Academy Committee

The aim of the Academy Committee Representatives of Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Primary School (which is part the St Nicholas Owen MAC) is to work together with the Principal, the Vice Principal and all the staff on operational matters in the school in order to support the children at the school to achieve their full potential in a happy, caring, Christ-centred environment maintaining at all times the Catholic ethos.

The key elements in achieving this aim are to:

  • Preserve and develop the ethos and character of a Catholic School and the academy through high expectations of everyone in the school community including fundamental British values of democracy (rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance for those with different faiths and beliefs).
  • Ensure strong links within the Parish are maintained to ensure children and their families are given the opportunity to deepen their faith building on the knowledge and values taught at the school.
  • Monitor the performance and progress of all the children at the school.
  • Work with all the staff to help them to teach and care for all our children in the most effective manner.
  • Ensure that the resources of the school are best utilised, in consultation with the Principal.
  • Plan with the Principal to guarantee that the overall performance of staff, children, and hence the school, continues to improve in all aspects.

To enable the Academy Committee Representatives to achieve these objectives, the Academy Committee is made up of key groups within the school- parents, staff, the Church and the community. The Foundation Academy Committee Representatives are appointed by the Diocese, whilst the parent and staff representatives are elected. All representatives serve for a term of four years.

The Academy Committee meets each term; at which time they focus on specific activities such as: finance and budgeting implications, curriculum, staffing, admissions, premises and health and safety. Individual members of the Academy Committee bring valuable experience and skills which are utilised to ensure the community of Our Lady Of Fatima School continues to be happy, caring and successful whilst benefiting from the wider community of the Multi Academy and the Church.

The Academy Committee, whilst responsible for operational matters takes overall direction from the St Nicholas Owen Catholic Multi Academy Company Board of Directors and as such, communication and links are put into place to ensure that there is cohesion and clarity among and between all of the schools within the Catholic Academy. We also welcome views from our parents and supporters. If you would like to get in touch with me at any time, please contact the Senior Office Manager at the school.

Dr Lorraine Cemm

Also see: SNOMAC Governance Structure Diagram (pdf)

Academy Committee 2018/19

Name Type of Member Related to any Employee
Dr L Cemm Foundation Representative, Chair of the Academy Committee,   Safeguarding Lead Academy Representative  
Mr K Keegan Foundation Representative, Vice Chair of the Academy Committee  
Mrs C van Vliet Principal  
Mr D Simmons Staff Representative, Vice Principal  
Mrs R Harlow Staff Representative Inclusion Leader  
Mrs K Bowater Foundation Representative Sister of Mrs G Wakeman (TA)
Mrs I Byrne Foundation Representative  
Mrs M Hooper Foundation Representative  
Mr K McGuinness Foundation Representative Brother-in-law of Mrs J McGuinness (Teacher)
Mrs M Wooldridge Foundation Representative  
Mr M Higgins Elected Parent Representative  
Mrs D Lacey Elected Parent Representative  
Mrs C Billingham Clerk to the Academy Committee  

Committee Member Profiles

Mrs Kathy Bowater

Being a former pupil of Our Lady of Fatima and then many years later a parent of two children who also attended this wonderful school, I have very strong links to both this school and the parish community it serves. It is therefore an honour for me to now to serve as a Foundation Academy Representative for Our Lady of Fatima School. As well as being a busy parent, I have over 30 years experience in the banking industry, currently working in Corporate Banking and achieving a BSc Honours in Banking and Finance.

Mrs Irene Byrne

I was invited to become a Foundation Academy Representative during the Autumn Term 2014, just before the school became part of the Multi Academy Company. I am an active member of Our Lady of Fatima Parish, serving as a Eucharistic Minister, data secretary for the SVP Conference. I am also a member of the church Finance Committee and assist at the church fetes and bazaars. I recently retired after 35 years in Quality Control in the aerospace industry. Recently I became Link Governor for Training and for the Creative Curriculum.

Dr Lorraine Cemm

I have attended Our Lady of Fatima Church for many years. I have the privilege of being both a Eucharistic Minister and Reader. I became a member of the Governing Body of the school ten years ago and since that time have served on various committees. As a mature student I trained as a teacher and taught primary children for 23 years; within that role I became a Senior Leader. I have always valued education and as such continued my own studying to graduate as Doctor of Education and since retiring I now work for Birmingham City University supporting trainee teachers. I find the role of Academy Representative both challenging and rewarding. I feel blessed to be part of the team guiding children to achieve their full potential.

