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Meet our Prep School Team

Prep School Teaching Team

Gavin Bunker
Head Teacher
Gavin Bunker
Head Teacher

Gavin’s path to teaching began 16 years ago when he was a youth worker and a Community Sport Coordinator for the local authority. Here he realised his passion for teaching Sport and PE. He studied Business and Sport Studies at university and took extra modules in Sport Science. He then completed his PGCE at the University of East London.

Stephanie Edmunds
Deputy Head - Academic
Stephanie Edmunds
Deputy Head - Academic

Stephanie studied Biology and Maths at the University of London (Goldsmiths College). She was a manager of clinical trials within the pharmaceutical industry before retraining to become a teacher.

I decided to become a teacher because I love learning and being with children. No day is ever the same and there are always opportunities to make a difference. I teach Maths, but have also taught IT, Biology and Games.

Celia Ackerley
Deputy Head - Progress Lead
Celia Ackerley
Deputy Head - Progress Lead

Celia Ackerley has been teaching for 20 years. She started out with a degree in Zoology from Liverpool University before trying out nursing. However, after realising she was too squeamish to make that a career she started working in challenging schools in London, Sheffield and East Sussex.

I became a teacher as I wanted to help people and be challenged. I particularly like working with young people as they make make my day fun and two days are never the same.

David Slattery
Head of STEM
David Slattery
Head of STEM

David’s career path has been eclectic. He completed a degree in English Literature before sitting an aptitude test that indicated he would be a good computer programmer, so he pursued that for some years after university.

I then spent almost 10 years teaching overseas before realising I would like to return to the UK and pass on my knowledge of technology to young minds in a British classroom setting. Claremont gives me that opportunity.

Jack Richardson
Head of Science
Jack Richardson
Head of Science

Jack grew up in Hastings and went to University in Norwich (UEA). He studied Environmental Science and Biology, UEA is the centre for climate change research. He decided to train to become an educator after teaching a trial Science lesson to Year 7 students at Robertsbridge Community College.

My mum was a teacher for 35 years and has always inspired me.

Nicky Glendinning
Head of Humanities and English
Nicky Glendinning
Head of Humanities and English

Nicky has been teaching since she was seven! Her parents put blackboard paint on a wall at the back of our conservatory, and she would teach her teddies and dolls very patiently in the garden. From there she went on to the Purcell School of Music and learned the clarinet and piano, as well as singing in the choir. She went on to read English at King’s College, London followed by a semester spent in Perpignan to immerse herself in French language and culture. Her career started in publishing, at Random House Children’s Books. After having her two boys, she took the NCTJ news preliminary exams and worked as a freelance feature writer before undertaking teacher training. Nicky did her PGCE in MFL (secondary French) at CCCU.

Some of my favourite memories of school are the concerts. We did a whole school performance of Handel’s Messiah and Britten’s Ceremony of Carols, among other works; it was exciting to be part of it.

Georgina Osbourne
Head of Modern Foreign Languages
Georgina Osbourne
Head of Modern Foreign Languages

Georgina has been teaching for 20 years. She started out teaching in Spain and France. The university where she worked had a link with a UK university and that is how she ended up back in England, teaching French and Spanish. She has had a career involving learning support, business and management, but it’s her passion for languages that takes precedent.

I have been lucky enough to teach Claremont children both in the Prep school and the Senior school. I am proud to be a part of their language learning journey.

Jayne Francis
Head of Geography
Jayne Francis
Head of Geography

Jayne has been teaching for 17 years. She studied Geography and Sociology at the University of Keele and before becoming a teacher, spent 10 years in Local Government, in Contingency Planning for Civil Emergencies and as an Information Officer, producing Labour Market reports.

Lorraine Barry
Director of Music
Lorraine Barry
Director of Music

Lorraine has a BA hons in Performing Arts with Classical Voice major and has been teaching music for 22 years.

When I am not teaching, I am a choral director and musical director.

Barbara Darlington
Head of Art
Barbara Darlington
Head of Art

Barbara has been teaching for 29 years. She studied at Falmouth School of Fine Art and at the University of Greenwich.

Kate West
Head of Drama & LAMDA Coordinator
Kate West
Head of Drama & LAMDA Coordinator
Franki Pena
Head of Creative Faculty
Franki Pena
Head of Creative Faculty
Dan Brownbill
Head of Games
Dan Brownbill
Head of Games
Kate Alexander
History and English teacher
Kate Alexander
History and English teacher

Kate has been teaching on and off for 37 years. She has also worked for a film company and run her own import/export business.

