Bath & Wells Multi-Academy Trust

Swainswick Church School is an academy within the Bath & Wells Multi-Academy Trust (BWMAT).


For more information about the trust, and contact details - see our specific BWMAT page.  

The MAT governance structure includes members, and a board of Trustees who are responsible for the strategic direction of the whole trust. The Local Governing Board at the individual school level is responsible for the individual scheme. 

Within the BWMAT, there is a scheme of delegation which clearly sets out what decision making is delegated to the LGB and school, and which decisions remain at the trust level.

Responsibilities of the Governors on the Local Governing Board


The LGB has a largely strategic role, deciding what the school wants to achieve, setting and reviewing targets, and acting as a ‘critical friend’ to the Headteacher.


The Headteacher is responsible for the internal organisation, day-to-day management and control of the school, and reporting to governors on the delivery of the objectives agreed within the school’s development plan.


The governors and Headteacher work together in partnership to develop the key policies for the school and to decide which decisions are reserved to the governors, which are shared between the governors and Headteacher, or delegated to the Headteacher.  The principal areas of responsibility are reflected in the sub-committees listed below.

All Governors sign the BWMAT Governors Code of Conduct.

In 2017, the Governing Body and the School developed and consulted on a Three Year Strategic Plan to detail Swainswick's Journey to 2020. You can read more about this plan and how it was used on the Vision and Values Page.

We have reviewed the success of the 2017-2020 strategy and will be publishing our new strategic plan early in 2022.



In accordance with government recommendations the membership of the governing body is widely drawn to reflect the various aspects of school life and to represent a balance of interested parties, comprising : –


  • 2 x Parent Governors. Parent Governors are usually parents of children at the school. Most are elected by the parents. If not enough parents stand for election, the governing body can appoint an individual to the position.

  • 2 x Staff Governors.  Headteacher, plus one staff Governor.

  • 2 x Foundation Governors. One Foundation Governor is appointed by the Diocese of Bath and Wells Board on the nominations from Swainswick and Woolley Parochial Church Council.

  • BWMAT Appointed Governors. These governors are appointed by the BWMAT with input from the governing body. This is on the basis of the skills they can bring to support the effective governance and success of the school.

  • The Clerk of Governors.  Not a Governor as such, the Clerk is a paid administrator appointed to assist Governors in fulfilling their duties.

The usual term of office, that is, how long governors are expected to serve on the board is four years for all types of governor. The governing body can, however, determine the term of office for governors to be less than four years.


Governing Committee Structure

The Governing Committee structure at Swainswick was reviewed in Autumn 2021, to ensure that it aligned to the updated BWMAT Scheme of Delegation.

The committee structure is as follows, and all committees have been mapped to the scheme of delegation for clarity of purpose and responsibility.

Swainswick Church School Local Governing Committee (LGC)

The LGC takes a strategic role avoiding routine involvement in operational matters, acts as a critical friend to the school and is accountable for its decisions – specifically:

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos, strategic direction and Christian distinctiveness

  • Holding the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils, and the performance management of staff

  • Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent 

Safeguarding is a standard agenda item and it is reported on at every LGC



Resources & Pay Committee

•    Overseeing financial performance and making sure money is well spent 

•    Monitor, and review all matters relating to the maintenance and development of the school premises and grounds, security and Health and Safety.

•    Ensure the school is staffed sufficiently for the fulfilment of the school’s development plan and the effective operation of the school.

•    Holding the headteacher to account for the performance management of staff

•    Responsible for determining pay progression of all school based staff 

•    Approves and supports restructuring of school-based posts (not Headteacher)

•    Monitors terms and conditions, pay grades, roles and contracts to ensure they do not deviate from Trust standards

Standards Committee

•    Holding the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils 

•    Monitor and evaluate: 

o    Curriculum intent, progression, implementation and impact.

o    rates of progress and standards of achievement by pupils, including any 

o    underachieving groups.

o    the impact of quality of teaching on rates of pupil progress and standards of 

o    achievement 

o    Special Educational Needs, Inclusion and Equal Opportunities 

o    Pupil Premium, ‘narrowing the Gap’, and Sport Premium and ensure their 

o    effective implementation. 

o    the impact of continuing professional development of improving staff performance. 


