Staff biographies

Janine, Head of Service

It’s my responsibility to ensure all the learners and staff are happy, safe and working hard. It’s also my job to make sure the individual learning programmes are being delivered in a creative and engaging way and that we have enough money to cover all our costs.

I came to the Special Education sector in Derby in 2008, having worked at mainstream further education colleges in London, Yorkshire and the Southern Counties for several years.

I have always enjoyed supporting young people to fulfil their potential and feel very lucky to be doing this job in which I can see the learners becoming more confident and independent every day.  I am a Specialist Leader of Education (SLE) which allows me to help other schools and teachers across the City through the Derby Teaching Schools Alliance (DTSA).  I am also a qualified Thrive Practitioner, which helps me to support social and emotional learning through an understanding of neuroscience, attachment styles and current research on child development.

As well as being a Manager and a Teacher, I have my own business as a practitioner of The Feldenkrais Method® which helps people with neurological problems, rehabilitation needs or injuries to improve their physical awareness and movement possibilities.

Alex, Teaching & Learning Coordinator

It is my job to organise all the fun and important learning activities for our learners.

I have been working with young people with Learning Difficulties for 10 years and have taught in both mainstream and special schools.

The best part of my job is building relationships with our learners and watching them progress and become more independent.

Sue, Learning Assistant

I have been working with children and young adults with Learning Disabilities for more than 30 years. I have worked across all age groups, from early years to FE, before joining T2, where specialist support is tailored to the needs of the learner. My role is to facilitate learning experiences for the learners, helping to build their confidence, guiding them to become more independent citizens.

Outside work, my main interests are photography and discovering new places in the world. I try to keep up with the learners by regularly swimming and playing badminton!

Debbie, Learning Facilitator

I have worked within Adult Social Care all of my career and have gained 24 years of community field work experience, supporting people with Learning Disabilities and their families. My last role was as a Support Planning Officer, helping people to find opportunities related to their individual interests and complete their support plans. I have strong links with many organisations and resources in Derby, which means the learners at T2 will be given the very best opportunities to explore what is available in their local community.

Being part of a young person’s transition and seeing them move on to live a fulfilled life is why working at T2 is such a privilege.

When I am not working, I love spending time watching French films and mooching around antique/vintage markets, as well as spending time with my family and friends.

Charlotte, Learning Facilitator

I have worked with young people with Learning Difficulties for over 20 years.  My particular interest is in work experience and careers.

I am also a carer for my elderly parents which has given me an insight into support networks from a different angle.

I enjoy walking in the countryside with my dog Daisy and creating applique pictures and cushions.

Amie, Learning Facilitator

I have worked with young people with learning disabilities for around 14 years, and have gathered a broad experience, working in schools, both special needs and mainstream, residential support and day service provider. I have also been a travel trainer, and have experience in setting up and supporting work experience placements. I enjoy building fun and meaningful relationships, watching confidence grow, and personality thrive as the young people take ownership of life choices.

In my free time I love to spend time with my family, especially having outdoor adventures with my little boys –  building dens is my speciality!

Laura, Learning Assistant

My role is to encourage and enable our learners to actively pursue their end goal. I have previously worked within mainstream education and studied performing arts and film and television studies at university. I feel extremely privileged to be a part of Transition 2, and I particularly enjoy seeing learners flourish under the support and guidance of our team. My areas of interest include; baking, drama and enterprise.

Outside of work, I love to see friends and I spend time with my 2 children crafting, baking and dancing around the kitchen!

Kirsty, Wellbeing Manager

My role involves overseeing all the pastoral (non-academic) aspects of Transition 2, supporting learners to identify self-management strategies which support them to engage better in their learning programmes.

I am a registered Creative Expressive Therapist and have also trained in Counselling. I have also recently completed professional training in Sensory Integration Therapy. I manage our Health and Therapies department and deliver therapeutic sensory sessions to our learners.

I have been part of the organisation since the doors opened in September 2012 and have worked to support learners with their individual educational programmes as well as liaising with families/carers and professionals within the young person’s circle of support. I have worked closely with young people who have severe Autism for 5 years and am interested in finding innovative ways to meet individual needs.

I am very interested in fashion and spend some of my free time vintage shopping. Having a healthy diet and getting plenty of exercise is important to me, so I also spend time swimming, running and cycling.

Angie, Learning Facilitator

I have worked with people with Learning Disabilities for about 28 years, mainly with learners over the age of 16.

My main interest is Person Centred Planning.

I enjoy spending time with my family and friends.

Naomi, Business & Development Manager

I manage the college’s administration, finance, building, marketing and development.

Before joining Transition 2 I worked in the voluntary sector for 9 years, with my last project focusing on creating opportunities for young disabled people.  I volunteered on the Transition 2 steering group for a year before joining the staff team in September 2013 and am extremely proud to be part of such a pioneering new organisation.

I enjoy supporting people to recognise their strengths and build their confidence, so link up with a network of local organisations who provide additional opportunities for our learners to participate and develop in.

I see how the learning opportunities at T2 can have such a positive impact on our learners’ lives and so enjoy sharing this with our future learners by spreading the word through our website, presentations and events.

Adam, Peer Mentor

I started at Transition 2 as a volunteer and now work as a Peer Mentor.  Because I’ve got learning difficulties myself and over the years I’ve become more confident and independent, I feel that I can help the learners through my experience.  I am a kind and friendly person and enjoy helping people and have worked with people with learning difficulties as an advocate and an ambassador for 6 years.

I like to help the learners to become more independent and reach their end goals.  I encourage them to do things themselves and enjoy seeing them build their confidence and get better at doing things on their own so I can stand back as they become independent.

I like walking in the Peak District and the countryside and enjoy keeping fit and eating healthily.

Simon, Partnerships Manager

It’s my role to develop internal and external stakeholder partnerships to improve the college’s community visibility.  I also deputise for the Head of Service internally and externally.

I’ve spent most of my working life in the Voluntary and Community sector in Derby, helping charities to connect with funders, volunteers, business and education providers.  I’m passionate about collaboration, community development and working with people to help them achieve their potential based on their unique set of skills and talents.  Immediately prior to Transition 2, I worked for Derby City Council as a Local Area Coordinator supporting individuals in a Derby neighbourhood to make use of their skills and talents to build networks, relationships and connections in the local community to help improve health outcomes.

In my spare time I am Chair and Founder of a nationally recognised local Cancer Support Charitable Trust. I live in Derby with my partner, my two sons and our two dogs.  I am quite sporty, often taking part in triathlons and running events throughout the year.

Sessional Tutors

We also have a bank of Sessional Tutors who provide a range of specialist vocational learning opportunities.

This includes Reflexology, Hairdressing, Horticulture, Makaton, Enterprise and Drama.