Company Information2020-10-21T13:24:59+00:00

Company Information

Our governance structure reflects the needs of running a multi academy trust and meeting the needs of the children and communities we serve.

Our governance structure is flexible to meet the needs of the Trust and the individual schools for example some schools do not have local committees and manage governance through the full governing body meetings.

We are always keen to hear from anyone who may be interested in being part of our governance whether as a Trust Member, Trustee or as a Governor.

If you would like to find out more about any of our roles please contact our clerk:
Helen Turner – info@vennacademytrust.org.

Trust Policies

Venn has a master policy schedule for the Trust and its schools. Where appropriate we have Trust wide policies and school specific. A full list of these policies can be found here:

Trustees & members

Established in 2015 Venn Academy Trust  has ensured its governance structure reflects the needs of running a multi academy trust and meeting the needs of the communities we serve.

The knowledge and understanding across our Trustees and Governors is vast ranging from educationalists, parents and local residents to those with legal, finance and HR skills – all with one goal in mind of making a positive impact on the lives of the children we serve.


Mary Wallace2020-02-04T18:22:49+00:00

I taught in Hull Primary schools for over 40 years. For the last 20 years of my career I was the Headteacher of two schools in challenging circumstances.

My work involved all aspects of curriculum planning, staff development, budget monitoring, the organisation of special educational needs provision, behaviour management and working with parents.

Following my retirement I worked as a Consultant for the LEA and for local Academies assisting schools to develop their Governing Bodies. I also worked as an Advisor to both Primary and Secondary age schools which were in special measures. This gave me a further opportunity to work with Ofsted Inspectors to support Senior Leaders to improve teaching and learning throughout their schools.

Term of office 9 December 2019 to 8 December 2023

Mike Parker2020-02-04T18:20:50+00:00

I qualified as a nurse in 2000, and since then I have worked in Emergency Medicine at Trauma Centres in various teaching hospitals around the UK. My last substantive post in the NHS was Deputy Matron for Emergency Medicine and clinical lead for education.

Since then I have undertaken various academic courses:

Advanced Clinical Practice
BSc In Critical Care
Doctor of Education (expected completion in April 2020)

I currently work as an associate professor at the University of York – and I am the official University Correspondent for the Nursing and Midwifery Council – the Governing body of nurses and midwives in the UK. This role focuses on quality assurance of nursing and midwifery education programmes delivered along with change management on a local, regional and national level.

Term of office 9 December 2019 to 8 December 2023

Terry Johnson (Chair)2020-01-27T10:04:07+00:00

Terry retired in 2013 having worked for Hull City Council and Hull & East Yorkshire Hospitals. He was heavily involved in the design and delivery of national accredited courses. Terry also worked for the Home Office in major incident and mass fatality planning.  Terry strongly believes that all children should have the best education possible and if he can help and support the Trust academies to deliver this he will be achieving his ultimate goal.

Term of Office : 29 June 2019 to 28 June 2023 – Members Appointed

Mel McAlindon2020-01-27T10:05:01+00:00

Mel spent 6 years in the Police before moving into a High Street retailing environment, working with Bhs and Specsavers where he has focused on Risk, Audit and Governance both within the UK and globally. Most recently Mel has set up his own company which manages corporate risk. Mel believes passionately in education having seen his three children all educated in Hull schools and Colleges.

Term of Office: 20 October 2019 to 19 October 2023 – Members Appointed

Sheila Wallace-Marshall2020-10-21T13:22:34+00:00


Term of office: 19 October 2020 to 18 October 2024. Co-opted by Trustees

Paul Wilson (Vice Chair)2020-01-27T10:05:41+00:00

Paul has over ten years of transformation expertise in Education and Local Government, particularly within Children’s & Education services. He specialises in redesigning service delivery and commissioning practice, contract monitoring and in implementing cost reduction measures. Paul is committed to improving the education outcomes of our children and young people so that they have the best possible opportunities to succeed in their lives.

Term of Office: 23 March 2016 to 22 March 2020 – Member Appointed

Simon Witham2020-01-27T10:06:48+00:00

Simon is the CEO of Venn Academy Trust and also the Executive Headteacher at Thorpepark Academy.  Simon is passionate about education and through his role as CEO has gained an insight into the current provision of SEMH pupils in the city and that there is a need to support pupils who are at risk of exclusion due to moderate learning and behaviour difficulties.  Simon is undertaking a Doctorate in Education with a focus on the impact of low level disruption in the classroom.

