Governance is a key element of the leadership and management of the Trust itself and of the schools individually and collectively. Please click here to see our governance structure.
The Trust (itself accountable to DfE) is the body to whom schools are directly accountable. It delegates autonomy to each Local Governing Board/Body (LGB) or School Improvement Board (SIB) according to the Scheme of Delegation.
The Trust Board is made up of experts in UK and international education as well as private sector professionals with a wide range of commercial experience and expertise. In keeping with our vision we also place an emphasis on attracting Trustees who have backgrounds and networks in Sport and the Arts. The Board acts as guardian to the Trust vision, and ensures that progress towards its fulfilment is underpinned with the highest standards of compliance with our regulators so that public funding is very well-used.
Serving as a governor in a GST school requires a commitment to the seven principles of public life and to a code of conduct which puts the school and its pupils at the centre. GST governors meet formally every thirteen weeks (i.e. once every school term) and much of the real work is done between these meetings, through Working Groups and individual contributions to the school’s life according to each governor’s skills and the needs of the school.
The role is very different from that of a governor in a Local Authority school, recognising that the Head is the school’s Chief Executive and the Board is there to advise, support and challenge through appropriate channels and to evidence the impact that governance is having on the school’s progress. As in the world of non-executive directors, GST governors are expected to bring their skills to bear and to work in co-operation and collaboration with the staff team, the whole Local Governing Body and the Trust to bring about rapid and sustained improvement for the pupils they serve.
The Trust is responsible for the appointment, performance management and professional development of the Heads, though the LGB’s work has a vital role to play in highlighting and evidencing the impact that the Head and governors are making through their termly meetings. Through their work in and for the school, governors come to know the school community and to be well-informed about its performance, able to talk about it confidently and accurately to the Trust, to Ofsted, to parents and to interested local groups.
We very much appreciate the work that governors do and the part they play in the success of the schools they serve and indeed of the Trust. We hope that governors find reward in the impact they make on young lives and their individual experience of the living reality of the GST motto: Proud Traditions Wide Horizons High Achievement.
The North Warwickshire Improvement Board is:
Liz Lewis – Chair
Carrie Clare – Head of Park Lane
Carrie joined Park Lane Primary & Nursery School as Head in April 2018. After starting her teaching career in 1998 she quickly progressed through Senior Leadership. As school partnerships grew, Carrie became Executive Head of a federation of schools and the founder of a small Multi- Academy Trust. Carrie has a strong belief that the children should be at the heart of all decisions made by school leaders. She recognises that children only get one chance at Primary Education and this inspires her vision and values. Carrie believes that school to school support and strong partnerships are essential to maximise the educational opportunities for children and communities.
Phillip has over 15 years’ experience in corporate banking and is currently working with the not for profit sector specialising in higher and further education and charities. Phillip has been a school governor for many years, including five as Chair of Nicholas Chamberlaine school before it joined the Trust. He now chairs the North Warwickshire Local Governing Board for GST as well as the Trust Board’s Finance and HR Committee. Phillip is delighted to be a Trustee and have the opportunity to work with the Griffin Schools Trust to have a positive impact on the lives of the thousands of children who attend GST schools.
Justin was appointed Head of School at Riverley Primary School in April 2015 after working there as an Assistant Head and Deputy Head from September 2013. Justin’s interest in early development and child psychology drive his ambition to develop pupil voice throughout all areas of school life. He believes that a GREAT school is a place where every decision made is driven by, and centred around what is best for the children in it. As a former professional dancer and musician, Justin values all areas of achievement including performance art and musical theatre. Currently, Justin plays the French horn and performs with a London Wind Band and a semi-professional London Orchestra.
Suzanne Edwards – Head of Race Leys
Suzanne joined Race Leys Junior School in April 2018. A graduate of English Literature, Suzanne began her career in the secondary sector in Oxfordshire, teaching English and Humanities. After moving to Warwickshire where her career progressed upwards through middle to senior leadership level, Suzanne moved into school improvement leadership, firstly within the National Strategies and later in a number of local authorities. Moving into the primary sector several years ago, Suzanne has worked to strengthen school leadership and effectiveness across a number of primary and secondary schools across the East and West Midlands. Suzanne is ambitious for all pupils. She is committed to delivering excellence in the curriculum and classroom provision to ensure that every child is excited, challenged and supported to achieve their full potential. Widely travelled across Europe, America, Africa and Australasia as well as in Britain, Suzanne is passionate about the opportunities education affords to open children’s eyes to the wider world and to aim high. She is determined that all children, whatever their background, should be given the knowledge, skills and opportunity to have wide horizons and the confidence to realise their ambitions.
Kevin is an experienced school Governor who has served as a local Governor and as a member of the North Warwickshire Board. Kevin is committed to ensuring that the pupils in a Griffin school receive a rich and varied curriculum. His knowledge of the business sector brings experience and expertise to his role as a Governor.
Liz Lewis – Chair
A founder and first Joint CEO of the Griffin Schools Trust, Liz has spent more than twenty five years in school and system improvement in the UK and overseas. She has held leadership positions in independent, international and maintained schools, experiencing the full spectrum of challenges and opportunities encountered by children and the adults who work with them. As well as serving as Head and Executive Head of four schools, Liz has experience at a senior level in local authorities, leading school improvement and advisory services. Before establishing the Griffin Schools Trust she grew a successful consultancy business with a range of clients including DfE and Local Authorities. The drive in whatever she does is to focus system leaders on social equality.
Anne Powell is a music graduate who found her vocation in teaching in the least affluent communities in East London. She has had a proud association with Riverley Primary school, having led high quality provision in the primary phase and served on the school’s leadership group for some time. When Riverley joined the Griffin Schools Trust, she took every opportunity to expand her skillset and was delighted to become the Head of the new academy school and then Executive Head of Riverley, Willow Brook and Lordswood primaries. She embraced the vision to provide rich classroom and extra-curricular experiences for children as the heart of a good education and worked to establish and host the ever-growing Griffin Arts Festival, now in its fourth year, remaining ever more determined that good exam outcomes are the corollary of a great education and not its sole focus. Having led two schools from special measures to outstanding and consecutive years’ outcomes to well above national, Anne has also worked widely with primary, secondary and Trust colleagues to support a range of strategic issues. Anne has led and supported school improvement projects, senior appointments and Ofsted inspections in many Trust schools with impressive impact and has also supported the Founding CEOs in key aspects of MAT leadership. In her role as CEO Anne is honoured to be the first embodiment of GST as a truly Head-led Trust
Alison Ramsay – Executive Head of Nicholas Chamberlaine
Alison joined NCS as Deputy Head before becoming Acting Head. In October 2015 Alison was officially appointed as Head of Nicholas Chamberlaine School. Alison has been teaching for 25 years in a range of schools; her leadership experience includes Deputy Headship in 3 schools as well as working to support underachieving schools in a school improvement capacity. Alison is dedicated to raising ambition in all its forms, especially for disadvantaged students and, being a linguist, is passionate about opening up the world to students. In her spare time Alison enjoys taking part in gym classes, from boxing to yoga, walking with her dog, watching French serials and spending time with her extended family.