Results Day

Year 13 Results

Yet another extraordinary year of results for students both national and at Durham Sixth Form Centre. Two-thirds of all A-Level entries awarded at grades A*- B. Students have gained on average a Distinction/Distinction* in vocational courses. Well done!

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At Durham Sixth Form Centre we have high expectations of our Governing Board because of the significant impact governance has on key areas such as student outcomes and development. They provide support and challenge to the strategic leadership of the Academy, playing a vital role in making sure that every student gets the best possible education in their time at the Centre. Following academisation, our highly experienced and skilled Governors work collaboratively with the Providence Learning Partnership Trustees. They support Trustees to make informed decisions and so ensure accountability, transparency and development of vision, ethos and strategic direction.

Should you have any questions regarding governance at Durham Sixth Form Centre, please do not hesitate to contact the Governance and Compliance Lead Emily Church at [email protected].


Catherine Reading

Category of Governor: Chair of Governors; Trustee appointed

Term of office: 01/11/2023 – 31/10/2027

Mrs Reading is Chair of the Durham Sixth Form Centre Local Governing Board. She is the Director of Professional Programmes at Durham University. She graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Medicinal Chemistry at University College London in 1991 with an interest in neuropharmacology and as a Graduate Assistant, she continued this work by designing and synthesising 5-HT1A (Serotonin) receptor partial agonists. After completing the PGCE Science programme at Durham University in 1993, Mrs Reading worked in Secondary Schools in London and the North East before joining the School of Education in 2009. Since that time she has contributed to a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate teaching, as Module Convenor and in previous leadership roles as PGCE Science Leader and Programme Director of the BA (Ed) Primary course. Mrs Reading’s Masters in Online and Distance Education developed a special interest in technology-enhanced learning which is evident in Durham University’s Teacher Education offer.

Joanne Lain

Category of Governor: Principal – Ex officio

Term of office: N/A

Mrs Lain is the Principal of Durham Sixth Form Centre, taking up post in September 2023. She graduated from the University of Durham with a BA Honours degree in Geography, before completing her PGCE in Secondary Education at Newcastle University. She began her career in 1994, teaching Geography in a school in the Lake District. She then taught in London for several years, before taking up a post as Head of Geography at Durham Sixth Form Centre in 2001. In her leadership roles Mrs Lain has had responsibility for teaching and learning, professional development and performance management and has undertaken an active role in governance for a number of years. She also trained as an Ofsted inspector in 2021-22 but has since stepped back from that role.

Gillian Askew

Category of Governor: Trustee appointed

Term of office: 01/11/2023 – 31/10/2027

Ms Askew is employed in the Funding Directorate of the Education and Skills Funding Agency, monitoring post-16 providers of 16 to 19 education nationally and is a DfE Accessibility Champion Advocate. After attending the universities of Durham, Wales, Sheffield Hallam, and York she has a BA Honours degree in education, teaching and postgraduate qualifications in developmental co-ordination disorder, Asperger’s Syndrome, and dyslexia & literacy, and is qualified to give advice & guidance. She has held posts in local FE colleges, universities and local authorities: assessing, supporting and lecturing students with SpLD, chronic illnesses, and mental health concerns. She has also: volunteered as a pastoral tutor at Josephine Butler College, Durham University, mentoring first year students; coordinated family learning programmes; managed a county wide skills for life programme; established academic support services for HE students and contract managed providers delivering devolved adult education for a mayoral combined authority. Her particular interest is inclusivity including the support available to enable all students to maximise their potential and the training for staff to facilitate this.

Trish Churchill

Category of Governor: Trustee appointed

Term of office: 01/11/2023 – 31/10/2027

Mrs Churchill has worked for the NHS in a variety of roles for over 25 years and is currently Programme Manager for the North Cumbria and North East Learning Disability and Autism Integrated Care Workstream. Mrs Churchill has a Business and Finance degree from Northumbria University and a professional Management Accountant qualification. Mrs Churchill has two teenage daughters and has lived in Durham for the last 20 years.

Jose Cruz da Angela

Category of Governor: Trustee appointed

Term of office: 19/12/2023 – 18/12/2027

Dr Cruz da Angela is an experienced Director, having held a number of corporate leadership and analytical roles across the private and public sectors. He is currently the Director of Analytics at Chill Insurance (insurance broker in the Republic of Ireland). Prior to his current role, Dr Cruz da Angela led, managed and nurtured data science and analytical teams in Fintech, following a career in the UK civil service where, as an operational researcher, he supported ministerial teams in the delivery of government priorities. He holds a PhD in Physics from Durham University, and lives with his wife and daughter in Durham city.

