About Us  »  Governance

Governing Body

Oakwell Rise Primary Academy is part of the Barnsley Primary Partnership, which came into being in the autumn of 2016. It brings together the three primary schools: The Forest Academy, Oakhill Primary Academy and Oakwell Rise Primary Academy, which are all members of the Wellspring Academy Trust.

The Trust has put in place a single governing body for the Partnership, replacing the three former governing bodies. Our role has three key parts:

• in consultation with the Trust, we decide the vision, ethos and strategic direction of each of the three 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 each of the three schools and make sure that money is well spent.

Details of our current governors are set out below. They have a wide range of backgrounds, skills and experience which they bring to this important role, and meet at least every half term to look at all aspects of the life and work of the schools. Many of the Governors are linked with specific aspects of the life of the schools and make regular reports to the governing body.

All our work as governors has one simple aim: to make sure that our schools provide the highest standard of education and care for all our pupils, so that they have the best possible life chances.  


Meet the Team

Michael Sanderson - Trust Appointed, and Chair of Governors

Michael has served on various governing bodies in Barnsley, and helped form the Barnsley Governors Association. He was 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, and Finance.


Mrs Jessica Jenkins

Our Executive Principal of Oakwell Rise Primary Academy and Victoria Primary Academy, has served on the governing body since her employment as Principal (and previously Head of School).

   Mrs Claire Faxon, Mrs Lisa McCarthy and Mrs Katie Pierce

Our collective Principals have served on the governing body since their employment as Principals (and previously Heads of Schools) of their respective sites. They represent: Oakwell Rise Primary Academy, Oakhill Primary Academy and The Forest Primary Academy.

Father Paul Cartwright - Trust Appointed, and Vice Chair

Paul is a parish priest in Barnsley, as well as being a chaplain to Barnsley College and West Yorkshire Police, and has a background in equalities and diversity.  He is an elected member of the General Synod of the Church of England, a member of the Society for Education and Training, and has a love of music.  Paul’s link responsibility on the Governing Body is Curriculum and Quality of Education

Craig Aubrey - Parent Governor

Craig is one of the Parent Governors for Barnsley Primary Partnership and his two daughters attend The Forest Academy. He was born and raised in Barnsley and works for Barnsley Council as the Community Development Officer for the Central Area Team, where he leads on projects and initiatives that build stronger, safer and healthier communities.  Craig’s link responsibility on the Governing Body is Community and Stakeholder Engagement.

Ella Copping - Staff Governor

Ella has over 8 years of experience working within the education sector, and is a teacher at The Forest Academy.  She was born and raised in the local area of Barnsley and has good understanding of the area.  Ella loves to spend her time outdoors and enjoys sharing her passion for the Arts in her teaching.

Ken Mosley - Trust Appointed

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 link responsibility on the Governing Body is Health and Safety, Safeguarding and Attendance.

Natalie Hardman  - Ex-Officio Governor, Trust Representative
Natalie has eight years experience in the MAT sector with a further six years experience within education management. She was one of the founding officers at Wellspring and led the development of the infrastructure,systems and processes throughout the growth of the Trust.
She is a member of the Executive Team responsible for the business support function encompassing leadership of; Governance, Marketing & Communications, Data & Information and Academy Conversions. Natalie has extensive experience as a values driven leader who champions an inclusive community culture. 

Scott McHale - Trust Appointed    
Scott is an Associate Principal based at Victoria Primary Academy in Leeds. His main duties include being a Designated Safeguarding Lead, specialising in online safety and curriculum lead for the school. Over the last 12 years, Scott has supported schools with developing fun and engaging curriculums that provide high quality learning for all children, especially in Computing. This is complimented by him being the network lead for computing for Wellspring. Scott's link responsibilities on the Governing Body are SEND and Behaviour. 

Jane Kirkham - Parent Governor

Father Blair Radford - Trust Appointed

Mrs Laura Barraclough - Trust Appointed


Other recent governors have included: Helen Handley, Lindsey Groom, Mitch Stringer, Richard Whitfield and Sam Bailey.

If you are looking for information regarding joining the Governing Body or for Local Governing Body minutes, please contact the Clerk to the Governing Body:
Megan Cotney via email: m.cotney@wellspringacademies.org.uk. 

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

Click here to view Wellspring's policies and documents:

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

Governing Body