Senior School Teachers
Expert teaching leads to excellent results.
Our inspirational Senior School Teachers
Teaching staff at NGHS are passionate experts in their field. They do what they love, and they love what they do. Their dedication and expertise make teaching and learning a pleasure and a real success which is reflected in the excellent achievements of our students every year. Find out a bit more about our teaching staff in their profiles below.
Heads of Department
Mr Colin Aspley
Head of Science Faculty and Head of Physics
- BSc, Loughborough University and PGCE, University of Nottingham
- Subjects: Physics and Science
- Quote: “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough” – a slight mis-quote from Einstein
Mrs Cath Pilling
Head of Spanish
- BA Hons French with Spanish, University of Sheffield
- Subjects: Head of Spanish and teacher of French
- Enrichment activities: Organises a continued programme of study visits to the Spanish speaking world for students from KS3, KS4 and KS5. The Spanish Department also runs weekly grammar support sessions for students in KS4 and KS5.
- Quote: “I am passionate about the Spanish language and culture of Spain. I see myself as a life-long learner so, in addition to striving to enable my students to achieve their best, I am continually working to improve my own linguistic proficiency. I love teaching at NGHS because the girls are bold and enthusiastic about their learning, and they can see that learning a language opens doors. ”
Dr Dani Frisby
Head of Latin and Classics
- PhD, MA and BA (Joint Hons.) in Classics, all University of Nottingham
- Subjects: Classics (under the aegis of which I teach Latin, Greek and Classical Civilisation)
- Enrichment activities: Runs Pleiades KS3 Classics Club; Latin and Greek Reading; Linguistics Club
- Quote: “An endlessly rich tapestry woven from myth, history and language – there’s something for everyone in Classics at NGHS.”
Mrs Michaela Lewis
Head of Philosophy, Religion and Ethics
- MA Educational Leadership, University of Leicester; MA Philosophy & Religion, University of London; PGCE RS University of Exeter; BA Hons RS University of Lancaster.
- Subjects: Philosophy, Religion & Ethics
- Quote: “I love teaching at NGHS because it is such a friendly and kind place, where all the students have so much creativity and enthusiasm for everything they do. It is a pleasure to be their pastoral Head of KS4.”
Miss Sam Fruin
Head of Art and Design
- BA(Hons), PGCE, MA
- Subjects: Fine Art
- Enrichment activities: Life Drawing, Christmas Card Club amongst others clubs too. In her spare time, Miss Fruin enjoys swimming, walking, yoga and tattooing.
- Quote: “Art is the most intense mode of individualism that the world has known.” ― Oscar Wilde
Mr Richard Macfarlane
Head of Humanities Faculty
- BA (Hons) Modern History and Politics and PGCE both University of Sheffield
- Subjects: Teacher of History and Politics and a Senior examiner for OCR
- Other information: “I have written a textbook on the Cold War for A level history.”
Mrs Gemma Giacone
Head of Geography
- BA Human Geography (Hons) Nottingham Trent University and PGCE University of Nottingham
- Subjects: Geography – with a particular interest in Human Geography/Geo-Politics/Globalisation
- Also the owner of Saffy the school dog!
- Quote: “I absolutely love my job. I’m so lucky to get to teach young people who are hungry to learn, and who have the ideas and motivation to one day change the world for the better.”
Mrs Kathryn Kelly
Head of Psychology
- First class BSc (Hons) Psychology, Staffordshire University. Completed the Graduate Teacher Programme to gain full QTS, General Teaching Council for England.
- Subjects: Psychology
- Other information: Psychology in Action event hosted by the University of Warwick, Tutor2U AQA Psychology Grade Booster event, links with the Psychology Department at the University of Nottingham which provides volunteering opportunities during their Summer Scientist Week
- Quote: “Psychology is a truly fascinating and challenging subject. It provides students with a more detailed understanding of behaviour, perceptions and motivations. It introduces students to how empirical research is conducted and develops important skills of evaluation and critical thinking. Psychological research is always insightful, often counter-intuitive and can have the potential to encourage us to challenge and change pre-conceived beliefs, ideas and systems. For all these reasons, it is a hugely important subject.”
Mrs Frances Sparrow
Director of Digital Innovation and Learning
- BA (Hons) Maths and Computing, University of Essex, PGCE Maths, University of Oxford
- Subjects: Science and Space Technology Diploma, previously taught Maths.
- Other information: Responsible for the school’s Digital Strategy and managing IT Support. A lot of technology industry experience including coding Ship simulators, Air Traffic Control and Crime report systems. Also helped start up several US .com businesses in Europe.
- Quote: “Technology will play a big part in our future. It is vital that our students learn to code to ensure that the female voice is heard and that young women become the creators of technology and not just consumers.”
Mrs Chris Clarke
Director of Music
- MMus and BMus First Class Hons, Surrey University, and PGCE from the OU.
- Subjects: As Director of Music Mrs Clarke teaches in the classroom up to Year 13. Chris also conducts the Symphony Orchestra, the Lower School Wind Band and assists with the String Orchestra. She also runs the (now famous!) Staff Choir, loved by staff and students alike.
- Chris has worked at NGHS since September 1999 and has played piano since the age of three. She is a performing musician as well as a teacher and is a first study pianist, but also a percussionist and conductor.
- Quote: “Working at a school such as NGHS brings such personal and professional satisfaction, no wonder I’m still here!”
Mrs Jan Maxted
Head of Educational Support
- NPQH, National College for Teaching and Leadership; SLE in Education – SEND, National College for Teaching and Leadership; National Award for SEND Coordination (SENCo award), Sheffield Hallam University; MA in Education, Sheffield Hallam University; PGCE – Secondary – PE and Humanities, Sheffield University; BA Hons – PE and History, Chester HE College
- Focus areas: Educational Support/SEND
- Quote: “Every student can learn, just not on the same day or in the same way.” George Evans