Aquinas Trust            

Meet the Team

Kathy Griffiths, CEO

Kathy Griffiths, CEO

Mrs. Kathy Griffiths

Kathy is the CEO of the Aquinas Trust and was previously the Headteacher at Bishop Justus Church of England Academy. Before founding Bishop Justus School in 2004 Kathy spent sixteen years as a teacher and senior leader in a range of London schools. During this time, Kathy developed a passion for educational change and development and is totally committed to the education of all children and young people, irrespective of their start point.

Suthan Santhaguru, CFO

Suthan Santhaguru, CFO

Suthan SanthaguruSuthan is an experienced Finance Director, working for over fifteen years in the public sector. Change management, strong leadership, team development and extensive business partnering at Director level are some of his key attributes. His most recent role was as Finance Director/CFO of a large multi academy trust. Prior to this, Suthan worked as Finance Director of the National Enterprise Academy (which was set up by Peter Jones CBE of Dragon’s Den) where he was responsible for helping with the start-up business plan, liaising with key stake holders, developing a viable commercial model, setting up the finance function, centralising all procurement and overseeing the external audit.

Dr. Ann McCarthy, Trust Improvement Director

Dr. Ann McCarthy, Trust Improvement Director

Dr Ann McCarthy

Dr. Ann McCarthy is the Academies Improvement Director and is a member of the Aquinas Education Scrutiny Committee, chairing the Management Board for Deputy Headteachers. Throughout her long career in education, Ann has experience of both primary and secondary education, holding leadership roles in secondary schools. She has been a champion for more able mathematicians particularly encouraging girls into STEM subjects. She holds Masters degrees in both Mathematics and Education. Her leadership interests have been curriculum development and leadership coaching. Ann's research interests are leadership development.

  • To lead on learner performance and standards across the Trust
  • Due diligence on incoming academies
  • Lead annual reviews
  • Work with the Primary Phase Director to advise and support Headteachers following annual reviews
  • Keep the Trust Board up to date on Ofsted requirements
  • Lead and manage school reviews/surveys, e.g. more able review, literacy project, etc. depending on need
  • Continue with Headteacher Consultancy for Cudham as appropriate
  • Lead reporting Director to Education Scrutiny Committee including:
    • Review of Trust wide data 
    • Monitoring school use of data and intervention 
    • Benchmarking school and Trust data providing detail to the Board
  • Line manager Primary Phase Director and Assistant Headteacher – Innovation and Excellence

Chris Healey, Innovation and Excellence

Chris Healey, Innovation and Excellence

Mr. Chris Healey

Chris has worked as an AST and a successful English subject leader in several schools across South London over his 15 year teaching career.  A Specialist Leader in Education since 2013 (specialising in English, Literacy and using technology to extend learning), he is an Assistant Head Teacher of the Aquinas Trust with responsibility for Teacher Development, promoting innovation, challenge and scholarship throughout the Trust. He also runs many of the synergetic projects for the more able students across the Trust.

  • Responsibility for design and delivery of bespoke Aquinas Excellence programmes - ACE, ACLE and future developments
  • Trust wide CPD
  • New website including teaching resources, AquinasTeach, AquinasLearn
  • Oversee effective use of TAs in the classroom
  • School based projects, e.g. Poet Laureate, News Reader, etc.
  • Development of an Aquinas online student portfolio

Mary Capon, Director of Communication and Compliance

Mary Capon, Director of Communication and Compliance

Mrs. Mary Capon

Mary Capon is the Operations Director and Company Secretary for the Trust. Mary is a qualified solicitor with over 10 years’ experience of commercial work and litigation in the private legal sector. She attends all Trust Board and Committee meetings in her capacity as Company Secretary to advise on relevant legal and operational issues. Mary supports the Chief Executive Officer in implementing Trust Strategy.

  • Provide legal advice to the Board, academies and the Trust in general
  • Project manage new academy transfers to the Trust
  • Maintain company books
  • Support Board and Sub Committee meetings and prepare supporting documents for the meetings
  • Support the operation of the Trust structure through agenda calendars, terms of reference and delegation documents
  • Provide administrative support to the Trust when required, including maintenance of records and organisation and minuting of meetings
  • Ensure all annual returns are submitted in a timely manner to Companies House
  • Undertake internal audits of a non-financial nature
  • Project management of EFA business cases for academy expansion and changes
  • Deal with admissions and appeals across the Trust

Janet Vick, HR Director

Janet Vick, HR Director

Ms. Janet Vick

Ms. Janet Vick is the HR Director for the Trust. Janet is an Assoc. CIPD specialising in policy writing and implementation and has extensive experience in leading, influencing and advising staff of all levels in matters of HR. Janet has worked in the education sector for 23 years and previously in corporate banking. She is fully committed to the Trust’s Christian ethos and has an innate sense of justice and equality for all.

