Professor Colin Diamond CBE

Professor Colin Diamond

School of Education
Professor of Educational Leadership

Contact details

School of Education
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston, Birmingham
B15 2TT, United Kingdom

Colin Diamond has worked in the field of educational leadership for many years in England. He has been a Head of Faculty, Associate Headteacher, Local Education Authority Adviser, Assistant Director and Director of Education/Children’s Services.

He led improvements in two local authorities taking them from government intervention to strong performance. He has also worked for the Department for Education in England as Head of Education Advisers for the Academies and Free Schools Programme. He was Deputy Education Commissioner in Birmingham and he was also an OfSTED inspector. He was an associate lecturer at three universities before taking the chair of education leadership at Birmingham.

Feedback and office hours

Colin Diamond works three days a week, normally Monday – Wednesday.


  • MA (Education) Open University
  • Advanced Diploma in Education Management (Open University)
  • Certificate in Counselling (Lincoln Clinic)
  • Certificate in Emotional Factors in Learning Difficulties (Tavistock Clinic)
  • BA (Hons) Economic History University of Leeds
  • Qualified Teacher Status England


Colin Diamond began his career working in inner-London secondary schools. He also worked as a youth worker. His main responsibility at school was to ensure that pupils with special educational needs and disabilities were successfully included in all aspects of school life. His school became a pioneer of inclusion and he was asked to work across many secondary schools in London to advise them on inclusion. He also took on a school in very challenged circumstances as associate head.

His career then moved into local education authority senior roles in the north east and south west of England culminating in being appointed as Director of Education. In North Somerset he took the authority from government intervention to the best performing in the south west according to OfSTED. He worked as a senior civil servant in London providing advice directly to ministers on the academies and free schools programmes. When the Trojan Horse crisis emerged in Birmingham he was asked to become Deputy Commissioner to build and implement an improvement plan. This was judged to be successful within 18 months. He then became Executive Director of Education in Birmingham. In 2016 he was awarded a CBE for services to education.


Colin Diamond is particularly interested in urban educational leadership

Other activities

  • Adviser to Never Such Innocence which engages young people globally in understanding the sacrifices made in WW1
  • Adviser to the Associated Board of the Royal School of Music
  • Adviser to the Compassionate Education Foundation



Media trained by former ITN journalist. Many radio and TV interviews undertaken


Colin’s research interests are in urban educational leadership and his policy expertise is around English education policy – he has direct experience of working with ministers in Whitehall.