Staff biographies

Janine, Head of Service

I am the very proud Head of T2. I’m more of a Head Learner than a Head Teacher, as I believe passionately in the powers of curiosity, imagination and creativity as the catalysts to lifelong learning. As a Senior Leader, I always try to role-model the importance of learning something new every day, putting in effort, keeping my word and genuinely looking out for one another; as a result, learners and staff thrive at T2, where we work hard, care about each other, and find joy in the planned and unplanned learning opportunities we share.

I came to the SEND sector in Derby in 2008, having worked in mainstream further education across London, Yorkshire and the Southern Counties. I co-founded Transition2 in 2012 and we now sit within the Learning, Inclusion and Skills Directorate at Derby City Council, where we are proud to be an important part of the LA’s ‘Living My Best Life’ strategy. I am a Specialist Leader of Education (SLE) in SEND leadership and complex behaviour, and a qualified Thrive Practitioner, which enables me to support and promote social and emotional learning across our provision, the locality, the region and nationally, through a developed understanding of neuroscience, child development and interpersonal neurobiology.

Outside of SEND leadership, I run my own business as a practitioner of The Feldenkrais Method®, working with people who have a range of neurological challenges, rehabilitation needs or injuries, as well as those who wish to improve their physical awareness, movement capacity, or specialist skills in musical instrument playing, sport, or corporate coaching through leadership embodiment practises and neuro-movement principles.

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.

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!

Angie, Learning Facilitator

I have worked in education for my whole career, starting in schools with a behaviour specialism then moving into special education, and have worked at Transition2 since we opened in 2012.

I am passionate about person-centred planning, believing in the importance of involving young people in every stage of their journey and giving them a voice, and have been involved in the Pathways project, Helen Sanderson training and Sharing Knowledge.  This year I have taken on the role of Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead, as well as continuing my responsibilities as a First Aider and Mental Health First Aider.  I enjoy taking on new professional development challenges and bring with it my pastoral and educational experience supporting learners and families through safeguarding, person-centred planning and transition into adulthood.

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.

Laura, Learning Facilitator

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!

Simon, Partnerships Manager / Deputy Head of Service

My role as Partnerships Manager sees me develop internal and external stakeholder partnerships to improve the college’s visibility within the community. I deputise for the Head of Service internally and externally, and I offer physical fitness and vocational support to our learners as part of their timetable. I am the Designated Safeguarding Lead for the organisation and I Chair all of our learner reviews.

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 assets, skills and talents. I joined Transition2 in 2016; prior to this I worked for Derby City Council as a Local Area Coordinator supporting individuals to build networks, relationships and connections in the local community to help improve health outcomes for themselves and others. I’ve also coordinated mentoring projects helping young people at risk of crime, and have spent some time in the commercial sector.

In 2014 I helped set up and chair a nationally recognised charitable trust to support local families living with cancer. I live in Derby with my wife, my two sons and my dog. I’m a bit of a fitness fanatic (and a qualified gym instructor) so if I’m not at T2, you’ll find me out and about running up and down hills, cycling on the roads or swimming in a lake.

Sara, Assistant Business & Development Manager

I have recently started at T2 and am excited about developing this brand new role to support the administration of the college and specifically to administer the learner review process, ensuring it is as effective as it can be for our amazing young learners.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed working within the education sector over the past 7 years – managing HR and payroll at a busy Inner City primary school in Derby – and more recently, as HR Manager within the central team of a large multi-academy Trust.  Prior to this, I’ve worked across a number of regional Adult Social Care & Health and Education teams.

For the past 5 years, I’ve also volunteered as a Governor at my local primary school and have loved learning about education in our City from the perspective of a Governor as well as a parent and employee.

In my spare time, I enjoy travelling around our beautiful countryside by motorhome with my family and socialising with friends.

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.

Specialist Tutors


We also have a range of specialist colleagues working across varied areas of learning, including horticulture, media, supported employment, job coaching, systematic instruction, Makaton, BSL, green skills, hairdressing, art, enterprise, Thrive, wellbeing, creative practises, person-centred planning, yoga for special needs and independent travel training.