  • Overall responsibility for the human resource and payroll function, including safer recruitment, casework, contracts of employment, payroll and pensions
  • Ensure academies within the Trust comply with employment law and on how to implement HR policies
  • Understand the effects and implications of government policies and legislation for current and future initiatives and ensure that resources are organised and used appropriately
  • Manage human resources, ensuring effective deployment of staff to meet the current and future needs of the Trust
  • Keep up to date with developments and changes in legislation and guidance and communicate appropriate information to the Board, Headteachers, colleagues, directors and others as appropriate
  • Advise on compliance with legislation and guidance including safeguarding requirements, employment law, pay and pension changes
  • Assist the Trust Board, the Headteachers and senior leadership teams in formulating and establishing the policies, systems and procedures to ensure they achieve their objectives
  • Provide professional leadership and management of academy support staff, to enhance their effectiveness in order to raise standards and achievement
  • Improve management/employee communications, including mediating in disputes and advising line managers of procedures when dealing with grievance, capability and disciplinary issues
  • Line management of the HR and Payroll function
  • Day-to-day public relation issues associated to staff and the HR function
  • Ensure that all aspects relating to work status and registration, immigration and sponsorship are followed including liaison with all relevant agencies
  • Responsibility for the implementation and operation of all internal personnel policies, e.g. discipline, grievance, capability, redundancy, absence monitoring and equality schemes including the appeals process

Glen Day, Estates and Facilities Director

Glen Day, Estates and Facilities Director

Mr. Glen Day

Glen has worked in education for 23 years and has seen major changes during this time, through grant maintained, foundation and academisation. Glen was involved in the set-up of Bishop Justus School in 2004, which involved in house, payroll, catering, finance, premises and cleaning.

Glen is now the Estates and Facilities Director for the Aquinas Trust and is involved in ensuring all academies comply with health and safety and overseeing all capital projects and developments.

  • Ensure academies within the Trust comply with health and safety legislation and how to implement premises, buildings and health and safety policies
  • Understand the effects and implications of government policies and legislation for current and future initiatives and ensure that building resources are organised and used appropriately
  • Buildings and site maintenance and development, including school expansion and new build
  • Compliance
  • Matters of insurance
  • Health and safety (including RIDDOR)
  • Site security

John Wootten, Trust Accountant

John Wootten, Trust Accountant

Mr. John Wootten

John Wootten is the Trust Accountant of Aquinas and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales. He has extensive experience both in professional practice and as the Group Financial Accountant for a large commercial organisation. In addition he has previously been a Governor for a Primary School in the London Borough of Bexley.

  • Provide sound financial and governance framework for the Trust
  • Represent financial matters on the Executive Board of the Trust
  • Attend and report to the Trust Finance and Audit Committees on finance and financial governance matters on a regular basis (and other committees as required)
  • Prepare regular financial reports for the Trust Business Team and governance structures within the Trust and member academies
  • Carry out regular internal audits of the finance functions of the member academies
  • Prepare consolidated statutory financial accounts for the Trust group of academies and once approved submit to the EFA
  • Be the main point of liaison with the external auditors of the Trust and any other external financial advisors
  • Review the Audit Management letter and formulate responses to matters raised and submit to the EFA
  • Complete required DfE forms and returns and other financial returns; this includes the Accounts Annual Return and all budgetary returns required by the EFA
  • Responsibility for cash flow projections and maintaining surplus funds on fixed deposit
  • Carry out due diligence investigations into potential schools that may join the Aquinas Trust
  • Line management responsibility for Budget Manager

Lee Kings, RE & Community

Lee Kings, RE & Community

Mr. Lee Kings

Having trained as a secondary religious education specialist, Lee’s subsequent management roles have included subject and year group leadership and five years as an Assistant Head Teacher responsible for key stage 3, gaining the National Professional Qualification for School Leadership. Lee’s work with student transition into secondary school, led him to develop an interest in teaching and learning in the primary phase; exploring how primary and secondary schools can work together closely. As well as continuing to teach in the secondary phase, Lee is also teaching in the Trust’s primary phase and leads on Primary RE and the Trust’s programme of community events.

  • Leading the REconnect forum for primary RE subject leaders, sourcing and providing a programme of professional development.
  • Monitoring and consultation for the teaching and learning of RE across the Trust’s primary phase.
  • Supporting preparation for SIAMS inspections.
  • Liaison with local clergy to support the Trust’s academies.
  • Coordinating opportunities for the primary and secondary phases to share best practices.
  • Leading the Trust’s programme of community based events, providing opportunities for children in the Trust’s academies to have shared learning and worship experiences.
  • Liaison between the Trust and the Diocese of Rochester.