The Governing Body of Manston St James Academy is made up of individuals who are representative of different sections of the academy and the local community. Some are elected by parents and staff while the rest are appointed by the Trust; their term of office lasts for 4 years, after which they will need to be re-appointed if they wish to continue being a Governor.

Neil Morrisroe – Chair of Governors


Neil has worked in the Social Care sector for over 25 years and currently holds the position of Operations Director at a Leeds based Social Enterprise whom provide care and support services to  people with a learning disability.  His work means that he is well practiced in strategic planning and risk management as well as having specialist knowledge on the needs of individuals who may require involvement from Health and Social Care services.

Jane Kent - Principal



Alice Swinburn – Trust Appointed Governor


After studying Chemistry at university Alice moved into the Information Technology sector and has more than 20 years of experience in various roles. Working as an IT Project Manager for over ten years Alice has delivered IT projects in a wide range of industry sectors including education and health. She particularly enjoys the challenge of translating between technical and business experts to try and make the most out of the opportunities presented by new technology.


Originally from Bedford Alice has lived in Leeds for 20 years, has 2 children at the academy and also plays an active role the events run by the school PTFA

Rev. Carolyn James - Co-Opted Governor Carolyn has been Priest in Charge of the Parish Church of St James the Great, the church directly adjacent to Manston St James Primary Academy, since 2012 and has been a member of the Governing Board from that time. Having herself initially left school with the dream of becoming a teacher, Carolyn found herself being ‘nudged’ to explore the possibility of ordination. After graduating, being selected for ordination training, and attending Theological College in Lincoln, Carolyn was ordained deacon in Ripon Cathedral in 1991 and subsequently ordained Priest (one of the first women priests in the Church of England) in 1994. Carolyn’s parish experience has been varied – serving a curacy in Middleton, South Leeds and then in Wetherby, followed by 7 years as Vicar of Kirkstall (1997-2005).Carolyn then left the Diocese for seven years to be Chaplain to the students and staff of Bishop Grosseteste University College, in Lincoln – a Higher Education College. In each of her ministerial posts Carolyn has always enjoyed and developed strong links with schools founded upon her belief that all should be given opportunities which allow them to explore, to achieve, and to grow in body, mind and spirit. In her spare time Carolyn enjoys reading, time with friends and walking on the cliff tops or the seashore at Whitby!

Heather Woodhead - Trust Appointed Governor


Heather has worked as a maths teacher for 36 years. Her last 7 years before retirement in 2014 were spent as head of the Mathematics/ICT faculty at Abbey Grange C of E Academy, although since then she has been back at Abbey Grange on a part time temporary basis, and done some private tutoring.


Heather graduated with a first class honours degree from London University in 1977 and has also been Brownie leader since that time, firstly at St Marys, Whitkirk and more recently at St James the Great, Manston. She has also held other Guiding roles such as County Brownie holiday advisor. She is a practising Christian who sings in the church choir and music group at St James the Great and is a strong believer in volunteering and creating community links.


Retirement from full time teaching has meant she is able to concentrate on her hobbies; singing and travelling with choirs, (most recently to Belgium and New York) singing in folk clubs, reading and gardening (although she still finds time to do Mathematics).

Helen Wright - Trust Appointed Governor


Helen taught music in a Leeds Primary School for 12 years until she left to start her family.  She became a Governor at Manston St James in 2010.  She runs the school choir and also plays the piano for all the schools musical events.


Helen has attended Manston St James church all her life and is fully involved in the church life.  She sings in the church choir, plays the piano for various services, helps lead the children’s events and has served on the Parochial Church Council.


Married with 2 children, in her spare time Helen conducts an adult choir based in Tadcaster.

Claire Panther - Staff Governor Further information coming soon. Caroline Ward - Parent Governor Caroline studied Psychology at University and now works for a large firm of Engineering Consultants, leading the North West & Yorkshire finance team. She particularly enjoys working with local leadership teams to implement change and instil commercial best practice. Caroline has lived on the Manston’s for 3 years and has 2 children, one at MSJ and one due to start in September 18. In her spare time Caroline enjoys frequenting National Trust properties and running around after two energetic boys. Jo Rowley - Parent Governor Further information coming soon.
Manston St James Primary Academy Sandbed Lane Cross Gates Leeds LS15 8JH Telephone: 0113 859 2073 Email: Abbey Multi Academy Trust, c/o Chapter House Abbey Grange C of E Academy Butcher Hill Leeds LS16 5EA Telephone: 0113 275 7877 Email:
Company No.: 07705552