Timothy Saunders


Welcome to Head Coaching

With 25 years experience in schools and university I now enjoy a portfolio career with a team of associates dedicated to Educational  Leadership and Interim Management in the UK and the Middle East.

I specialise in teacher development, thinking skills, SMSC development, leadership coaching and curriculum design at Primary and Secondary levels.

My first book was about spiritual leadership called Faith in School Leadership and I am currently writing a second focused on the inner curriculum which integrates SMSC and thinking skills via the practices of craftsmanship, scholarship, leadership and mindfulness.

My Motto

Disce ut Docere

learn …that you may teach


Years Experience




Happy Clients


Books Published


Holding and articulating clear values and moral purpose, focused on providing a world- class education for the pupils he serves. Leading by example-with integrity, creativity, resilience, and clarity -drawing on own scholarship, expertise and skills, and that of those around him.


Securing excellent teaching through an analytical understanding of how pupils learn and of the core features of successful classroom practice and curriculum design, leading to rich curriculum opportunities and pupils’ well-being. Identifying emerging talents, coaching current and aspiring leaders in a climate where excellence is the standard, leading to clear succession planning.


Ensuring that the school’s systems, organisation and processes are well considered, efficient and fit for purpose, upholding the principles of transparency, integrity and probity. Welcoming strong governance and actively supporting the governing board to understand its role and deliver its functions effectively – in particular school strategy and holding the headteacher to account.


Challenging educational orthodoxies in the best interests of achieving excellence, harnessing the findings of well evidenced research to frame self-regulating and self- improving schools. Shape the current and future quality of the teaching profession through high quality training and sustained professional development for all staff.



Values-based Leadership

Using the Competing Values Framework to assess & rebalance quality of control, creativity, collaboration and competetion


Tribal Leadership

Shifting cultures from 1) Undermining to 2) Apathetic Victim to 3) Lone Warrior to 4) Tribal pride to 5) Generosity


Creating & Coaching High Performing Teams

Proactive team development through 1) Forming 2) Storming 3) Norming 4) Performing stages


Appreciative Inquiry as Positive Change Strategy

Individual, Team, Organisational action research via stages of 1) Discover 2) Dream 3) Design & 4) Deliver


Coaching 4 Teaching

6 modes of helping teachers improve their performance 1) Supporting 2) Catalyst 3) Feedback 4) Prescription 5) Training 6) Catharsis


Open Leadership

Improving organisational communication systems with staff intranet & online feedback to stakeholders

Academic Leadership

  • English, History & RE Subject Leadership (15 years) 80%
  • Teaching Philosophy & Thinking Skills (21 Years) 90%
  • Curriculum Design (14 years) 90%
  • Inner Curriculum: SMSC Development (21 years) 95%
  • Building Learning Power & Split Screen Teaching (7 years) 85%
  • Renaissance Learning & Character Building: Craftsmanship, Scholarship, Leadership & Mindfulness (2 years) 95%

Pastoral Leadership

  • Holistic Tutoring/Student Coaching (7 years) 70%
  • Behaviour: Preventative, Positive, Corrective, Supportive Discipline (21 years) 95%
  • Nurture Groups 70%

Team Leadership

  • Blend of Visionary, Consultative & Coaching Leadership Styles (17 years) 90%
  • Action Learning Set Facilitation 80%
  • Personality Typing & Team Building using Enneagram (8 years) 85%

My Packages

Fixed Term Headships

/2 Years Plus

Medium Term Interim Headship

/2 Terms - 2 Years

Leadership Coaching & Short Term Interim Management

/1 Day - 1 Term

Long Term Solutions

Fixed term contracts with Academies and International Schools who normally employ school leaders on 2-3 year contracts. Longer term support for challenging UK schools in need of Turnaround to tackle critical areas of underperformance.

Stable operational management. Renewed strategic direction. Capacity building in relation to agreed developmental projects. Significant targeted improvements in performance. Succession management to secure the interim legacy.

  • Transformative leadership style
  • Intensive SLT & MLT Development & Leadership Coaching
  • Turnaround focus or Significant transformation
  • Formulating & delivering enhanced school improvement plan

Medium Term Solutions

Medium term Capacity Building in an improving school which wants to use an Interim to leverage significant change in critical areas.  The absence of a substantive  Head is regarded as an opportunity to tap into  the interim manager’s extensive consulting portfolio and initiate longer term projects which have early gains.

