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University of Chester Academies Trust

University CE Academy Ellesmere Port

Welcome to University Church of England Academy

List of Governors at University CE Academy, Ellesmere Port

An overview of governance for UCAT and all of it's academies can be found on the UCAT website.

Governors have three key roles;

  • Setting strategic direction
  • Ensuring accountability
  • Monitoring and evaluating school performance

All Governors are expected to demonstrate a high level of involvement and engagement within the Academy through regular attendance at meetings, events and through the use of ICT.


UCAT is a multi-academy trust (MAT) and its Board of Directors have overall control and are responsible for all UCAT academies.

The Board have set up a structure that has tight lines of accountability through two main committees and Statement of Action Committees (SOACs) in each academy.

In addition there are Community Development Groups at each academy to ensure that important links with parents and the wider school community are maintained.

Statement of Action Committee (SOAC)

The SOAC, on behalf of UCAT Trustees, has the responsibility of improving the quality of provision so that the academy moves to ‘Good’ or better. 
The SOAC meets regularly, monthly or fortnightly depending on the academy, and holds the Principal and senior leaders to account for student progress and achievement; ensures effective use of resources; ensures continuous improvement and maintains consistency of UCAT practice and procedures. 

Our Statement of Action Committee (SOAC)

Rev. Charles Nevin:  Chair of the Statement of Action Committee

Rev. Charles Nevin spent the first thirty years of his working life in IT mainly in the Banking sector where he was Head of Computer Operations and Support for the TSB.  In 1995 he took early retirement and was ordained as a Methodist minister.  As an ordained minister he was appointed to the Chaplaincy of Greater Manchester Police and is now senior chaplain to the Police. He also served in the Methodist church in Heald Green where he set up a community café which has just celebrated its 10th anniversary.

Charles has been involved in governance for over thirty years, fifteen of which has been in the secondary sector. He is currently Chair of the Laurus Education Trust in Cheadle Hulme and Chair of the UCAT academy in Kidsgrove.  He is a  National Leader of Governance.

Rev Gordon McGuiness

Scottish born, Rev Canon Gordon McGuinness has lived and worked in Ellesmere Port since 2001, as the senior leader in St Thomas and All Saints church, opposite UCEA. 

Gordon has a great enthusiasm for the Academy and wants to play his part in helping it became an excellent centre of education, preparing and equipping students for their future lives. He wants to ensure that the wider community is aware of what the Academy is doing, and what it is achieving. He particularly wants to support parents and ensure their voice is heard, their concerns addressed and their questions answered.

Alex Makinson

Alex’s profession is accountancy; he is a Chartered Certified Accountant and a Partner in the Chester office of the top 15 national accountancy firm UHY Hacker Young. Alex grew up in North Wales, where he was educated and qualified as an accountant before moving to Chester over 18 year ago He has a keen interest in education and welfare, a firm believer that every student deserves the right to the best education and through education comes opportunity and career success. A former governor at a local Primary School where he was part of the governing body that obtained the Governors Mark for quality amongst other accreditations, before joining the Statement of Action Committee (SOAC) at UCEA. Alex has two children and he enjoys spending time with his family and visiting national trust properties.

Iain Robinson - Interim Principal

Community Development Group (CDG)

The CDG ensures that parental and community views are included in decision making and forms and maintains links with the wider school community.

The CDG meets termly to gather the views of the wider school community to provide the SOAC with a clear view of that community’s perspective; ensures that the academy meets the needs of the community; uses the expertise within the community to support the development of the academy; works closely with the SOAC to ensure that the community dimension is taken into consideration when planning for future improvements; reports progress on a regular basis to the SOAC ; and undertakes parent and wider community surveys to report back to the SOAC.