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About Us  »  Governance

Governing Body

Forest Academy is part of the Wellspring Academy Trust’s Barnsley Primary Partnership, which brings together three primary schools: Forest Academy, Oakhill Academy and Oakwell Rise Academy. 

The Partnership has a single governing body with three key roles:

  • in consultation with the Trust, we decide the vision, ethos and strategic direction of our schools;
  • we hold the Executive Principal and her senior staff to account for the educational performance of the schools and their pupils;
  • we oversee the financial performance of the schools and make sure that money is well spent.

We have a complement of 14 governors, and the details of the current members are set out below.  Governors bring a wide range of backgrounds, skills and experience to this important role.  We meet about 12 times a year to consider all aspects of the life and work of the schools. Many governors are linked with particular aspects of school life on which they make regular reports to the governing body.

The Executive Principal, Sam Bailey, supported by two Heads of School and other staff, is responsible for the day to day running of the schools. She is accountable to governors for how she does this, and frequently reports to us

All our work as governors of the Partnership is aimed at achieving our vision of skilled and inspiring teaching in high quality learning environments enabling our children to succeed and reach their potential.

Michael Sanderson

Chair of Governors

  Meet the Team
Michael has served on various governing bodies in Barnsley, and helped form the Barnsley Governors Association. He is a  National Leader of Governance. Having trained as a statistician, Michael worked for nearly 40 years in local government, in a  wide range of roles. He links with Sam Bailey, Executive Principal in relation to Leadership and Management.
Michael Sanderson
Chair of Governors
Sam has led very significant change management programmes in order to secure success and has had a very significant impact in all of her schools. Sam is Executive Principal of the three schools which make up the Barnsley Primary Partnership, namely The Forest Academy, Oakhill Primary Academy and Oakwell Rise Primary Academy.
Sam Bailey
Ex-officio Governor
(Executive Principal)
Fr Paul Cartwright is a Parish Priest in Barnsley, as well as being a chaplain to Barnsley College and West Yorkshire Police.  He has a background in equalities & diversity and is also an elected member of the General Synod of the Church of England. He is also a Member of the Society for Education and Training, has a love of music and is the link governor for teaching, learning and staffing.
Father Paul Cartwright
Vice Chair -Trust Appointed
Jenny is a staff governor and links with Sue Galley and Sam Bailey for Safeguarding. She works at Springwell as Borough Services Manager and has extensive experience in the field of Behaviour and Attendance and has previously worked on the senior leadership team for BMBC’s Education Welfare Service.   
Jenny Davis
Vice Chair -Trust Appointed

Fiona Has been the vicar of Christ Church Ardsley since June 2013.She is also a member of the local Stairfoot Ward Alliance.  Her particular responsibility within the Governing Body is with the issue of Community Engagement.
Fiona Kouble
Trust Appointed 
Lucy works as an Office Manager at Oakwell Rise Primary Academy. She has over 15 years experience working in education, from a secondary teacher to marking Examinations papers. She loves to travel and often spends her weekends with her children at English Heritage sites.
Lucy Donald
Staff Governor 
I started at Forest in 2011 by volunteering in a Year 1 class. Both my daughters attended Forest but have moved onto high school. Volunteering gave me the courage to start studying to become a Teaching Assistant. I then went on to do further training and I completed my Higher Level Teaching Assistant qualification. I have since progressed on to become a Learning and Family Support Mentor which gives me the time to support children on a one to one basis.
Melissa Watkinson
Staff Governor  
Ken is a retired Chartered Health & Safety Practitioner, having worked 40 years in the construction industry in UK and China in various engineering and management roles and has several years experience in corporate governance. Post retirement ken worked for Barnsley Football Club in an advisory capacity on management procedures. Ken's responsibility on the Governing Body is Health & Safety. 
Ken Mosley
Trust Appointed
Chris is a Chartered Educational Psychologist with over 20 years experience  of working with schools in Barnsley to support families, pupils and staff in the area of Special Educational Needs. Chris also has considerable experience as a governor and her responsibility on the Governing Body is oversight of Key Pupil Groups. Her links in school are the SENDCO's.           
Chris Parkes
Trust Appointed 
Rob House is one of our parents who has had his children attending The Forest Academy for the past 15 years. Originally from Hertfordshire, Rob moved up to Barnsley in 2003 and lived in the local area for 12 years. He has a background in customer service and worked closely with financial advisers for Aviva UK. He has a love for Tottenham Hotspur, travelling and his children and is the link governor for Community/Parental Engagement.
Robert House
Parent Governor
Helen Handley is one of the Parent Governors for BPP and has her son attending Oakhill Primary School.  She was born and raised in Barnsley and hence knows the area very well.  Her background is in Management working with the Salvation Army as well as having worked in Childcare.  She is also the owner of a local business.  Helen is also the Link Governor for Community Engagement”

Helen Handley
Parent Governor
Karen is Wellspring Trust’s appointee to the Governing Body.  She is employed as Wellspring’s Company Secretary and Clerk to the Wellspring Trust Board.  Karen also leads the Trust’s Governance Team, which provides governance support to the Trust Board, Board Committees and to all Governing Bodies within the Trust.
Karen Froggatt
Ex-officio Governor

If you are looking for information regarding joining the Governing Body or wish to obtain copies of Local Governing Body minutes, please contact the Clerk to the Governing Body on 01226 720741 or emailing

Please click on the following picture which will direct you to the Wellspring's Governance Page:

Please click on the following picture which will direct you to the Wellspring's Trustees page:

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Please address all correspondence to the Chair of Governors:

Mr Michael Sanderson
Wellspring Academy Trust
Digital Media Centre
County Way, Barnsley 
South Yorkshire
S70 2JW