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Panel discussion: Reducing teacher workload

Cath Murray
Cath Murray
Commissioning Editor, Schools Week

Ani Magill CBE
Ani Magill CBE
Chief Executive, Xavier Catholic Education Trust

David Lowebridge-Ellis
David Lowebridge-Ellis
Deputy Headteacher, Barr Beacon School

Jack Worth
Jack Worth
Lead Economist, National Foundation for Educational Research

Luke Tryl
Luke Tryl
Director, Corporate Strategy, Ofsted

Chaired by Cath Murray, Schools Week, the panel will focus on teacher workload and will explore:

  • Where does workload come from? Government, Ofsted and the media? School leaders and governors? Teachers themselves?
  • How much of a problem is workload? Does it affect teacher wellbeing, recruitment and retention?
  • What practical steps can be taken to reduce workload?

Cath Murray is Commissioning Editor and Head of Digital content for two education publications: Schools Week and FE Week.

She writes and commissions features, interviews and comment pieces on the burning education policy issues of the day.

She was previously Managing Editor at parenting website Netmums.


Ani Magill CBE has been in education for 35 years, working in both primary and secondary schools. Before her appointment as CEO of Xavier, she was headteacher at St John the Baptist School for 23 years. During that time she has also had five headships of schools in difficulty, that required rapid change. Over 20 staff from SJB have gone on to become headteachers of schools in Surrey and beyond.

Ani has been an associate headteacher for SSAT, worked as part of the SSAT Leading Edge & Raising Achievement Transforming Learning partnership, been appointed an NLE, and been a member of the Secretary of State’s consultative group of headteachers. This experience culminated in a CBE for Services to Education, in the 2017 Birthday Honours List.


David Lowebridge-Ellis has 15 years’ experience in the classroom and has been a senior leader for more than 10 of those.

As Deputy Head Teacher of Barr Beacon School in Walsall, he leads CPD, staff wellbeing, curriculum intent, implementation and impact, parental engagement and equality and diversity.

In the past year, his work has been featured by Schools Week, SecEd, The Key for School Leaders, SSAT, the National Carnegie Centre of Excellence for Mental Health in Schools, the Centre for LGBTQ+ in Education, the BBC, the DfE and LGBTEd. He is a regular contributor to Teacher Toolkit.

An SLE for assessment, he has worked with many schools, in the UK and worldwide, to slash their marking burdens while improving feedback to pupils. He is most passionate about all aspects of leading change (the focus of his Masters degree). In his time away from education, he enjoys travel blogging with his husband and watching classic westerns with their two cats.


Jack Worth is an expert on the teacher labour market. His research and analysis aims to understand the changing teaching profession and identify ways of improving teacher recruitment and retention. He has given evidence to the Education Select Committee on how schools and policymakers can better retain teachers and is a member of the Department for Education’s Teacher Supply Model technical group.

Specialising in analysis of large datasets, including the National Pupil Database, School Workforce Census and Labour Force Survey, Jack uses advanced techniques to gain insights for policy and practice.

Jack is experienced in quantitative policy evaluation and value for money analysis. He has led a number of impact evaluations using randomised controlled trial and quasi-experimental designs and has also developed the Education Endowment Foundation’s guidance on cost evaluation.


Luke Tryl has been Director, Corporate Strategy at Ofsted since February 2017. In that role he is overseeing the development and implementation of Ofsted’s strategic priorities, as well as the organisation’s research function and external relations.

Before Ofsted, Luke was Special Adviser to Nicky Morgan at the Department for Education and he has also been a Director of Public Policy Projects at an independent think tank, Head of Education at Stonewall and an Education Researcher at Reform.