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.

William Parker 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 William Parker Academy.

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, Ark William Parker Academy governors are able to concentrate on the things that really matter – educational strategy, school outcomes and aspiration.

PDF iconAmendment and Restatement Agreement

PDF iconArk William Parker Academy Supplemental Funding Agreement

The Ark Schools Articles of Association, Master Funding Agreement and Accountabilities Framework can be found on the Ark Schools website here.

Our local governing body

Ark William Parker Academy’s LGB is made up as follows:

  • Six to ten members appointed by Ark, including the Chair – usually people with a local connection or interest who are committed to supporting educational opportunity in the area
  • Ark William Parker Academy's Principal
  • One parent governor
  • One teaching staff governor
  • One non-teaching staff governor
  • One local authority representative from East Sussex County Council
  • Two governors appointed by the Diocese

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

Contacting the governors

The current Clerk to Governors is Charles Shaw ( 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


Clifford Smith (Chair, Diocesan representative, H&S & Finance Link Governor)

I have a background in finance and have been a governor in maintained schools in East Sussex for a number of years, including six years as Chair of Governors during which governance was rated outstanding by Ofsted. Most recently I was appointed to a school in special measures and assisted that school to be rated as satisfactory the following year. All of my children have attended William Parker and/or Parkwood and the former 'federal sixth' with Helenswood.



Helen Bostock (Sixth Form, Pathways & Enrichment & Careers Link Governor)

Helen Bostock is a human resources consultant, specialising in organisational effectiveness, talent, leadership development and resourcing. Prior to this she was a director in People & Culture at Primark where she was Global Head of Organisational Effectiveness & Resourcing.

From 2010 to 2015 she was a director in the Human Resources department of Barclays Plc, where she led the Organisational Insight team as well as having global responsibility for the Barclays graduate and MBA recruitment programmes. Helen joined Barclays in 2010 as global head of entry-level programmes for Barclays Wealth. Helen was formerly a Managing Director and global head of campus recruitment at Credit Suisse and prior to this spent 17 years at JPMorgan in a variety of HR and Marketing roles.  She is a former board director and Vice President of the Association of Graduate Recruiters (UK), a former external trustee for the Centre for Recording Achievement. She was a member of the Vice Chancellor’s Thought-Leadership Council, University of Leicester and a member of the advisory board of the Wilson Review on University/Business Collaboration (2012). She is currently a trustee of the charity, Let Them Shine.  Helen has a keen interest in coaching and mentoring having previously worked as a careers placement counsellor for the London School of Economics.

Helen holds a BSc in Sociology from the University of Kent at Canterbury.  Her interests include the Anglo-Zulu War, military aviation, theatre and live music.  She lives in East Sussex and is married with one daughter.


Jonquil Cargill (Parent & Personal Development / Welfare, Community, and Marketing Link Governor)

I have worked as a journalist for most of my working life, primarily for the Daily Telegraph as well as other broadsheets and magazines. I have also worked in broadcasting at the BBC and independent radio stations. In the last few years I have changed lanes into writing film scripts. I have a BA In Philosophy and English. I am in my second term of been a governor at Netherfield C of E primary school, my son's primary school. Now my oldest son has gone to Ark William Parker I am looking forward to doing whatever I can as a governor to support and contribute to the positive and stimulating learning environment which my son so much enjoys..



Reverend Luke Dean (Diocesan representative and Ethos & Behaviour Link Governor)

As a late developer, doing poorly at school I didn’t complete any further education until I was 30. However I gained experience in life; worked on a building site with the site-engineers for three years and drove delivery vans, buses, coaches and articulated lorries for four years. Following further education became a land and hydrographic surveyor and software engineer specializing in locating aircraft lost in deep sea. With 3 colleagues subsequently started a software company focussed on land mapping applications. That company was sold to one based in the USA and led to the requirement to move to the USA which re-ignited the interest in ordination. I did move to the USA and there met my wife but moved back to UK in 2005 to start theological college. I have been a vicar in St Leonards-on-Sea since October 2011. Hobbies include computing, motorcycling, cycling, running, skiing and keep fit.


Sarah Driver - Associate Governor and Founding Partner

My husband, Mark, and I sponsored Ark William Parker and I was Chair of Governors for 4 years.  I am driven by a desire to see all children and young people able to access education and experience success regardless of their needs, where they live or their social background.  This led me to establish the Driver Youth Trust in 2007, a charity that focuses on literacy and works across the SEND sector.  We are strategic partners of London Leadership Strategy and are key members of the government funded Whole School Send Consortium looking at building capacity and workforce development.  Our flagship programme, Drive for Literacy, is in many of the schools in Hastings, making a real difference to young people.  I was originally a lawyer in the City but now focus on running Rathfinny Wine Estate in Sussex which I founded with my husband.


Nick Wallace (Ark Link Governor - Teaching & Learning, & Curriculum Link Governor)

Nick works in Ark's English Mastery programme, which is currently being taught in 13 Ark Schools. He joined the organisation in 2014 and has experience in working across the Ark network as well as in partnership with other academies across the country. He holds an English degree from Oxford University, is an experienced English teacher and a Teach First alumnus.


Sarah Thake (SEND & Safeguarding Link Governor)

Sarah is the Training Manager of a large chain of leisure facilities, bringing with her a wealth of experience in managing the delivery of accredited courses. She has extensive experience in working with a variety of awarding organisations and facilitating rigorous audits, both internally and through external parties, such as the SFA and OFSTED. Sarah finished Helenswood in 2004, at this point she entered the leisure industry as a lifeguard, steadily progressing into higher level management. She has now forged a career in the vocational learning sector, so has lots of experience in managing the delivery of courses and ensuring an exceptional learner journey. Sarah is excited to be a Governor as she feels her knowledge and experience can help to build on the good work that is already being done. She feels it is important to instill good practice and work ethics for future generations.


Yvonne Powell OBE (Executive Principal)

Yvonne is the Executive Principal of Ark William Parker Academy and Ark Helenswood Academy, both based in Hastings. Ms Powell is a very experienced school leader, who was awarded an OBE by the Queen for her services to education, and until Summer 2018 was Principal of Ark Walworth Academy in London. She is also Principal of Ark Helenswood Academy.  


Stephanie Newman (Principal)

Stephanie is the Principal of Ark William Parker Academy. 


All appointments are made by the Governance Manager for Ark Schools.  The term of a governor is three years, except for the Principal, who remains a governor for the duration of his/her time in post.  The register of interests and attendance for LGB governors can be found here: PDF iconRegister of Interests and Attendance 2017-18.pdf