How Ark's governance works
Every school in the Ark network is the legal responsibility of the Ark Schools Board. This board focuses on statutory duties and delegates most day-to-day responsibilities to each school’s individual Local Governing Body (LGB).
This means that our Academy's governors are able to concentrate on the things that really matter – educational strategy, school outcomes and aspiration.
The Ark Schools Decision Making Framework outlines where responsibility and accountability sits for the key functional areas within Ark Schools between the ‘tiers’ of governance.
Our Local Governing Body
Our Local Governing Body (LGB) is made up of 6-10 members – usually people with a local connection or interest who are committed to supporting educational opportunity in the area. The board generally includes:
- Academy Principal
- Up to two Parent Governors
- One Teaching Staff Governor
- One Non-teaching Staff Governor
- One Local Authority representative
We aim to create a balanced group that will have the right skills, connections and dynamic for the LGB to work well and support the school in achieving exceptional performance. Attributes we look for include:
- Good insight into the specific challenges at the school and the general challenges of operating top-quality schools
- Excellent community links
- Specific skills as needed by/relevant to the school
- A link to the senior executive team of Ark Schools
All appointments are made by the Director of Governance for Ark Schools. The term of a governor is three years, except for the Principal, who remains a governor for the duration of his or her time in post. Governors may be reappointed for further terms.
The LGB meets four times a year.
Becoming a governor
If you have an interest and commitment to improving education, and would like to make a difference within your community, please register your interest in becoming a governor by completing our online Governor Application Form. If you have any questions about a governor’s role or responsibilities please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
A full programme of induction, training and support is provided. You can see more information, including role specifications here.
Contacting the governors
The current Clerk to Governors is Cathi Hughes (Catherine.Hughes@arkonline.org). Please contact them if you have any governance-related queries, or would like to contact one of the governors.
Daniel has 20 years’ experience as a senior member of UK Law Enforcement, leading teams nationally and internationally. His last role was directing a major national digital transformation programme. He now is the business lead for Europe in an AI company. Daniel studied Zoology and postgraduate studies including an MBA. He lives locally with 3 children, who have all attended Ark Byron. I'm passionate about Ark Byron and delighted to be the Chair of Governors.
Tom has been a solicitor for 15 years and for the last four a banker with UBS. He studied geography at Trinity College, Cambridge. During his working life he has acted as a mentor and coordinated mentoring schemes for school children in East London and has benefitted from reverse mentoring through these schemes. Tom has a focus on quality of education, the cultural DNA of organisations, how opportunities can be made more widely accessible and aspirations raised. He has three children, the oldest of whom is an Ark pupil.
Courtney Gainer is passionate about the education sector, having served as both a management consultant to and an executive within schools and universities. Courtney started off her career as a consultant at EY-Parthenon, where she spent eight years working with global education providers and investors. Courtney joined Hult International Business School in 2016 and is currently Senior Director of Operations, running the non-academic side of the London undergraduate campus. During the 2012/13 academic year, Courtney was seconded to Ark Schools and collaborated with teachers to pilot various classroom technologies. She is delighted to be returning to Ark as a governor.
Onome Okwuosa is a professional writer with a background in the care sector; working with vulnerable adults, children and families alike. With two children attending an Ark Academy, chasing excellence and supporting success at the school is paramount.
Ammani trained as a physiotherapist at King’s College Hospital, qualifying in 1981. She specialised in paediatric respiratory care, working extensively in the field of paediatric and neonatal intensive care and respiratory medicine, in particular cystic fibrosis. During her 35 years at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, she was involved in many aspects of health care including clinical care, under- and post-graduate education, research, and management. She has published extensively and has frequently presented at international conferences. In 2009 she was awarded the Fellowship of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists. Recently she was involved in the implementation of significant change following the review of a clinical department and initiation of an ongoing quality improvement programme. She maintains a research interest in Cystic Fibrosis in association with the Institute of Child Health, London.
Jemma’s professional expertise is in business strategy, largely in technology companies, with particular experience leading large teams through periods of change. She studied English Literature as an undergraduate, has a Masters in Chinese Studies, and has an MBA. She lives in Acton with her wife Sarah and their children and has established a charity working with Afghan refugees, focussing on education and employment opportunities.