Our Teams

We see success being founded upon nurturing relationships, challenge, support and high expectations; and encourage an ethos of creativity, expression, dedication and achievement in each and every school, securing the best outcomes for all those in our care.

Schools are led locally by those who know their students, staff and communities best; their headteachers and local governing bodies.  Staff are motivated, well-managed and well-led; with clear opportunities for career progression and development within the MAT.  We all want to imbue our children and young people with a lifelong love of learning and strive to provide quality education in a caring environment at the heart of the local community.

We are 'better together'.

Members

Athena-GEP Members

Our Members are the conscience of our trust, ensuring that we all remain true to our aims and objectives. They are able to hear viewpoints from any member of Athena-GEP and they hold the trustees to account for the strategic operation of the Trust. They appoint the trustees and have the power to remove the trustees if necessary. They appoint our auditors and meet twice a year. Members do not sit on any other committees.

 

Fiona Boulton

Fiona has been Headmistress at Guildford High since September 2002.  Prior to that she was Deputy Head at Guildford High for 5 years.

Fiona grew up in Guildford where she was a pupil at Boxgrove Primary School.  At age 11 she was offered a place at Guildford County School, which was then a Grammar School.  Before she could take up the place her family moved to Kent, where she attended the local Comprehensive school.   She is keen to finally be involved with Guildford County School.

Guildford High is a member of United Learning, it is a Teaching School and Fiona is a National Leader of Education.  She firmly believes that schools working in collaboration are stronger than schools working in isolation and is very supportive of the idea of the Trust.  She hopes to bring some of her experience of cross school work to the table. 

Donald Hirsch

Ex-parent, Former Vice Chair at GCS

Director of the Centre for Research in Social Policy

Donald is a former journalist and international policy consultant, who was Poverty Adviser to the Joseph Rowntree Foundation for the ten years prior to joining CRSP in 2008.  

He played a central role in establishing A Minimum Income Standard for the United Kingdom, using CRSP's ongoing research methodology showing what incomes households need for an acceptable standard of living as agreed by members of the public.  He now leads that programme and associated projects studying income.  He also plays a prominent national role in commenting on the adequacy of the public welfare system, and on poverty trends.

Paul Martin

Paul is a Chartered Accountant who qualified in 1982. He runs a local accountancy practice -  CMB Partnership Limited in Guildford - with two fellow directors. CMB provide a full range of accountancy, audit and taxation services to both individuals and businesses.

Paul was appointed a governor at Guildford County School (GCS) in 2001. He became Chair of Finance a few years later and oversaw the financial turnaround of GCS from a huge deficit to a positive financial position. He also served for four years as Chair of Governors, prior to the appointment of the current Chair, Janette Owen. In addition, he played a significant role in the successful transfer of GCS from a Foundation School to an Academy in 2013. He continued as a governor until 2014.

After a break from being a governor Paul is keen to offer his experience to assist in the creation of the Multi-Academy Trust.

Stephen Ravenscroft

Stephen is a Partner at law firm Stone King, who have offices around the UK.  He leads the Education Team and has specialised in charity and not-for-profit law since qualifying as a solicitor in 1997.

Stephen has been involved in the academies programme since its inception back in the early 2000s, initially advising on the “type 1” failing school projects. He has acted on the conversion to academy status of over 170 maintained schools of all types, including community, faith and alternative provision schools.

Stephen has been instrumental in developing some of the larger multi academy trusts. This experience of building Trusts from small entities to quite complex and sizeable organisations has given him insight into the legal issues and the organisational and strategic challenges which may lie ahead.

Stephen’s particular expertise surrounds governance structures of multi academy trusts, drawing on his charity law background. This experience includes a detailed understanding of the relationships between academy trusts and their trading subsidiaries. He has particular experience in dealing with the establishment of academies within the faith sector and has acted on a significant number of conversions within Surrey.

Stephen is recognised as a leader in both education and charity law by Chambers and Legal 500. He has recently stepped down as a member of the Executive Committee of the Charity Law Association having served on the committee for 9 years. He is a governor of two schools and sits on an Academy Strategic Board for a Catholic Diocese.

Trustees

Athena-GEP is governed by a board of trustees. The board of trustees provides a strategic overview of the running of the trust, support the executive team and ensures that all schools in the MAT are well-governed. AST believes that trustees should be appointed for their professional, educational and governance skills. All trustees have the interests of every member school at their heart. 

Details of Trust Board Membership

Governance Leaders Group

A Joint Governors' Council (JGC) ensure that the voices of local governors are heard and communicated with the Trust and the Headteachers’ Group. The JGC is made up of two representatives from every member school.

The key role of the JGC is to ensure that the knowledge and requirements of individual schools are fairly represented in the MAT. The JGC has the power to challenge the trust and the Headteachers' Group on strategic matters when necessary. It is also responsible for improving the standard of governance across the MAT through training and sharing of best practice.

