SLT Bios

Executive Leadership Team –

Neil Rodgers

Neil joined James Calvert Spence College as Executive Headteacher in January 2016 and leads the staff team across both school sites with overall responsibility for all aspects of school life. Prior to working at JCSC, Neil was a senior leader in secondary schools in Newcastle, North Tyneside and Sunderland for 15 years.

Neil studied mathematics and computing science at University, followed by a Secondary PGCE qualification, which led to his first teaching post as a maths teacher at Hirst High School in Ashington.

Like every member of the senior team, Neil is passionate about ensuring all children have every chance to succeed, regardless of any potential barriers. He truly believes that education is the key to success, and is determined that the students at JCSC are given the best possible start in life.

Outside of school, Neil plays the guitar quite badly, cycles fairly well and has most of his spare time taken up by his two daughters, both of whom are currently studying towards their GCSEs.


David Nisbet

David joined JCSC in January 2016 as Head of School. He has responsibility for the curriculum and key outcomes at Key Stage Four and Sixth Form, as well as a number of leadership roles across the two sites. David is the Pupil Premium champion for the school, ensuring that all children, regardless of their background are able to reach their full potential.David has been a senior leader in schools for ten years where he has led strategic development of curriculum design, PSHE, parental and stakeholder engagement as well as leading the pastoral and academic progress of schools and alternative education.David studied economics at university and is passionate about business and its place in the wider world. He is a dad to two boys, enjoys running and likes to play a part in his local community.

Above all, David is a teacher and enjoys nothing more that spending time with his Year 10, 12 and 13 students.


Amy Crawley

Amy is the Business Manager at JCSC. She joined the school in July 2011 and has responsibility for the support functions across the two sites. As a member of the ELT, Amy provides strategic leadership and management on all aspects of school business management to continuously improve the effectiveness and performance of our schools.

Amy’s primary focus is to ensure our schools and staff have the best facilities and resources available to give our students the best education possible. Amy graduated with a first-class honours degree in Business Studies before working at the North East Strategic Health Authority, managing junior doctor’s speciality training. She enjoys working in organisations where you can see first-hand the benefits of high quality care and education. She is a mum to two young boys and enjoys spending quality time with her family and friends.


Jacqui Johnson

Jacqui is JCSC’s Assistant Headteacher – Diversity. Jacqui is passionate about supporting all of our pupils to overcome barriers to learning .Jacqui has spent her whole teaching career working in the north. She started working as an RE teacher then quickly applied for an SEN teacher job. For the past 15 years Jacqui has worked with vulnerable learners as a SENCO and leading an Additionally Resourced Provision for pupils with Autism. She has achieved her NASENCO qualification and specific qualifications in supporting pupils with ASD and SEMH. Whilst working in North Tyneside, Jacqui supported other schools to improve their SEN provision as a Lead SENCO. She achieved Specialist Leader in Education for SEND status in December 2015, which led to further outreach support for other schools within the Local Authority.

Jacqui is mum to two young boys and spends most of her ‘spare’ time watching them swim.

Neil McCudden

Neil  joined JCSC in September 2019 as Assistant Headteacher in charge of Ethos and Culture. He has responsibility for the attendance, behaviour and safety of all our young people, as well as a number of other leadership roles across the school. Neil is Designated Safeguard Lead for the school, ensuring that all our students are safe from harm and safe to learn. Neil has worked in a pastoral setting in a number of schools across the North East, gaining over 20 years of experience in working with students from a wide variety of backgrounds.  He is passionate about ensuring the very best for the young people who attend our school, vociferously stating that if it is not good enough for his children then it is not good enough for the children of our community.Neil studied Economic and Social History at university and believes that the the study of history allows us to learn from the mistakes of the past so as not to repeat them today. He is a Dad of two boys, and enjoys playing hockey and going on holiday to warmer places.

Neil loves being in the classroom, teaching.

Senior Leadership Team –

 James Moore

James joined JCSC in September 2014 as a teacher of Physical Education, in September 2017 he became Head of Sixth Form. James works closely with Sixth Form students and oversees their progress and achievement at Key Stage 5, whilst providing guidance to support their aspirational progressions alongside pastoral care.

