Leadership Team

Two Heads are better than one….

Joint Heads and Co Directors - Hellen Papworth and Gareth Wright

With combined experience of over 40 years in education, 30 within the SEN sector and 20 within senior leadership and Headship, Hellen and Gareth are accustomed to the drive, resilience and knowledge required to channel the rigour, accountability and pressure associated with leadership to move a school forward towards excellence.

Hellen and Gareth have a track record of impact and whole school improvement at senior level, with improved outcomes for students, and raised quality across all judgement areas at inspection.  They are experienced in working collaboratively with all stakeholders including governance and outside agencies to effect maximum school development and student progress.  

Both are Designated Safeguarding Leads, and above all else, hold young peoples' wellbeing as the priority.  

Feedback from professionals:

'...extremely hard-working and dedicated individuals continually going above and beyond ...'

'...extensive experience as extremely effective designated safeguarding leads and senior leaders with proven, quality impact...'  

'...consistently impressed with their diligence, work ethic and integrity...'

'... implemented systems and procedures with clear direction which effectively raised standards...'

Hellen Papworth

Member of our Senior Leadership Team

Learning Team Lead

Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead

  • responsible for the whole school curriculum, beliefs and ethos
  • community links and business development

Gareth Wright

Member of our Senior Leadership Team

Designated Safeguarding Lead

Lead for Health & Safety

Gareth’s role will encompass:

  • strong links to all aspects of Pastoral Care
  • oversight of compliance related to Health & Safety and Estates
  • support for outdoor activities and learning sessions as appropriate
  • focus on marketing, community links and business development

Alongside the serious stuff….

Gareth is obsessed with all sports, particularly football. He runs a local sports radio show and his specialist quiz subject is The Beatles.

Hellen loves being outdoors, especially the ocean, running, music and being with her children (most of the time).

Anne Baker

Member of our Senior Leadership Team


Anne has lived and worked in Somerset for 35 years, where she brought up her 2 children, and has recently welcomed a gorgeous granddaughter to the family

With over 30 years teaching experience in mainstream secondary and middle schools and FE, Anne has a range of experience working with young people and adults with a range of learning needs; 19 years of which was spent in a specialist schoool for students with specific learning difficulties and co-morbid learning differences.

As a teacher, Head of Department and SENCO across her career, Anne continually applied her knowledge and experience of different learning needs in order to support students to reach their potential. Her role as SENCo involved oversight and quality assurance of learning, assessment and progress tracking, for which she worked closely with learning and therapy teams. Anne was pivotal in assuring the implementation of IEPs and EHCPs, maintaining collaborative relationships with stakeholders such as local education authorities and other professionals including Educational Psychologists

Anne has previously served on governing bodies as parent governor in local primary schools

‘I found fulfilment during my time working with young people and a specialist team of staff. I welcome the opportunity to contribute to students’ life at Abbot's Way’.