School Students sitting and standing

Pele Trust Schools Academy Governance

In order to become an academy, the school must establish an Academy Trust.

The Directors of Pele Trust set the strategic vision and ethos of the academy or academies, and oversees the work of the local governing bodies, known within Pele Trust as Academy Committees within. Members of Pele Trust must have an annual meeting and agree an annual report.

Legally, the academy trust is the employer of staff, the admissions authority and the owner or the lessee of the land and buildings.

Governance Structure

Pele Trust has 5 Members; 9 Directors and an Academy Committee for each school. Each Academy Committee is constituted in line with provisions as laid out in our Scheme of Delegation, i.e. 8-12 members including at least 2 parents, Headteacher and 1 staff member.


Pele Trust Directors are responsible for:

  • ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
  • holding executive leaders accountable for the educational performance of the organisation and its pupils
  • the performance management of staff
  • overseeing the financial performance of the Trust ensuring that public money is well spent

The Directors will work collaboratively with the 6 schools, each bringing their own unique experiences to support the schools and to ensure that the pupils are getting the best possible education.


The members of the Academy Committees will support the work of the Directors by taking on a more substantial role in each school to closely support and challenge Headteachers and senior leaders to ensure that the school is offering an excellent education to all pupils. They have a prominent role to play in:

  • Identifying and agreeing key objectives 
  • Development planning for improvement 
  • Monitoring and evaluating the progress that the Academy is making towards its set objectives




Gerry Miller - Chair of Directors

Gerry studied Spanish and Latin American Studies at Newcastle University and completed his PGCE in 1972. He taught modern languages in five different school in North Tyneside and his leadership roles …

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Professor Gary Holmes - Member

Recently retired Pro Vice-Chancellor, University of Sunderland. Previously: Head of Dept., Leeds Beckett University Principal Lecturer Oxford Brookes Lecturer Anglia Ruskin Teacher of French. …

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Mark Tanner - Member (Bishop of Berwick)

Mark Studied at Christ Church, Oxford. He was ordained in 1998, and in 2005 was awarded a Master of Theology from Chester College, University of Liverpool. In 2015 he became an honorary Canon of Durha…

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Liane Atkin - Member

Liane is the Assistant Director of Education at the Joint Education Team, Dioceses of Durham and Newcastle. She is an employment law specialist having qualified in 2003. Liane has experience of workin…

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Maureen Bates - Member

Maureen is a highly experienced and successful secondary school Headteacher. Following a period as Deputy Headteacher at St. Thomas More RC School, North Tyneside, Maureen was appointed as Headteacher…

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Gerry Miller - Chair of Trust Board

Gerry studied Spanish and Latin American Studies at Newcastle University and completed his PGCE in 1972. He taught modern languages in five different schools in North Tyneside and his leadership roles…

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Hugh Clear Hill - Vice Chair of Trust Board

Hugh studied for a BSc at Wye College, University of London and a MSc at Reading University. He is currently Principal Environmental Policy Officer at North Yorkshire County Council. He previously wo…

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Richard Bliss - Director

Richard studied medicine at the University of Cambridge qualifying BA in 1983 and completing clinical training in 1986. Most of his post-graduate training in surgery was in the North East gaining his …

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Revd Steven Harvey - Director

Steven read History at Reading and Theology at Oxford, and did his teacher-training at Cambridge. He was awarded the National Professional Qualification for Headship in 2005. He was ordained in 1984 …

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Marian Stromsoy - Director

I have lived in Northumberland since 1980 and am married with 2 children, both of whom attended Heddon First School, Richard Coates Middle School and Ponteland High School. I am a retired headteacher…

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Ross Golightly - Director

Ross Golightly is an experienced Growth Strategist, Consultant, Coach, Mentor and Non-Executive Director. His firm (Sphera Consulting Ltd) typically works with CEO's, Entrepreneurs and Owner-Managers …

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Chris Gill - Director

Chris, a Chartered Accountant and Mining Engineering graduate from Newcastle University, has extensive management and financial experience across a wide range of international and North East based bus…

