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St. Paul’s C of E Primary School

Governors

Our Governing Body

St Paul’s Governing Body is made up of 12 people drawn from parents, representatives of the parish of St Paul’s Church, members of the local community and staff, including our head teacher, Richard Catchpole.

Each governor brings a wide range of knowledge, experience and skills to their role and all, apart from Richard, work in a voluntary capacity. They undertake regular training and perform their role with great enthusiasm and energy. 

The Role of Governors

Governors work in close partnership with each other, supporting and challenging the school to ensure the highest achievement for all our children. They work with Richard to set the vision, ethos and strategic direction of the school and hold him to account for the educational performance of the school. They oversee the financial performance of the school and ensure that the school’s funds are well spent.

The Work of Governors

The governing body meets four times a year as a full governing body, FGB.  

The two main committees, Resources and Learning, meet generally twice a term. The Resources committee oversees the school’s buildings, budget and finance and health and safety. The Learning Committee oversees staffing, the curriculum, pupil data (covering both progress and attainment) and the quality of teaching and learning. Governors also meet occasionally as a Development committee to discuss more strategic issues. Our deputy head teacher, Deirdre Malia, assistant head teacher, Hugh Hogan-Fleming, and bursar, Loraine Pellman, attend some meetings. Other smaller committees review Staff Pay, Head Teacher Performance and Admissions.

All governors have other roles in addition to their committee work. They monitor the day-to-day work of the school by visiting during the school day and at other times to talk to members of staff, visit classrooms, speak with children and look at their work. They attend school events such as assemblies, the Musical Soiree in the Spring term, the school production in the Summer term and the major religious festivals. They are involved in staff recruitment. Helen Wharmby, our chair of governors, meets with other chairs of local schools’ governing bodies. Governors also participate fully in the activities of the Dorking Schools' Partnership.

 

Governor

 

Type

Committees

Other roles

Mark Brookman

Foundation

Resources (Chair)

Buildings
Health & Safety
Pay Cttee

Rev Ruth Bushyager

Foundation

Learning

Christian Distinctiveness

Richard Catchpole

Head teacher

Learning
Resources

Policies
Changes in legislation

Chris Ellis

Parent

Resources

FOSPA link
Finance

Jeremy Herbert

Foundation

Learning (Chair)
Data (Chair)
Admissions (Chair)

 

Steve Lister

 

Foundation

Vice Chair of Governors
Development (Chair)
Resources
HTA (Chair)

Safeguarding
Treasurer of Governors’ Fund

Alexandra McLeod

Staff

Learning
Resources

Policies
School Centre
Governor monitoring
E Safety

Ian Simpson

Parent

Learning

Admissions
School Council Link

Richard Tanton

Foundation

Learning
Resources

Teaching & Learning
Pay Cttee (Chair)
HTA

Helen Wharmby

LA

Chair of Governors
Learning
Resources

Policies and Governor Training
Pupil Premium
Safeguarding
Pay Cttee
HTA

Sylvia Yelland

 

Foundation

Learning

Looked After Children
SEND
Young Carers

Elizabeth York

Foundation

Learning

Staffing

Helen Wharmby
Chair of Governors

If you would like to speak to a governor, please ask the school office and they will arrange for a governor to contact you.  

 

Governor Profiles
 

Helen Wharmby - Chair of Governors  

Helen was appointed a governor in October 2012 and was elected as Chair of Governors in 2016. Two of her four children currently attend St Paul’s, as did her older two children who are now at Aschombe.

Helen worked for 19 years as a Chartered Accountant but now works as a freelance pianist and piano teacher. As well as fulfilling her governor role, she helps run the school's orchestra and choirs, organises the children buskers at the Christmas Fair and helps run the school’s Musical Soiree in the Spring term. In 2013 she researched and published a book telling the history of St Paul’s School in celebration of the school's 150th anniversary.

Helen has recently completed the nationally accredited Chair of Governors Leadership Development programme.

