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Trustees

SMART’s Board of Trustees is legally responsible and accountable for all statutory functions and for the performance of all schools within the Trust.

Governance structure and lines of accountability

The Trust Board is responsible for the three core governance functions.

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction.
  • Holding the Executive Team to account for the educational performance of the Trust’s schools and its pupils, and the performance management of staff.
  • Overseeing and ensuring effective financial performance of the Trust.

Trust Board:

Richard Newton Chance

Mr Richard Newton Chance

Member, Trustee and Chair of the Trust Board

Trustee Responsibility: Chair of Trust Board

My parents moved to St Cleer in 1965, from where I attended Liskeard Grammar School.  Having decided that a career in the Fleet Air Arm was not for me, I completed a B Ed (Hons) at the College of St Mark and St John in Plymouth.

I started teaching English in 1978 at Efford Secondary School.  In 1984, I moved to Lipson Community College to take charge of Information Technology and in 1995 I became Vice Principal. I successfully led the bid to become a specialist Arts College in 1998. In 2000, I became Principal at Queen Elizabeth’s Community College in Crediton until early retirement in 2014. QE is a large, split site 11-18 school with the only state boarding provision in Devon.  During my time there we became a High Performing Specialist School and, in 2011, an academy.   I also chaired the Devon Association of Secondary Heads for two years.

In 2014 – 15 I was the Association of School and College Leader’s funding specialist. I am also a council member of Learnus, a group involved in educational neuroscience.

I became a Trustee of SMART because I still want to contribute to making our education system as effective and enjoyable as it can be both for those who experience it and those who work in it.

Helen Casson

Helen Casson

Trustee

Trustee Responsibility: Safeguarding

After graduating from the University of East Anglia in Psycho Social studies, I completed a PGCE at Sheffield Hallam University. I then taught in Sheffield for a few years before moving to an inner London school as Assistant Headteacher, leading on student and staff wellbeing. After a move to Cornwall in 2011, I became Deputy Headteacher at Looe Community Academy before moving to my current role as Executive Principal for Medical Provision with Wave Multi Academy Trust.

In addition to being a Trustee of SMART, I am also a local governor for the Bridge Multi Academy Trust at Polperro, Looe and Brunel.

I am passionate about ensuring the needs of all young people are met I am delighted to be part of the SMART team.

Marcel Aarts

Trustee

Trustee Responsibility: Finance

After completing my bachelor’s degree in economics in 2012 in my native country of the Netherlands, I moved to London where I completed an MBA in 2013. My working life started in Management Consulting where the primary focus was to help clients in the financial sector to deliver large scale processes & IT change programmes. In 2017 switched from Management Consulting to work in the Treasury department of a major European bank. In my current job, I work with a global team to deliver the infrastructure that is necessary to meet the global regulatory requirements placed on our Treasury department.

In 2018 I was fortunate to be offered options to work flexibly, which allowed me to move with my wife back to her home county of Cornwall. I was privileged to earn my British Citizenship in 2019.

I am delighted to have been appointed as finance trustee for SMART as this provides me with an opportunity to use the skills that I have developed through my career for the benefit of our local community.

Jamie Crisp

Mr Jamie Crisp

Trustee

Trustee Responsibility: Learning

I spent 24 years in the military as a senior non-commissioned officer in the British Army and was a specialist PT instructor as well as a senior tactics instructor, conducting operational tours around the world before joining Duchy College.

We are proud to be part of our local and rural community, offering young people the opportunity to study subjects that enthuse their passion for our rural landscape, which secure them future employment. We are passionate about supporting our learners’ personal and professional development at every stage of their careers.

Lydia Lawson

Trustee

Trustee Responsibility: Staff Health and Wellbeing

I grew up in East Cornwall, and attended Liskeard School and Community College, I have now relocated back to the area from Bristol where I began my career as an Occupational Therapist. Whilst in Bristol I worked in various NHS mental health services and most recently managed an eating disorder service in conjunction with Bristol University. I now work for Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust as Professional Lead Occupational Therapist for inpatient and specialist mental health services.  

I would like to use my experience of supporting those struggling with their mental health to enhance staff and pupil wellbeing and resilience and have a specific interest in leading staff and services compassionately. I have a young family that are currently enjoying their education at a local primary school. 