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Rishi Kohli - Director

Rishi studied Law at Northumbria University, graduating with a Masters in 2014. Rishi is currently Legal Counsel at Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy and advises on all aspects of wind turbine projects.…

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Beryl Condra - Director

I left central government in 2006 to establish my own consultancy BC Business Solutions enjoying a directorship with BeeAgile Ltd and associate consultant status with SHAIP LLP.   My civil service ca…

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Our Roles

The various roles at different levels of governance within Pele Trust are described below:

The Members act as guardians of the governance of the Trust; in essence their role is ‘eyes on – hands off’.  They will annually review the accounts and submit a MAT report to the Directors. Members are responsible for approving any amendments made to the trust`s articles of association. The Members are not permitted to be employees of Pele Trust.

The Directors are the charity trustees and are responsible for the general control and management of the administration of the Trust in accordance with the provisions set out in the memorandum and articles of association.

The Board of Directors is the accountable body for the performance of all schools within the trust and as such must: 

  • Ensure clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
  • Hold the CEO to account for the educational performance of the schools and their pupils, and the appraisal of staff
  • Oversee the financial performance of the trust and make sure its money is well spent

The Directors have established two sub-Boards with delegated authority to make decisions or to provide advice and support, informing the overall work of the Trust Board. The two sub-Boards are the Resources sub-Board and the Achievement and Standards sub-Board.

We recognise that local Academy Committees (ACs) play a critical role to ensure each school delivers high quality performance and upholds the values our partnership represents. 

ACs know their school best and are an integral partner to our Trust’s continued improvement. The AC will delegate to the Headteacher responsibility for the day to day operations of the Academy.

ACs monitoring whether the school is working within agreed policies,is meeting the agreed targets, managing its finances well, engaging with stakeholders, delivering on its curriculum objectives to provide a broad and balanced curriculum which meets the needs of its pupils and ensuring highly effective communication with parents, the wider community and key stakeholders.

The Chief Executive holds responsibility for the day to day operations of the Trust, as delegated by the Board of Directors. The CEO is supported by a leadership team which includes the Deputy CEO, School Improvement Lead, and the Head Teachers from each school in the MAT.

Key Documents & Reports

Scheme of Delegation

This document sets out the decision making processes within Pele Trust

Articles of Association

This is the legal framework underpinning the running of Pele Trust

School Improvement Strategy

This document outlines the support and challenge offered to Trust schools

Admissions policy

We are currently consulting on our Admissions Policy for the 2021-22 academic year. The documents sets out our intentions.

Terms of office and meeting attendance

This document sets out terms of office for all Directors and meeting attendance in 2018-19

Pecuniary interests record

This document sets out the pecuniary interests of Pele Trust Directors as well as members of the Executive Team

Master Funding Agreement

This document sets out the conditions of the Funding Agreement between Pele Trust and the Department for Education

Admissions Policy (2021-22)

This document sets out the Admissions Policy adopted by the Board of Directors for the 2021-22 academic year.

Trust Board Terms of Reference

This document sets out the Terms of Reference for the work of Pele Trust Directors

Structure of Pele Trust Board

This document displays the structure of the Pele Trust Board and composition of sub-Boards

Terms of office and meeting attendance 2019-20

This document identifies the terms of office for al Directors and logs attendance at Directors meetings for 2019-20

Record of pecuniary/business interests - April 2020

This document sets out the pecuniary and business interests of Pele Trust Directors in April 2020

2018-19 Pele Trust Annual Accounts and Report

This document sets out the externally reviewed Pele Trust annual accounts and report for 2018-19 academic year

Gender Pay Gap report (2018-19)

This document sets out the Gender Pay Gap information for 2018-19

19 September 2019

Minutes from the 19 September Directors meeting.

17 October 2019

Minutes from the 17 October Directors meeting

21 November 2019

Minutes of the Achievement & Standards sub-Board meeting on 21 November 2019

19 December 2019

Minutes of the Resources sub-Board meeting on 19 December 2019

AGM - 16 January 2020

Minutes of the AGM on 16 January 2020

16 January 2020

Minutes of the Directors meeting on 16 January 2020

13 February 2020

Minutes of the Resources sub-Board on 13 February 2020