Within this position, James strives to ensure every student receives a high level of careers education and guidance, collaborating with other schools to develop provision within JCSC. Before joining the JCSC team, James completed a degree in Physical Education and Youth Sport. James has a huge amount of passion for his subject.  He coached sport in America before qualifying as a PE Teacher and as also an athletics coach at The Institute of Sport in Sheffield. This sport enthusiast leads Key Stage 5 PE courses, KS4 exam classes and supports physical and fitness development at JCSC.


Janice Bailey

Janice is the Director of Science at JCSC. She is accountable for the science curriculum and key outcomes of biology, chemistry and physics for Year 7 through to Year 13. She is also part of the school’s health and safety team. Janice is passionate about working with students and parents, and thrives on seeing our students succeed. She has been with the school since 2009 and is still as determined as ever to ensure our students achieve their potential.Before moving into the education sector, Janice worked within research and development as a scientist and manager in three blue chip multi-national companies, namely Procter & Gamble, Mars Inc and Reckitt Benckiser. She brings a wealth of real-world knowledge to the department and the school. Her work required extensive travel, living in several different cities and even a short stint living in Hungary. Janice has a first-class honours degree in chemistry and several professional qualifications in auditing and food safety. Janice is currently taking part in the Ambition School leadership programme.

Janice lives within the community and enjoys having a chat with our past students, current students and parents, when outside the school environment. She is a keen mountain biker and can often be seen cycling around the area.

Jane Grey Lead Practitioner and NQT/ITT Tutor

Jane started at JCSC in 2012 as an English teacher and was appointed as Lead Practitioner in 2017. She previously worked in schools in Newcastle and Blyth, holding middle leadership posts including Whole School Literacy Lead and Assistant Leader of English.She believes in the need for teachers to be learners too, and has achieved Post Graduate Certificate in Practitioner Enquiry and recently completed her NPQML. Jane is responsible for the training and development of our newly-qualified teachers and student teachers in school. She also leads whole school CPD programmes and provision. She is passionate about promoting the love of reading in children and believes it can change lives.

Outside of school, Jane enjoys live music and theatre, swimming and loves reading crime and detective fiction.


Kerry Payne

Kerry joined JCSC in September 2017 as Director of English. She has responsibility for the English curriculum and raising standards and student outcomes in English, at Key Stage Three, Four and Five, as well as being a whole school leader. Kerry held a number of leadership roles whilst working at a Secondary school in Shropshire for eleven years. These roles included leadership posts within the English department as well as being the Whole School Literacy Co-ordinator, Pastoral Head of Year 9, and the NQT and ITT tutor.Kerry is a mother to two children and she enjoys spending quality time with her family. At university she studied an English and Media degree.

Kerry is passionate about education. She believes that education empowers young people to change their lives and feels that English is a vital life skill that provides a window on the world through the study of diverse texts.

 Russell Gaines

Russell started JCSC (then Coquet High School) in September 2007 as Head of IT. Russell has been a senior leader within the school for over six years. Russell’s current role is Director of Vocational Studies, which encompasses ICT, Computing, Business Studies, Health and Social Care, PE, French, History and Music and Performing Arts. In addition, Russell has key responsibility as the BTEC Quality Nominee for all Level 2 and Level 3 BTEC qualifications which are offered in school. This role is to ensure that all subjects comply with BTEC delivery and assessment objectives. Russell also has the responsibility of assessing and approving all external visits that are planned by staff to take students out of school to enhance their education experiences. Russell has been a senior leader in schools for over ten years. In these roles he has contributed and led on whole school focuses including enhancing the profile of gifted and talented students, monitoring the progress of students requiring greater support and building praise and reward systems for students.Russell studied Business Information and Technology at university and then went on to complete a teaching degree. Russell is passionate about IT and Computing and how the medium can be used to amplify and support learning. Russell recently completed his National Professional Qualification for Senior Leadership (NPQSL).