Lea Valley Academy

Part of the EdAct Trust

Senior Leadership Team

  Stephen Kinson - Headteacher

Stephen Kinson has over 25 years’ experience of teaching and school leadership in north London. During this time he has held a wide range of senior leadership roles including pastoral and curriculum.


Stephen studied Engineering at Manchester University and completed a Post Graduate Certificate in Education at King’s College, University of London. As a science and physics teacher, his students have consistently achieved significantly higher than expected results. In 2006, Stephen was appointed Head of Science at Edmonton County School. He led the faculty from inadequate to outstanding with student progress in the top 5% nationally for science. He became Deputy Head in 2011 and helped secure positive progress for students across the school. He became Head teacher of Lea Valley Academy in January 2020.

David Bucho - Deputy Headteacher

David Bucho graduated from Roehampton University with Honours in Theology and Education Studies and then his Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE).
He started his teaching career in Waltham Forest and has also worked in Enfield and Barnet schools in a career spanning over 25 years in education. As a leader and manager, he has been responsible at Departmental, Faculty and Pastoral level as well as leading on Sixth Form Teaching and Learning and Student Voice across schools.
David was appointed to Edmonton Academy Trust as Director of Sixth Forms in September 2017 and was responsible for delivering a broad, balanced and successful Post 16 offer to students at both Edmonton County School and later at Lea Valley Academy. Since 2016/17 Edmonton Academy Trust have secured Outstanding A level results for 5 consecutive years, being in the top 10 % of UK Sixth Form providers (ALPS 2).
David was subsequently appointed as Deputy Headteacher in 2021 with a focus on student academic outcomes and Learning and Teaching standards in the classroom.

 Nicola Dodd - Assistant Headteacher

Nicola studied for a degree in Mathematics and Sport Science at Loughborough University, graduating with a 2:1. Having always known that she wanted to work in education she then studied for a Post Graduate Certificate in Education in Mathematics at the University of Nottingham, before securing a job in Leicester. Nicola worked in the city for thirteen years holding a variety of roles including Head of Mathematics and Assistant Principal. In 2019 she was appointed Assistant Principal at Lea Valley Academy.

 Patricia Cole-Burke - Assistant Headteacher

Patricia Cole-Burke graduated from Queen Mary University with a 2:1 in English. Patricia was passionate about working with young people and knew she was going to pursue a career in teaching. She completed her Post Graduate Certificate in Education at the Institute of Education, University of London and began her teaching career in a Secondary School in East London. Patricia was keen to develop further and completed a Masters in Teaching at the IOE, University of London. She was appointed to middle leadership early into her career and has held a number of middle leadership roles, including: Literacy Co-ordinator, Head of Year and Head of English. After a secondment to the Senior Leadership Team in an inner London Secondary school, Patricia knew she wanted to secure a position on the Senior Leadership team. In 2019, Patricia was appointed as Assistant Principal of Lea Valley Academy.

 Andy Djemal - Assistant Headteacher


Andy Djemal graduated from the University of Greenwich in 2006 and began working in a specialist setting for young people aged 14-19.  Mr Djemal  continued to work with and enjoy supporting students who found school a little more challenging and worked on the development  of whole school strategies to promote an inclusive approach to Behaviours for Learning. 

He has a passion for supporting all students to progress and maximise their life chances. 

Andy has held several middle leadership roles, including Curriculum Manager and Head of Year.  After a successful secondment to the Leadership Team at Lea Valley, Andy secured his position and was formally appointed Assistant Headteacher of Lea Valley Academy in 2021.

 Maria Codrington - Assistant Headteacher

Maria Codrington graduated from The University of Greenwich in 2000 as a teacher of Physical Education. She began working in an inclusive secondary school in East London and it was there that her passion for working with young people of all needs developed. Maria broadened her subject specialisms to include English and has held several middle leadership and whole school roles throughout her career, including Pastoral, Faculty and SENDCo teams.

This broad range of expertise and experience has facilitated a seamless transition to the senior leadership team at Lea Valley Academy where she could advocate for students of SEND on a whole school level and was appointed Assistant Head Teacher-Director of Inclusion.