Natalie Harris

Member Article

Focus-Trust appoints new Chief Operating Officer

Newly created role to ensure high quality strategic leadership across the whole trust

Focus-Trust, a multi-academy trust based in the North-West of England, has appointed experienced HR, community regeneration and business management advisor Natalie Harris in the newly created role of Chief Operating Officer.

Working as an integral part of the senior leadership team, she is tasked with championing high quality strategic leadership and the sharing of best practice across the trust’s 15 schools, which are located in Greater Manchester and West Yorkshire.

Natalie will also be instrumental in building on Focus’ existing reputation as a ‘trailblazer’ academy trust and ensuring the ongoing improvement as it looks towards the future following what has been a challenging couple of years for the sector as a result of the pandemic.

Commenting on the appointment Chief Executive Helen Rowland said that the trust would ‘benefit immensely’ from Natalie’s wealth of experience across the education and wider public sector, having previously worked within HR, community regeneration, business management and finance roles throughout her career.

She went on to explain that the creation of the COO role formed part of Focus-Trust’s continued efforts to ensure the learning of all children and adults is continuously valued and promoted.  

A charitable organisation, Focus Trust’s vision is “learning together, making the difference”.

During the pandemic, it made the decision to publish all of its educational articles, blogs and resources on its ‘Learning Together’ website in a bid to help others across the industry – promoting a collaborative approach following what has been ‘an extraordinary year’.  

Natalie says she is looking forward to applying her ‘pragmatic’ and ‘solution focussed’ approach to the role, and to playing an integral role in evaluating and planning the future opportunities for the trust.

Welcoming her to her new position, Helen Rowland said: “Natalie’s expertise and experience will really complement the existing skills that we have within our senior management team here at Focus Trust.

“She is incredibly passionate about what she does, and about the wellbeing of our children and colleagues and so we know she will really help to champion our collective values, and to deliver on our shared vision of ‘learning together, making a difference’.

“Her role not only demonstrates our continued commitment to ensuring high quality strategic leadership across the whole trust, but also our ongoing investment facilitating the sharing best practice across all of our schools.”

Commenting on her new role Natalie said: “Even in the short period of time I have been with Focus-Trust, I have witnessed their core values in play – every decision they make is about what’s in the best interest of the children, staff wellbeing & wider community.

“I am delighted to be joining the team, and very much looking forward to contributing to our continued success over the coming months and years.”

Focus-Trust - a charitable primary schools trust which is based in the North West of England and West Yorkshire with a vision of providing great schools at the heart of communities where children thrive, achieve and succeed. 

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Isabella Storey .

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