Steven Gardiner

Category of Governor: Staff (Support) Governor

Term of office: 01/09/2021 – 31/08/2025

Mr Gardiner is the Facilities Manager at Durham Sixth Form Centre, appointed in June 2018. Mr Gardiner previously worked at Freeman’s Quay Leisure Centre for ten years where he gained multiple qualifications in management and building operations. Mr Gardiner holds his NEBOSH National General Certificate in Occupational Health and Safety and has ensured the premises and facilities of the school continue to support a safe and well maintained environment for students, staff and visitors. With skills and experience in management and building operations, Mr Gardiner provides assurance that risk management is reflected and implemented effectively in school policy and practice and that there are effective risk strategies in place to safeguard and promote students’ welfare. Mr Gardiner has two young sons and volunteers as Head Coach for his eldest son’s football team in his spare time.

James Miller

Category of Governor: Staff (Teaching) Governor

Term of office: 01/12/2023 – 30/11/2027

Mr Miller holds a Masters Degree in Classics from Durham and is Head of Department for Classical Civilisation, Philosophy, and Theology and Ethics (Religious Studies) in which role the school’s constant push for improved student educational experiences and achievement outcomes is always the key priority. Over twenty years at the school he has filled a variety of other roles alongside this: in Progression (with a focus on Oxbridge applicants), as a Lead Teacher (with changing emphases on educational technology, on literacy and on Aspirations with the More Able), as part of school workgroups on wellbeing and coaching, and as a mentor and coach to many trainees and ECTs over the years. He has a particular interest in pushing extra-curricular experiences in the school and runs Classics Soc., Latin Club, and has been involved in student DofE and staff hiking groups and led many foreign and domestic trips.

Nicole Race

Category of Governor: Parent Governor

Term of office: 14/11/2021 – 13/11/2025

Mrs Race was born in Chester, but grew up in Oban in the Highlands of Scotland, where she attended Oban High School. Mrs Race moved to the North East of England in 1990 where she studied at Darlington College before attending Teesside University to study business and marketing.  Mrs Race is currently a student at the University of Northumbria where she studies project management. Mrs Race has over 20 years of experience in the further education sector, in a variety of different roles spanning course development, delivery, quality assurance and program coordination/management. She is an experienced management coach and trainer and currently works for North Tyneside Council with responsibility for developing and delivering professional development to the management team. Mrs Race has worked across industries, in the private, public and charity sectors. Mrs Race has two daughters, one of whom attended Durham Sixth Form Centre.  Mrs Race is also a Life Coach and she is member of Hunwick Harriers, where she offers her services as a Running Coach.

Marie Roe

Category of Governor: Parent Governor

Term of office: 23/11/2022 – 22/11/2026

Mrs Roe is Vice Chair of the Durham Sixth Form Centre Local Governing Board. She is an experienced executive and non-executive director of business and corporate services, having gained experience in senior leadership positions in the private, public and charitable sectors. Mrs Roe has a keen interest in the education sector, specifically in maximising outcomes for pupils. She is an experienced school Governor and academy trust Trustee and she has extensive experience of strategic governance leadership across a range of school settings and a deep understanding of the education environment and context.

Associate Members

Lee Bone

Category of Governor: Associate Member

Term of office: 01/11/2023 – 31/10/2024

Mr Bone is Vice Principal at Durham Sixth Form Centre. He graduated with a First Class Honours degree in Geography Education and started his teaching career at DSFC in 2006, as a teacher of Geography and Humanities. During his time with us, Mr Bone has held various roles including Head of Geography, Head of Humanities, Leader of Learning (Curriculum): English and Humanities, Assistant Headteacher and Senior Assistant Headteacher. Mr Bone was also seconded to the LA for a year (part time) as an Education Development Advisor, supporting other schools in the County and further afield. As Vice Principal, Mr Bone oversees all pastoral, progression and student support matters including behaviour and attitudes (including attendance), personal development (including careers education and enrichment) and groups (MA, SEN, Disadvantaged).

Lesley Thompson

Category of Governor: Associate Member

Term of office: 01/11/2023 – 31/10/2024

Miss Thompson is Vice Principal at Durham Sixth Form Centre. Miss Thompson graduated from the University of Hull with a BA Honours degree in French and a PGCE in Secondary Education. She has worked at Durham Sixth Form Centre since 2001, during which time she has held a variety of roles, including teacher of French, Head of Modern Foreign Languages and Assistant Headteacher. In 2012, she was appointed to the role of Deputy Headteacher to work closely with the Headteacher to oversee the strategic leadership of the school. As Vice Principal, Miss Thompson is responsible for attainment, achievement and Centre quality assurance.

More information…

For information on register of business interests, please click here.

For information on last year’s meeting attendance, please click here.

For DfE information on the school’s financial benchmarking service, please click here.

For the Employees Whose Benefits Exceed £100k Statement, please click here.

For information on Providence Learning Partnership governance, including governance structures and memberships, please click here.

Governor Mark - Walton Academy
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