Jonathan Simons

Director of Policy and Advocacy, Varkey Foundation


Jonathan is the newly appointed Director at the not-for-profit organisation established to improve the standards of education for underprivileged children throughout the world. He was formerly Head of the Education Unit at Policy Exchange, where he directed research on all aspects of education including Early Years, schools, skills and HE. Previously Jonathan worked at Serco Group, where he was Director of Strategy in the company’s specialist education practice. Prior to that, he was Head of Open Public Services in the Cabinet Office, and Head of Education in the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit in the administrations of both Gordon Brown and David Cameron. Outside of work Jonathan is the Chair of Governors and Co-Founder of Greenwich Free School, and a Trustee of Reach4 Multi Academy Trust. He writes a weekly column for the TES newspaper on politics and education policy.

Jonathan Simons

Related Posts & Publications

What is a coasting school?

What is a coasting school?

I spent Monday afternoon doing a webchat with Schools Week and Nicky Morgan discussing what a majority Conservative government might look like for education (see this excellent piece by Natasha which sets out some of the areas which the DfE might consider)....
Priorities for the new BIS team

Priorities for the new BIS team

From having been, in some people’s eyes (including, er, mine), set for axing or major restructuring, BIS finds itself in an unexpectedly strong position today, with a fresh ministerial team made up of high profile and influential MPs within this majority Conservative...
Schools policy challenges after the election

Schools policy challenges after the election

I spoke this morning at an IPPR seminar on schools policy challenges after the election. This is a summary of the perspective I offered, seven days out. Although there are distinct policy and philosophical differences between the two parties on education, in practice...