Governance

The Shared Learning Trust is a multi-academy trust – that means that a single trust is responsible for running a number of academies, in our case currently four. The trust itself is made up of a group of members and trustees who take joint responsibility for making sure things run smoothly across all the academies.


Members

The ‘members’ of the Shared Learning Trust are a bit like the shareholders of any big company. They have the ultimate say over what the trust does, they can make changes to the trust’s constitution, which is known as the ‘Articles of Association’, and they have the power to appoint some of the trustees.

The members of The Shared Learning Trust are:

Rachael McConaghie

Rachael is a lawyer and Partner leading the property disputes department at Spearing Waite. Rachael studied law at Cardiff University where she also completed her Legal Practice Course. She qualified as a solicitor in April 1998 and is a keen advocate of mediation within litigation. She has been a member of the Property Litigation Association since 2007 and of the Association of Women in Property since 2003.

William David McKenzie, Lord McKenzie of Luton (Bill McKenzie)

William David McKenzie, Lord McKenzie of Luton (Bill McKenzie) (born 24 July 1946) is an English Labour politician and, up to the General Election of 2010, was Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Work and Pensions and the Department for Communities and Local Government. Post 2010 General Election he has variously served as shadow ministers for DWP and DCLG. He served for 22 years as an elected member of Luton Borough Council, four years as its Leader. Over his time with accounting firm Price Waterhouse, he worked in the US, Hong Kong and Vietnam.

David Sheridan

David is Managing Director of Europa Components plc (1990 – Present). Based in Luton, Europa is the leading independent supplier of fuses in the UK and a leader in supplying isolators and other control gear components to electrical wholesalers throughout the UK. David is also Chairman of Veruth Holdings Ltd a long term investor in SMEs. David became an ACA in 1978. He spent 20yrs + on national and local committees of ICAEW. He was on the Council of ICAEW for three years and Vice Chairman of the Board of Chartered Accountants in Business.

Mark Hamilton

Mark is the Senior Vice President of Electronic Warfare at Leonardo.  He leads the largest Airborne EW business outside the US, based at Luton, with 900 people, and a supply chain of 500 companies, most of them SMEs, and a research programme working with universities across the UK.  His business area is responsible for the defensive aids systems on combat air platforms such as Eurofighter Typhoon and on helicopters across the UK JHC fleets.  His also leads EW export programmes in North America, Far East, Middle East and Australia.


Trustees

While the members are like the shareholders of a company, the ‘trustees’ are more like Directors. They are responsible for three main areas of running the trust:

  • Setting the direction of the trust in terms of what it wants to achieve
  • Holding the Principals to account for the educational performance of each academy, and
  • Making sure the finances are all in order and everything we do offers the best possible value for money.

Like the Board of Directors of any big organisation, the trustees of the Shared Learning Trust pay particular attention to:

  • Setting the strategic direction for the Trust, alongside the Chief Executive
  • Making sure there is consistency in things like HR policy across the trust
  • Ensuring that the trust complies with all relevant laws, includimg charity law requirements and the same company law requirements that apply to all Directors.
  • Keeping a close eye on the executive team and the individual academy principals and holding them to account at all times through the Chief Executive.

The Shared Learning Trust Trustees are:

David Sheridan – Chair

David is Managing Director of Europa Components plc (1990 – Present). Based in Luton, Europa is the leading independent supplier of fuses in the UK and a leader in supplying isolators and other control gear components to electrical wholesalers throughout the UK. David is also Chairman of Veruth Holdings Ltd a long term investor in SMEs. David became an ACA in 1978. He spent 20yrs + on national and local committees of ICAEW. He was on the Council of ICAEW for three years and Vice Chairman of the Board of Chartered Accountants in Business.

