TADSS Headteachers


Seán Kretz, Headteacher of Westfield Arts College

Seán has recently been appointed Headteacher at Westfield Arts College, a 4-19 Dorset special school in Weymouth. He joined Westfield in September 2018.  Westfield Arts College serves the needs of 180 pupils with moderate/complex learning difficulties and autism. Seán was awarded the National Leader of Education accreditation in February 2015.

Prior to joining Westfield, Seán was Headteacher at Yewstock School for 7 years and before that Headteacher of St Giles School in Croydon which provided for pupils with physical disabilities and complex medical needs.  He began his career as a mainstream primary teacher before becoming a special school class teacher.



Diane Makariou, Joint Acting Headteacher of Beaucroft Foundation School

Beaucroft Foundation School (caters for children between 4 – 19 years with complex learning needs including those with an ASD) and is situated in Wimborne Dorset. Diane is acting Head alongside Joe Barnett.

Diane has worked in the SEND field for over 22 years. She started as a care worker at a residential school for young people with Asperger’s Syndrome. She has worked as a teaching assistant, classroom teacher and was previously Deputy Headteacher at Beaucroft Foundation School. She has spent several years supporting mainstream schools through her Outreach Teacher role. Diane was a Team Teach Tutor for 15 years and has recently become a Dorset Steps Tutor.



Joe Barnett, Joint Acting Headteacher of Beaucroft Foundation School

Joe is currently acting Head alongside Diane Makariou. Prior to that Joe was Deputy Head at Beaucroft where he joined in 2003.

Previously Joe was a SENCO in two large secondary schools after starting out as an English teacher. He was also an Advanced Skills Teacher (Inclusion) for Bournemouth Local Authority.

Joe has particularly enjoyed his involvement with Outreach and Initial Teacher Training.




Jackie Shanks, Headteacher of Mountjoy

Jackie Shanks joined Mountjoy School as Headteacher in September 2014 and was awarded the National Leader of Education accreditation at Easter 2018. Mountjoy is a day school for pupils, between the ages of 2.5 and 19 years, who have severe, profound and/or complex learning difficulties. Jackie began her career working with horses, before deciding to train as a teacher. She has been the Headteacher of two other schools, one a day maintained SEBD school, the other, an independent school for pupils with complex needs, where she was also responsible for the management of five care locations.  Jackie is also the Special Schools representative at the School’s Forum.

Jackie lives in Somerset and has one daughter. She enjoys running, riding and looking after her ever growing menagerie.



Bruce Douglas (Wyvern)

Bruce Douglas, Headteacher of Wyvern Academy

Bruce is Headteacher of Wyvern Academy in Weymouth, which is a special school for children and young people aged 2-19 years with severe learning difficulties, autism, challenging behaviour, PMLD and complex health care needs. Bruce has worked in a number of special and mainstream schools over the past 30 years and has previously been the Headteacher of a mainstream primary school and a similar special school in Wiltshire.

Bruce lives in Weymouth with his partner and has two children of his own, two step sons and a canoe.




Gill Howard, Acting Headteacher of Yewstock School

Gill has recently taken the role of Acting Headteacher at Yewstock School. Prior to that Gill was Deputy Head at Yewstock School where she joined in 2015. Yewstock is an all age special school for pupils aged from 3-19 with moderate, severe and complex learning difficulties and autism.

Before Yewstock, Gill worked in mainstream secondary in a variety of roles, including SENCO, specialist teacher and setting up a base for excluded students. She has worked across primary and secondary schools as an advisor for Dorset SENSS.  Gill has a special interest in developing pedagogy and leadership as a focus for getting the best out of teams. and their pupils.