Governance and Documentation

Youth Engagement Schools Trust is a charitable company limited by guarantee and has a three tier management system.

The Members of the Trust are similar to the ‘shareholders’ in a company and are responsible for strategic oversight, whilst the Trustees are appointed to challenge and scrutinise the strategic direction and day -to-day running of the company.

Each Trustee fulfils three particular roles:

Director – because the Trust is a company;
Trustee – because the Trust is a charity; and
Governor – because the Trust is responsible for running the schools.


Chris Hindley  |  Jim Bisset  |  Amanda Kiddle  |  Martin Pearson

Following the passing of a Special Resolution by the Members on 11th May 2022, the Trust has adopted new Trust’s Articles of Association outlining the requirements of how the Trust is operated and governed.

The Academy Trust acts in accordance with the conditions set out in the Funding Agreement which provides the framework for our academies to operate in and can be found here Master Funding Agreement and Deed of Variation.

Trustee Appointments

The YES Trust is looking to expand our Board of Trustees, if you are interested in joining our Board please get in touch through Tel: 01260 490042 /Email: Alternatively, please apply directly by completing the Trustee application form which can be found here: YES Trust Trustee Application Form

YES Trust Directors and Trustees

Select the Director/Trustee to read their bio

Nic created The Youth Engagement School Trust and led the development of all four free new schools from design to oversubscribed provisions every year since opening. Our formal Ofsted inspection graded us as ‘Good’ and ‘Outstanding’ across the board, The Fermain Academy is recognised as a beacon school for AP, being shortlisted for alternative provider of the year 2019 and 2020 and published in the parliamentary review for best practice.

Nic is currently managing the trust growth from 5 to 12 schools in the next 24 months. Nic leads the implementation of the trust strategy and wider whole trust development, including; the setup of all policies and procedures to run a school, financial viability and processes, school recruitment and curriculum design.

In addition, Nic sits on The Northwest Advisory Board and provides advisory work to the DfE and Ofsted, as well as school improvement work across the Northwest for academy trusts and LA’s.

Nic has a background of working with SEN and vulnerable students throughout his career, overseeing many different aspects of the schools, such as; development and growth planning curriculum, behaviour & welfare, attainment planning, whole school data and completing compressive work to convert SATs into MATs.

Nic also lectures at three universities, and is part of multiple teaching school hubs to deliver CPD on Leadership at Senior and Middle levels, SEN in the classroom and early intervention and multiple elements on managing behaviour. Nic has been fortunate to speak internationally on education leadership and whole-school design for equity. Nic has completed the NPQH, NPQEL, and MSc and is currently finishing his PhD. Nic is also used for emergency school support as a national leader by the DfE.

Rob lives in Middlewich, Cheshire, with his partner Kathryn and daughter Sophie.  Rob has worked in food retailing for 32 years, many of these have been spent being a Store Manager for Tesco Stores Limited.  During his 15-year career, Rob had the opportunity of working in many areas of Britain and was based at the Macclesfield branch for over three years.  Robs main responsibilities were to try and keep customers and colleagues as happy as possible whilst managing the bottom line profit.

Rob’s spare time is mainly spent tinkering with his classic car and motorcycle collection as well as watching motor-sport. Having been a YES Trust trustee and governor of The Fermain Academy since 2019, Rob has recently taken on the role as Chair of the YES Trust and looks forward to using his skills and experience to help in adding value that will benefit the school and its pupils.

Belinda Logan is Director of Education and Co-Founder of ReconnectEd Community Interest Company (The Reconnect Education Project). Belinda also combines this work with her Education Consultancy.

Belinda has successfully led Special Schools and Alternative Provision Schools and has valuable experience as an OFSTED inspector and  School Governor.

Belinda has also trained as a Coach through the University of Manchester and taught on the NPQML programme and has worked as an Achievement Coach for the charity Achievement for All. More recently she has worked as a Programme Director for a reducing exclusions project with Right to Succeed.  

Tim Haselwood is a Chartered Accountant who spent most of his professional career with Deloitte LLP specialising in external and internal audit, IT consultancy, Management Accounting and Financial controls. He then spent two years as Business Manager of Hollinhey Primary School in Sutton near Macclesfield and 7 years as Business Director of Tytherington School in Macclesfield, where he was responsible for all the business aspects of the school.  He retired in April 2022.

In addition to being a Trustee of the YES Trust, Tim also chairs the Finance, HR and Premises Committee and The Fermain Academy Local Support Board.  Tim is also the Chair of Governors at Hurdsfield Primary School in Macclesfield.