Term of Office: 29 June 2019 to 28 June 2023 – Member Appointed

Chris Fenwick2020-01-27T10:07:15+00:00

Chris is a retired computer auditor and has 40 years experience in a variety of governor roles. He believes all children should have the opportunity to achieve their potential irrespective of their background and starting point.

Term of Office: 29 June 2019 to 28 June 2023 – Member Appointed


Pat Dubas2019-04-29T14:06:52+00:00

In my overall career I have significant experience in working with pupils with challenging behaviour.  I have led an SEN Unit within an FE College, worked with young offenders, and had a range of teaching and leadership experience within Special Schools (Secondary Boys and All-age)

I have previous head teacher experience of a) a Special School – Moderate Learning Difficulties, Behaviour and Autism, b) a Secondary Fresh Start School, c) an all-through Academy (3 – 16 years).

Since taking early retirement from my head teacher role I have worked as an Education Consultant supporting Multi-Academy Trusts, in particular in their structural development and school improvement processes.  Within this role I currently support 6 Multi-Academy Trusts in Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire, Sheffield, York, Hull and Middlesbrough.   Within the context of this role I also support performance management of CEOs, development of Free Schools and Project Leadership of Large Scale School Improvement Projects (SSIF).  I have also supported MATs in the development of effective governance models, including schemes of delegation and articles of association, and wider governance models relating to HUB models.

I am currently a member for Sir Christopher Hatton Academy – a role I took on last November.  Within the context of this role I have begun to identify how the role of member can support and enhance the role of Trustees, while allowing them to effectively carry out their role.

External to my head teacher role I have also worked for the National College Teaching and Leadership, and previously for the College when it was the National College for School Leadership.  Within this role I played a crucial role in the establishment and role out of the first cohorts of teaching schools, in particular in Nottinghamshire and Northamptonshire, and provided support for schools considering becoming Academies or establishing themselves as MATs.  This role has enabled me to have a deep understanding of the current leadership system and of the role system leaders are required to play to ensure we move to a joined up system within a complex and disjointed system.

Over the past year I have worked for the Teaching School Council, which has involved close working with the RSC and the RSC team, and also all teaching schools within the East Midlands, South Yorkshire, York and Humber Region.  Through this role I have developed positive working relationship and increased the opportunities and structures to enable teaching schools to work more closely together.  Within the context of this I am currently carrying out a review of SEND within Hull.

Neil Catterson2020-09-07T14:51:11+00:00

Neil Catterson is a senior manager in the probation service and was previously a manager in local authority social care. As a senior manager he knows when to operate at a strategic level and when to be operational. He has gained extensive experience working with people feel marginalised and socially excluded so has an extensive understanding of the often complex social, psychological and personal factors which are at play. He is committed to recognising and celebrating diversity and understands and believes in the importance of equality of opportunity for our staff group. All skills that will allow him to understand the complex range of settings and schools within Venn.

As a practitioner and manager he has a significant and extensive experience in areas of child and adult safeguarding. As a manager in social care and probation he has extensive HR and staffing experience including recruitment, staff supervision and support, following and implementing disciplinary proceedings, undertaking investigations concerning, complaints, grievances and professional practice issues. He has extensive experience of managing budgets and facilities. These are essential strategic skills required to ensure good value for the public purse.

Mark Wannan2018-11-12T20:26:49+00:00

Mark has held senior leadership roles in the finance sector for over 38 years; he currently works for a large international bank with branches across the UK.  He has extensive knowledge covering a variety of skills with customers, colleagues and external professionals.  An effective communicator, he has skills and experience of strategic decision making and managing staff.

Mark has three children who have all been educated in Hull.  His eldest daughter has Special Education Needs and attended a Hull special school, where he was a parent governor.  This included various roles particularly on the finance committee and gave him an insight in to the importance of SEND provision. He is passionate about ensuring that all children receive the best possible education and life chances possible.

Mike Dickinson2019-09-24T10:06:50+00:00

Mike is a professional engineer with over 50 years experience. Having spent the first 30 years in the Royal Air Force before seeking a new challenge, Mike has since worked for a number of international companies managing large infrastructure and rail projects all over the world. Mike believes that all children should have the educational opportunity to explore their true potential.

We are always keen to hear from anyone who may be interested in being part of our governance whether as a Trust Member, Trustee or as a Governor.