Governors

The governing body set the vision, ethos and strategic direction of the school as well as challenge the capital, educational and financial plans. Believing that a strong understanding of these core functions is essential the trust has identified governors with the requisite skills and time. The board believes that there are complementary skills within the governing body which will provide the required support and challenge to create an outstanding new school.

Our governors for 2017 / 2018 are:

Andrew Richardson

Andrew works as a Financial Adviser in his own business whilst also being a founding partner of Openwork LLP,  one of the largest distributors of financial services and mortgages in the UK. Andrew has 1500 clients for whom he seeks to make complex financial concepts easier to understand. He chairs and organises a quarterly peer group meeting for Openwork partners, providing a platform for discussion and the continuing professional development of local advisers within a highly regulated and changing industry.

He also acted as a Trustee and co-leader of a Church for 16 years, overseeing the employment of staff, setting of budgets, financial monitoring and Charity governance. Andrew has education experience through family members.

Skills: Communication, Finance, Marketing, Charity management

Nicola Bates

Nicola completed the inaugural intake of the Teach-First Program, working in an inner-city London school teaching science – interning with the London 2012 Olympic Bid during the summer break. After teaching she spent over 11 years working within the transaction services team in Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC). Here she managed project teams assessing the financial performance and potential of multinational companies from both buy and sell side perspectives. Whilst at PwC she also gained experience working in the business recovery, strategy and audit departments. 

Despite having left the day-to-day teaching environment she has retained her passion for encouraging children to explore their interests in STEM subjects and continued to mentor pupils and teachers through the Teach-First program as well as PwC outreach days. 

She has completed a Masters in Physics from Cambridge University where she also helped to increase access to underrepresented pupils, completed research on phase unwrapping algorithms and was Chair of the University Physics Society. 

Skills: Financial knowledge, Education, Commercial experience, Governance, Leadership, Coaching and mentoring.

Stuart Boreham

Stuart has ten years’ experience of teaching at GCSE and A levels including roles as HoY, exam board moderator and residential trainer.

Stuart also has ten years’ experience as a professional stills photographer shooting school, commercial and industrial marketing material and event requirements. He has been the official photographer to the CERN LHC project and has qualifications and awards in the area of photography. In addition, Stuart has 7 years’ experience of running his own production company making corporate, charity and education sector videos managing large projects for clients such as Samsung, Adobe and Miele and winning multiple awards. Stuart will work with the project team to ensure that marketing opportunities are appropriately managed and professionally led.

Stuart has been a governor for Salesian School for 9 years and is also a trustee for Grassroots.org.uk; a UK based Christian charity working in child sponsorship and sustainable aid.

Skills: Secondary education, Educational standards, Local knowledge, Marketing & publicity, Communicating vision, Governance, Charity financial requirements.

Rev. Dr. William John Dickson

Father John has taught in independent and mainstream comprehensive schools and at university level.

He has been a school governor in four different schools for more than thirty years including finance, personnel and admissions and has served as chair for various committees including the staff appeals and student exclusion committees. Father John has also been Vice Chair and Chair of Governors for 10 years. Father John was selected as a National Leader in School Governance and has mentored other chairs of governors for the last two years. Father John will contribute to the team by ensuring that we have appropriate governance in place providing the requisite challenge.

Father John has experience of establishing a new school have guided the difficult amalgamation of two inner city comprehensive schools including the rationalisation of staff and appointment of the Headteacher. Father John will support the project team with his knowledge of setting up a new school and ensure that recruitment policies are fit for purpose and are followed.

Skills: Education (independent and maintained), New school development, Local knowledge, Governance (National Leader in School Governance), Recruitment.

Zelia Munnik

Zelia is our newly appointed Headteacher. Zelia spent 3 years as Headteacher of Pyrcroft Grange Primary School, one of the schools within the Bourne Education Trust. Prior to that Zelia was Assistant Headteacher and Head of Inclusion at Epsom & Ewell High School.  Zelia has had to develop the “Pyrcroft Grange” brand and ensure that an appropriate marketing plan was in place and implemented. This has led to an increase in pupil numbers and greater collaboration with local primary schools. One of Zelia’s key contributions to the governing body will be to advise on transition, marketing and understanding local sensibilities.

As Headteacher of a small school, Zelia is well aware of the pressures of a small budget, the need to scrutinise the finances and make difficult choices whilst maintaining pupil progress. Zelia will contribute to the governing body by working with the project team to bring in an efficient budget for the early years.

During her time at Pyrcroft Grange Zelia had to build a significantly new team and transformed the leadership by ensuring adequate training and a ‘grow your own’ attitude. Zelia will contribute to the governing body by ensuring that the project team employs the right mix of experience and training.

Skills: Marketing, Transition, Local knowledge, School budgets, Development of teams.

David Truslove

David Truslove qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1986. David has more than 10 years’ experience working as a business consultant to Independent schools. From 2009-2014 David was Chief Executive of St Joseph's College Reading. His work in saving St Joseph's from the threat of closure was recognised in the 2015 TES awards where St Josephs received the award for 'Independent School of the Year' and the award for the best commercial/financial initiative.

Prior to working in schools, David worked in house building as Finance Director and Managing Director of Swan Hill Homes, and was a Director of Swan Hill Plc. He has also managed his own £3m residential development. Together with his knowledge of schools, David also brings his strategic, commercial and financial experience and expertise to the Board.

Skills: Corporate strategy; Commercial & financial experience, Capital & site development, Project Development, Education business development

Penny Rendall

Penny works as a Property Manager for Centrica managing fit out projects on a daily basis for millions of pounds. Penny commissions and manages project management teams and ensures that the needs of the end user are reflected in the end product. This experience will enable Penny will support the team on the capital and budget management elements of the project.

Penny was Chair of Governors of Pyrcroft Grange and a Director of the Bourne Education Trust. She relinquished these roles to ensure that she has the time commitment to support the project.

Skills: Capital & site project management, Management of teams, Budget management.

Jane Vaughan

Jane Vaughan was Director of Education at the National Autistic Society 2009-2014 and had responsibility for the strategic development of the NAS Education Group of six specialist residential schools for children with autism and the NAS educational support service for mainstream schools.

Jane led the successful NAS bid to open the very first Charity sponsored free school in England for pupils on the autism spectrum and two more successful free school bids followed. In 2012 Jane qualified, through the Institute of Directors as a Certified Company Director and played a leading role in setting up the NAS Multi Academy Trust that provides the governance for the NAS free schools. Jane will contribute to the team by ensuring that we have appropriate governance in place providing the requisite challenge.

Jane has also worked as a School Improvement Consultant for Surrey Local Authority attached to 12 special schools. Jane will contribute to the team by ensuring that we have appropriate education policies and procedures in place particularly in relation to SEN and tracking and reporting pupil progress.

Skills: Free School development, Governance, Education policies and procedures, Special Educational Needs.

Nicola Hardcastle (Parent Governor)

Nicola brings a wealth of experience from both an industry and educational background. Her robust understanding of many school systems comes from having taught different subjects and age groups across three countries.  Nicola has worked closedly with SEN departments as both a parent and teacher and is confident she will be able to use her experince and skills to benefit both the school and students.

Helen Skinner (Parent Governor)

Helen has 3 daughters and has always been heavily involved in their schools.  She has used the opportunity of involvement within PTA's and volunteering in school to gain a greater understanding of schools and the education sector.  Her experience as a qualified nurse means she brings a wealth of key skills to the role of governor.