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Senior Leadership Team

The school is extremely well led and managed. The unit managers and education staff work together effectively, to promote young people's welfare. Ofsted March 2015

The Principal, working well with Senior Leaders, has improved many areas of the school. She enjoys the support of the dedicated staff team. Together, they ensure that the curriculum meets pupils' academic and social needs. Ofsted, July 2017.


Z Lattimer

Zoe Lattimer BSc (Hons) PGCE

After gaining a Science degree at the University of London and a Post-Graduate Certificate of Education (PGCE) from Goldsmiths College (also part of the University of London), Mrs Lattimer began her career lecturing at West Kent College of Further and Higher Education supporting young people entering medical support services and nurses. She taught in the Hospital Teaching Service and then moved on to become Head of Reading’s Pupil Referral Service and the Executive Head of two Social, Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties (SEBD) schools before taking up post as Principal at High Close School. Mrs Lattimer believes passionately in an holistic approach to education with a conviction that life and academic skills can be taught side-by-side with support.

Deputy Principal

Mark Shears BA (Hons) PGCE

Mark Shears studied for his degree in German and Management Studies at Leeds University.  From there he initially went into industry, working as a Senior Account Manager for a multi-national hotel and leisure chain. After six years in business, Mark decided he wanted a more rewarding career and studied for his PGCE at Oxford Brookes University.  He took up his first teaching post in a mainstream school in Berkshire where he worked for eleven years, ten of which were spent working with the most vulnerable pupils in the school, first as Head of House and then as Assistant Head with a specific remit for SEND and vulnerable pupils.  He was also the Designated Senior Person for Safeguarding for several years.  Mark was appointed to High Close School in July 2014, initially as Assistant Principal and, in March 2016, he was promoted to the position of Deputy Principal, taking the lead for the academic side of school.

Assistant Principal

Wendy Gosling BEng (Hons) PGCE

Wendy Gosling has gained experience in several different types of schools in her career, both in State and Private education, in Secondary Moderns, Comprehensive and Grammar schools. She started at High Close School as Head of Mathematics and was promoted to Assistant Principal in September 2016. As part of her role, Wendy works closely with the Deputy Principal to ensure the quality of teaching and learning and the tracking of progress both academically and socially, is of a very high standard.

Leader for Care (Behaviour)

Wayne Grey

Wayne joined High Close School as a Residential Project Worker in 1996.  Over the last twenty years, Wayne has worked as a Shift Leader, Deputy Unit Manager, Unit Manager and now Leader for Care (Behaviour).  He has extensive knowledge and experience of supporting young people with complex needs and residential care, and is the lead for behaviour management at the school.  Wayne is a Therapeutic Crisis Intervention (TCI) trainer with over 12 years experience of training staff in the TCI system. Wayne became the joint Acting Head of Care in November 2015 and was promoted to Leader for Care (Behaviour) in July 2016.  Within his role Wayne is one of the School’s Designated Safeguarding Leads. Having worked with children and young people for over twenty years, Wayne is extremely passionate about the work undertaken at High Close School supporting young people to achieve their full potential.

Leader for Care (HR)

Natalie Potter

Natalie joined High Close in 2005 as a Residential Project Worker. She was promoted first to Shift Leader, then Deputy Unit Manager and then Unit Manager in 2011. During this time she was able to work with young people with a range of differing needs and develop an extensive knowledge of care within a Residential Special School. Natalie took responsibility for E-safety at High Close alongside her Unit Manager role and is the E-Safety Co-ordinator for the school. She also completed her Level 5 Diploma in Leadership and Management in Health and Social Care for Children and Young People. When the school moved to using Therapeutic Crisis Intervention to support the young people, Natalie trained to become a TCI trainer and became part of the TCI training team at High Close. Natalie became joint Acting Head of Care in November 2015 and was promoted to Leader for Care (Human Resources) in July 2016. She has also undertaken training to be part of the Designated Safeguarding Leads team within the school. Natalie believes all young people need care and support in order to reach their potential in all aspects of their lives and, alongside the staff at High Close, strives to provide every opportunity to enable this.


Richard Knight, Bursar at Barnardo's High Close School

Richard Knight

Richard Knight joined High Close as Bursar in 2002 after a Civil Service career in the Ministry of Defence and HM Treasury, including two years with the Australian Government. He is a Chartered Management Accountant and, as Bursar, has responsibility for the finance, administration and business management of the school.