Helen is proud of the calm, happy atmosphere of the school and the confidence and enthusiasm of the children. She is also proud of the dedication and imagination shown by the staff and the many other people who help voluntarily at the school.

Mark Brookman 

Mark has been a Governor for 10 years and served as Chair of Governors from 2010 to 2013. He has 3 children who all attended St Paul's and they loved their time at the school benefiting from the ‘outstanding’ education that is provided.

Mark is a Chartered Building Surveyor with a passion for residential property. He is Chair of the Resources Committee and also serves on the Development Committee. He is an active member of St Paul's Church and is proud that we are a really friendly and welcoming school with a totally committed Head, teachers, staff and Governors.

His interests includes cycling in the Surrey Hills and sailing in Chichester Harbour.

 

Rev'd Ruth Bushyager (Vicar) 

Rev’d Ruth Bushyager became vicar of St Paul’s Church in December 2014 and is on the Learning Committee. She moved to Dorking from west London, with her husband Ron and her two daughters who are both at the school. She has been ordained for over ten years and served parishes in Bristol, Nottingham, Oxford and London, and twice been a School Chaplain – once for an inner-city comprehensive and also for an independent boarding school where she taught RS at GCSE. Ruth loves serving children and young people and is committed to developing the close relationship between St Paul’s school and church. On her day off she enjoys picnics and walks in the beautiful countryside, and movie nights with her family.

 

Richard Catchpole (Headteacher) 

Richard took up the Headship of St Paul's in September 2014. Prior to that he was Head for eight years at Rowledge CE Primary School in Farnham, a school with a very similar ethos to St Paul's.

Of his three children, one is still in the primary sector, and his wife works as an SNA (but not at St Paul's). He enjoys hearing about school life from their perspective as it helps in his role as Head.

Richard believes that every member of our school family has a part to play in the effective running of our school. He believes that everyone can make varied and valuable contributions that enhance our life together regardless of age or experience.

Often found on two wheels pedalling to and from school, Richard also enjoys (if that's the word) participating in a local Park Run every Saturday morning. He also plays the guitar, with an emphasis on enthusiasm rather than skill.

Chris Ellis
 

Chris was elected as a parent governor in November 2016 and has a son and daughter at the school.

Chris works in financial services and has worked with schools and local authorities for nearly 20 years.  He is very proud of the outstanding education that the school provides to all its students and the welcoming and friendly approach of the staff.

He is found most Saturday mornings running around a football pitch somewhere in Surrey with his son’s St Pauls Panthers football team, where he helps out with the coaching.

 

Jeremy Herbert 

Jeremy became a governor in February 2007 and is a foundation governor appointed by the church.

He has 3 children, all of whom attended St Paul's. Jeremy is chair of the Learning Committee and has specific responsibility for Admissions at St Paul's. 

Jeremy is a regular spectator of St Paul's Panthers football team and a member of St Paul's church. He is proud that the children are always cheerful and local residents have commented on this. It gives the school a happy welcoming atmosphere.

 

Steve Lister - Vice Chair 

Steve has been a Foundation Governor since 2010 and was elected Vice-Chair of Governors in 2017. Two of his children attend St. Paul's School, in years 6 and 2 respectively, while his eldest has moved on to the Ashcombe School.

Steve has a Natural Science degree from Cambridge University and now works as a health economist for a major pharmaceutical company. The focus of his role is to demonstrate how medicines offer good value for money to the NHS, requiring skills of project management, strategic planning, and effective interaction with a wide variety of stakeholders. He is a member of the Governors' Resources Committee, and actively supports the Chair of Governors in his role as Vice-Chair.

He is an active member of St. Paul's Church, and is passionate about family life. He is extremely proud of the school's close links with St. Paul's Church, its established role in the local community, and its wonderfully caring and committed staff team.

 

Alex McLeod 

Alex is a teacher governor and is currently teaching Beech class, Year 4 at St Paul's. Alex has a specialism in Mathematics, with a strong background and interest in IT; she currently leads the school's computing and e-safety provision. She has a particular interest in encompassing the outside classroom into the everyday learning environment.

