Ryedale Learning Trust

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Governance & Statutory Information

The Ryedale Learning Trust is committed to professional and excellent governance for both the Trust as a whole and each school. It is imperative that this is highly effective in providing accountability that supports our Trust's aims.


Governance Structure

The Ryedale Learning Trust Governance Structure establishes clear lines of accountability, overview and scrutiny at three levels:

  • Trust Members
  • Board of Trustees and its Committees
  • School Committees


This structure has been established to support the core functions of governance:

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
  • Holding executive leaders to account for the educational performance of the organisation and
    its pupils, and the performance management of staff
  • Overseeing and ensuring effective financial performance



To find out more about the Trustees of Ryedale Learning Trust please click on the profiles below.

David works for England’s Environment Agency where he is National Director for Water, Land and Biodiversity. David graduated from the University of Sheffield in 1987 and has spent his career working in the water and environmental management sector.

David is a member of the Chartered Institute of Water and Environmental Management, and completed a MSc in Service Management in 1996.

David has a strong personal and a professional interest in both the environment and education, believing that “teaching is the essential profession, the one that makes all other professions possible.” 

David lives in North Yorkshire with his wife Ruth and their two children. Both children attended primary and secondary schools within the Ryedale Learning Trust. David is also a local Parish Councillor.

David was previously Chair of Governors at the Ryedale Federation, and now as Chair of the Board of Trustees says “it is a privilege to chair the Board of Trustees of the Ryedale Learning Trust, and to work with so many people across the Trust who are dedicated to providing the very best education for young people in our area.”

David Ball was born in New Zealand and moved to the UK in 1991.

David has a Bachelor of Building Science and Bachelor of Architecture (Hons) Degree. Since graduating in 1987, David has worked in private practice and for Blue Chip companies in both New Zealand and the UK.

David is currently founder and Managing Director of a Property Investment Company and a Design, Construction and Project Management Consultancy.

David has been a School Governor at Terrington C of E School, Ryedale School, Ripon Grammar and latterly a trustee of the Ryedale Learning Trust. David was Chair of Governors at Ryedale School for two years.

He is married with three grown-up children who were educated at Sinnington Community Primary School and Ryedale School. The two youngest children are at University and his eldest is now working full time in London having completed her degree.

In his spare time David enjoys working on his house, travel, hiking, sailing and skiing.

Favourite quote: "Do not go where the path may lead; go instead where there is no path and leave a trail" (Ralph Waldo Emerson).

Heather has a degree in history and English and a diploma in Business Administration. Following her graduation, she worked in local government, a university and a national charity, before becoming practice manager for a local medical centre in 2005.  Five years ago, she undertook further studies to become a member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development.

In 2019, her practice management role expanded when she became the Lead Manager for a network of GP practices in Ryedale and Hambleton.

Heather has been a School Governor and latterly a Trustee for 20 years. She is married with three children who have been educated at Sinnington Community Primary School and Ryedale School. With her youngest son in year 11, and two eldest at University, she has parental experience of the whole educational journey.

When not in a GP surgery or at school, Heather enjoys running her B&B business, gardening and exercising out on the North York Moors.

She can be often be heard saying to her children "your first thought should be to say yes I can help, not find an excuse to say no".

Ruth’s background is in education, originally as a secondary science teacher and then after re-training as a nursery and primary teacher. Following 20 years as a teacher she took an opportunity to work as an education manager for the Royal Society of Chemistry. This involved facilitating online and face to face support for teachers of science in the north of England.

Ruth has been involved as a school governor of the Ryedale Federation, and now as trustee of the Ryedale Trust since inception. She has significant primary education experience; as parent governor, class teacher and headteacher.  

In addition to her voluntary work in the educational sector, Ruth is also a trained lay preacher in the Methodist Church and attends Rievaulx chapel.

Ruth lives in Oswaldkirk, and her two grown up children both attended and enjoyed Helmsley Community Primary School and Ryedale School.

