The Sussex Learning Trust aims to play an integral part in providing the highest possible educational opportunities for children and young people in Sussex via a network of Academies committed to partnership working for the benefit of pupils and students

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GCSE results 2019: 32% of grades achieved were the top 9-7 grades!OUTSTANDING: Personal development, behaviour and welfare (Ofsted, 2017)“Governors and staff promote positive relationships combined with high aspirations for themselves and pupils” (Ofsted, 2017)"The behaviour of pupils is outstanding" (Ofsted, 2017)GCSE results 2019: English, 87% / Maths 80% achieved a grade of 9-4OUTSTANDING: Effectiveness of leadership and management (Ofsted, 2017)..the school's culture of respect for all and positive relationships, summarised succinctly in "do your best and be nice" (Ofsted, 2017)GCSE results 2019: The proportion of students who achieved both English and Maths at grade 9-4 is a truly impressive 77%!GCSE results 2019: 80% of students achieved grades 9-4 in 18 subjectsOpen Morning bookings now being taken. Call our Reception team Tel 01444 457881 to reserve your place



Warden Park Secondary Academy is for young people aged from 11-16 based in Cuckfield, West Sussex. The Academy operates as an independent school maintained by government funding. Parents do not pay fees.


jonathan Ash-Edwards

Experience, Skills Set and Expertise

I currently serve as Chair of the Local Governing Body for Warden Park Secondary Academy and have over ten years of school governance experience across primary and secondary phases. As a former Warden Park student, I know the academy well and am committed to ensuring students have the very best opportunities to succeed.

I led the Board’s decision to convert Warden Park to academy status and establish Sussex Learning Trust. Since being Chair of Governors, governance has twice been rated as ‘Good’ or ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted. In April 2016, I was appointed by the Department for Education as a National Leader of Governance, a role which involves supporting Chairs of Governors in other schools and carrying out external reviews of governance. This role is part of the Government’s drive to give schools a central role in developing a self-improving and sustainable school led system.

As well as experience running a small business, I am Deputy Leader of Mid Sussex District Council, where I have responsibility for giving strategic direction and leadership to the local authority. My portfolio responsibilities include financial management, budget setting, performance management and estates.

(vice chair)

Experience, Skills Set and Expertise

I applied for the role of Parent Director following the excellent all-round education and experience afforded to my two sons at Warden Park.

As a serving teacher for 36 years my roles have included:

  • Boarding Housemaster
  • Head of Department
  • Head of Sixth Form
  • Director of Studies
  • Academic Deputy

My experience has involved:

  • Management of Departments to include Learning Support.
  • Management and analysis of performance data.
  • Relevant training in Compliance, Safer Recruitment, Child Protection, Prevent, Safety Management on Educational Visits

In addition to this, I have been an Independent Schools Inspector since 2003 and hold the National Professional Qualification for Headship.  I am a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and a Chartered Geographer.

Having retired in December 2015, I am now able to focus on Consultancy and have qualified as a Lead (Reporting Inspector) for the Independent School Inspectorate.

I have served as Chair of the Pastoral and Safeguarding Committee and I am the nominated Governor for Safeguarding and, in this role, monitor the Academy’s regulatory compliance with respect to Keeping Children Safe in Education July 2016 and future changes or updates to legislation.

I now serve as a Member and Trustee for the Sussex Learning Trust, Vice Chair of the Warden Park Secondary Academy Local Governing Body and sit on the Audit Committee. 

Nick Dyson

Experience, Skills Set and Expertise

My professional experience includes roles in retail and then education. Following the completion of the Aldi Graduate Management Scheme in 2005, I was appointed Area Manager for several stores across the south of England. I received intense training in accounting, logistics, marketing, recruitment, merchandising and inventory control before being allocated my own area. Training less experienced employees sparked my interest in education and training, which then led to my pursuit of a career in teaching.

Following the completion of a PGCE in Secondary Geography at the University of Exeter, I was appointed as Teacher of Geography at Exmouth Community College and later, Initial Teaching Experience Coordinator, overseeing the school placements of 20 PGCE students and Newly Qualified Teachers each academic year.

Since then, my career in teaching has involved roles as Head of Geography, Head of Careers and Head of Sixth Form. I am currently the Director of Creative Enterprise at Francis Holland School where I have responsibilities for whole school enterprise programmes, co-curricular provision, school trips and community engagement, including partnership work with charities and schools in Tanzania and New York. I am also an Education Consultant for the BBC Mind Set campaign and writer for Oxford University Press (Secondary Geography).  I enjoy windsurfing, running and walking in the wonderful Sussex countryside. I am married to Alison, who is an actor, and we have two young children.


Experience, Skills Set and Expertise

My teaching career has been based in Sussex and prior to my arrival at Warden Park Secondary Academy I worked as a senior leader in three schools, most recently as Deputy Headteacher at Steyning Grammar School.

As a school boy sport was my passion and the opportunities I had at school helped steer me into university where I trained as a PE teacher. New opportunities here opened up as a judge in Sports Acrobatics and I had the enormous privilege of judging for Great Britain at European and World Championships.


Experience, Skills Set and Expertise

Biography to follow

Peter smith

Experience, Skills Set and Expertise

Biography to follow


Experience, Skills Set and Expertise

Biography to follow.

Jeff Thompson

Experience, Skills Set and Expertise

I’m married to Ros. We have two children, Alexander (who attends Warden Park – Year 8) and Hope, who is in Balcombe Primary School. I’ve served as a Governor of Balcombe Primary for the last 11 years, 8 of those as Chair of Governors, which has given me a chance to work extensively with the schools in our locality, including Warden Park and Oathall. With that experience, I helped establish the locality Community Interest Company to make it easier for our schools to share and collaborate. I’ve also served on the West Sussex County Schools Forum, which was a consultative group for the County addressing county-wide school funding applications, amongst other issues.

I’m retired from PriceWaterhouseCoopers, where I led their Consulting business. This practical experience in managing a wide-ranging business, as well as advising private and government organisations on how they can improve, has been invaluable in my role as a Governor, given the myriad educational and business issues our schools face. I’m passionate about education, as I believe that there is no greater gift we can give to our children.


Experience, Skills Set and Expertise

Biography to follow



Articles of Association

Constitution of Local Governing Body for Warden Park Secondary

Scheme of Delegation



Click here to contact Clerk to Board of Governors



Copies of Governors Minutes are available on request from our Clerk to the Board of Directors, Mrs Natalie Shelford. Click on link below

Contact Clerk to Board of Governors