Gemma Martin appointed new DDE for Hereford Diocese

Published on: 22nd January 2024

Gemma Martin, New Director of Education, Hereford Diocese

The Dioceses of Hereford and Worcester are pleased to announce a new cross-diocesan appointment which will see Gemma Martin take over as the next Diocesan Director of Education for Hereford Diocese following the departure of Canon Andrew Teale from April 2024. Upon completion of her degree in Religious Studies and Education at the University of Cambridge, Gemma moved back to the area in which she grew up and has 18 years of experience working in Church of England primary schools in both Worcestershire and Warwickshire, with 12 of these years in leadership roles. She brings a wealth of expertise to her new role.


Gemma has most recently served as the Head Teacher of Himbleton CE Primary School and Nursery, where she has played a central role in supporting the school to achieve rapid improvement and growth, with a positive inspection outcome in March 2023. Her commitment to enhancing educational outcomes has been further demonstrated through her dual role as a School Effectiveness Adviser for the Diocese of Worcester Education Team, where she has supported schools across the diocese in various capacities, and led a range of training opportunities. As part of this role, Gemma has led the delivery of the National Professional Qualification for Senior Leadership (NPQSL) for the Diocese of Worcester, showcasing her commitment to developing leaders within the education sector. Gemma has also worked for Worcestershire Local Authority in an advisory role, working with schools on focused projects and key improvement priorities.


This new cross-working role will be overseen by the current DDE for the Diocese of Worcester, Tim Reid, who has been appointed as Executive Director of Education covering Hereford and Worcester Dioceses. Tim Reid adds: “Gemma's appointment as the next Diocesan Director of Education for Hereford reflects a joint commitment to the goals outlined in the Church of England Education Office 2023 report 'Our Hope for a Flourishing Schools System: Deeply Christian, Serving the Common Good.' I look forward to continuing to work with her and supporting her as she develops in this new role."


“Gemma's extensive experience in both formal leadership and advisory roles positions her to lead our joint Diocesan Education efforts," adds Sam Pratley, Diocesan Secretary at Hereford Diocese. "Her dedication to curriculum development, leadership support and targeted projects for improved pupil outcomes aligns with our mission to see young people flourish and grow in their Christian faith as part of our school community across the Diocese."


Commenting on her new appointment, Gemma Martin said: “I am delighted to be embarking upon this exciting opportunity as the new DDE for Hereford Diocese. The outgoing DDE, Canon Andrew Teale, has worked incredibly hard with the Education Team to achieve a great deal in a relatively short period of time. The positive relationships he has been instrumental in fostering, as well as the paths that he and his team have established, will be a great foundation for our future work.


I am taking up this role at a point when the Church of England Schools in Hereford and Worcester Dioceses are in a good position, where there are many strengths upon which to build. Therefore, I believe that we are well positioned to embrace the future challenges of educating the next generation of pupils in an ever-evolving world, with a focus on partnership and collaboration at all levels.


Hereford Diocese is a large area to cover, with many rural school communities. I am very much looking forward to building positive and trusting relationships with all schools as we begin our journey together. I am passionate about ensuring that all pupils have access to a high-quality educational offer underpinned by a clear Christian vision, enabling them to develop and thrive as unique individuals.


I look forward to collaborating with schools across the diocese in a wide variety of ways to continue fostering positive and effective learning environments for our pupils and to sharing key learning opportunities between our two diocesan education communities.”


Gemma will be working under the new Executive Diocesan Director for Education, Tim Reid, who will be overseeing Church of England schools across Hereford and Worcester Dioceses.

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