Favourite quote: "History will judge us by the difference we make in the everyday lives of children.” (Nelson Mandela)

Peter joined St Peter’s School, York in September 2019 as the Bursar. St Peter’s 3-18 comprises three schools, Clifton, St Olave’s and St Peter’s itself. There are 1,150 pupils in total all based around a beautiful 55 acre campus in central York.

 From 2010-2019 Peter was the Director of Corporate Resources and Deputy Master at Marlborough College in Wiltshire. During his time there Peter was involved in a number of significant developments including the implementation of a campus master-plan, an increase in boarding places, the development of an overseas school, raising of alternatives sources of income and additional funding for bursaries. From 1991-2000 he worked for the Ampleforth Abbey Trust, which includes Ampleforth College, St Martin’s Ampleforth and St Benet’s Hall, Oxford. In 1998 he was appointed the first lay Procurator in the United Kingdom.

 Peter is a Chartered Accountant having trained with BDO and holds a degree in Accounting and Business Law from Stirling University. Prior to entering the world of education Peter was a divisional finance director in the Goodhead Group.

 Peter has served as a governor of several schools including Ardingly College, Pinewood School and more locally Lady Lumley’s School and St Martin’s School. He has also acted as a financial advisor to the Douai Abbey Trust. He was a member of the Independent Schools Teachers’Pension  Working Group and chairman of the employers’ group for the Independent Schools’ Pension Scheme.  Local voluntary work has included membership of the Parochial Church Council and treasurer of the Helmsley Arts’ Centre.

 Peter is married to Judy and they have three children. Lizzie is a doctor, Will is a consultant in digital technology and Jack is a trainee accountant. Peter and Judy enjoy Yorkshire life and especially walking the Moors with their three whippets. Peter plays squash for Kirkbymoorside and is a keen cyclist.

Chris was Head of Mathematics at Ampleforth, and post retirement taught at St Peter's School, York. Through various roles, and throughout his career, he has acquired significant experience in curriculum development, assessment, teacher recruitment and training, and policy in school mathematics. He brings a range of experience across the educational spectrum.

He was a contributing author to two major curriculum developments in school mathematics, and for many years a Chief Examiner at both GCSE and A-level Mathematics. He served on subject committees for OFQUAL, was a member of Council and Chair of the Schools and Further Education Committee of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications. He was a member for four years on the Advisory Committee on Mathematics Education for England and Wales (ACME). He has contributed to conferences on Mathematics Education both nationally and internationally.

Chris has lived in Helmsley for many years. He recently founded the Helmsley Gardening Club and is a Trustee at The Helmsley Arts Centre. He is a season ticket holder at Headingley, supporting Leeds Rhinos Rugby League.

Favourite Quote: “Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted, counts.”

Attributed to Albert Einstein

Jill has worked in education for over forty years in a variety of roles and positions. She graduated from Exeter University in 1979 and the followed this up with an MA in Education in 1999. She taught in Somerset and Suffolk before moving to North Yorkshire in 1997.

Jill was previously Headteacher at Norton College and other roles include Assistant Director for Education and Skills in both York and North Yorkshire as well as being the Director of Education with CfBT in Lincolnshire.

Jill has had a variety of governance roles since 2017 including being a governor and Trustee at Norton College. She was Vice Chair of the Trust Board at South Bank Multi-Academy Trust in York and more recently Chair of Governors at Norton College. She is currently a Member at South Bank and a Trustee at Ryedale Leaning Trust.

Outside education, Jill is Churchwarden at St. Helen’s in Sheriff Hutton and enjoys reading, family history, tennis, football and sewing, as well as looking after her little grandson once a week.


To find out more about the Members of Ryedale Learning Trust please click on the profiles below.

Picture and bio to come soon.

Picture and bio to come soon.

Picture and bio to come soon.

Picture and bio to come soon.

Ryedale Learning Trust Statutory Governance Information

Ryedale Learning Trust Financials

Ryedale Learning Trust Policies

Each school within the Ryedale Learning Trust has school specific policies which can be
viewed on their websites or requested from the schools. These policies complement the
Trust wide policies below.