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Governor Area

Our Governing Body

School Governors


The role of Governor is an important one and offers the school a form of critical friendship ensuring that our school and our systems remain fit for purpose. The governing body has a range of duties and powers and a general responsibility for the conduct of the school view to promoting high standards of educational achievement. Their responsibilities include areas such as:


• analysing pupil progress and achievement

• managing the school's finances

• making sure the curriculum is balanced and broadly based

• appointing staff

• reviewing staff performance and pay


Our Governing Body consists of two committees —Finance and Environment, and Staffing and Curriculum; these committees meet once a term and the meetings are then consolidated into a Full Governing Board meeting, again once a term.


Our Governors help the school provide the best possible education for our pupils.


As part of the School's overall leadership and management, they help to govern the strategic framework of the school, while the Headteacher manages the day-to-day management of the school, staff, teaching, support and planning.


Governors do this by:


• thinking and working strategically to help raise standards

• monitoring and evaluating the progress towards priorities and targets

• supporting the Headteacher and staff as well as challenging their perceptions

• accounting to all stakeholders for the school's performance and for the decisions taken.


The Governing Body also monitors the school policies and procedures.


Our Governors are vital to the school and are dedicated, caring individuals, from various walks of life, including parents, ex-parents and a dedicated school representative, if you wish to speak to them for any reason or have any concerns they are extremely approachable and would be pleased to contact or meet you.


Key policies are available on the school website


If there is a vacancy on our Governing Body the school will inform parents and then anyone is free to apply for an application pack.



Our Governor Body Structure






Mrs Lisa Gray

Miss Sarah Hardy   

Mr Culvin Milmer        


Mrs Vicki Church

                                              Mrs Linda Skinner

                                              Mr David White

STAFF GOVERNORS          Mrs Clare Lowe


HEAD TEACHER                 Mr Martin Godfrey                        


CHAIR OF GOVERNORS    Mrs Vicki Church

VICE CHAIR                         Mrs Linda Skinner


FINANCE & ENVIRONMENT COMMITTEE       CURRICULUM & STAFFING COMMITTEE                                                                                        

Mrs Smith - Chair                                                 Mrs Skinner - Chair

Mrs Gray                                                              Mr Butt

Mr Godfrey, HT                                                     Mr Godfrey, HT

Mr Milmer                                                              Mrs Lowe

Mr White                                                               Ms Cocup

Mrs Watson (Finance Officer)                               Miss Etherington (invited attendee)                                                                                                                                                Miss Hardy

                                                                              Mrs Church                                                                                           

Headteacher Performance Committee                                                                                        

Mrs Church

Mrs Smith

Mrs Skinner


Pay Review Committee                                                

Mrs Church

Mr Godfrey                

Mrs Smith                                                               

Mr Milmer         


Staff Appointments/Dismissal Committee          

Chair of Curriculum and Staffing Committee

Two others governors to be assigned when committee is required


Student Dismissal Committee                                   

To be formed by 3 governors who have no knowledge of the incident or people involved as and when required.


Appeals Committee

Members of the appeals committee to be assigned when required - members will not have been involved in the original decision to which the appeal relates.



SEN                                                                         Miss Hardy

CHILD PROTECTION                                             Mrs Smith

PUPIL PREMIUM                                                    Miss Hardy

ENGLISH                                                                 Mrs Church

MATHS                                                                    Ms Cocup

HEALTH AND SAFETY                                           Mrs Smith

EARLY YEARS                                                        Mrs Lowe

SPORTS PREMIUM                                                Mr White

Meet our Governors

Davina Smith

Davina Smith – Safeguarding Governor

I have been living in Swanage for 10 years. I am by profession a Nurse and Health Visitor and was in the dim past a School Nurse! I retired in 2004 when I was director of Nursing and Patient Services in Primary Care Trust in Bedfordshire. I have been involved with Children’s Services throughout my career and have considerable experience in Safeguarding.

My own grandchildren are of Primary age.

I realise the hard work involved and the dedication given by teachers to ensure all Primary children have a solid basis of education to take them forward in life.

Linda Skinner - Vice Chair

I am a foundation governor at Swanage Primary School and also chair of the curriculum and staffing committee.  I became a governor at Swanage Primary in October 2014 and I feel privileged to hold this role.  The staff of the school are so very hard working; totally committed to their pupils - and what a lovely group of pupils they are.


I moved to beautiful Swanage with my husband in 2012 having spent many happy family holidays in Dorset.  With 25 years’ experience and a master’s degree in education management, I missed regular contact with education and the buzz that working with committed staff and children eager to learn brings and so when I was approached to become a governor I did not hesitate. Two years ago I trained to  be an Ofsted inspector and so I feel this brings a useful added dimension to my governor role. 

Janice Williams – Clerk

I have been Clerk to the Governors at Swanage Primary since September 2014.  I am an experienced Clerk who has worked with other local schools in this capacity since 2001.  Currently I Clerk for St Mary’s Catholic School as well as Swanage Primary.  I am also the Finance Officer at St Mary’s Catholic School. I have lived in Swanage all my life so am very familiar with the local schools and the challenges that face them. I have three children who are now at secondary school and university but they have all experienced a Swanage education and thrived on this.  My aim is to support all the schools that I am associated with to allow pupils to achieve their full potential.

Vicki Church – Chair of Governors/Maths Governor

I have lived in Swanage for over thirty-five years with my husband and we raised our family here. Before I retired I was a teacher at Sandford Middle School where I was a senior member of staff with responsibility for SEN in Years 7 And 8 and Humanities throughout the school. I became a governor at this school two years ago as I felt I could make a useful contribution due to my experiences. At the present time I am overseeing Maths within the school and love the opportunity of being able to get back in the classroom and giving support to the children.


Clare Lowe – Teaching Assistant (HLTA) Early Years Governor

I am very pleased to be appointed as staff governor.  I am beginning my second term, each term lasting four years. I have worked for over ten years as a TA / HLTA seeing many positive changes, especially from First School to primary. I am very proud to be part of Swanage Primary School.


Sarah Hardy – SEN & Pupil Premium Governor

My name is Sarah Hardy and I am a parent governor, and I also journeyed through Swanage First school as a pupil. My two daughters both attend the school, so I wanted to take an interest in how the school was run and to help in any way I can to ensure a robust education for both of them. I am also a teacher in a local special needs school, so I have a keen interest in education, and am interested to get involved and get more knowledge of the mainstream education sector.


David White - Finance

I am delighted to have been appointed as a governor in September 2016 and am currently part of the Finance Committee. I have lived in Swanage for many a year now. My background is the motor trade, working in a local family garage up until 2005. I then left this to set up a bookkeeper, which now keeps me very busy. I have two children in Years 1 and 3 and so I have keen interest in the school. I have a passion for numbers and I am very pleased to be a part of the team and to offer my support to the school in any way I can.



Governor attendance records 2017-18

Governor attendance records 2018-19


Governor resignations (in last 12 months)


Susannah Hill (ex HT) - resigned December 2017

Steve Cottrell (ex acting HT) - left post at end of contract August 2018

Elaine Jones - resigned September 2018

Aimee D'Ercole - resigned September 2018


Governance roles in other educational institutions (2018-19)


None known

Governors' Action Plan 2018 - 2019

Governors' Action Plan 2016 - 2017

Governors' Action Plan 2015 - 2016