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Be an agent of change to #BreakTheBias - #IWD2022

She Persisted
by Kerry Jordan-Daus @kerryjordandaus

I considered myself a rank outsider. But I had nothing to lose. Well maybe, my pride. But still I gave it a go. I believed I could. So, I would. No, I should. When we reflect on #BreakTheBias, we are facing personal, cultural, and structural barriers to equality. Today, I am thinking about my own bias, the unconscious bias and self-limiting thoughts that are deeply embedded in so many of us.

"It's no good – not a bit of good," I said. "Once she knows how to read there's only one thing that you can teach her to believe in – and that's herself".

"Well, that would be a change," said Castalia.

(Virginia Woolf, 1882-1941, A Society).

How many of us step away from applying for leadership roles because we think, well we might not be quite good enough? We don't believe we could. This is a story of why we should believe. We, together, by doing that simple act of believing, can #BreakTheBias.

How many of us step away from applying for leadership roles because we think, well we might not be quite good enough?

We don't believe we could.

This is a story of why we should believe.

We, together, by doing that simple act of believing, can #BreakTheBias.

So, today is INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY 2022. 

Today, I am announcing that I will be the new CEO of The Veritas Multi Academy Trust. I am hugely excited by this opportunity to lead with authenticity, to put my values into the leadership practice of our MAT and be an agent of change to break the bias, for my colleagues and for the children and young people in our schools.

We know that women are hugely underrepresented in the highest levels of education leadership. 

We know that there is a significant gender authority gap. 

We know the reasons for this inequality are multiple and complex. 

But we know that many more women can and should be in these leadership roles. 

These are stories of missed opportunities and lost talent. Our stories of becoming leaders are diverse. These stories shout out that more women should and could and would be our leaders if we unite to #BreakTheBias.

I want to thank everyone in the #WomenEd community who have been my allies. 

I want to thank the wonderful women I currently work with who have told me that I could and that I should. 

I want to thank Graham @chizkent, the architect of this MAT, who has built a vibrant and inclusive community of professionals, committed to irresistible learning for all.

And finally, I want to thank my best friend, who gave me this beautiful book of women's stories.


We met on our PGCE year in Sheffield over 30 years ago. 

She has been part of my story throughout my teaching and leadership career. 

She knows how this new CEO leadership role is my story. 

We've talked about this story.

She told me, just do it Kerry.

I have, I will, I can, I shall. 

You can, you will, you must.


Together we can #BreakTheBias.

I look forward to writing the next chapter in my story and sharing it with you.

I look forward to hearing your story too.


Let's all believe in ourselves.


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Sunday, 29 May 2022

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