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WSAT Leadership Team

WSAT Leadership Team 2020-21

Paul Rushforth is the Chief Executive Officer of the Trust

He has been a Headteacher of four schools over the last 23 years.  Paul has worked as an additional inspector and lead inspector for 11 years and been based in West Somerset for the past 17 years. He works with a number of partner Trusts to review primary and secondary provision across the South West. 



Barbara O'Keefe is the Chief Operations Officer for the Trust

Barbara has worked in school business management for over thirty years, working in schools and running her own management consultancy. Barbara and the Trust Central Services Team are keen to ensure that our children and staff work in the best possible learning environment and have the resources they require to maximise learning opportunities and raise educational standards across all of our schools and nurseries.



Mr Sebastien Crossley Executive SENDCO

Mr Crossley is our newly appointed Executive SENDCO. His role is to support the provision for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities across our Trust. He works closely with our team of school based SEND managers and headteachers to ensure that our Teachers and Teaching Assistants have the right training to meet the needs of the children in our care. 



Judy Shore is the WSAT HR and Payroll Manager

Judy has worked in schools for the last 27 years, primarily at a Junior School in Highbridge and then for Minehead Middle and now for WSAT. She previously trained as a Nurse and qualified as an SRN and also worked as a Manager of a large distribution depot.  Judy loves her  job and is extremely experienced in all aspects of HR management, and associated practices. Currently she is running the payroll system for the WSAT.  She is married with 4 children and 8 grand children.




Mrs Emma Murch - Director of Early Years

Emma Murch  joined West Somerset Academies Trust in September 2019 as Director of Early Years. Emma was an early Years Teacher and Advisor before having her own family. In her role as Director of Early Years, Emma works with the Head Teachers and Early Years Teachers across West Somerset Academy Trust to create an outstanding curriculum that inspires children and meets their learning needs, to ensure they achieve their potential.