Stuart Ware
Progress Lead Year 6, 7 & 8
Stuart Ware
Progress Lead Year 6, 7 & 8
Margaret Perry
Science and Maths Teacher
Margaret Perry
Science and Maths Teacher

Margaret has been teaching for 26 years. She got her BSc Environmental Studies at Kingston University and Human Geography from Open University. She has worked in several primary schools, as well as for the World Wildlife Fund in Godalming, before studying for a PGCE.

I decided to become a teacher because I believe that education is empowering and is the key to a better life for all.

Emily Chaffer
Year 3 Form Tutor and Teacher
Emily Chaffer
Year 3 Form Tutor and Teacher

Emily has been teaching for 5 years. After studying a Sports Science degree, she decided to begin the path to teaching by completing a primary PGCE at the University of Manchester. She then taught in London for five years before making the move down to Sussex to begin the next chapter of her teaching career at Claremont.

I became a teacher as I enjoy making a positive impact in peoples lives and I believe that inspiring children to realise their full potential is one of the biggest impacts I can make.

Rachel Holmes
Forest School Lead
Rachel Holmes
Forest School Lead

Rachel has been teaching for 25 years. She was inspired to become an educator by her own PE teacher at school. She studied at The University of Brighton in Eastbourne.

It was a beautiful place to learn. I have remained in Eastbourne ever since!

Dan Sutherland
Key Stage 2 Teacher
Dan Sutherland
Key Stage 2 Teacher
Marie Patel
Year 3 Teacher
Marie Patel
Year 3 Teacher
Elaine Hickman
Learning Support Teacher
Elaine Hickman
Learning Support Teacher
Marty Dornan
School Nurse
Marty Dornan
School Nurse

Pre-Prep Teaching Team

Rachel Potter
Head of Pre-Prep and Nursery
Rachel Potter
Head of Pre-Prep and Nursery

Rachel completed her Bachelor of Education (hons) Degree at Middlesex University in London. Part of the degree included the invaluable opportunity to study at a school in the MidWest USA, Muncie, Indiana. This involved teaching and being a fully recognised member of the teaching department. Rachel has also worked in inner city London, Hertfordshire, Hastings and Eastbourne, teaching across the entire Primary age range 5-11 years.

I have been incredibly lucky to work with some outstanding professionals throughout my career, including current colleagues from whom I continue to learn a great deal.

Holly Newton
Deputy Head of Nursery & Pre-Prep, Head of Early Years, Reception Teacher
Holly Newton
Deputy Head of Nursery & Pre-Prep, Head of Early Years, Reception Teacher
Stephen Drinkwater
Year 2 Teacher and Key Stage Assessment Coordinator
Stephen Drinkwater
Year 2 Teacher and Key Stage Assessment Coordinator

After working in retail and local government, Stephen decided to follow his dream of teaching. He went back to college and then university at the age of 27.

I have always enjoyed challenging myself, in sport and and academic setting, and I want to enter teaching to share, support and encourage others to build their own pathways in life. Going back to college and then university presented me with many challenges, but the overall experience and joy of seeing other progress made those good struggles worth it! I love teaching Year 2 and watching the children grow in confidence with every new experience we share together.

Leila Brownbill
Year 2 Teacher
Leila Brownbill
Year 2 Teacher
Christa Chandler
Year 1 Teacher
Christa Chandler
Year 1 Teacher
Claire Wilson
Year 1 Teacher
Claire Wilson
Year 1 Teacher

Sports Department

From left to right: Natasha Bonnici (Girls Games), Chris Catt (Head of Swimming, Games), Megan Compton (Sports Teacher), Michael Cook (Sports Teacher, Pastoral Lead), Sam Hurst (PE and Girls Games) and Dan Brownbill (Head of Boys Games).

Claremont School
Nursery & Prep

Ebdens Hill, Baldslow, St. Leonards-on-Sea
East Sussex, TN37 7PW
01424 751555

Claremont School
Senior and Sixth Form

Bodiam, Nr. Robertsbridge,
East Sussex, TN32 5UJ
01580 830396

Claremont School
Clyde House

Clyde Ho/258 Sedlescombe Road North,
St Leonards-on-sea TN37 7JL
01424 233000

Claremont School
Pyke House

Claremont Boarding House Upper Lake,
Battle, East Sussex, TN33 0AN
01424 775332

Claremont School
French Study Centre

La Maison Claremont,
14 rue de l'arbalete,
62500, St Omer

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