Governors' Profiles


Nick Plater

Trust appointed Governor
Committee: Standards and Learning/Ethos, Resources and Personnel

Currently Co-Curricular Deputy at Norwich School, with responsibility for all extra-curricular activities, sports and games, music, drama and the creatives, Nick spends the majority of his time watching lessons being taught, tracking pupils' performance through observation and assessing teaching. He retains much of his previous brief as Academic Deputy Head, a role he fulfilled for twelve years. His experience as an inspector is now applied beyond the classroom as well as in it. He was appointed to Norwich School as Head of History, from Bristol Grammar School where he taught History and was in charge of all games. Nick has been an A Level examiner and local coordinator and has also taught Politics to A Level and English and Geography to GCSE. Always involved in sports, especially cricket and rugby, he ran cricket at both BGS and Norwich.

His wife works as a Deputy Head in one of the city Academies; his elder son is at Exeter University and younger just going through the upper sixth. Apart from sports his interests lie in music and the environment being involved with conservation projects and beekeeping.


John Ford


Committee: Standards and Learning/Ethos, Resources and Personnel

I had a range of work experience on leaving school including restaurant, bar and factory work, before returning to education with a desire to teach in my early twenties.

I used my initial experience in teaching to take the opportunity to travel, training science teachers in Asia for a couple of years, before returning to lead science departments in two schools.

I moved into senior leadership in 2001 and I have been part of four senior leadership teams as both Assistant Head and Deputy, covering all responsibility areas.

I became a Headteacher in a large Norfolk secondary school in 2011 for almost six years before moving on to work as an educational consultant.

Missing the excitement of school life, however, has driven me back to seek the challenge of school leadership once again and I am delighted to become part of the value-driven, inspirational team that is Open Academy.


Mark Hurren

Trust appointed Governor

Committee: Vice Chair of Governing Body, Chair of Ethos, Resources and Personnel

Health and Safety and Pupil Premium Governor

I have always been local to the area, though from over the county border in Beccles. Having studied Mathematics at UEA, I went on to qualify as an accountant working as an external auditor based in the Ipswich office of KPMG. After a brief spell at Larking Gowen in Norwich I took up my current role at Aviva Investors in the city centre, which involves analysing commercial and public sector real estate tenants as part of direct property investments and commercial mortgages.

Being married to a primary school teacher has given me good insight into the education sector and I recently spent just over a year as governor at a small rural primary school before that came to a natural conclusion. I was keen to get back into a new governor role and was delighted to take up a vacancy on the Open Academy governing body.

Much of my time (and energy!) outside of work is currently taken up looking after my new son, Blake, born February 2017. Beyond that I follow a range of sports and am a keen runner having completed marathons in London, Paris, Berlin and New York


Anthony Edwards

Staff Governor

Committee: Standards and Learning

Attendance Governor

I was keen to become a Staff Governor at Open Academy because I wanted to be involved in the Open local community. I hope to get a better understanding of the students and their needs through closer contact with their parents and local issues.

I bring 20 years of full time English teaching experience to the role of Staff Governor, working over the years at three secondary schools. I have held responsibility positions both academically (as Head of Subject - Media Studies) and on the pastoral side – as Assistant and Deputy Head of House. I am interested in forming links between local business and the Academy.

I look forward to building relationships with members of the Open Academy staff and bringing their ideas and inspiration to Trustee committee meetings.

I moved to Norfolk 20 years ago (from London, where I worked as an Editor in magazine publishing – titles included Rugby magazines, Television Advertising, London and Health). I live in a rural village, and regularly let the community down in the local football and cricket teams. I am married with two children, two Border Terriers and one Labrador.


Charlotte Land

Trust appointed Governor

Committee:  Standards and Learning

I am, a committed, proactive, highly skilled and knowledgeable Independent Chair of Governors on the Local Governing Body of a Multi Academy Trust. Prior to this, I served on the board of City Academy Norwich from January 2010-June 2014.
I believe that strong and effective Governance can transform the educational opportunities and outcomes for every student, at every stage of their education. I believe that every student deserves the same educational opportunities thus enabling them to achieve their aspirations. School should be: a calm, happy, safe and stable environment where each student’s achievement is celebrated and valued.
In education, I am an approachable, collaborative forward thinking classroom practitioner who works well within a team and in leadership roles.  An adaptable, confident, resilient individual, capable of inspiring, motivating and challenging young people to achieve their aims and aspirations.
I look forward to using my experience to support Open Academy in order to meet the expectations of all its stakeholders.

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Callum Perry

Trust appointed Governor - Committee: Chair of Standards and Learning

SEND and Student Voice Governor

Norwich has been my home since birth. I was born in the old hospital, now flats, and attended local schools, sixth form and now am undertaking my Bachelor's Degree in Education Studies. From an early age I was a keen learner in the classroom but school was not always easy for me. As I developed academically and socially at school, I embraced leadership positions and was head boy at my sixth form. School was a place which I enjoyed and it also encouraged me to pursue a career in the same field.

Since then, I have been actively involved in community youth work in local catchment areas and have worked closely with young people on various funding boards such as YAB and YNAF. Most recently, I have undertaken a sabbatical from studies to lead UEA Students' Union as the Undergraduate Education Officer; focusing on curriculum standards, quality assurance and student voice across the learning community. As well as this, I have had extensive training and experience of chairing our charity trustee board and managing our CEO. Performance and data are important aspects of understanding success , but what really matters to me is understanding the students and getting a feel for the school.

Our community is a huge part of our identity and OPEN Academy is no exception to this. With huge opportunities for collaboration and joint work, we can enhance our understanding of educational excellence and also enhance the experience for our students at the points of entry, retention and success, and progression and transition. I have always been an active member of service and so I very much hope that staff, students and parents will feel my presence around the school and I hope to bring a fresh and innovative approach to governance at OPEN.

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Caroline Hardy

Parent Governor - Committee: Ethos, Resources and Personnel.

I was born in Norwich and returned here 15 years ago when I met my husband. I’ve lived in Sprowston for 10 years and have three children (one at nursery and 2 at secondary school). When my second child started at Open in 2022, I decided it would be good to be a part of the school community as I would be around for a while!

As a child I enjoyed school and had a thirst for knowledge, this hasn’t changed as I’ve grown older. I always look for ways to further my understanding and knowledge, in both work and home life. I have run businesses in the past and have a good understanding of finances, HR and health & safety, all of which are transferrable to a school environment.

As a parent governor I can bring a different perspective to the board, including any experiences from my children.

When I’m not working or spending time with my children, I can be found walking our young Cockapoo or reading a good book.

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