Mrs R Harlow

I have worked at Our Lady of Fatima School since September 2005 in a variety of interesting roles. For the last 7 years, I have had the privilege of being the school's Inclusion Leader. This whole-school role enables me to work with children, families and staff in order to meet the needs of the 'whole child'. I am also a Deputy Designated Senior Lead for Safeguarding and Mini Vinnie co-ordinator (Junior strand of the St Vincent de Paul Society). Within my role I have been able to access a significant amount of varied training and work alongside many outstanding practitioners both in school and in the wider education system. This supports my ethos in trying to be as inclusive as possible to all children. My position is incredibly rewarding as I am passionate about enabling all children to have a happy, safe and rewarding education.

Mr M Higgins

I have two daughters at Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Primary School and I am passionate about providing them with the support required alongside the fantastic education they receive. I am fortunate to have a longstanding relationship with the school through close relatives who have previously attended the school and whose children continue to do so. I have been employed for 25 years by Scottish Widows and work with Heads of Business to ensure that appropriate advice, discussions and behaviours are consistently used with customers. I am highly motivated and dynamic and my employment role requires me to have strong engagement in all business matters. I am also an active member of the school’s PTA and relish the opportunity to offer my skills and experience to further support and challenge the school.

Mrs Marea Hooper

I am a retired primary school teacher who worked in Early Years through to Key Stage 2. I taught for many years at Our Lady of Fatima Primary School and my children attended the school. I currently work at the school as a cover teacher as required. As a Foundation Representative of the Academy Committee, I regularly have the privilege of listening to the children’s views and sharing in their learning. I often attend school events, where I enjoy meeting parents and grandparents, getting to know them and having informal chats with them. Within the school, I work particularly closely with the Inclusion Leader and the RE Co-ordinator, as I am the Link Representative for SEND and Religious Education. Having previously held similar responsibilities to these teachers, I am in a position to assist them in their role of promoting and further developing a wonderful school experience for children and their families.

Mr Kieran Keegan

I have been an Academy Representative for the past five years. I wanted to become a representative as both of my children had an outstanding education whilst at the school and I decided it would be great to be able to give my time back as a thank you.

Mrs D Lacey

I have a daughter at Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Primary School. I am driven by a desire to provide the very best for my daughter and for the children and families at Our Lady of Fatima School. I am very proud of the school and its reputation excels itself. I am also a committed member of the school’s PTA and wish to offer my support to the school’s organisation to ensure that active engagement remains a priority in the school’s partnership with parents.

Mr Kevin McGuinness

I have been a Governor / Academy Foundation Representative for approximately 10 years at Our Lady of Fatima School. My two daughters were fortunate to attend our wonderful school and by supporting the school in this way, I feel that I have the opportunity to "put something back into the school and Catholic education" as a small thank you for the excellent education my daughters received. I am the Regional HR Director for Kärcher and am responsible for the UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

Mr David Simmons

I am the Vice Principal at Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Primary School. I have a variety of roles as Vice Principal: I am the Deputy Designated Senior Lead for Safeguarding, with additional responsibility across the school for E-Safety, Assessment, English and Computing. Prior to this I worked as a Deputy and Acting Headteacher at St Francis Xavier Primary School and as a teacher at St Philip’s Primary School.

Mrs Clare van Vliet

I have been a primary school teacher for over 30 years across EYFS and both Key Stages and have spent the last 22 of these years at Our Lady of Fatima School. I was originally appointed as a class teacher, then a Senior Leader, Deputy Headteacher and am currently very proud to be the Principal of this successful catholic school. It is a real privilege to come to school every day and work together with the children and families of this community. I believe that learning needs to be relevant and exciting, so that all of our children experience the pleasure of achieving both academic and personal success. Being happy, safe and secure in school enables all children to have the very best start to their education.

Mrs M Wooldridge

I am a Higher Level Teaching assistant working in a local primary school, where I have worked for 36 years and have gained a great deal of knowledge and experience in my role. It is safe to say that I have a depth of understanding in children’s all-round development. I teach and support children across Early Years and Key Stage 1. My role is very rewarding and it is a pleasure to work with the children and be a part of their learning and school experience. When I was recently invited to become a Foundation representative of Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Primary School I felt honoured to be asked to become a part of such a lovely school. I endeavour to support the staff, children and whole school community in my role as Academy Representative.