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 Boulton 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 Ark Boulton

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 Ark Boulton's governors are able to concentrate on the things that really matter – educational strategy, school outcomes and aspiration.

Ark Schools Master Funding Agreement.pdf

Amendment and Restatement Agreement.pdf

PDF icon Supplemental funding agreement

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


Ark Boulton’s LGB is made up as follows:

Six to ten members appointed by Ark, to include the Chair - usually people with a local connection or interest who are committed to supporting educational opportunity in the area.

Ark 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 meet four times a year.


Contacting the Governors

The Clerk to Governors is Lucy Taylor ( 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

For information on the Ark Schools board please visit our Trustees page.


Our Local Governing Body

Venessa Willms - Acting Chair, Ark Nominated

Venessa Willms is the Director of Primary Education at Ark Schools. She is the Founding headteacher of Ark's King Solomon Academy (Primary) and is Chair of Ark Start (nursery programme). Venessa is also a Non-Executive Director on the Ofsted Board and the Chair of Governors at Ark Boulton. In 2016 Venessa was awarded an OBE in the 2016 Honours List for services to education.

Eleanor Linford - SEND Link

Details to follow

Isra Abdi - Ark Nominated

Isra Abdi graduated with a law degree and currently works as a caseworker for a Member of Parliament. Previously, Isra worked as a paralegal within a law firm practicing public law and community care. Isra became a governor at Ark Boulton in order to give back to the community that she grew up in, and is passionate about youth development. 

Hayley Francis - Safeguarding Link

Biographical details to follow

Barbara Opala -  Finance Link

Barbara is originally from Poland and came to England 13 years ago, where she has qualified as a solicitor. Barbara has previously volunteered at Coventry Citizen Advice Bureau, and currently works as a volunteer mentor with The Girls Network. She is keen to contribute to the community and brings enthusiasm and commercial skills to the governing body. 

Shabrana Hussain - Ark Nominated

Shabrana is a local councillor and mother of three. She holds the post of Cabinet Adviser (Walking and Cycling) and is a member of a number of Birmingham City Council committees including Council Business Management Committee, Housing and Neighbourhoods Overview & Scrutiny Committee, Trusts and Charities Committee, West Midlands Police and Crime Panel (substitute member).

Lucy Wood - Ark Link

Biographical details to follow

Mark Gregory - Regional Director for Secondary

Herminder Channa JP FCCT - Principal 

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

Governor attendance at LGB meetings: Governor Attendance Register 2019-20

Governor Decarations of Interest 2020: updating shortly