Who we are

Bowden Education's contributors are education professionals with decades of experience in a range of roles across different educational sectors - primary, secondary, Further Education and Higher Education and with varying areas of expertise.

All our contributors have experience of supporting and developing those training to teach, early careers teachers, experienced teachers, middle and senior leaders as well as acting as, and supporting those in governance roles.

Meet Our Contributors


Dr Jonathan Barnes

B.Ed (Hons), MA, PhD, FRSA

Jonathan  has taught throughout Asia and Africa and in primary and secondary schools in England. After working as an education officer for English Heritage in the early 1990s he took over as head of a successful and popular primary school.  He became a teacher educator in the early 2000s and was granted a National Teaching Fellowship in 2015. Currently he is Visiting Senior Research Fellow at Canterbury Christ Church University.  Jonathan has written widely on the arts, creativity, curriculum and values in education. His books on cross-curricular approaches,  Cross-Curricular Learning 3-14, and Applying Cross-curricular Approaches Creatively, are used  in schools and teacher education courses throughout the country. In 2018 he founded the charitable company Education4Diversity dedicated to celebrating the huge creative and social value of our diverse society.

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Adrian Bethune


Adrian Bethune is dad to two young boys, a part-time teacher at a primary school in Aylesbury, and the Education Policy co-lead at the Mindfulness Initiative. He delivers wellbeing-focused training in schools across Europe through his organisation www.teachappy.co.uk. In 2012, he was awarded a ‘Happy Hero’ medal by Lord Richard Layard at the House of Lords for his work on developing wellbeing in schools. In 2015, he was invited to speak at the Action For Happiness event, Creating A Happier World, on stage with the Dalai Lama. Adrian is author of the award-winning, Wellbeing In The Primary Classroom – A Practical Guide To Teaching Happiness (Bloomsbury, 2018).

Dr Virginia Bower 


Virginia has a particular interest in English as an Additional Language and Primary English.  Her PhD focused on English as an Additional Language.  Virginia is a Senior Fellow of Advance HE and has experience of senior leadership. Virginia has written and edited several books focussed on teaching in primary.

Catherine Carden


Catherine's expertise is in educational leadership at all levels as well as policy and the wider educational landscape.  She is an experienced teacher educator and is currently working as a Director of Learning and Teaching in the Faculty of Education at Canterbury Christ Church university.  She is a Senior Fellow of Advance HE and a Founding Fellow of the Chartered College of Teaching.  Catherine was also awarded a University Teaching Fellowship for teaching and learning excellence in Initial Teacher Education.  She has experience of senior leadership and is currently a Chair of Governors in a primary school.

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David Gumbrell


David has over 25 year’s experience in education, including 7 as a Headteacher of a Junior school. Now working as an education consultant, David is passionate about keeping the best early career teachers in the profession. With this mission, he created The Resilience Project, a series of materials to encourage teachers to look after themselves in order to allow them to be the best teachers that they can be. This resulted in the publication of his first book LIFT! in 2019, and the sequel, RISK will be out in 2020. Both books seek to support teachers with their resilience and to improve decision-making processes so that learning is exciting and engaging. 

Dr Lee Hazeldine


Lee has a PhD in Philosophy and has over 20 years experience within education.  He has recently worked as a learning consultant and provided guidance and training on good teaching practice.  He has particular expertise in technology based learning.

Meet our Ambassadors

Robert Gold


Rob has 10 years experience teaching in primary education which includes key stage leadership, subject leadership, a lead teacher role and school governor.  He is  currently writing his dissertation for his MA in Education which has primarily  focussed on reading within primary schools. 

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Harriet Smith

BA, PGCE (maths specialism) 

Harriet is in her 3rd year of Primary teaching. She has a special interest in maths as well as reading for pleasure in the classroom.  She is keen to develop her own skills as a professional to enhance her understanding of the children she teachers and their needs.   Harriet is looking to commence an MA in Education.

Joe Perryman

BA(Hons) RYA (200)

Joe is a Musicianship Teacher & Yoga Instructor; specialising in Children’s Yoga with 12-years experience delivering workshops in the private sector. She follows the Kodály method, using the first instrument (voice) for music instruction; a child-centred, more inclusive approach to music education today. 


Joe’s first-hand experience of the positive effects of both yoga & music – post practice – on the emotional and academic development of her students, leads her to believe in the strong link that sees both disciplines as transformative educational tools, as well as, fun and skilled activities: A theory she is currently researching in the final year of her PGCE course. 


In her teaching practice, Joe aims for her students to experience yoga and music daily and feels passionately that this be the case for all students in Primary and Secondary education.

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