Deborah Harris-Ugbomah

Deborah is a chartered accountant and a senior executive with significant experience in strategy and change management, strategic development and delivery. Having trained as an auditor with PwC, her career has been in corporate finance, investment banking and financial services.  Deborah is a director of consultancy, DHUA Ltd and a director of venture capital service, MEH Ventures LLP. Deborah is also the Audit Committee Chairman and a Non-Executive Director with Moorfields Eye Hospital, a specialist NHS ophthalmology hospital with world-leading education, research and commercial services and is a non-executive member of the Moorfields Eye Hospital Dubai .  Deborah also chairs the Association of Audit and Financial Non-Executive Directors (AFNED), holds several non-executive roles at the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) and is the first female elected as chairperson of its non-executive directors’ group. Deborah was recently appointed to the main committee of the London Society of Chartered Accountants. With an interest in the third sector, Deborah became the Treasurer and Audit Committee Chair for Action for Blind People, one of the charities within the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) group. Deborah is also a member of both the audit committee and treasury committee of Notting Hill Housing Trust.

Trefor Hamer

Trefor retired as a senior executive after 35 years with a major clearing bank. During that time he undertook roles in branch banking, regional administration, and teaching management accounting skills at the bank’s training centre and spent three years working in the community helping business proprietors address solutions to problems in all aspects of their businesses. He subsequently undertook the role of chief executive officer of a division of a public company whilst retaining support functions in other businesses and a charitable organisation.

David Forbes

David is a retired teacher. After graduating from the Royal Northern College of Music and Middlesex University, he taught Secondary Class Music in the London Borough of Haringey and then moved to Hertfordshire Music Service, the Country’s largest, as a Peripatetic Instrumental Teacher, delivering woodwind instruments and Music Technology tuition in Primary and Secondary Schools. He was responsible for the website, Music Medals and organising and delivering CPD for its 550 teachers and instructors. As an active member of the Hertfordshire Branch of the Associations on the Music Service Hub – its Governing Body. He currently directs a local Community Choir, plays sax and flute with Fleetville Swing band, and is involved with Computer Friendly, a charity offering ICT advice and courses.

Rob Grant – Vice Chair

Rob is the Director of Operations for Loughborough Endowed Schools, which is a collective of four selective, independent, private schools in the town of Loughborough.

Prior to working in the education sector Rob worked in construction and latterly in facilities management where he was the account manager for a facilities provider supplying a major UK bank.

In the voluntary sector Rob has served as a councillor and school governor as well as various other trusteeships.

Tricia Penfold

Tricia has considerable experience as a leader and mother. She is a recently retired headteacher of 15 years, a headteacher in two schools both in the early years sector. Tricia has worked in education for 30 years. Her initial training was completed at Newcastle Polytechnic after which she taught in both primary and special schools.

She was awarded the NPQH and BAHonours degree during this time.

She is also a mother and grandmother.

During her tenure as headteacher she volunteered her services to the local authority schools forum and the creative partnership working party.

She comes to the board with particular interests in leadership, inclusion, Community Cohesion and safeguarding.

Sarah Mortimer

Sarah is the Vice Principal of Central Bedfordshire College, a Further Education College serving Central Bedfordshire and Luton. Sarah has held senior management positions across the education sector for over 16 years; she is also a qualified Teacher. Sarah has lived in the area for over 30 years and her two daughters went to school here, grew up here and now work in the area to in education and children’s social care. Prior to the education sector, Sarah worked in senior management posts within the private sector, where she undertook responsibility for business growth, for sales, for marketing and for staff development. Sarah is committed to helping and enabling people to get the best out of themselves and she is passionate about learning and entrepreneurial skills development.

Sarah comes to the board as the Local Safeguarding Lead for the College as well as particular skills in partnerships development and strategic growth


Local Governors

One of the jobs of the trustees is to appoint a governing body to each of the academies within the trust. These ‘local’ governing bodies are given the job of helping the trustees, or the Directors, with more detailed decision making specific to each of the academies. So they’ll be getting involved in areas such as:

  • Scrutinising the finances and resources of each academy
  • Doing all they can to increase the success rate for students and the quality of the teaching
  • Working to develop and maintain a good relationship with parents, carers and the wider community in which each academy is based
  • Details of each academy’s governing body can be found on the individual academy websites, links to which can be found below.

The Chalk Hills Academy

The Stockwood Park Academy

The Vale Academy

The Linden Academy