Welcome to the Governors
I am pleased to introduce the governing body of the school and to tell you something about our role and responsibilities and the work we do. We work very closely with the Head Teacher and the Senior Leadership Team but, while the school staff have responsibility for the day to day management of the school, our role is strategic in nature. This means that we are responsible for setting the strategic direction of the school in consultation with the Head Teacher.
We are responsible for:
• Supporting and holding the Leadership to account for the day to day management of the school, the school curriculum and its implementation and pupils’ progress and achievements;
• Setting and overseeing the school budget and ensuring that the school gets value for money from its spending;
• Appointing staff, including the Head Teacher.
Throughout the year, in practice, this is achieved through structured meetings and monitoring visits. We have meetings with the Head Teacher and leaders to discuss successes and areas of future development. We also invite senior and middle leaders to our meetings to share with us the work they do and to respond to governors’ questions. Governors visit the school as part of their monitoring role, with a specific focus that is based upon identified areas in the School’s Improvement Plan. They talk to teachers and pupils about their work and present a written report of their visit at Governors’ Meetings.
School data is a key element in providing information that shows pupils’ progress and achievements and is presented regularly at Governor Meetings, along with any reports regarding quality assurance. This work allows us, through a positive relationship with staff and pupils, to really get to know the school and its work and to ensure that the education the children receive is of a high quality and the school continues on its successful journey.
Chair of Governors
We are responsible for setting the strategic direction of the school in consultation with the Head Teacher
How the governing body is made up
Some governors are appointed and some are elected. The term of office for elected and appointed Governors is four years. Six Foundation Governors are appointed by the Parochial Church Councils (PCC) of Upwey, and Bincombe with Broadwey and the incumbent priest is a Foundation Governor ex officio.There should be an overall majority of two foundation governors.
2 Parent Governors are elected by the parents.
2 Staff Governors, one teaching that is elected by the staff, and the headteacher. ex officio.
1 Local Authority (LA) Governor, appointed by the the Local Authority – “Childrens’ Services”
Governors serve on committees, based on their role, experience and interests. In this way our various abilities can be used to the best effect. The committees are:
Personnel, Finance and Environment – This committee looks out for the welfare of everyone in the school community: children, staff and parents, and monitors the budget which comes to us mainly from the Local Authority, supplemented by some direct grants from the government. It reviews all financial issues and oversees repairs and maintenance within the school buildings and grounds.
Curriculum, Standards and Distinctiveness – This committee discusses how the subjects in the curriculum are being covered, planned and implemented and to monitor and evaluate performance and outcomes.
Policy Group – This committee reviews and agrees polices, passing on statutory ones to the Full Governing Body for approval
Meet the Governors
I joined the Governing Body of St Nicholas and St Laurence CE VA Primary School in August 2019 as an LA co-opted Governor and was elected Chair in September 2019. I have worked in education all my life, as a history teacher, deputy headteacher, headteacher and Director of the largest state Sixth Form in the country (950 students). I have worked on governing bodies for nearly thirty years and was previously chair of governors of a church secondary school. The Bishop of Salisbury awarded me the St Aldhelm’s Cross in 2015 for my work and support for that school. I have been Chair of Governors of a VA church school near Swanage for four years and was on the Interim Executive Board of Budmouth College last year. I was also emergency Chair of the IEB at Bovington Primary for three months before its academisation. Subsequently I was asked to join the South West Regional Board of Aspirations Academy Trust. My wife is also chair of governors of a church primary school in Weymouth.
I continue to pursue my interest in history and am chair of a trust at the Dorset County Museum in Dorchester. I sail, I am an energetic supporter of Bath Rugby and I enjoy spending time with my young grandchildren.
I grew up in the Weymouth and Portland area, and having attended local schools and colleges moved to Cardiff where I studied for my degree. After completing my degree I moved back to Weymouth and have lived here ever since.
I had my first job at Dorset County Council where I have worked in Children’s Services and Human Resources and I still work in the public sector as a Senior HR Officer.
My eldest child started at St Nicholas and St Laurence School in 2015 and is now in year 4. I also have twins who are due to start at the school in 2020.
I became a foundation governor in 2018, and I enjoy being involved in the life of the school. Not having a working background in education, it has been a steep learning curve, but I feel it is wonderful opportunity to be able to play a small part in ensuring our children become the best they can be – from academic success to becoming creative, caring and confident young people.
