The Vaughan Parents’ Action Group has been set up by a number of parents worried about radical changes the Diocese of Westminster has made to the School’s Governing Body. It is a sub-committee of the Vaughan Parents' Association.
We now have not a single current parent Foundation Governor. Parents are woefully under-represented.
The Diocese has made its own Director of Education, Paul Barber, a Governor. This appointment creates a clear conflict of interest, we believe. It also means that he will not be able to give as much attention to the many other Catholic schools in the Diocese. Paul Barber is a Governor of no other school in the Diocese.
John O’Donnell has now been elected Chairman of Governors at the Vaughan. He is already Chairman of Governors at neighbouring Sion Manning School. He is also Vice-Chairman of Governors of St Charles’ Primary School. This is another conflict of interest. Besides that, how can he possibly give the Vaughan School the attention it needs and deserves?
We believe the Diocese wants to change the way the school operates, to dilute its Catholic ethos and to turn it into a local comprehensive. We do not believe this will help the school to continue to provide a first-class education to young people of all abilities and backgrounds from across the whole of London.
We want above all to protect the School’s Catholic ethos. We want to protect its distinctive identity. We want to protect its high spiritual, moral, educational, cultural and sporting standards.
Our aims are these:
1) To persuade the Diocese to appoint Foundation Governors who are parents of children at the School.
2) To persuade the Diocese to remove Paul Barber from the Governing Body.
3) To seek the election of a Chairman who will have time to devote to the Vaughan, and who will not have a conflict of interest.
Michael Gormally, the school’s highly-respected former Headmaster, shares our views and vigorously opposes the changes that have been made. He has also resisted strongly Archbishop Nichols’ attempts to gain his support for the changes.