Tim is married to Jan and they have two grown-up daughters, one of which is teaching English in China. Living in Wincle near Macclesfield, Tim and Jan have two grandchildren and they live with a neurotic Shichonpoo, an alpaca who cuts the grass and a wind turbine.

Lisa, is a dedicated mindfulness practitioner with over 15 years’ experience working with children and young people and education professionals. She has spent over 10 years working in the education sector and the last 5 years helping teachers and school leaders to improve their whole school approach to mental health and wellbeing. Her experience of how barriers to learning impact the ‘whole child’ fuels her passion and determination to promote and enable environments where learning, wellbeing and relationships are accessible to all.

During Lisa’s time working with Visyon (a Children and Young Persons Mental Health Charity), she developed and delivered a range of wellbeing programmes, combining theory into evidence-based practice. Lisa is also trained to teach education staff to implement wellbeing programmes such as Friends Resilience, Incredible Years Classroom Management, Emotion Coaching U.K. and to deliver Paws.b (a leading mindfulness curriculum).

At present Lisa is coordinating the Wellbeing for Education Recovery Initiative across Cheshire East, working to a greater depth with individual settings to support them in embedding trauma recovery principles into their whole school approach.

Sharon Bradshaw has been a passionate Senior Leader for over 30 years working across Children and Family Services, Health and Social Care, Skills and Education, Information Advice and Guidance and Careers Education. She is a qualified Careers Adviser and has worked across Public, Private and the 3rd Sector connecting education with business to help inspire young people to take their best next step and achieve their full potential.

Inclusion is important to her, and she is committed to ensuring that all pupils have access to an appropriate education that affords them the opportunity to achieve their personal potential by supporting leaders to shape world class careers provision driving educational standards, attainment, behaviour and aspirations for ALL young people.

She is currently leading business and educational engagement and collaboration across Cheshire and Warrington so young people can access high quality, meaningful careers and enterprise education that aligns with local economic and skills priorities, to improve career outcomes and achieve sustainable change in careers provision at a local and national level.

Sharon looks forward to establishing her role as link trustee for Quality in Careers Education across the trust.

Outside of work you will find Sharon in the great outdoors either solo or with family and friends, hiking, climbing, camping or paddleboarding. She is creative, enjoys learning new skills and experiencing new opportunities.

Helen Davies is an award-winning specialist recruiter in the Education sector covering SEND. Helen has over 10 years’ experience of working in the sector, and in her current role as Head of SEND she is leading and developing a team and supporting senior leaders.  As part of the senior leadership team Helen overseas multiple branches and develops strategy across the education recruitment business.

Helen has a wealth of experience in compliance and staff development. In addition, Helen is an in-house Team Teach instructor and delivers training for Teachers and Teaching Assistants who work in a variety of school settings.

Helen’s childhood dream was to become a PE Teacher and she is now incredibly passionate about the SEND sector and in supporting young people and changing their lives by recruiting great staff for schools and the business. She intends to provide her expertise and knowledge in order to support the work of The Yes Trust.

Outside of work Helen is passionate about interior design and enjoys spending any spare time with her young family.

Trust Executive Team

Select the team member to read their bio

Nic was the founding Principal of The Fermain Academy, from design, to oversubscribed provision every year since opening, to ‘universal’ grade for the provision from the Local Authority, and culminating with an Outstanding Ofsted in 2018. Nic is now continuing to work closely with the DFE and EFSA as he embarks on a similar journey as the CEO of the YES Trust, opening The Axis Academy in September 2020 – a brand new SEN provision in Crewe for young people with a diagnosis for Social, Emotional and Mental Health needs.

Nic has a background of working with SEN and vulnerable students throughout his career overseeing many different aspects of the schools such as; covering the school development plan, SEF, curriculum, Behaviour & Welfare, Attainment planning, whole school data and completing the paperwork to expand to a MAT. Nic also wrote the application and bid that won one of his schools the SEN school of the year 2013/14, and more recently, The Fermain Academy’s shortlisting for Alternative Provision School of the Year.

Nic has a passion for developing all, continuing to lecture at three universities and multiple teaching school alliances to deliver CPD on Leadership at Senior and Middle levels, SEN in the classroom and early intervention and multiple elements on managing behaviour. Currently Nic has recently completed his National Professional Qualification for Executive Leadership (NPQEL) and is currently embarking on a Doctorate of Education (EdD) in Strategic Leadership for Education settings.

