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The Academy Council at St John Fishers currently comprises 10 members, including the Headteacher, foundation, staff and parent Governors. The Academy Council meets six times a year and the admissions committee meets annually.

The Headteacher provides the Academy Council with regular updates concerning Progress towards Whole School targets, which are linked to the School Development Plan.

The Academy Councils of The Bishop Wheeler Catholic Academy Trust schools work closely with the Trust Board, through Mr Beardsley, Trust Chief Executive Officer and Mr Nightingale, Trust Chief Operating Officer to ensure good communication, maintain high standards of teaching and learning, and ensure implementation of statutory requirements and good financial management.

The Academy Council at St John Fisher comprises of 10 Governors:

  • 6 Foundation Governors
  • 2 Parent Governors
  • 1 Staff Governor
  • Headteacher

Contact Information

Any queries to the Governors should come through the Clerk to Academy Council, Mrs Deacon at St John Fisher Catholic High School, Hookstone Drive, Harrogate, HG2 8PT or via email to 

Academy Council Members

Foundation Governors

  • Fr Bradbury
  • Mrs Clifford
  • Mr Gregson (Vice Chair)
  • Mr Hopwood
  • Mrs Player
  • Mrs Wicken (Chair)

Parent Governors

  • Mrs Atkin
  • Mr Longley

Staff Governor

  • Dr Langstaff


  • Mr Mort

Clerk to Academy Council

  • Mrs Deacon

Academy Council Link Roles

  • Quality of Education
  • Catholic Life and Enrichment
  • Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)
  • Resources (including Finance, Estates and Safety, ICT, Pupil Premium Strategy)
  • Safeguarding and Pastoral Inclusion
  • Careers

Academy Council Meeting Role and Responsibilities

Admissions Committee (incl Headteacher)                                            

  • Mr Hopwood                                                                                       
  • Mrs Wicken

Disciplinary Board:

  • All Academy Council Members


  • All Academy Council Members

Headteacher Performance Management:

  • Academy Council Chair
  • Academy Council Vice Chair
  • Academy Council Resources Link

How Governors are Appointed

How Governors are Appointed

  • Foundation Governors are appointed by the Diocese of Leeds, following recommendation from the parish priests.
  • Staff Governors are appointed through a process of election by the whole staff of the academy.
  • Parent Governors are appointed through a process of election by the parents of students at the academy.
  • The Headteacher maintains their post for as long as they are in role.

Code of Conduct for the Academy Council

All members of the Academy Council sign the code of conduct at the first meeting of each school year.


Academy Council Terms of Office

Mrs Atkin Date of current term:  08/04/2024 – 07/042028
  Declared business interests:  St John Fisher, related to member of support staff.
Fr Bradbury Date of current term:  01/09/2021 – 31/08/2025
  Declared business interests: none
Mrs Clifford Date of current term:   01/06/2023 – 31/05/2027
  Declared business interests: none
Mr Gregson Date of current term:  01/09/2021 – 31/08/2025
  Declared business interests:  Harrogate Grammar School Employee
Mr Hopwood Date of current term:  08/09/2020 – 07/09/2024
  Declared business interests: none
Dr Langstaff Date of current term:  06/12/2022 – 05/12/2026
  Declared business interests:  none
Mr Longley Date of current term:  28/06/2022 – 27/06/2026
  Declared business interests:  none
Mr Mort Date of current term:  01/09/2020
Mrs Player Date of current term:  01/07/2020 – 30/06/2024
  Declared business interests:  St John Fisher, related to member of support staff.
Mrs Wicken Date of current term:  01/09/2021 – 31/08/2025
  Declared business interest:  St Gregory the Great employee.

Attendance at Academy Council Meetings and Committees

St John Fisher is indebted to all Governors, who dedicate considerable time and energy to supporting the running of the school on an entirely voluntary basis.  Even when they are unable to attend meetings, their contributions are noted.  We are very privileged to have such a dedicated Academy Council.

Governor Attendance 2022 2023

Relationship between St John Fisher Academy Council and The Bishop Wheeler Catholic Academy Trust

The Directors of the Bishop Wheeler Catholic Academy Trust are drawn from a wide range of backgrounds, appointed by the Bishop

One of the founding principles of our Trust is subsidiarity; that all decisions are made at the most appropriate level, rather than being imposed from above. In practice, therefore key to the work of the Trust is our Headteachers Group.

The Headteachers of all 16 Trust schools meet on a regular basis. As well as sharing good practice, they offer mutual support and development, peer review and develop and oversee the implementation of Trust wide policies.
Each school has an Academy Council with Governors appointed by the Diocese or elected by parents and staff. They oversee the strategic direction of each school and scrutinise standards, finance and admissions. Governors work with staff to continually monitor and develop the school’s achievements and direction as outlined in the School’s Development Plans.

The Trust Directors meet as a Board supported by the Resources Committee and the Audit and Risk Committee. They receive regular updates on progress within all the schools and have overall legal responsibility for standards, finance and admissions.

Everyone who works in our schools are employees of the Bishop Wheeler Trust and the Directors are responsible for developing and ensuring implementation of policies across all our schools to support this.

The work of the whole Trust is underpinned by and focused ensuring outstanding Catholic education for all pupils. As a family of schools, the Trust enables our young people to develop spiritually, morally, intellectually and personally, putting their faith into action, through serving Christ in others, in the church and in the world around them.

Articles of Association 

Articles of Association

St John Fisher Scheme of Delegation

St John Fisher Scheme of Delegation

St John Fisher Supplemental Funding Agreement

 St John Fisher High School Supplemental Funding Agreement 


Trust Contact Details

The Bishop Wheeler Catholic Academy Trust

Bradford Road


West Yorkshire

LS29 6AE

Telephone: 01943 883012