Mike Gibbons

Speaker Photo

Speaker Topics

  • Workforce Reform
  • User Voice
  • System Change and Transformation
  • Secondary
  • Policy Making
  • Policy
  • National and International Reform
  • Motivation
  • Leadership
  • Innovation
  • Futures Thinking
  • Extended schools


Mike’s career in education and public services began in 1972, teaching in a large comprehensive school in the West Midlands. In 2002, thirty years and four headships later, he joined the Senior Civil Service as the founding Lead Director of The Innovation Unit. The Innovation Unit was inspired by the Education Secretary as a way of connecting the ambition of government with the expertise of the country’s best and most innovative educational practitioners here and abroad. In 2006 Mike became The Innovation Unit’s first Chief Executive when it subsequently became independent of government. The Unit with its unique mission of connecting practitioners with policy makers now has links with education in all parts of the globe.

Mike has led four large schools, three in the Midlands and the North and then became Principal and Chief Executive of a 3-18 International School in Brussels with students from 65 different countries.

Mike led a challenging project as CEO of The Richard Rose Federation of Academies. This was seen by National Commentators as the most difficult educational situation in the country. It involved amalgamating three underperforming schools, bringing one of the schools out of what HMI described as 'deep Special measures', regaining the trust of local communities and completing a £55million pound building project in less than two years.
Mike is currently advising a range of clients on leadership, innovation and change management. His partners include multi academy trusts, groups of schools and local authorities. He was part of the group that advised the Falkland Islands on a fundamental review of its educational legislation and provision.
He has spoken extensively in the UK and internationally on innovation and reform in education and public services and has worked with a wide range of agencies and organisations both public and private

Current Positions Held

2009 - Chief Executive of the Richard Rose Federation, combining three former schools in to two academies – The Richard Rose Central and The Richard Rose Morton.
Chief Executive Innovation Unit
Director, Senior Civil Service
International Consultancy on Innovation and Education reform - UK and Ireland, France, Germany and the Middle East.
Channel 4 Advisory Board on Education
Founding member (and former vice chair) of the Governing Council of The National College for School Leadership

Personal Achievements and Awards

Honorary Doctorate form the University of Wolverhampton for Services to Education
Founder member of the Governing Council of the National College for School Leadership

Relevant Career and Professional Background

2002-2008 Lead Director and then Chief Executive Innovation Unit
1987-2002 Head Teacher in four large schools in UK and abroad
- International School in Brussels
- Voluntary Aided C of E Language College with sixth form of 400
- Inner City Community Technology College with 2000 on role
- Inner City Community multi ethnic school
1982-1987 Deputy Head- Inner City School with further community provision for 10,000 adults per week
1977-1982 Head of English
1976-1977 Assistant Head of Lower School
1972-1975 Teacher of English and Drama
1972 MA Hons English University of Edinburgh

Additional Information

"A truly inspirational presentation, you felt he really did know what it was like to be in a school and how important it is to keep focused on the big picture and the moral purpose of teaching."
"I was delighted with him and his professionalism- he fitted in perfectly."
"Mike was absolutely superb. He spent the full day with us and went to workshops before delivering his keynote which was "inspirational" and "thought provoking" to quote two delegates."

For availability or to book this speaker please email enquiries@slaterbaker.com or call 07595 820211 / 07919 216280