Meet the Staff

English – Mr Michael Wood

Michael started his Outwood journey as a Teaching Assistant at Outwood Academy Ripon in 2013. In 2015, Michael trained through the Outwood Institute of Education to qualify as a teacher of English. Michael has spent the last 4 years at Outwood Academy Acklam in that role. In 2020, Michael was appointed as Teacher of English at Outwood Academy Riverside and is excited about this new adventure.

Watch his video here

Maths – Miss Elli Hanmer

Elli started her teaching journey in 2013 working in and around Sunderland leading maths GCSE resit courses and helping adults to transition back into education and the workplace. She joined Outwood Academy Bishopsgarth in 2017 as a teacher of maths and is passionate about helping students to overcome their fears and barriers within maths to succeed and become confident, well rounded young people. Elli also has a background in performing arts and loves taking students on a variety of exciting educational trips to explore learning outside of the classroom.

Watch her video here

Science – Mrs Liesl White

Liesl went to the University of Leeds and studied for a BSc (Hons) in pharmacology. After a couple of years as a management trainee with Lloyds bank she returned to the University of Leeds to complete a PGCE in science, allowing her to become a science teacher. After a couple of years working as a voluntary teacher in Malawi, East Africa, she returned to the UK and based herself in the Teesside area. She has taught in several schools across the area, most recently as Head of Science at Outwood Academy Acklam.

Liesl is fascinated by science and wants to ensure all students understand and enjoy learning about the science they need for life in the 21st century. She is really looking forward to the opportunity to start at the beginning of Outwood Academy Riverside’s journey to become an amazing place to learn.

Watch her video here

Computing – Mr Daniel Marshall

Daniel grew up in Hartlepool and always had a passion for Computer Science from a very young age. He spent a lot of time working out why computers did things, taking them apart and putting them back together (successfully, most of the time!)

Daniel went on to Sunderland University where he studied Computing, which taught him a lot about different areas in Computer Science, including how to program, how to design good websites and also how to build his own company that could market all of his ideas.

Daniel can’t wait to see all of the amazing skills everybody has and how our students can all become amazing computer scientists!

Watch his video here

Humanities and Health & Wellbeing – Mr Josh Cooper

Outwood Academy Riverside is Josh’s first humanities teaching role after completing a training year with the OIE’s Teach North School-Direct programme. I achieved a BA (Hons) History degree at Teesside University in order to meet his goal of becoming a teacher.

Josh was lucky enough to embark on a charity trip to visit schools in Kenya and Tanzania during his time in sixth form. Having a first-hand experience in seeing the value of education to children that live in deprivation was what encouraged Josh to become a teacher.

Josh strongly believes that all children, regardless of social background or upbringing, should have access to a fair, equal and quality education, as well as being exposed to career opportunities. Josh believes teachers should help children to realise their potential and help them to leave school as well-rounded individuals.

Watch his video here

MFL – Miss Marta Bargallo

Marta will be teaching Spanish at Outwood Academy Riverside. Marta was born in Barcelona and grew up there until moving to the UK to teach Spanish. Marta has already worked within a Trust academy within the North and is very much looking forward to working with students to develop a new language and to learn about and understand the Spanish culture.

Watch her video here

Design & Technology and Art – Mrs Ruth Williamson

Ruth trained at the University of Teesside, obtaining a BA honours degree in Design Craft for the Entertainment Industry. After completing her degree, Ruth attended the University of Sunderland to complete a PGCE in Design and Technology, here she gained experience in teaching. Ruth began her career at Eston Park School where she stayed until working for Outwood Grange Academies Trust. She has been able to demonstrate her ability to teach, lead and manage as part of her previous roles as a Director of Progress, Head of Faculty and Second in House. In addition to her management experience, Ruth has gained a lot of experience as a classroom practitioner in a variety of subjects including, Graphics, Textiles, Resistant Materials and Art. Teaching them all at key stage 3, key stage 4, as well as Graphics and Textiles to A level.

Ruth believes that all students should have the best education possible. She is excited to be at Outwood Academy Riverside and is bringing a strong passion for both Technology and Art.

Watch her video here

PE Boys – Mr Anthony Cox

Anthony Cox is currently teacher of PE and Maths at Outwood Academy Bishopsgarth and will be teaching boys’ PE at Outwood Academy Riverside. After graduating from Northumbria University and later completing teacher training at Carmel Teacher Training Partnership, Anthony has worked in education since 2012. He is looking forward to welcoming you all to the Outwood family as you start your exciting learning journey with us.

Watch his video here

PE Girls – Miss Lorna Connor

Lorna Connor is currently Head of PE at Outwood Academy Bishopsgarth. She was appointed in 2017, having previously been in post at Outwood Academy Acklam as part of the Senior Leadership Team. Lorna started her teaching career at Bishopsgarth before it became part of the Outwood trust and has been part of transforming the school. Lorna is passionate about engaging students in their learning and giving them the best opportunity in life.

Watch her video here

Drama & Music – Mrs Brant–Smith

Melissa graduated from The University of Manchester with a 2:1 BA Hons degree in Drama. She spent some time adapting and directing plays and working in television whilst studying for her degree. Following this, she began her teaching career in Redcar and Cleveland where she gained QTS through the Graduate Teacher Training Programme. Later she worked at an Academy in Watford where she was the Assistant Curriculum Leader for Creative Arts and MFL. Melissa joined Outwood Grange Academies Trust as an Assistant Principal in 2014 at Acklam. She has worked across several of the Academies including: Bishopsgarth, Easingwold and Ripon where she was the Head of Sixth Form. Most recently, Melissa was the Associate Principal at Redcar for 18 months and Vice Principal at Outwood Academy Acklam. Melissa is delighted to be part of the Riverside team and is committed to raising standards, she feels passionate that all students receive the best possible education and have equal opportunity to succeed.

Watch her video here