Fun • Creativity • Achievement



On April 12th 2021, the Trust Board replaced Local Governing Bodies with Local Advisory Boards. This change was made for two key reasons:

  • The responsibility and accountability for each school no longer rests with Governing Bodies but with the Trust. Therefore, we needed a model that was more aligned to our scheme of delegation.
  • We wanted to create a model of Governance which ensures more community representation, is more linked to the Trust and has more time to focus on each school, it’s priorities and its uniqueness, rather than budgets and school performance data.


The Purpose of the LAB

  • The primary focus of the LABs is to promote the best interests of all the children and their families within their school and the wider Trust. They will provide an opportunity to support the ‘uniqueness’ of each school in terms of learning opportunities available, enhancing school wellbeing and a focus on the needs of the local community. The LAB will enhance community engagement through being a collective channel of communication. The focus of enhancing community engagement reflects the Trust’s values and will be particularly important for the growth of the PHAT.

Parklands Primary LAB Members

Emma Bell – Chair of the LAB

I am passionate about ensuring all children get the best quality education and believe that this needs to be achieved holistically, with the happiness and wellbeing of the child being just as important as their day to day learning experiences.

I am a fully qualified HR Professional, with over 14 years HR experience.  I am currently Head of HR Operations at the Open University and as such have gained valuable experience in the education sector. I am confident that my skills in this area can be utilised effectively to support the strategic aims of the school, as well as ensuring that money is spent effectively. I look forward to playing an active role in supporting the successful development of the school over the coming years.  

Carmilla Cassidy – Principal

Helen Furniss – Member of the LAB

I am a mother of two children that will both see the first part of their schooling journey at Parklands Primary school. As a teacher myself, I wanted to support the important job that the school have in nurturing and encouraging each child to meet their full potential.

I have been a teacher for 12 years in the secondary sector. I have spent my latter years training new teachers in a school environment. I organise and deliver training in behaviour management, creative curriculums and differentiation  in the classroom. 

Chris Gallagher – Member of the LAB

I am a father of two children, one of whom attends Parklands Primary and the other who is currently at Parklands Nursery. As a parent I want nothing more for our children than for them to be happy, confident and given the best learning environment to recognize their potential.

I believe I will provide a different perspective based on my work background with several international companies over the past 15 years. I currently work as a Sales Director for a global manufacturing company which brings me into contact with a huge variety of different people and organisations in the UK and abroad. I will use this experience to challenge how our school is run and help contribute to making it even better going forward.

Shahnaz Zaman – Member of the LAB

Previously a member of staff, Family Support Worker and DSL. Have seen the school convert in to an academy and progress. Parent to children who were former pupils at Parklands primary, both had wonderful experiences at the school, and want to continue that support for other children to achieve their full potential. Passionately believe in good education and school experiences for all children and providing opportunities for all. 20 years experience of working in safeguarding, children services and community development. Currently working as Court Case manager for Northamptonshire Youth Offending Service and volunteer as a Magistrate.



We will be recruiting LAB members during May 2021 and will be holding a recruitment evening to share further information. If you have any questions, please contact the Trust Company Secretary on :