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peeple trustees

Peeple has a board of pro-active trustees with a strong background in education, family work and management at policy, academic and leadership levels.

Mark Harris became our chair of trustees in March 2017. He is a business consultant with more than thirty years experience of international sales and marketing. He has held a range of senior executive positions, most recently as Global Senior Vice President of Quaker Chemical Corporation. Mark has been a trustee of Peeple since 2013 following completion of a project for the charity which he undertook as a volunteer with the Cranfield Trust. He is currently also Treasurer of Age UK Warwickshire and a trustee of Oxford’s Community Emergency Foodbank and the charity ZANE (Zimbabwe a National Emergency). He is a National Trust volunteer and a Parish Councillor.

David Bailey is our vice chair of trustees. He is currently a self-employed finance consultant with extensive experience in Board development events in financial management, advising on competitive tenders and developing business cases. He is a qualified accountant (Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) and has an Advanced Certificate in Marketing. David was Board Director of South West Environmental Parks Ltd, including Paignton Zoo, Newquay Zoo and Living Coasts and has been a trustee of Peep since 2012.

Neil McClelland OBE was the founding director of the National Literacy Trust, which works across the UK to raise literacy standards and promote reading. The Trust worked closely with Peep and he was on the advisory committee for the initial development of Peep. Neil was a secondary school teacher and education officer, before becoming Deputy Director, Schools for the Inner London Education Authority, with responsibility for pre-school and primary education, and then Director of Education for the London Borough of Greenwich. Neil now works as a consultant and personal/organisational development coach, a volunteer mentor and adviser to a variety of charities; he also contributes to international literacy developments via The Frankfurt Book Fair/UNESCO Literacy Campaign.

Dr Helena Mitchell is an educationalist with experience as an infant and deputy head teacher, research and the professional development of teachers. She was Head of the School of Education at Oxford Brookes University until 2013, and was responsible for the development of a range of courses focused on the early years, including the Early Childhood Studies degree in 2000, and Early Years Professional Status. Her research work has focused on early years topics including early literacy, and she has been involved in research projects on student employability with the Higher Education Academy, a project gathering practitioners’ views on appropriate training, and is a member of EECERA, UCET and TACTYC, as well as the Early Childhood Studies Degrees Network. She has been involved with Peep since 2000 and became a trustee in 2006.

Mike O’Regan taught for two years before becoming a co-founder of Research Machines (supplier of IT and services to education) where he worked until 1994. He is now mostly involved with the creation and financing of small companies, including as a Director of the Oxford Technology VCTs of which he was a co-founder. He set up, funded and chairs Hamilton Trust, which ran several educational projects, including an Education Action Zone (EAZ) in Oxford and which now supports primary teachers through its web-based support of the planning and teaching of English and Maths. Mike co-founded Peep in 1995 and is also a trustee of a number of other educational charities.

Teresa Smith stepped down as our chair of trustees in March 2017, but continues to be a trustee. She has a life time of experience in work and research with families, including the national evaluation of children’s centres (ECCE 2001-2016) commissioned by the Department of Education. She was a specialist advisor to the House of Commons Children Schools and Families Select Committee (2004-2010) during their inquiries into children’s centres and social work training. Teresa worked in the Department of Social Policy and Intervention in the University of Oxford for many years, where she was Head of Department 1997-2005. Her research has focused on community, family and childcare; and the evaluation of community-based programmes for young children and their families such as children’s centres. She contributed to the reviews which led to the development of children’s centres.  Teresa has been involved with Peeple since she was part of the advisory board which helped set up the organisation in 1995.

Dr Alison Street has spent 30 years in community music education with families. She composed and compiled materials for the Peep Learning Together programme (2000). Her research interests focus on the musicality of adult-infant interactions from diverse social and cultural perspectives. She works as a consultant to national projects that support families with young children’s learning and communication through music. She is a tutor on the Masters Programme in Early Childhood Music, accredited by Birmingham City University and is associate lecturer at Oxford Brookes in Early Childhood Studies.