Tewkesbury Academy is part of the Cabot Learning Federation, a multi-academy trust that is responsible for a number of academies across Bristol, South Gloucestershire and North Somerset. Governance for a multi-academy trust operates at two levels. At trust level, there is a Board of Directors. The directors are accountable to the Department for Education and external government agencies, including the Charity Commission, for the quality of the education the trust provides and the effective use of the associated academy funding. They are required to have systems in place through which they can assure themselves of quality, financial probity, safety and good practice. The Board is provided assurance on a number of these areas through various sub-committees, as shown in the diagram below.
At a local level, each academy has an Academy Council comprising of up to 13 Academy Councillors. Academy Councils are responsible for holding Principals and their leadership teams to account for the quality and effectiveness of the academic experience of the students under their care with the aim of securing effective school improvement. They do this through monitoring performance against an annual academy improvement plan, through monitoring risks and responses to risks, and by overseeing systems and processes for the safeguarding of children and the health, safety and wellbeing of academy staff.
Chair of Interim Executive Board
Sue Maizonnier, Chair of Academy Council
I’ve lived in Tewkesbury since 1982 and have two sons who both progressed to university from Tewkesbury Academy. I live in the school community and have a keen interest in the success of Tewkesbury Academy, so I am delighted to be invited to support the school and community as an Academy Councillor and Chair of Academy Council.
Recently retired, my background is in the financial services sector, with 40 years’ experience in general insurance underwriting, people and project management, marketing and strategy. I am a retired Fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute. I’m keen to support the academy in seeking opportunities to develop every one of our students to their full potential, and at the same time support the community.
I’m very much an outdoors person and in my spare time I enjoy leading guided walks for a holiday company. When I’m not doing this I can be found taking an energetic walk to enjoy our countryside and coastlines, kayaking or supporting the school’s Duke of Edinburgh Award programme.
Term of office ends: 2 July 2024
Interim Executive Board Members
Jon Quinn, Vice Chair of Academy Council
I am the owner and Managing Director of Geckota Limited. Geckota is a local company specialising in the design and online retail of watches and replacement watch straps. I have a degree in electronics and prior to setting up Geckota I was employed as a Development Engineer at L-3 TRL Technology.
Geckota has grown to a staff of around 20 people and in the past few years we have taken on a number of apprentices and former pupils of Tewkesbury Academy. I believe young people should be given every possible opportunity to achieve their full potential and at Geckota we do this with on-the-job training, as well as providing opportunities for additional study.
I am keen to contribute to the development of Tewkesbury Academy and look forward to serving as a Councillor.
Term of office ends: 25 July 2026
Patricia Stringfellow, MBE, Academy Councillor
In my early career I spent over 15 years working at board-level of UK service sector companies. I have a degree in business studies and an MBA as well as being a Chartered Fellow of the CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development). I have many years of experience as a Human Resource Director and in 2010 set up my own freelance consultancy business advising board-level directors in strategic HR matters, as well as business effectiveness issues. My work has covered sectors across service, distribution, charities, education, pharmaceuticals, health care and oil exploration.
I am also a co-founder and joint Managing Director of WatchMeGrow, an early years education consultancy and software business.
In 2003 I was awarded an MBE for services to training through many years of chairing the National Training Awards (NTAs). I also more recently chaired The Princess Royal Training Awards. I am an Honorary Fellow of City and Guilds and served on the City and Guilds Trustee Board for 12 years.
I have lived in Tewkesbury for 32 years. My husband David, set up his business in the town 20 years ago and employs over 25, people some of whom joined from Tewkesbury School. I am particularly interested in supporting students to become job-ready and to forging links between the academy and local employers, as well as supporting the teaching body in business-related subjects.
In my spare time I enjoy being outdoors, whether walking the hills, out kayaking or tending our garden.
Term of office ends: 31 August 2024
Steve Hawkins, Academy Councillor
I started working life as a Student Dowty Apprentice who subsequently went to work for: Dowty Hydraulics, Mining, Rotol and Propellers where I became Managing Director. I then continued to work for TI and Smiths Aerospace Landing Gear Actuation in similar roles.
While most of my career has been spent in senior aerospace management positions, I have had more general engineering positions working for John Brown Group and B.P. My position before retiring in September 2012 was Site Manager for Moog Controls at Tewkesbury, with operational responsibilities in the US and Philippines. In 2011 I was asked to join the board of the Gloucestershire L.E.P. and set up the Advanced Engineering and Manufacturing Sector Group. I am the Business Manager Trustee for the Peter Lang Trust, a Gloucestershire-based charity.