 

Matthew Parris - Boxgrove
 

 

Paul Ballard - Fullbrook School
 

 

Nicola Mead - George Abbot School
 

 

Jennifer Obaditch - Guildford County School

 

 

Heather Anne Archer - Guildford Grove
 

 

Michael Michell - Kings College Guildford
 

 

Andrew Shovelton - Loseley Fields
 

 

Konstanze Hild - Northmead
 

 

Julia May Douetil - Pirbright
 

 

Melanie Liv Hancox - Sandfield
 

 

Sarah Hardcastle - Shalford
 

 

Nicola Buchan - Stoughton

 

 

Headteachers

Athena-GEP puts the education of young people first, driven by the headteachers’ group, comprised of the head teachers, or head of school, from member schools. The group drives the school improvement and academic strategies of the MAT: monitoring standards and ensuring optimum collaboration between schools to enhance education and best practice in school management. 

 

Alison Fitch and Rebecca Stacey

Boxgrove

 

Katie Moore
Fullbrook School

 

Kate Carriett
George Abbot

 

Steve Smith
Guildford County School

 

Rona Mackie and Lucy Ryder
Guildford Grove School

 

Alastair McKenzie
Kings College Guildford

 

Amanda Pedder
Loseley Fields

 

Debbie Brown
Northmead Junior School

 

Gavin Dutton
Pirbright School

 

Kate Collins
Sandfield Primary School

 

Michelle Dutton
Shalford Infant School

 

Sarah Carrington

Stoughton Infant and Nursery School 

 

Executive Team

Our executive team supports headteachers and schools deliver an excellent standard of education across the whole trust.

Through partnership, systems leadership and shared accountability, the team establish the Trust's ways of working; implementing systems and structures which benefit children’s education, deliver smooth financial operation and improve school performance by investing in training and mentoring school staff.

 

Jack Mayhew

JjmayhewJack Mayhew is the founding Executive Headteacher of Athena Schools Trust and brings significant experience of school leadership from both the secondary and primary sector. A teacher for more than 20 years, involved in school leadership for over half that time and a head, of one description or another, for almost 8 years, across three different schools, he is pleased to form Athena with like-minded individuals and schools seeking a new collaborative multi-academy trust model.

Jack has experience of school leadership in a variety of contexts and varying educational stages. He has experience of forming a multi-academy trust team before joining Guildford County – a school he led to outstanding Ofsted status in 2017.

The formation of the Athena Schools Trust in 2018 is part of a shared vision for education which believes we are ‘better together’. The best way to face the challenges facing schools in the current climate is through collaboration, honesty and high expectations.

 

Patrick Overy

Patrick OveryPatrick is the Chief Financial Officer for the trust. Patrick was previously School Business Manager for Guildford County School and brings a wealth of knowledge to the Trust from previous roles, including as an Operations Manager within the electronics industry and, as a volunteer, as the vice-chair of a national youth organisation. Patrick trained as a Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineer.

Patrick is an accredited School Resource Management Advisor and provides support to schools on behalf of the Department for Education to assist them in making the most effective possible use of resources.

Patrick’s role is to ensure that the Trust provides effective support to our schools, enabling them to offer the best possible learning experiences for children and young people.

 

Andrew Roach

Patrick is the Director of Education Operations Director for the trust.

 

Ali Larcombe-Fish

Ali is the Commercial Director for the trust.

 

Jo Jones

Jo is the SCITT Director for the trust.

School Improvement Team

 

Carol Pearce

CPearceCarol has been supporting Athena Schools Trust since  September 2018, adding a wealth of educational leadership experience to the team.  Her passion is to support school leaders, including governors, to be the best they can be; continually improving the provision they offer their children so that they thrive.

Carol’s experience includes being a teacher across the entire age range (Nursery through to Secondary), Headteacher, Service Leader for Education Standards within a local authority, School Improvement Partner, a National Leader of Governance, a Trainer delivering National School Leadership Programmes and a Trainer in Neuro Linguistic Programming.

Central Operations Team

 

Sarah Allen

Sarah AllenSarah is a qualified accountant who joined the trust as Finance Officer following four and a half years as School Business Manager at Shalford Infant School. Prior to this she worked as a Financial Controller and has over 15 years of commercial finance experience gained in the private sector.

Sarah believes great financial management can help the trust deliver the best outcomes for its children.

 

Sarah Mackenzie

SMackenzieSarah is a qualified HR professional who joined Guildford County School in April 2015, following work as School Business Manager at Queen Eleanor’s Junior School for six years.

Prior to this she worked as a Personnel Manager at Ashford and St Peter’s Hospital for over ten years.

School Business Managers

An operations group, headed by the Athena-GEP’s finance director, is comprised of the business managers and bursars of the member schools, plus appropriate co-opted professionals. Its responsibilities include ensuring that all schools are financially viable, examining and progressing synergies across the MAT and ensuring services, such as HR and payroll, are effectively run and monitored.

School

School Business Manager

Boxgrove Primary School

Ian Dickinson

Fullbrook School

Peter Torrance

George Abbot

Sarah Jones

Guildford County School

Mark Cheesman

Guildford Grove Primary School

Julie Smaller

Kings College Guildford

Peter Torrance

Loseley Fields Primary School

Anne Benson

Northmead School

Deborah Cole

Pirbright Village School

Helana Muller

Sandfield Primary School

Jane Cregan

Shalford Infant & Nursery School

Lauraine Banks

Stoughton Infant School

Marion Parish