Governance

Governors play a vital role in both supporting and challenging schools to ensure they meet their objectives.
At EKC Sheppey Secondary, we are incredibly grateful to have a team of local governors with a wide range of professional, educational and voluntary experiences.
  • Alan Horton – Chair of Governors

    Alan is a lifelong public servant, safeguarding our communities for over 30 years with Kent Police. In serving as a Swale Borough and Upchurch Parish Councillor, he’s championed and shaped the local area.

    This, and his 20-year dedication to education, as a School Governor, Chair, and Trustee, Alan proudly Chairs EKC Sheppey Secondary’s Governing Body.

  • Fiona Trigwell

    Fiona is a passionate islander with decades of experience working in education in Swale. Fiona has championed the island all of her life and has shaped the futures for many families all over the island.

    Fiona started her teaching career on the Isle of Sheppey 45 years ago and in that time worked across Island schools in various leadership roles. In 2012 she was appointed as a Headteacher in a Sittingbourne secondary school where she raised standards and transformed the school’s reputation. Since her ‘retirement’ she has been Chair of the Board of Directors for an academy trust of eight schools, two of which are on the Island

  • Jackie Noble

    Jackie has educational experience spanning over 28 years within a challenging Swale School. She is committed to offering all young people a chance to be successful, whatever their background and circumstances.

    Jackie has leadership experience of safeguarding, curriculum development, career education and whole school strategic planning. Her family have always lived on the Island and she spent most of her childhood school holidays staying with grandparents there.

  • Denise Knights

    Denise is an experienced entrepreneur who has made an enormous difference to the lives of the young people of Swale helping those who have often felt left behind.

    She ran her own successful international Interior Design business for over 30 years. Working with celebrities and corporate clients, worldwide. She took early retirement and joined Canterbury College in the Visual Arts Department, as an Industry Liaison Officer. In this role, she was responsible for getting young people work experience and getting them work ready. After 5 years, she was offered the role as Enterprise Manager at Launch It on the Isle of Sheppey, to grow the next generation of entrepreneurs and creatives on the Island.

  • Dolley Wooster

    Dolley is a Labour counsellor for Sheerness. As a passionate and dedicated Islander, she has a proven track record in campaigning for positive change in Sheerness and ensuring that the voices of the Sheerness community are heard at every level.

    As an experienced governor and within her own family, she has personal experience of schools on the island. She has been working in the local community for many years and is involved in a number of development projects across the island.

  • Clare Bush

    Clare is an experienced and committed safeguarding lead who has dedicated her career to safeguarding young people throughout Swale.

    She has 15 years of experience in working with children and young people in Swale in both primary and secondary settings. She is passionate about supporting families in her role as a Designated Safeguarding Lead and being a mental health lead and qualified counsellor has enabled her to transform the lives of the young people she works with.

  • Garry Ratcliffe

    Garry is dedicated to his mission to improve the life chances for all children, both within his schools and within the charities he works with. He has lived on the island for the last ten years, and some locals may remember his family taking part in the DIYSOS programme a few years ago. He is all too aware of the brilliant community that we have on the island, and how supportive it can be to our young people.

    Garry has been a teacher for 28 years, and for 15 of those he was a headteacher. He is currently the CEO of The Golden Thread Alliance, a successful Multi Academy Trust of 9 Primary Schools in North Kent.

  • Alexandra Syrotiuk

    Alexandra started her long career in further education 15 years ago. She has had the opportunity to work nationwide in different colleges and brings this wealth of experience to her role as Principal at Sheppey College.

    Alexandra is a proud member of the EKC Group Leadership Team who is dedicated to working with our young people on the island to support them into further education, degrees, apprenticeships or successful employment.

  • Stewart Heywood

    Stewart is a fully qualified Carpenter and Joiner with over 20 years of experience running his own company; in 2001, his career direction led him to Education with a passion for sharing his knowledge and experience with Carpentry students at Folkestone College.

    In 2007, he became a Director, and since then, he has led a number of curriculum areas, including Plumbing, Electrical, General Construction, Computing, Engineering and Automotive. In 2013, he became the senior lead on all Estate Capital projects within the East Kent Colleges Group. Over the last ten years, he has been involved at the senior level in the Group’s expansion and has led over 70 projects, equalling more than £80 million.

    “I am excited to become part of the governing body of EKC Sheppey Secondary and feel my above experiences can help develop the school to meet the needs of all students as they progress into their chosen careers.

    I am a strong-willed person, and I feel this, with my life experiences, will put me in a good position to both support and challenge all aspects of the school‘s development to move forward in a positive way.

“I have the honour and privilege to lead the finest team I could ever dream of, on what I believe is the most exciting development in education on the Isle of Sheppey in at least a generation, and arguably much longer.

Together with our team of dedicated and passionate staff we are going to work our socks off to reverse the injustices of the past and change the lives of the young people on whose shoulders the future of the entire community rests.

In exchange for that hard work I promise each of you the most rewarding experience possible, to know that you shaped a life, in fact many lives, and delivered hope, ambition, self-worth and the valuing of all in society, to the island and beyond as our students grow as individuals and shape their community for years to come.

I am reminded of the words of JFK in his famous speech at Rice University in which he gave the immortal lines; ‘We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard.’

For us, we chose Sheppey because it is the right thing to do.”

Alan Horton