Governing Body

A school’s governing body is a group of public-spirited volunteers whose main responsibility is to determine the aims and conduct of their school with a view to promoting high standards of educational achievement. Individual governors bring their own experience and expertise to the group, and the best governing bodies use and benefit from the skills of all their governors.

The governing body holds the school to account for the quality, standard and effectiveness of the teaching and learning. Through the governing body, the school is accountable to the local education authority, the parents of the students and to the wider community. In practice, the governing body works with the Headteacher to determine how the school should develop to ensure continued improvement, and with the Head and staff agrees plans, policies, targets and procedures that work towards that development.

The governing body is also responsible for ensuring that the school fulfils its legal obligations, for the provision of the curriculum, managing the school budget, staffing, the social care and development of the students, and other statutory requirements such as developing school policies, setting targets, managing performance and so on. The governing body is also responsible for evaluating the progress of the school, making sure that effective monitoring is taking place and making strategic decisions on the basis of this evaluation. Governors are most useful to the school by being supportive yet challenging, neither blindly accepting nor entirely critical of the way the school functions. If the governing body gets the balance right it can both support the school and promote its improvement effectively. We welcome the involvement of parents, both as Parent Governors and through feedback. For more information, contact the Chair of Governors, via the School Office.

Meet the Governors

Andy Abbott

Andy is the Staff Governor, and is part of St John Payne's cleaning team where he is also an active trade unionist. Away from the school Andy led the recent successful campaign against proposals to downgrade Broomfield A&E. Andy has a degree in history from the University of Essex.

Anne Rushton – Vice Chair

Anne’s professional life is in classical music, where she is Executive Director of a contemporary music charity and is Consultant for the Hallé Orchestra’s record label, skills which are utilised in the SJP Marketing Working Group which she Chairs. A Foundation Governor, Anne practises at the Assumption of Our Lady in Maldon and has a daughter and three nephews who have studied at SJP.

Claire Wright

Claire is currently studying with the Open University for a degree in mathematics and mathematical education, whilst working in sales and marketing at International Property Media.
A Foundation Governor, she attends the 9am mass at Our Lady Immaculate, where you will see her with her daughter in the choir, reading or as the children’s Liturgy leader.

Maria Payne

Maria is the Local Authority governor at SJP, and brings over 8 years’ experience of local government to the governing body. Her current role in the Public Health team at Thurrock Council requires her to analyse and interpret data, influence strategic development and support monitoring and evaluation of programmes. With a keen interest in the health and wellbeing of the students and staff at SJP, Maria applies these skills to the Curriculum & Personnel Committee, where she has recently been appointed vice-chair. She is a practising Catholic at OLI in Chelmsford, and has several family members and friends who have attended SJP previously.

Mary Ball

Mary is a Chartered Engineer working part-time as a highway engineer and as an exam invigilator at SJP. This experience is advantageous to her participation in the Health & Safety committee, which she chairs and the Finance and Premises committee. Mary joined the Governing Board as a Parent Governor in December 2015 and transferred to being a Foundation Governor in May 2018. She is a parishioner of St Augustine of Canterbury, in Chelmsford and has a son at SJP.

Mike Frost – Chair

Mike is a Foundation Governor and has worked in the education sector for 29 years, he is currently Director of Finance at Anglia Ruskin University. He has had a close affiliation with the school over many years and was himself a former pupil. Mike is Chair of the Board of Governors and also Chair of Finance and Premises Committee where he utilises his professional skills. He is also a Governor at another local school academy.

Richard Barber

Richard has created a large I.T. and data business that operates in over 150 countries, he is currently Chairman of several businesses and occasionally lectures on entrepreneurship to university students. Richard is a Co-opted Governor; formerly chair of the Finance committee, Richard currently chairs the Curriculum and Personnel committee. Richard converted to Catholicism in 2010 and is married with three children who still seem to occupy most of his spare time.

Sharon Mussett

Sharon’s professional life is working in a secondary school in Braintree, Tabor Academy where she is the Exams and Data Officer. A Foundation Governor, Sharon practises at Our Lady Queen of Peace Braintree, where she teaches catechism and prepares children for First Holy Communion and Confirmation. She has two sons both studying at SJP.

Sister Sheila Sumner

Sister Sheila Sumner, a Servite Sister, was a Secondary School teacher of Mathematics for many years in Hackney, East London. She had to retire early due to responsibilities within her Congregation. She has always been passionate about education and served for many years on the Governing Body of a Secondary School in London. Since moving to Chelmsford she is currently the Chair of Governors of Our Lady Immaculate School, Chelmsford and has been a Governor of St John Payne School since 2017

Tom Reilly

Tom Reilly is a Foundation Governor and a practising catholic at Our Lady Immaculate Church. He is also a Foundation Governor at Our lady Immaculate School. Tom has a long association with Saint John Payne through his children who all attended the school. He is also a part time member of staff undertaking cover supervisor duties and invigilation at examinations. He worked for NatWest in the City for 35 years before taking early retirement after which he undertook various roles locally in the voluntary sector. He also works as Head of Centre for Chelmsford Marriage Care in a volunteer capacity.


Very Reverend Father Stephen Morrison O.Praem.

Fr Stephen is a priest of the Norbertine Order (or Premonstratensians), currently curate of Our Lady Immaculate and Holy Name parishes, Chelmsford. He is also chaplain to OLI Primary Academy, and works in his parishes on various catechetical programmes and pastoral initiatives. He studied French at Oxford before joining the Order and beginning his priestly studies, and is still very much interested in language learning, being fluent in French, Spanish and Italian. A foundation governor, Fr Stephen is also a keen organist, Cantor for his community at St Philip's Priory, and is also Sub Prior and Novice Master/Vocations Director. He has recently helped St John Payne with A-level French oral exams, and preparing candidates for university interviews, and takes a keen interest in the formation of the next generation of Catholics.