Chris was appointed as Business Manager of The Fermain Academy in 2015, the founding Academy of the YES Trust, and played a lead role in establishing the systems and processes which underpin the great work the Trust does today. Chris is now the Trust’s Director of Business, and has overseen the opening of two new Free Schools, and a small Independent School in that time, with a 3rd new Free School also in the pre-opening phase.

Chris has a background working for the Local Authority within the Business Support and Schools Capital Strategy teams, and as a Business Manager / CFO in three Special and AP Trusts. He has experience in leading the conversion to Multi Academy Trust from maintained school at a previous Trust, as well as setting up the Fermain Academy from scratch and bringing new Academies in to an existing MAT set up.

Committed to ensuring that the Trust’s Academies have the best possible staffing, resources and environment in which to inspire our learners, Chris oversees finance, H&S, HR/recruitment and operational leadership across the Trust, and works closely with Senior Leaders, Office Managers and Site Managers to help drive standards in our schools.

Chris completed the CIPFA Level 7 Certificate in School Financial and Operational Leadership in 2020, and carries out the role of Chief Finance Officer for the Trust

In post since September 2020 Helen is working as part of the Executive Leadership Team to ensure that the quality of curriculum and education across the Trust is maintained to an outstanding level and one which prepares young people to become fully functioning members of a global society.  Helen brings to the post a wealth of experience through coaching leaders, training teachers and promoting outstanding teaching and learning across Primary and Secondary settings, having led in both mainstream and alternative provision.  

Helen designed and delivered an innovative Home Office funded project, aimed at re-engaging and improving the life chances of some of our most vulnerable pupils, which was praised as being the only one nationally to achieve its aims. She has taken on failing schools which have then been judged to be Good by Ofsted. 

Helen puts pupils at the heart of all she does and brings not only enthusiasm and passion to everything she does, but an intelligence and depth of understanding of pedagogy which informs her training of teachers and leaders; she is herself an outstanding practitioner and uses her degree in French and Russian Studies to continue to inspire and motivate language learning and literacy in children and adults alike. Her passion for language teaching and literacy has led her to write and develop an exciting inter-generational language scheme which is now in the implementation stage; she hopes to map the impact of this as part of her EdD studies.

Andy joins us with over 20 years of experience in education having started his career as a French teacher in 2002. He went on to work as a senior leader in three mainstream secondary schools across Nottinghamshire, Worcestershire and Sandwell, primarily leading on Quality of Education in all of these roles.

Andy has worked in Alternative Provision since 2017 when he joined The Edge Academy in Birmingham, initially as Vice Principal and becoming Principal in 2018. The Edge is the current holder of the PRUsAP “National Alternative Provision Team of the Year” and won the Midlands Education Awards “Outstanding Support for Students” Award in 2022. More recently, the school was named as the first Alternative Provision school in the country to be awarded “When the Adults Change” Partner School status. This recognises a culture built at the school founded on relational practice, emotional connections and trauma-informed approaches to positive behaviour management.

Outside of school life, Andy lives in the West Midlands with his wife and two children, is a member of a running club and enjoys European travel. He is also a long-suffering Birmingham City supporter!

Trust Central Team

Select the team member to read their bio

Linda joins has recently joined the Trust with 15 years of finance and business admin experience in education having started as a bursar in a mainstream first school in 2008 and will be primarily supporting our Director of Business, Chris Heptinstall and our academy teams.

Linda developed her passion for Alternative Provision working as a School Business Manager at an SEN school in Staffordshire.  Most recently, she was working with a large secondary school in North Staffordshire.

Linda lives in Cheddleton, North Staffordshire with her husband, son and two dogs (Chester and Bob), enjoys eating out, going to concerts and the theatre and is a keen crafter.

Having joined the YES Trust in September 2021 as Administrative Assistant, Ilona progressed to Office Manager and is responsible for primarily supporting the Trusts executive leadership team. As an overarching role, Ilona also enjoys supporting and collaborating with all our academies office managers as well as all our teaching staff and senior leadership teams across the Trust.

Ilona particularly enjoys the supportive aspect of her role in ensuring all our staff are able to work efficiently to realise our overriding goal of supporting and achieving the best outcomes for all the children within our schools.

Ilona has a background in school office administration and brings with her a breadth of experience from mainstream primary school administration as well as her most recent role as Attendance Manager at Holmes Chapel Secondary School.

