Former Wigan headteacher hopes to find best school staff with launch of recruitment firm

A former headteacher from Wigan who struggled to secure classroom-ready staff for his school has launched a specialist education recruitment and training company.

By Gaynor Clarke
Friday, 17th June 2022, 12:30 pm

James Lowe, 40, has more than 16 years of experience in the education sector, including nine years as headteacher at specialist independent school EdStart.

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He now owns and runs EdStart, while also sitting at the helm of Grolife, a group of organisations designed to support the education sector.

James Lowe

With EdStart schools spanning five sites in Greater Manchester, recruiting quality employees was proving harder and harder.

Frustration and disillusionment with both the process and the quality of candidates finally prompted James, who lives in Wigan, to launch Moxi.

It matches schools with candidates who are well trained and primed to hit the ground running in a range of education settings.

James said: ‘’Over the years in my various management roles in schools, I’ve faced the situation of either having no support when short staffed or accepting support that is very much below par. This isn’t fair on the pupils, whose education suffers, or the existing staff, who are already working incredibly hard to ensure every child receives the education and pastoral care they deserve. I’m passionate about helping schools to source the teams they need so they that they can continue to do the great job they do despite the challenges they face.”

Moxi offers a nationwide service to fill schools’ recruitment needs at all levels, from support staff and teaching assistants to classroom teachers and senior management leadership professionals. It also specialises in supplying qualified professionals to support special educational needs.

With official figures showing a need for more secondary school teachers and a fall in the number of people entering teacher training, Moxi finds and trains people from both inside and outside the education sector.

James said: ‘’From recent graduates who hadn’t considered teaching as a career option, to people returning to work after a career break, and even former professional sports people, there’s a wealth of talent just waiting to be accessed. We’re seeing lots of students, who are about to graduate in subjects like geography, sports science or sociology. They’re not sure what to do with their degrees, and you can see that lightbulb moment when they realise teaching could be for them.’’

Among those recruited by Moxi was former Wigan Warriors player Stuart Howarth, 31, who now works as a teacher.

He said: “Moving into EdStart gave me all the training and support I could have wished for in pivoting my career. It meant the world to me that the team recognised the value in my transferable skills as a sportsman. Through the launch of Moxi, the team behind EdStart is now able to open doors for many more people, supporting them through the next steps in their career. This will make a huge difference to lots of people’s professional woes. I, for one, am grateful for the opportunity to share my passion for science and make a real difference to the lives of vulnerable students.’’

Moxi offers a range of training courses, from its free entry-level course to teacher training with affiliated universities.