Steve Lloyd

Trustee

Trustee Responsibility: HR

I have lived in West Devon and South East Cornwall for most of my life and am proud to think of this area as home. I worked in Secondary education for over 20 years moving from schools in London, Wiltshire and Southampton and then eventually posts as Head of Science, and then 2 Deputy Headships in Cornish comprehensive schools.  I took an opportunity to then lead a consortium of Universities, and Local Authorities in the South West in a transformational Learning and Development initiative. Since completing this role I have been working for the last 20 years as an independent leadership development facilitator, and coach and have worked with organisations in all sectors to help them resolve people related issues to progress their development. This has included short periods of work in West Africa, Malaysia, Central Asia, India, and the USA. 

I am an active trustee of an education charity ISSET, who specialise in developing STEM experiences for young people through their contacts with NASA. In this role I have contributed to this through leading trips to the USA and Russia, supporting astronaut based STEM projects in the UK, India, and Singapore.

I still have a passion for working with schools and coach a number of senior leadership teams often supporting them when times are particularly challenging. I have always been fascinated by the positive impact that developing Emotional Intelligence can have on outcomes. In facilitating this work I am accredited to use the Insights Discovery profiling tool through The Colourworks International Ltd.

I hope that my breadth of experience in people issues across a large range of organisations and cultures brings something positive to the HR trustee role.

Colette Storey

Trustee

Trustee Responsibility: Student Health and Wellbeing

Lee Hallam

Trustee

Trustee Responsibility: Compliance

Gemma Adams

Trustee

Trustee Responsibility: SEND

I grew up in Torpoint, attending Torpoint Community College and then went on to Plymouth Marjon University (then The College of St Mark and St John) to study primary education. I have worked in a number of schools in various roles, but my passion has always been SEND, inclusion and ensuring that pupils’ needs are met through the most suitable provision. I am currently studying a Master’s degree at the University of Birmingham in SEN and autism. I would eventually like to study for a PhD in Education/ Psychology.

As an autistic mother of an autistic son, who attends a local primary school I have a good awareness of SEND, however, I know that in an ever-changing system, further education and CPD is essential. I hope that sharing my own diagnosis is reassurance that I have lived experience and can understand some of the challenges and barriers within education. I, too, have experienced the battles, waiting lists and frequent disappointment, but have also celebrated the mini milestones and ‘small achievements’. I also realise that sometimes school can be “too noisy”, “too smelly” and just a little “too much”. We have a newly qualified autism assistance dog called Shadow who supports Joseph, and he certainly lives up to his name. In our leisure time we love to go on long walks and jump in muddy puddles together.

I am passionate about SEND, inclusion and the needs of disadvantaged pupils and am excited to be joining the SMART Trust team.

Chris Piper

Chris Piper

Trustee

Trustee Responsibility: H&S and Premises

Born and raised in Plymouth, I have now been living in Liskeard for over 15 years. After graduating from the University of Plymouth in Mechanical Engineering, I completed an Engineering Management MSc with the University of Bristol.  I am a Chartered Engineer and have held a number of positions throughout my career in various premises management roles; including time spent in London, Derby and even Belgium.  However, I have always been drawn back to Devon and Cornwall.

I am delighted to be the SMART Trustee for H&S and Premises.  In addition to my Trustee role, I am employed full time as the Head of Estates Operations for the University Campuses in Penryn and Falmouth. 

Rachel Brooks

Rachel Brooks

Trustee

Trustee Responsibility: Community Relations

In my eight years as a Liskeard Town Councillor and most recently in two years as Mayor my key focus has been encouraging local organisations to work together to achieve things not possible for single organisations. 

My professional background is in organisational development, facilitation, and management training in the public and not-for-profit sectors.  This included working with NHS Trust Boards and senior teams in organisations such as the National Trust and the Crafts Council and local government to help them understand their role and how they could operate most effectively and running strategic planning sessions.

My son is in Liskeard sixth form and as a parent and member of the community I’m aware of how much difference education makes to people’s life chances.  My main reason for taking on this role is as a keyway I can make a difference locally.

 

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