National Alternative Education provider, Progress Schools, has recently welcome Nancy Wright to its Senior Leadership Team. Nancy, who has stepped into the role of Director of Business role, will spearhead the day-to-day running of the organisation, driving high-quality provision across the business.
Before joining Progress Schools, Nancy worked as Director of Resource in a large specialist setting, catering for young people with additional needs. During her seven-year stint, Nancy’s role saw her head up the finance, HR, facilities, and operations departments.
After studying for a Law degree at Sheffield University, Nancy took on a temporary position supporting in a school office during a gap year, where she began learning about the role of a School Business Manager.
“I really enjoyed the thought of having a career that involved planning budgets, working with people, and strategic planning in a school environment – it had a real buzz about it,” Nancy said.
This new career path quickly became Nancy’s top priority. She began researching courses to help her achieve the job she wanted and continued her studies whilst working her way up the career ladder.
After starting her career in a mainstream primary school, in 2016, Nancy decided to take the leap and began working in a specialist setting. She said: “It was at this moment that my career became really rewarding.
“Witnessing students who came to the school with huge barriers to learning have those barriers knocked down was amazing. To be part of an inclusive environment where students were given the facilities, resources, and opportunities to achieve was, and still is, what gets me out of bed every morning.”
In 2020, Nancy completed the Chartered Managers Degree Apprenticeship with Manchester University, where she admits her leadership development blossomed.
“I found I really developed as a leader during this time. I was able to learn about strategies and tools that allowed me to be more innovative and productive in my thinking and planning,” Nancy shared.
When it came to Progress Schools, Nancy admits that the vision and ethos of the organisation are what caught her attention.
Nancy said: “Every young person is unique, and sometimes society can be so quick to try and stick groups into boxes or negatively label a person.
“Mainstream settings are not the appropriate place for every young person, and so we must provide safe, nurturing environments that offer the support and resources to allow those that do not fit into mainstream, the same opportunities to thrive.”
Coming into the role, Nancy set out her key priorities and outlined what she hopes to achieve, “My goal is to ensure each Progress School across the organisation is supported.
“Through effective resource management, I aim to work with our teams to ensure we consistently have good outcomes being achieved.”
Speaking on Nancy’s appointment, Progress Schools Managing Director Charlotte Barton said: “The Director of Business role is crucial to the operational running of a provision like ours. With such a large network of schools, that is ever-growing and changing, having a strong-minded and passionate individual in the position is vital.
“Nancy has already will hit the ground running and will really be a facilitator to support every one of our schools to provide the most effective support to our students.
“With a shared passion for supporting the most vulnerable in society, Nancy was the perfect candidate for the role. I can’t wait to see what the future has in store.”