Governors

The School Governing Body

Our governing board has three core functions.  These are to:

  1. Ensure clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
  2. Hold the Headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils;
  3. Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.

Our Governors are all either elected or appointed for a four year term according to our Instrument of Government, which is approved by the Local Authority (West Berkshire). Our Instrument of Government can be viewed below.

Instrument of Government

Our Governing Board is made up of co-opted governors, parent governors, a Local Authority governor, a staff governor and the Headteacher

The role of the parent governor is explained in the document below.

Role of the Parent Governors

All members of the Governing Board have the primary aim of providing an outstanding education to the children of The Willows.

Throughout the year, members of the Governing Body attend applicable training courses and forums arranged by the Local Authority, they also have access to many online tools to ensure that they are up to date with current policy and legislation.

The Department for Education requires governing bodies of maintained schools to publish a statement of behaviour principles for their school. This statement is to be offered as guidance for the Headteacher in composing The Willows Primary School’s behaviour and discipline policy by stating the principles which governors expect to be followed. This statement can be accessed below.

You can find out more about the members of the governing board below

The Willows Primary School Full Governing Board

HUW GRIFFITHS

Huw has been a member of the governing body at The Willows since May 2018 and is our Chair of Governors. In his previous job, Huw worked for West Berkshire council and was responsible, amongst other things, for collecting and analysing end of key stage results for primary schools. Previously he worked in the financial IT industry for a number of banks and data providers, and he also ran his own company for 15 years. He has many years’ experience in software development and data analysis.

Huw has two grown-up children who both attended Streatley School and The Downs. He was a parent governor then LA governor at Streatley. He has lived in Newbury for a number of years and he became a governor at The Willows to support his local school in providing the best possible educational opportunities for all children. In his spare time he “enjoys” running marathons and can be seen regularly pounding the local streets on his training runs.

STEVE BEESON

Steve is a co-opted governor at the Willows School and is currently Vice-Chair of the Governing Board as well as the Finance Governor. Steve works in a Newbury based IT Company in a senior management role and is responsible for a number of functions including Account Management and IT Technical Support. He is involved in forecasting and budget management and enjoys the financial aspects of his job, which links nicely into overseeing the good financial management of The Willows School as a governor. Steve hopes that he can bring some of his business experiences to the Board of Governors and likewise learn something in return. Previous to becoming a school governor Steve was a Parish Councillor for many years and is also an active member of various clubs and volunteering groups in West berks.

In his spare time Steve is a self-confessed car fanatic and enjoys watching motor racing and supporting events such as the Newbury car show and organising events for a national car club.

PETER RIMMER

Peter Rimmer has many years’ experience of human resource management and leading wage negotiations with trades unions, and is a Chartered Member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.  After graduating, he initially worked in the nuclear industry.  Until his retirement in September 2016, Peter was the Director of Employment Affairs and Skills at an employers’ organisation representing the commercial interests of specialist engineering contractors active in the construction and facilities management industries.  An important part of his job involved encouraging young people to train for an engineering apprenticeship and fostering work experience links between schools and employers.    

Peter is a firm believer in the importance of a sound, rigorous education as a route to improving young peoples life chances.  As a member of the Governing Board of The Willows since May 2016, he takes an active role in helping the school achieve the ambitious targets it sets for the young people who attend the school. He is also the current Safeguarding Governor.

JO MACARTHUR

Jo joined the Willows as Headteacher in September 2018, having worked with the school on a number of occasions in one of her previous roles as a School Improvement consultant for West Berkshire Local  Authority, responsible for Literacy, Assessment, Phonics and Gifted and Talented provision. Prior to her headship at the Willows, Jo was Headteacher at another West Berkshire school for 8 years.

Jo is dedicated to securing a high quality education and good outcomes for all children at The Willows. She strives to ensure that The Willows becomes a good school at its next Ofsted inspection as she believes this is what the children, parents and community of the school deserve.

NIKKI STEVENS

Nikki is a co-opted governor and has a daughter who has attended The Willows, and after school club, since Nursery. She has an older son who attends St Barts School.

Nikki has nearly 20 years of experience in education and became a governor as she wanted to contribute to the life of her local school.  She trained as a secondary school teacher and has been Head of Department and Head of Inclusion / Special Needs Co-ordinator.  She managed a Pupil Referral Unit for children who were excluded, or at risk of exclusion, in West Berkshire for five years. She now works for Reading Borough Council in the Special Educational Needs and Disabled Children’s Team. She has a particular interest in supporting the education of learners with Autism and ADHD and those at risk of exclusion.  

In her spare time Nikki enjoys cooking, reading, music, comedy and yoga.

CHRIS PRITCHARD

Chris is a newly elected parent governor and has a son who attends The Willows.  He was keen to contribute to the community and his local school so when an opportunity opened up to join the Willows governor’s he signed up!

 He has worked in Newbury for over 16 years, after graduating he settled in Newbury and has worked in I.T ever since. After several years in a role solving technical problems he then progressed onto managing several teams responsible for delivering technical services and end user support.

Chris enjoys getting out and about with the family, exploring new places and making memories. He is a keen runner, cyclist and swimmer and (prior to Covid) regularly attends triathlons around the country.

SARAH WILSON

Sarah is a parent governor with two daughters at The Willows; as education is such an important aspect of their lives, she wants to play a part in making the school the best possible place for all pupils to learn. She has lived in Newbury for twenty years, and has had a varied career creating content and designing user interfaces for a number of software companies before becoming a full-time parent and freelance writer.

Spare time activities include reading, baking, long walks, and building Lego (with or without the children's help).

ADAM OSMOND

Adam is a Co-opted governor of the Willows School. Adam currently works as a Family Support Worker within Children’s Services. Adam previously worked as a Primary School Teacher before making the change into Social Services. He believes strongly in the ability of all young people to succeed and the need to find the right keys to unlock that potential.

In his spare time, Adam enjoys spending time with family and watching his beloved Reading FC all over the country.

MIKE STEER

Mike is the Deputy Head of the Willows and he is also the staff governor. Prior to appointment at The Willows, he worked in 2 other West Berkshire schools gaining valuable experience across KS1 and the Early Years. He completed an MA in Education at Reading University in 2016 and has previously worked as a Local Authority EYFS moderator.

In his spare time, Mike enjoys travelling, cooking and participating in a wide variety of sports!

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