With four children of her own, Alex doesn't have much time for hobbies but tries to sail, paddleboard and skate as much as possible, and can be found walking her dog early in the morning in all weathers. She is also an ice hockey mum and can often be found at the rink side at 5:30 on a Sunday morning!

 

Ian Simpson
 

Ian was elected as a parent governor in November 2016.  Both his daughters attend the school, in years 5 and 3.

Ian is a firefighter in London Fire Brigade and has been so for the last 14 years.  He is a Watch Manager at Battersea fire station.  He is very proud of the welcoming children, parents and staff at St Pauls and hopes that the rapport between staff and children will be maintained.

Ian’s role in the fire service involves dealing with safeguarding and welfare issues due to the unique access the fire service has into people’s homes.  The largest role that he has in the fire brigade is to ensure that health and safety is abided by, both in the dynamic situation of an emergency incident as well as the day-to-day safety at a fire station.  He has an extensive knowledge of risk assessment and mitigation.

He is a keen cyclist, both on the road and mountain biking, and also enjoys reading and science and has a degree in environmental science from the Open University.

Richard Tanton  

Richard is a diocesan appointed foundation governor with 20 years’ service at St Paul’s. He was the governor responsible for the school building project from 1998 to 2002. He has served as chair, vice chair and has experience of all aspects of school governance in his time serving the school. He is passionate about the governor’s role and responsibilities in their part in delivering high quality education for all

He is married to Cath and they have two sons who both attended St Paul’s School. Both of their sons enjoyed and benefitted from the creative, self-disciplined, and lively learning environment at St Pauls.

Richard spent 40 years teaching in secondary education and managing departments delivering Design and Technology Education.

Richard enjoys walking , especially in remote locations, he assist with training and mentoring students involved in  expeditions for their D of E qualification at The Priory School  and he works as a volunteer in the loco workshops of the Bluebell Railway, helping to restore and maintain the heritage engines.

Liz York 

Liz was appointed a governor in November 2012. Her 3 children have all attended the school and one of them is currently in Year 5.

Liz is interested in the education of the whole child through the school’s aims and values.

She reads a lot and tries to keep fit by running & swimming. Liz is also an active member of St Paul's Church.

Liz was recognised as one of the first “Leading Literacy Teachers” in Surrey. In her last full time role she was Year 6 leader and worked on the Senior Leadership team at an “Outstanding” school. Because of this the school was designated as a “Beacon School” and Liz was involved with working with other school leaders on school improvement.  This led to Liz working as an Associate Partner on the County Advisory Team working with other English co-ordinators on the management of Literacy and improving writing across the school.

She is on the Governors’ Learning Committee.

She is proud of the St Paul’s school community: the Head Teacher, staff, governors and parents working together for our children.  She is also proud when she sees evidence of the children from different year groups playing and caring for each other.

Sylvia Yelland 

Sylvia was nominated as a foundation governor by St Paul’s Church in 2014, and serves on the Learning Committee.  She is married to Jeff, who is the Associate Vicar at St Paul’s, and she is very involved in several aspects of church life there.   She is proud that the school and the church work so closely together to bring a unique and special ethos to the school.

She has three grown up, married children who so far have presented Sylvia and Jeff with seven grandchildren, ranging from young teenager to tiny baby.

She is a qualified TEFL teacher but retired from teaching in 2007, having taught English to speakers of other languages at Secondary School level and to adults. In her early working life she was a social worker, initially in children’s services and later in a hospital setting and also in the community. The family has lived abroad for two periods, in Iran in the 1970’s and in Paris in the late 80’s/early 90’s.

Her interests include theatre and cinema, reading (especially historical fiction) and all things French. She enjoys most sports - though these days spectating rather than participating apart from walking and the occasional swim, and spending time with her lively family.

She hopes to bring to the governing body her experience in different areas of the world of education, plus the added perspective of a grandmother.