Denis graduated from Liverpool University in 1980 with an Honours degree in Mechanical Engineering. He started his career with Leyland Truck and Bus as a Graduate Engineer before leaving to join Paccar in 1981, and was based at Foden Trucks in Sandbach. His initial career was focused on vehicle noise/structural test & development. A revolutionary quiet vehicle project (QHV 90) was delivered and Heavy Duty structural testing was instigated to validate innovative off highway suspension systems, this included an assignment based at the Paccar Technical Centre. Denis progressed through Chassis Design roles into Engineering Operations Management.
During this period the DROPS military fleet was developed and commissioned, and Foden Trucks produced many innovative lightweight highly customised trucks. After being appointed as Foden Chief Engineer in 1997, the Foden Alpha range was developed to utilise the DAF truck platform as the basis for an extended range of customised trucks. Following the relocation of Foden build to the Leyland factory, the Foden and Leyland teams were integrated and in 2003 Denis was appointed Chief Engineer Foden and Leyland, responsible for the Foden and DAF LF ranges of trucks.
Major achievements since this time include the development of a new common lightweight chassis platform, the development of a new DAF LF specifically for export to the US and the successful delivery of Euro 4 and 5 trucks. Recent developments include the launch of a complete truck body portfolio and also the introduction of industry leading Hardware In the Loop testing methodologies.
Why train with Bishop Rawstorne School Direct Alliance?
Teaching is an enormously challenging profession but the rewards are immense. We firmly believe that the training programme and the support that follows must be of the highest quality in order to prepare our teachers to face the demands of any classroom within any context. Having successfully recruited a number of high calibre applicants to our previous School Direct provision, we have much pleasure in opening the recruitment and selection process for our new and improved School Direct Programme for 2018-2019.
We have an established and an ever growing partnership of schools who work closely with us to ensure that our unique Teacher Training Programme is of the highest quality and will provide you with all of the support and resources you will need. We also have a close working relationship with the University of Cumbria and work collaboratively with staff from the university to make sure that your experiences in school and when completing assignments are positive ones.
Schools within our partnership have been carefully selected to ensure that we can offer a wide range of opportunities that allow you to personalise your school based experiences. The main purpose of our alliance is to secure and promote high quality entrants to the profession, to facilitate high quality placements and to offer a creative approach with a wide range of school experiences. If you secure a place on our School Direct programme we will ensure that you will work with outstanding practitioners who are committed to securing outstanding outcomes. Our schools are conveniently located across the Northwest and will provide you with a diverse range of teaching and learning experiences. The schools that we are fortunate to have as our placement cluster schools include: Penwortham Girls’ High School, Byrchall High School, Brownedge St. Mary’s Catholic School, Lostock Hall Academy and Balshaw Lane Church of England High School. Moreover, at Bishop Rawstorne we pride ourselves on supporting all trainee teachers throughout their teacher training experience and on our ability to secure employment for them, often within our own school or our partnership schools, at the end of the placement.
In addition, as we are a lead teaching school in the North West, you will have the benefit of many extras; for example, you will have access to a free twilight CPD programme, across over 20 of our alliance schools. This will allow you opportunities for further networking but to also to gain cutting- edge training from experienced staff, many of whom are specialist leaders in education. We also offer you incalculable support with preparing for interviews and our trainees have a fantastic track record of securing employment.
In many respects, the most important people that you will meet in our schools are the pupils. Their friendly and welcoming demeanour helps to ensure that each of our schools can provide placements where you will be able to work with happy, confident, well behaved young people. Staff also fully support this ethos and will help you to both find your feet in school and then support your progress in developing your own teaching style. They have a wealth of experience and are eager to share their skills and knowledge with you.
About the programme
The training lasts for one academic year and leads to a qualification of a University of Cumbria PGCE and QTS; you will also have the opportunity to gain Masters Levels credits. The PGCE awarded is teaching at secondary level but what is special about our partnership is that there will also be opportunities for you to personalise your experiences during your placement by, for example, attending a special school and a post-16 learning environment, preparing the teachers of tomorrow to meet the individual learning needs of all children. You will also be afforded the opportunity to experience the day to day life within a primary school.
Our distinct training programme will provide you with opportunities to work alongside expert and friendly practitioners from within the partnership who will support your professional development throughout the course and beyond. Each of our schools has a Professional Mentor who runs a weekly programme of training events which will help you to understand your role within the context of the wider school. You will also be provided with your own Curriculum Mentor who will support your developing classroom practice and work with you as both a subject specialist and a coach.
The programme is ‘hands on’ with you undergoing two placements within one of our partner schools. The majority of the training that takes place will be conducted by ourselves, as a lead teaching school with over forty specialist leaders in education, as well as our partner schools, who have a considerable amount of experience in training new and qualified teachers. In addition, you will be required to spend some training days at the University of Cumbria, in Lancaster. Here you will have multiple opportunities for you to develop your understanding of how different pedagogical approaches can be used to teach your subject through a subject knowledge development programme. During these sessions you will work with a highly experienced tutor, from within your subject specialism, who will help you to make the transition from a subject expert to a teacher of that subject.
What our trainees say
‘The PM sessions were tailored to our needs therefore each session was relevant and not a repetition of previous meetings. Helen made us feel that we could go to her at any time and when we needed her always made time for us. I feel very lucky’
‘Positive environment, continuous support throughout and dedicated staff. Overall, an amazing first teaching experience’
‘Staff are very welcoming and willing to give you guidance or advice’
‘The support from the school has been outstanding and the only downside is that I don’t get to stay here longer’