Academies are schools funded by the government with the freedom to govern independently – but all are accountable to the Secretary of State for Education. To share resources and best practice, many are part of multi-academy trusts – a network of schools under one legal body.

Ark St Alban's Academy is part of Ark - a leading education charity and one of the country’s top-performing academy operators. Ark is non-denominational and does not make any profit from running its schools.

Ark’s relationship with the Secretary of State is set out in the master funding agreement. There are also supplemental funding agreements for each individual school in the network, including St Alban's.

Every school in the Ark network is the legal responsibility of the Ark Schools Board. This board focuses on statutory duties and delegates most day-to-day responsibilities to each school’s individual Local Governing Body (LGB). This means that, unlike in most non-academy governing bodies, St Alban's governors are able to concentrate on the things that really matter – educational strategy, school outcomes and aspiration.

Ark St Alban’s Academy is a Church of England school which welcomes pupils of every religion or none. The academy maintains a Christian ethos.  Ark works closely with the Birmingham Diocesan Board of Education which appoints two members to the governing body.


Ark Schools Master Funding Agreement.pdf

PDF iconSt Alban's Academy Supplemental Funding Agreement

The Ark Schools Articles of Association and Decision Making Framework can be found on the Ark Schools website here:



Our Local Governing Body

Ark St Alban’s Academy LGB is made up as follows:

  • Six-10 members appointed by Ark Schools, to include the Chair – usually people with a local connection or interest who are committed to supporting educational opportunity in the area
  • Ark St Alban’s Academy Principal
  • Two parent governors
  • One teaching staff governor
  • One non-teaching staff governor
  • One local authority representative from Birmingham

Ark Schools aims to create a balanced group that will have the right skills, connections and dynamic for the LGB to work well and support the school in achieving exceptional performance:

  • Good insight into the specific challenges at the school and the general challenges of operating top-quality schools
  • Excellent community links
  • Specific skills as needed by/relevant to the school
  • A link to the senior executive team of Ark

The LGB meets four times a year. 

Contacting the Governors

The current Clerk to Governors is Fleur Sifford ( Governors can be contacted through the clerk.

If you are interested in becoming a governor, please visit

If you have any governance-related queries, please contact

Current Governors


Jo Dawson (Chair )

Profile to follow.

Irfan Khan (Finance Link Governor)

A bit about myself, I have been living and working in Birmingham since 2006 after graduating from Nottingham University in 2005. I have supported many school pupils through work placements and apprenticeships throughout my engineering career. In September 2013, when my daughter started going to school, I decided to get more involved in her school through its governing body. I started as a parent governor at her infant school in Sep 2013, I am currently a community governor and Vice Chair of the Governing Body at our neighbourhood Infant School. I am also part of the Finance, Staffing and Audit sub-committee. Thrilled by my initial experience, and as part of my way of giving back to the wider Birmingham community, in March 2014, I joined St Albans Academy as the Local Authority nominated governor and support the school as Finance Link governor. I currently work in the city centre and use my business skills and professional experience to provide financial oversight and strategic direction to the school.

Susan Walton (SEND Link Governor)

I have been a teacher in inner city Birmingham schools for the whole of my career and so I am aware of the issues that face families in Birmingham with regards to education. Before I retired, I was vice principal at Ark St Alban's Academy and for the two terms before becoming an academy, acting headteacher. I have also worked with Teach First helping to improve the teaching of those young people joining the profession.  Retirement has allowed me to be a governor at this school. I have for several years been the link governor for Safeguarding.  This September, I changed from being Safeguarding to SEND link governor.  I visit the academy every week, so I have a good picture of what is happening, particularly with SEND.  In my spare time, I have always had an interest in all kinds of sports as a participator (netball and basketball), spectator (football, rugby, and speedway) and administrator (netball and basketball). I feel proud to state that I manage all the basketball finals organised by the British Basketball League. 

Rezvana Shaheen (Teaching Staff Governor)

Profile to follow.

Tara Collins-Bullock (Safeguarding Link Governor) 

Hello I am Tara Collins-Bullock and I am a member of Ark St Alban’s governing body and recently took on the position of Safeguarding governor.  I am a Deputy Headteacher at Christ Church CE Primary School and we are one of the main feeder schools to St Alban’s and this is my main reason why I wanted to become a governor so I could focus on the transition from Year 6 to Year 7 and foster a good relationship between both schools.  When I do manage to get some spare time, I love spending it with my children who are 13 and 8, going on family holidays and having fun together.

Evie Glypti (Ark Nominated) 

I have worked in education for over 25 years both in Greece and in the UK, and I am currently the Assistant Head Teacher at Nishkam Primary School Birmingham. I joined the Governing Body at Ark St Alban’s Academy in 2020 as a parent governor because I believe that giving our children a great education needs a strong partnership between teachers, parents and pupils. As the Curriculum Link Governor, I recognise the importance of providing pupils with a substantial, broad curriculum, ensuring that they are fully immersed in knowledge, vocabulary and experiences relevant to the world in which we live. In my spare time, I enjoy playing the accordion, reading, and playing chess as I find it a great mental challenge.

Father Gerry Sykes (Diocese Link Governor)

Profile to follow.

Calvin Hay (Ark Link Governor)

Profile to follow.

Guy Rimmer (Principal of Ark St Alban’s Academy)


All appointments are made by the Director of Governance for Ark.  The term of a governor is three years, except for the Principal, who remains a governor for the duration of their time in post.

To see the governors' attendance register click here: Governor Attendance Register 2020-21

To see the governors' declarations of interest 2020: Declarations of Interest Ark At Albans 2021-22.pdf