Foundation Governors
(ten required)
Appointment Expiry of appointment
Mike Frost 01/12/15 (R)
Anne Rushton 23/03/16 01/06/20
Fr Stephen Morrison 01/09/2017 31/08/21
Sr Sheila Sumner 01/09/2017 31/08/21
Sharon Musssett 20/02/2018 21/02/22
Claire Wright 20/02/2018 20/02/22
Tom Riley 20/02/2018 21/02/22
VACANCY Recruitment in process


Local Authority Governor
(one required)
Appointment Expiry of appointment
1. Maria Payne 08/11/2017 7 November 2021


Co-opted Governors
(three required)
Appointment Expiry of appointment
1. Richard Barber 12/04/2015 20 April 2023
2. Stephen Steadman 04/03/2016 1 July 2020
3. Adrian Dally 07/11/2017 (R)
8 November 2021


Parent Governors
(two required)
Appointment Expiry of appointment
1. Mary Ball 30/11/2015 1 July 2020
2. Mark MacDonald 01/02/2018 31 January 2022


Staff Governors
(two required)
Appointment Expiry of appointment
1. Tom Coen (Head Teacher)   ex officio
2. Andy Abbott 05/02/2018 4th February 2022


Clerk to the Governing Body
To be appointed   n/a


Governors’ details and the Register of Business Interests – September 2016 – August 2017

 Name of Governor or Associate Member  Category of governor and term of office (4 years)  Appointing Body
e.g. Governing Body, Local Authority
Membership of Committee  Positions of Responsibility  Relevant business interests that could present a conflict of interest, including whether a governor at another school  Personal relationship (if any) with member of school staff
e.g. spouse, partner, relative 
 Richard Barber  Co-Opted
 Governing Body  C&P Committee    None None 
 Stephen Steadman  Co-Opted
 Governing Body  F&P Committee
Admissions Committee
Marketing Committee
  Spouse works for AKC Design  None
 Katherine Delargy  Foundation
 Diocese  C&P Committee
SD Committee
 Chair of C&P Committee None  None 
 Mike Frost  Foundation
01/12/15 (R)
 Diocese  F&P Committee
SD Committee
 Chair of F&P Committee  Chair of Finance at Anglo European Trust  None
 Anne Rushton  Foundation
 Diocese  Admissions Committee
Marketing Committee
SD Committee
 Chair of Admissions and Marketing Committees  None Sibling (teacher) 
 Gloria Scott  Foundation
28/09/2014 (R) (28/09/2010)
 Diocese      None  None
 Chris Thompson  Foundation
 Diocese  Marketing Committee
Admissions Committee
   None  None
 Pol Toner  Foundation
 Diocese  C&P Committee    None  None
 Mary Ball  Parent
 Parent Election  F&P Committee
H&S Committee
   None  None
 Adrian Dally  Parent
Parent Election   F&P Committee
SD Committee
 Chair of Governors
Chair SD Committee Chair
 None  None
 Dani Powell  Staff
 Staff Election      None  None
 Tom Coen  Headteacher  N/A  All committees    None  None


Name of Governor or Associate Member who has served in the last 12 months but has now stepped down Category of governor and date of leaving Appointing Body
e.g. Governing Body, Local Authority
Membership of Committee Positions of Responsibility Relevant business interests that could present a conflict of interest, including whether a governor at another school Personal relationship (if any) with member of school staff
e.g. spouse, partner, relative
Sue Howell February 2017          
Sam Riddler 01/04/2017 Local Authority        
Fr. Hugh Allan June 2017 Diocese     Chair at Our Lady Immaculate None
Elaine Heyworth 21/06/2017 Diocese Finance Committee Vice Chair None None
Alistair Whipps 17/08/2017 Local Authority     None None


St John Payne School, Governors Attendance at Committee Meetings 2016-17


 M. Ball  3/3  100%
 R. Barber  2/3  67%
 A. Dally  3/3  100%
 K. Delargy  3/3  100%
 M. Frost  3/3  100%
 D. Powell  3/3  100%
 H. Allan  0/2  0%
 E. Heyworth  0/2  0%
 S. Howell  0/1  0%
 S. Ridler  0/2  0%
 A. Rushton  2/3  67%
 T. Coen  3/3  100%
 G. Scott  3/3  100%
 S. Steadman  3/3  100%
 C. Thompson  2/3  67%
 A. Whipps  2/3  67%
 P. Toner  2/3  67%


Finance & Premises
 R. Barber  3/4  75%
 M. Frost  6/6  100%
 T. Coen  6/6  100%
 E. Heyworth  2/5  40%
 A. Dally  6/6  100%
 M. Ball  6/6  100%
 S. Steadman  3/6  50%


Curriculum & Personnel
 T. Coen  3/3  100%
 K. Delargy  3/3  100%
 S. Howell  0/1  0%
 P. Toner  2/3  67%
 R. Barber  3/3  100%
 S. Ridler  0/1  0%


Health & Safety
 T. Coen  3/3  100%
 S. Ridler  2/3  67%
 M. Ball  1/1  100%


 E. Heyworth  1/1  100%
 T. Coen  1/1  100%
 S. Steadman  1/1  100%
 C. Thompson  1/1  100%
 A. Rushton  1/1  100%
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