Parent governor – Mrs Louise Wright
Vacancy – Staffing governor
I have been a member of the governing body for just over a year. I started my career in the Armed Forces after leaving school at 16. I have been in a fortunate position to travel to remote places of the world, visit different countries and experience different cultures.
When I left the forces I joined the National Probation Service. I worked in the service for 10 years, I have always had a passion for helping children and young people, I followed my passion and shifted my career in Criminal Justice to work with young people in the Youth Offending Service. I am currently in a Restorative Role within this organisation as a Restorative Justice Practitioner. l have years of experience working with young people and their families. I believe I have a good understanding of what responsibilities and duties we have as education providers to provide a safe and supportive environment for all associated with our school. Outside of school and work, I enjoy sailing and gardening. I have also two children.
I recently joined St. Nicholas and St. Laurence Primary School Governing body in 2019 as a Foundation Governor.
I live in Weymouth close to the school and have been part of the local community since 2011. My two daughters both attend school here at St Nicholas and St. Laurence. As a family we have found the school’s approach to learning and the dedication given by all the staff to their pupils, to be the most fitting choice of school for our children.
I have taught in other Dorset primary schools for the past 18 years and since electing to work part time I have chosen to do my SENDCo qualification through Exeter University and I am now currently SENDCo for two primary schools in Dorset. Due to my background I feel I bring expertise, knowledge and a passion for education and achieving the very best start for all children. I will work with all members of the Governing body, staff and children to achieve this at St Nicholas and St. Laurence.
I believe I am truly lucky to be living in Dorset and in my spare time I enjoy exposing our children to the wonders of living here. We love to explore woods and coastlines and the history of our heritage. In what spare time remains for myself I enjoy swimming, reading and meditation.
My name is Philip Elliott. I am priest of St Nicholas’ Church, Broadwey and St Laurence’s Church, Upwey. I have served these communities, along with Bincombe and Buckland Ripers since 2016. I am ex officio governor at our school as priest of the churches which have shared long associations with the school.
Before coming to this part of Weymouth, I served at Holy Trinity Church in the centre of Weymouth where I served my curacy having received my training at Westcott House in Cambridge. Prior to training and ordination, I have worked in a number of different environments from clerical work in a conference office at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa to a manager at a hotel in Salisbury.
Alongside my role as Parish Priest; I am also a trustee of the Lantern Centre in Weymouth and Chaplain to the Weymouth Sea Cadets, TS Bowcowen.
Life is a journey and I intend to bring experience gained in the past and present to the service of our school as we move forward always seeking the best for all in our community.
I joined the Governing body in 2020 as a Parent Governor.
I have worked in Risk Management with the same company since the age of 19 with the exception of a 2 year break; during this time I travelled around the world and was fortunate enough to visit some beautiful countries and gain amazing life experiences / skills during this time. On my return, I went back into Risk Management and secured a promotion to a Business Unit Team Leader and I’ve never looked back!
I have two children; both attend St Nicholas and St Laurence in Years 1 and 3. They thoroughly enjoy their time in the school and I am excited to be a part of their educational journey. One of the things that I love about St Nicholas and St Laurence is the variety of things taught and the experiences on offer to the children.
I am currently studying a DipHE in Criminology and Psychology with the Open University alongside my day job. The intention is to increase this to a Degree after 4 years of part time study. When I have spare time, I enjoy walks, running, reading and visiting spas!
I am truly thrilled to have been given the opportunity to support the school through the Governing Body. Through my commitment to this role, I will endeavour to do the very best for our children to make sure they gain the academic and life skills they need to flourish into positive, kind and inspirational young people.
I’m delighted to have joined St Nicholas and St Laurence School as a Foundation Governor, having previously enjoyed the same role in another Dorset Primary School. I have 10 years of experience in Chief Executive and senior Board level roles within school groups and education businesses, and have been involved in the governance and leadership of over 20 schools in that time. Prior to education, my earlier career was in pharmacy, healthcare and the pharmaceutical services industry where I also held Board level roles.
With our four children now all in their mid-20s, I live in Purbeck with my wife Alison and our golden retriever Reggie! We spend a fair amount of our time enjoying the amazing outdoor environment all around Purbeck and Dorset. I also remain an active and competitive hockey player, and continue to represent England Masters in recent World and European Cup competitions, albeit at advanced age groups !!
I’m a great believer that everyone has their own ‘superpowers’, and that great teachers and great schools help every child to find theirs. I think my job as a Governor of St Nicholas and St Laurence is to do all I can, with my fellow Governors, to support our great teachers and school to do just that.