Until recently I have raced and prepared my own Formula Ford race car. I have now unsuccessfully focused my attention to golf and cruising on the River Avon. I am married to Anne and have lived in Cheltenham for the past 40 years with my two daughters.
Term of office ends: 24 May 2024
Catherine Folkes, Parent Academy Councillor
I am from a teaching background, with experience in both inner city and more suburban/rural schools, but also have spent time working as a 1:1 SEN teaching assistant. I am currently working in a local school, as a creative technician, across the art and photography departments.
My eldest son is currently in Year 9 and I have been really impressed, especially throughout lockdown, by the commitment and enthusiasm of the teachers at Tewkesbury Academy. This has inspired me to want to play my part in the future developments of the academy, seeking a high-quality educational experience for all.
Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my family: we are part of Holy Trinity Church in Tewkesbury; enjoy exploring the countryside around us; travelling and I am always interested in new creative projects.
I am really looking forward to becoming part of the Academy Council and learning more about the organisation and culture of Tewkesbury Academy.
Term of Office ends: 20 October 2024
Kate Thompson, Parent Academy Councillor
I started as a Parent Academy Councillor in 2020, just as my son joined the school in Year 7 in the most unusual of circumstances due to COVID-19. It may seem early to volunteer to join the governing body when he has only been here a few weeks but I felt it gave me the perfect opportunity to see things through his eyes as a newcomer and add this perspective to the board.
We have lived in Tewkesbury for 14 years and I work across Gloucestershire as a Consultant Clinical Psychologist, leading services for people with learning disabilities and autism, as well as providing support to staff in a variety of settings. My studies and work in psychology have provided wide-ranging knowledge and experience of supporting people of all ages in a variety of settings, generally with the aim of helping them be the best version of themselves that they can be. This is often made easier by ensuring that they, and those around them, are receiving the right support.
Term of Office ends: 20 October 2024
Tracy Bryne, Staff Academy Councillor
I came to Tewkesbury in 1995 and I love living here. I started working in the Learning Support Department in Tewkesbury Academy in September 2022 after spending the previous four years working and training with much younger children in primary schools. I have two children in Year 9 and Year 6, one of whom has significant needs which impact his learning.
In my time at Tewkesbury Academy, I have supported students both in and out of the classroom, planned provision for students, and helped to coordinate the transitions of the incoming Year 6 children with SEN. I have always had a love of learning and am incredibly passionate about equity in education.
I feel very fortunate to be part of this community, helping to create an inclusive environment that we can be proud of and I am looking forward to serving on the Academy Council as Student Advocate.
Term of office ends: 1 July 2027
Richard Marriott, Student Advocate Councillor
I was born and educated in Malvern, so the town of Tewkesbury was always a popular choice during my childhood for scenic family days out.
After completing my studies at Cardiff University, I moved to Hong Kong, China in 2006 to teach for a non-profit organisation. What began as a twelve-month employment contract developed into a fifteen-year educational and cultural journey in the city. For much of this period, I was employed by the Hong Kong government as an English Literacy Program Co-ordinator in a number of state schools. In this role, it was my responsibility to plan the English curriculum for students from a range of socio-economic backgrounds.
I joined Tewkesbury Academy in September 2023 as a teacher in the English department and feel extremely proud to be part of an educational establishment with a strong sense of community and commitment to individual student needs. It is my pleasure to serve on the Academy Council as Student Advocate and look forward to being the voice for student needs and concerns.
Menize Donatien, Teaching Councillor
I relocated from Trinidad to the UK when I was very young. Since September 2023, I have been working at Tewkesbury Academy and it has been an amazing experience getting to know the local area through interactions with the staff and students.
I am currently the Inclusion Lead at Tewkesbury Academy, where my main subject of teaching is Health and Social Care. Over the course of my career, I have been fortunate enough to teach at various educational institutions, including Pupil referral units, special and mainstream schools, holding senior leadership positions for more than a decade. My educational background includes a degree in Education Studies and Latin American Studies, a Master's degree in Intercultural Communication, and a Post Grad certificate in Education. These qualifications have provided me with the necessary skills to bridge cultural gaps and promote effective communication, ultimately leading to successful academic outcomes.
What drives me is the profound impact that culture and education has on our life experiences. I believe that it is crucial to recognise and address the challenges faced by individuals who may not belong to a specific group, as this can hinder their ability to fully understand and navigate their own encounters. To me, it is essential to view individuals as complete beings, treating them as equals rather than reducing them to stereotypes or reflections of our own perspectives.
I am deeply passionate about collaborating with faculty members, students, and parents to address and celebrate diversity and identities within the school.