Ethos Committee

•    Monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of the Schools vision, values and ethos

•    Consider the extent to which the school intentionally embeds it’s Christian values, and the impact on Christian distinctiveness. 

•    Monitor and evaluate impact of the school’s communications; ensuring it is aligned to the Trust’s key messages and promotes the voice of parents, staff, and pupils. 

Further detailed information on the structure and function of the Local Governing Committee at Swainswick Church School, its Committees and their Terms of Reference is detailed in this document: Swainswick LGC Structure and Responsibilities, and it's appendix: Swainswick Committees mapped to the scheme of delegation.



Governors at Swainswick welcome constructive comments which may help them to improve the strategic direction of the school. We ask that this is done by letter or email addressed to the Chair of Governors and sent to the school office. It is not the role of the governors to respond individually to these comments but they will be taken into account when discussions are held.

Committee Membership, Register of Pecuinary/Business Interests & Attendance, 

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Shannon Carr-Shand

BWMAT Appointed Governor

Chair of Governors

Chair of Resources Cttee

Whistleblowing Governor

Shannon joined the Governing Body in Autumn 2015. She has one child at the school, and wanted to become a Governor after her son’s overwhelmingly positive introduction to the school – his comment at the end of his first day was “Why is everyone in Swainswick so kind?”. She is interested in how we help children to develop the skills they will need for an increasingly complex World, and passionate about the positive power of the natural environment and the rhythm of the Seasons in the lives of children.


Her professional background includes consulting, with a focus on process improvement and managing change on large scale business transformation projects. She subsequently went on to complete a Masters in Leadership for Sustainable Development, and worked with a number of organisations to understand their environmental and social impact, and develop projects to deliver a meaningful positive impact through their core business activities.

Robert Shackell

BWMAT Appointed Governor

Health & Safety Governor

Robert is the Local Education Authority Governor, having previously had children at the school. He lives and farms in the Swainswick Valley and is on the Swainswick Parish council. These close links make Robert particularly interested in the well being and future of the school. Robert was very involved and supportive during the review of primary schools when the future of Swainswick School appeared to come under threat. He is a also trustee of the Oriel Hall in Larkhall.

Sacha Taylor

BWMAT Appointed Governor

Sacha and her family moved to Swainswick in 2018 and feel very blessed to be a part of the school community, having been made to feel very welcome by staff, pupils and parents when they arrived towards the end of Year 1 with their daughter Pippa.  Working as a Solution Focused Hypnotherapist, Sacha has extensive understanding of mental health and best practice for supporting and finding strategies that work for each individual.  She is passionate about supporting the school and its pupils/parents in her role as Parent Governor and is excited to be part of such a dedicated team of Governors.

Nicky Lewis

Parent Governor


Nicky has lived in the village of Upper Swainswick for 15 years and has been a parent governor since September 2015. Nicky currently works for the Premier League as a Professional Skills Mentor and previously worked at the University of Bath (Team Bath) for 12 years. Nicky has extensive experience of higher education, elite sport and sports development.

Rich Watts

BWMAT Appointed Governor

Rich has one child at Swainswick and lives with Jessie and their two tore children in Larkhall. They moved to Bath in 2012 after several years in London, though Jessie is originally from the south west.

Rich’s work is in public services, particularly working with the NHS, social care and the welfare system to support disabled people of all ages. His work is mainly based around Whitehall, though also involves meeting lots of different people who use the care system and professionals who work in it across the country.


Rich has previously been a governor of a primary school and a trustee of various disability charities.


Parent Governor

Nominations to be approved at LGC Dec 2021.


BWMAT Appointed Governor


Nominations to be approved at LGC Dec 2021.

Claire Davies

BWMAT Appointed Governor


Chair of Standards Cttee

Claire has twoonechildren at Swainswick School, so appreciates what a special place it is for children and parent’s. Claire lives in Lower Swainswick and enjoys being part of the Swainswick/Larkhall community.  Claire works as a General Practitioner on the other side of Bath and has experience in the health and wellbeing of children and families.

Helen Roberts

Foundation Governor Safeguarding Governor


Mrs Sarah Charles

Staff Governor

Robert Beesley

Clerk to Governors

Governors who have served on the Governing Board in the last 12 months


Imogen Windsor - Parent Governor until July 2021

Dave Parr - Foundation Governor until July 2021