The MAT Board

MAT Board

 Elaine Marshall, Chair of Governors A previous student at Launceston College and Exeter University, I joined the Board of Governors in 2009. At that time I was the serving Police Commander for Cornwall & the Isles of Scilly and in charge of all policing for the County. This role led me to be part of the Cornwall Strategic Board and the chair of both the Crime & Disorder Board and the Domestic Violence Strategic Group. Earlier in my Police career I worked in North Devon, Penzance, Exeter and Plymouth both as a uniformed officer and as a detective. I was lead investigator on a number of high profile murder enquiries and investigations in the West Country and in Northern Ireland. In 1999 I worked with a National Task Force to tackle Police corruption and set up the first anti-corruption investigative team in Devon & Cornwall.I retired from the Police in October 2010 and was appointed as a Non-Executive Director with the Peninsula Community Health, the Company that operates Community Health services alongside the 14 hospitals in the County.   I believe in good quality public services and educational opportunities for everyone living in Cornwall.  During my 4 years as a Governor I have been actively involved in the financial management of Launceston College and in May 2015 I was privileged to become Chair to the Board of Governors.
Claire Penfold, MAT CEO Claire graduated with a Chemistry degree and trained as a science teacher, she worked in a number of schools in leadership roles including Head of science and fifteen years of senior leadership including seven years as Deputy Principal at Launceston College, with a wide range of responsibilities ranging from timetabling to SENDCo.

In 2015 Claire was seconded to Cornwall Council as a Secondary School Improvement Officer, where she was responsible for holding Headteachers to account for their schools’ performance. Claire has considerable strengths with understanding school data, identifying underachievement and acting to improve the performance of staff and students.

Claire worked across the Launceston College MAT as Director of Standards having oversight of the quality assurance and the curriculum in all of the five schools before being appointed as interim CEO in September 2019.

Ashley Shopland Having left Launceston College in 1985 post A-Levels, Ashley joined the then English China Clays (ECC) company as a Finance Trainee. After gaining his professional qualification as an accountant, he then moved through various roles in the company including an 18 month spell in the HQ near London. Today, Ashley is now the General Manager of the company, now Imerys, responsible for the whole of the china clay business globally served from Cornwall and Devon.

With 2 children, Ashley has always followed a keen interest in the education sector and has served as a Governor, including as Chair, at both St Dennis and Carclaze primary schools. Within both of these the schools underwent amalgamations, with Carclaze incorporating a complete new 420-pupil school build in 2010.

Ashley currently also serves as a member of the CBI South West Council and also sits as a Trustee of South West Lakes Ltd. responsible for such locations as Roadford just east of Launceston.

David Humphries  My varied and rewarding career in education began in 1976 as a mathematics teacher at a large comprehensive school in London. In 1979 I moved to northeast England to take up the post of Head of Mathematics at Bedlington High School , where I was subsequently promoted to Deputy Headteacher. In 1990 I was appointed headteacher of Southfield School in Workington, West Cumbria and led the school successfully through a period of many changes, including the completion of a major building programme, the initial round of Ofsted inspections and increasing financial delegation.

In 1997 I moved to North Devon as Principal of Ilfracombe College. During the following years standards rose markedly, culminating in a Department for Education Achievement Award in 2003 shortly before I left the College to join Ofsted as one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors (HMI). After gaining substantial experience as a frontline inspector of schools and initial teacher training, I became a member of Ofsted’s senior leadership team, responsible for managing complaints about school inspections across the south of England. In 2009 I moved to a key role in the development of school inspection policy and practice, working closely with Ofsted’s Executive Board and government officials.

Following my retirement, I undertook a range of voluntary work on behalf of Healthwatch Devon before joining the Governing Body of Bideford College in 2014. In January 2015 I was elected Chair of Governors and when Bideford joined the Launceston MAT in March 2016 I was appointed Chair of the Local Governing Body and, in that capacity, am a member of the MAT Board. After a rewarding and successful career in education I am glad that I am still able to put something back into the system!

Fenella Wojnarowska I was appointed to the MAT Board in 2018. I joined the Launceston Local Governing Body in November 2017 and was appointed vice-chair in November 2018 and served until 2019. I trained as a medical doctor at Somerville College, University of Oxford and later St Mary’s Hospital, London University. I specialised in Dermatology and returned to Oxford as a consultant later becoming Professor of Dermatology at the University of Oxford. My research included immunological diseases, women’s health, and Evidence Based Medicine, with over 300 papers published in scientific and medical journals. I also enjoyed teaching and mentoring Dermatology trainees in the UK and Europe.

I retired to Cornwall 10 years ago. Since then I have become very involved in promoting aspiration in Cornish schoolchildren and students. I do this in two ways, by working in the Launceston College Aspire Programme and within the Cornish Oxford Alumni as bursary secretary giving grants to Oxford students from Cornwall and assisting schoolchildren to attend open days and residential courses there.

I value my involvement in Launceston College and the other schools in the Multi Academy Trust and encouraging aspiration and achievement in all pupils.

Gilly Sanders I retired in 2010 and moved to North Devon in 2012 following a career in marketing communications; I worked in media planning and buying for over 35 years in a number of advertising agencies in London and, latterly, as a civil servant at COI, the government communications agency. I have been a school governor for over 20 years and served the primary and secondary schools in West London which were attended by my two children.

As Co-opted Governor of Bideford College, I represent our college on the MAT Finance and Assets Committee. I am also a Deputy Safeguarding Governor and currently Acting Health and Safety Governor. I get great satisfaction from working alongside fellow governors with the aim of supporting staff and pupils to help our young people be the best that they can be. Additionally, I am a governor of Instow Community Primary where my responsibilities include Finance, Pay and Performance and Media Links. I am Vice Chair of the Fremington Community Group Committee and enjoy volunteering at sporting and charity events, both locally and further afield.

Peter Crispin I have nearly twenty years involvement as a governor at Launceston College.  Since retirement I have continued to work part-time as an independent education consultant, based in North Cornwall, working with primary schools in Plymouth and Cornwall. Prior to this I was a Senior Primary Adviser in Plymouth. As part of the authority’s Challenge, Support, Standards and Intervention Team, I worked as project manager, supporting schools in challenging circumstances, with a successful track record of improvement. In addition, I had subject responsibility for music across all key stages in the city’s schools, which included managing Plymouth Youth Music Service. The service provided a comprehensive programme of advice, training, class/group/individual instrumental tuition and nine city-wide ensembles. Previously I enjoyed a varied teaching career. I was a primary headteacher in Cornwall for nineteen years, with experience in both small and large schools, which included nursery and specific SEN provision. I have also been Head of Music in an inner-city boys’ secondary school and a class teacher in primary and middle schools. I remain passionate about the need for schools to provide the very best educational opportunities for their students. I believe that my professional experience enables me to be effective in providing challenge and support to the College’s leadership
Tara Broad Tara has a first class honours degree in Business and Administration and worked in the finance team of an independent school before joining Launceston College as Business Manager in 2012. She is currently completing her CIMA qualification.

Tara became Finance Director when Launceston College became an Academy in 2013 and Finance Director of the MAT in March 2016, she has overseen a staff restructuring process, established effective financial systems across the MAT and developed services which are traded with other schools and MATs.

The financial procedures of the MAT are consistently identified as ‘green’ in all areas with no ‘areas for improvement’ by external auditors.


Dan Rogerson
Dick White
Colin Webb
Les Kennedy