Spotlight on Staff with Phil Whittley

07 March 2023 |

Our new blog series ‘Spotlight on Staff’ has been launched to showcase the great team we have here at Dartmoor Multi Academy Trust. 

We are keen to introduce you to the large team of fantastic staff we have across the Trust and to give you an insight into the work they do as we strive to serve our stakeholders and improve the life chances of the students in our schools.

Phil Whittley, Lead Primary Principal, joins us as the next guest for Spotlight on Staff

Can you give a brief overview of your role at the Trust?

I am honoured to lead the Primary Principal team for the DMAT. My role is to reduce anxiety, problem solve and empower the principals to lead their schools. This is through strategic leadership and supporting the day-to-day operational health of the school community.

What do you enjoy most about working for the Trust?

I travel daily from North Devon because I believe in the vision and values of the Trust. I have seen it grow and develop from a group of Local Authority schools, through Federation, Academisation to the amazing organisation that it is today.

How would you describe your team/ people you work with?

I am very fortunate to work alongside passionate and dedicated people who want children to be safe, happy and learning to their potential; and who go above and beyond to support each other and our communities to accomplish this.

What are some of the challenges that you face within the sector?

Covid and the resulting lockdowns were difficult for everyone, resulting in uncertainty and additional pressures on top of the complexities of modern living. This has affected the development of our young people and put families under increased pressure. Leading through this unprecedented time has been both a challenge and a privilege. Seeing the solidarity of colleagues and the support for our communities has been humbling. Together we forged a path through this challenging time, and together we will continue to support the children and communities we serve.

If you could tell your younger self one thing, what would it be?

I would tell my younger self that I would achieve and experience far more than I thought possible, and that my actions would bring positive change to whole communities of people. I would tell myself that there is strength in collaboration, and when there are challenges seek help and guidance. Lead by example and always be compassionate.