In addition to her Office Manager role, Ilona has recently taken on the role of Governance Officer at the Trust. Ilona is looking forward to broadening her experience and knowledge of MAT Governance to further enhance her role with the Trusts Board of Trustees and local support governors to ensure governance issues and compliance are upheld across the whole Trust.

Jayne has recently joined the Trust from busy HR Team at Cheshire Police and will now be helping Trust to increase its people management capacity and service from the Central Team.  Jayne will also be focusing on developing the staff benefits side of the Trust.

Jayne lives in Crewe with her husband, 2 children and pet tortoise (called Toad!)

Kate joined the Trust as Administrative Assistant in June 2023.

She has a background in education having completed a PGCE equivalent at Ankara University and worked as a language teacher for several years before starting a bespoke childcare facility for Early Years and Primary age children.

Kate then worked as a translator before starting a successful online business from home and has now returned to work now that her children are in full time education and looks forward to supporting the Trust with their future expansion.

The Fermain Academy Local Support Board

Tim Haselwood – Chair of LSB
Emma Sandbach – Headteacher
Deb Gibson – Co-Opted Governor
Lianne Hughes – Co-Opted Governor
Helen Brady – Co-Opted Governor
Colin Acton – Co-Opted Governor
Lucy Wheelton – Staff Governor
Lisa Spence – Parent Governor
Sally Brownhill – Co-Opted Governor

The Axis Academy Local Support Board

Julia Murray – Chair of LSB (Co-Opted Governor)
Paul Eager – Headteacher
Maddie Shaw – Parent Governor
Jenny Williams – Parent Governor
Helen Parsonage – Staff Governor

Cornerstone Academy Local Support Board

Darren Gallimore – Chair of LSB
Damien Sweeney – Headteacher
Juliet Jones – Co-Opted Governor
Kathryn Ollier – Co-Opted Governor
Amanda Whitehead – Staff Governor

The Keystone Academy Local Support Board

Hilary McGlynn – Chair of LSB
Belinda Logan – Trustee of YES Trust
Ali Bellaby – Headteacher
Boyd Robinson – Parent Governor
Tricia Slater – Parent Governor
Michael Dyer – Co-Opted Governor
Georgia Smith – Co-Opted Governor
Steven Gray – Staff Governor

Financial Statements


The Youth Engagement Schools Trust’s (formally East Cheshire Youth Achievement Free School Trust Ltd) audited financial statements are published on this website before 31st January each year, for the previous year ending 31st August.

Financial Statements for 2022-2023 can be found here
Financial Statements for 2021-2022 can be found here
Financial Statements for 2020-2021 can be found here
Financial Statements for 2019-2020 can be found here
Financial Statements for 2018-2019 can be found here.
Financial Statements for 2017-2018 can be found here.
Financial Statements for 2016-2017 can be found here.
Financial Statements for 2015-2016 can be found here.
Financial Statements for 2014-2015 can be found here.

Executive Pay Summary

YES Trust Executive Pay Summary 2021-2022
YES Trust Executive Pay Summary 2022-2023

Business Interests

The Trust keeps a record of all declared business interests. The up-to-date Register of Interests can be viewed here: Annual Register of Interests 2023

Trust Board Meeting Minutes

The following minutes are from Autumn 2019 when the YES Trust became a Multi Academy Trust. Previous minutes from the Single Academy Trust / The Fermain Academy can be found on their website.

2023-2024 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Autumn 2023
2022-2023 – Full Board Minutes – Summer 2023
2022-2023 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Spring 2023
2022-2023 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Autumn 2022
2021-2022 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Summer 2022
2021/2022 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Spring 2022
2021/2022 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Autumn 2021
2020/2021 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Summer 2021
2020/2021 – Full Board  Part 1 Minutes – Spring 2021
2020/2021 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Autumn 2020
2019/2020 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Summer 2020
2019/2020 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Spring 2020
2019/2020 – Full Board Part 1 Minutes – Autumn 2019

Minutes of the Trust’s Committees are available on request.

Trustee Board and Committee Meeting Attendance 

The YES Trust – Trustee & Committee Meeting Attendance 2023-2024

The YES Trust – Trustee & Committee Meeting Attendance 2022 -2023

Freedom of Information Publication Scheme

Please find the documents attached below which detail the Youth Engagement Schools Trust’s Publication Scheme. This covers the Trust as a whole, and all schools under its umbrella.

ICO Model Publication Scheme

Freedom of Information – Publication Guidance

Links to information contained in the above documents and relating to any of our schools, can be found on their individual school websites (under ‘Our Academies’ on this website), or by contacting