Stable operational management. Continuity of strategic direction Capacity building in relation to agreed developmental projects.

  • empowering leadership style
  • Intensive SLT Development & Leadership Coaching
  • Capacity building focus
  • Delivering enhanced school improvement plan

Short Term Solutions

Short Term Interim Management


Personalised Support for Heads & Leadership Teams

Ad hoc consultancy, INSET, short term Interim Assignments for 1 Day to 1 Term. Typically an effective school which requires sensitive handling but minimal change.In the event of sudden resignations, delayed recruitment or long term sickness absence or maternity leave - an interim manager is a safe pair of hands to keep the ship on course and ensure short term stability.

Stable operational management Continuity of strategic direction.

Coaching through critical incidents. Personal Consultancy - blending coaching & counselling support. Invisible support to achieve your goals. An extra head dedicated to your agenda behind the scenes.

  • Supportive Leadership Style
  • Leadership Coaching
  • Stability Focus
  • Delivering existing school development plan
  • Coaching Heads Through a Crisis Anonymously and Invisibly
  • A blend of coaching and counselling to enhance your personal effectiveness and evoke your resilience

My Projects



What my clients are saying

"I have worked with Tim on many occasions in the areas of organisational development through Appreciative Inquiry, and the training of coaching skills. I am consistently impressed with his knowledge of theory, his quick wit and his ability to engage with all kinds of groups"

Andy Smith – Appreciative Inquiry Facilitator and Trainer 2010

"Mr Saunders was one of the very few excellent teachers I have been taught by. Even thought It was over 25 years ago, such a positive experience stays with you forever. He was always able to think out of the box and deliver such interesting ways of teaching the simplest of things. Teaching a class to play chess, combining art into story writing and developing our “joined up writing” skills were all part of class 6 daily life, but having someone who instilled confidence and belief in each and everyone of us, no matter what our background or ability was a quality Tim brought to the classroom every day."

Laura Bostock- former student Tim’s first class 1990

"Tim is able to apply his wide range of skills to a wide variety of organisational development needs and professional fields beyond education. I have worked with him on many occasions and never fail to be impressed by his unique insights and creative approach. He is an accomplished events organiser and group facilitator encouraging user engagement in evaluating & improving services through appreciative inquiry. He speaks from the heart, is an idealist in the best possible sense with huge understanding and knowledge and would be an asset to any organisation concerned with people development."

Kate Mcallister Consultant and Thought Leader 2010

"Dr Tim has excellent interpersonal skills. He was equally at ease conversing with pupils, staff, parents or governors. A good listener who would accommodate different styles for people to achieve a common goal. My fellow governors and I would employ him again, without reservation. He is well suited for any roles that involve development, expansion, or diversification at a senior strategic level."

Waseem Yaqub OBE Chairman of Governors 2014

"Dr Saunders led on whole-school Teaching and Learning 3-16 with great skill and care, demonstrating excellent knowledge within a newly structured leadership team, and introducing a high impact Teaching and Learning strategy using split-screen teaching to improve learning dispositions and thinking skills across the age range. This project demonstrated his organizational skills and very good management of whole-school planning. I was impressed with the way a primary expert quickly gained the confidence of secondary teachers who enthusiastically put his recommendations into practice."

Anita Baptist Executive Headteacher 2014

"Dr Tim has Excellent Temperament, is a Brilliant Creative Thinker, a Great Team Player, Always willing to give others credit and motivate them. He has an “expert knowledge” leadership style. He can command respect because of his ability to effortlessly convey his expertise to those working with him. He is methodical and creative. This ensures that he continually inspires those around him to excel at their jobs."

Waseem Yaqub OBE Chair of Governors 2014

Some of my clients


  1. Discover – the best of what is

    Appreciating what's working well; asking 'what gives life?' what do people really value here? What makes them thrive?

  2. Dream – what it would be like in the ideal world

    Envisioning how things could be in the ideal world. Asking 'what might be?' What is the world calling for here and now…

  3. Design – what would make a difference

    Co-constructing the ideal. Asking 'how can it be?' Determining practical changes in behaviour and systems to make the ideal real.

  4. Deliver – sustainable results

    Embedding new strategic practices. Asking 'what will be?' Delivering outcomes and sustaining results.

Please enquire about my availability for Freelance work


117 Cootes Avenue, Horsham
West Sussex, England


Drop me a Line

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)


Your Message