The Academy Council collectively provide a challenge and support function to the Head of Academy and the Senior Leadership Team.

The setting of rigorous and clear targets, and the frequent detailed monitoring and questioning of progress, is fundamental to providing the educational aspirations that Inspire Academy desires for all its students.

The Academy Council of an academy or Free School is responsible for ensuring that it is run to promote excellent pupil outcomes.  Its duties include:

  • Holding the Headteacher to account as a "critical friend"
  • Supporting the Headteacher
  • Agree policies delegated to this Council
  • Making visits to the school to meet staff and pupils
  • Monitoring the spend of the delegated budget, including Pupil Premium


Our Members

Michael Gray Co-opted Governor and Chair
Sheila Kitchener Co-opted Governor and Vice Chair
Martyn O'Donnell Executive Director of Performance and Standards (PLT)
Mark Burgiss Non-voting Governor and Headteacher
Lynn Sims Co-opted Governor - Behaviour/RRS link
Lynda Harris Co-opted Governor - Headteacher of Wandle Valley Academy
Kevin Kitchener Co-opted Governor 
Peter Rice Teaching staff Governor

Declaration of Conflicts of Interest and Attendance

Sheila Kitchener

Sheila is the Vice Chair of Academy Council for Inspire Academy in Chatham. Her background is within education, firstly as a PE teacher and then, after taking post. grad qualifications, she moved into SEN management and Dyslexia. She has taught for 45 years across all key stages and all management levels. She set up the first Dyslexia unit in a mainstream school in 1986 and then advised on others that they created in Kent. At present she tutors trainees, within the Royal Engineers, who have Dyslexia. Apart from being chair of the AC, she also volunteers for two other posts, firstly as a member of an advisory panel for 11-25’s with EHCPs, for the National Association of SEN (NASEN). Secondly, she is a member at her local hospital and form part of an observation team who carry out regular checks on the hospital’s care environment.


Martyn O'Donnell

Nearly 30 years experience in Education. Previously Headteacher of Mainstream, SEN/AP settings and Head of Service in a large Local Authority. NPQH in 2004 and NLP Master qualification. Martyn works directly with Headteacher quality assuring the strategic and financial development of the academy and developing Trust initiatives into Park Campus and other Academies within the Trust.


Lynn Sims

Lynn has worked in Education for over 27 years and is currently an Inclusion Manager for Medway Council where she managed a small team. Her background is mainly behaviour support. She has had the pleasure of working in all types of educational settings from primary, secondary and special.


Lynda Harris

Lynda didn’t become a teacher until 1999, previously she was a Youth Worker and ran the Outreach Support for Hertfordshire. Alongside this, she was a Teaching Assistant in a large secondary school and an Outdoor Educational leader. Before Wandle Valley, she ran the behaviour support unit in a secondary school and assisted in the behaviour support across the borough. During her working career she has delivered CPD in a number of schools and in a DFE setting.


Kevin Kitchener

Ex Royal Engineer, followed by 11 years as a Government security driver. Kevin holds an HE diploma in youth work and a degree in behaviour management. After retraining, Kevin became a full time youth worker, which led to opening a unit for pupils with emotional and behavioural issues, in a large secondary school. He was, later, appointed to the post of behaviour manager for the school. Retired to start his own, very busy, archery coaching and instructing, this is delivered in schools and privately. In addition to being an AC member, Kevin is also a volunteer for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award expedition assessor and chair of a field archery club.