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High Aspirations Deep Roots

The Governing Body

Governor's Statement

The governors of Knebworth School take pride in supporting the staff and children to deliver our vision. We engage in all aspects of school life with care and attention and are always pleased to hear from parents and stakeholders with views, questions and issues. Parents and guardians may contact us by emailing the school office. The statutory information for our governors can be viewed by downloading the files below.

What the Governors Do

The Governing Board of Knebworth Primary School has overall legal and strategic responsibility for the school and is made up of four categories:

  • Parent Governors (2) elected by parents
  • LA Governor (1) appointed by Hertfordshire County Council
  • Co-opted Governors (9) co-opted by the governing body to maintain and develop the school’s links with its community
  • Staff Governors (2) including the Headteacher

Governors work collectively as a ‘whole team’, meeting once in each half-term, without any separate committees.  The Board meets at least six times a year, considers monitoring reports and recommendations, makes decisions and conducts routine business.  In addition to this, the Board receive regular written reports from the Headteacher.  Governors work in partnership with the Headteacher and Senior Leadership Team, supporting the delivery of the school’s vision and values.

An annual planner and agenda for each meeting contains all the tasks which the Board is required to consider, and the Board may commission working groups or other activities arising from the business of the meeting.  Any commissioned working groups will have agreed terms of reference and will report any findings, actions or recommended decisions to the Board at its next meeting.

In addition to commissioning activities or actions on their behalf, the Board, to ensure its core functions are fulfilled, will delegate monitoring responsibilities to monitoring pairs or individuals.  The Board recognises that the delegated monitoring individuals/pairs are replacing committees in terms of responsibility when undertaking their monitoring and reporting back to the Board.  The Board recognises that all decisions are made by the full Board and no financial delegated authority is given to monitoring pairs.  In each case where a function has been delegated, there is a statutory duty for the delegated governor/s to report, by written monitoring reports, any findings, actions or recommended decisions to the Board in time for its next meeting to enable informed collective strategic decision-making.

In addition to monitoring specific subjects and priorities within the School Development Plan, individual governors are responsible for the following areas:

  • Safeguarding
  • Inclusion/SEND/PPG
  • Headteacher’s performance review
  • Finance
  • Premises, Health & Safety
  • Risk register
  • Wellbeing & Mental Health
  • Equalities

Governors at Knebworth Primary School are recruited based on skills and are required to attend mandatory induction and safeguarding training upon appointment.  The board subscribes to the Herts for Learning Governor Training package, to which all governors have access to.

We currently have vacancies on our Governing Body.  Scroll to the bottom of this page for further information. 

The Knebworth School Governing Body

 

Gemma Wood (Chair of the Governing Body)

I have two children at Knebworth school and I joined the Governing body in 2017 as a parent governor. My background is in policy and communications and I have worked for children's, parents and education charities on topics such as bullying and home-school communications. I currently work for a scientific institute where I lead a team responsible for communications and public engagement with science, including school outreach. I enjoy volunteering as a school governor and supporting the leadership team to ensure our school is the very best it can be for our children and the community.

Natasha Laskey (Head Teacher)

I am very proud to be the Headteacher of Knebworth School.  The Governing Body and I work closely to ensure the school has a strong and strategic vision to enable the school to continue to thrive in the Knebworth community.  Respect, Responsibility and Resilience are the school values which we all abide by in order to facilitate this effective working partnership.  Deep Roots and High Aspirations underpins our decision-making processes.  The future of Knebworth School looks exciting, the school is going from strength to strength in this ever-changing world we live in.

 

Sim Bains (Acting & Deputy Head Teacher)

I have been a part of the staff at Knebworth School for over 15 years and in this time I have been fortunate enough to hold many different roles and responsibilities, with my current position incorporating the roles of both Acting & Deputy Headteacher. Being a part of the Governing Body means I am able to give something back to the school community and ensure our school continues to be the very best it can be for our children.

 

Sarah Aggrey (Co-opted Governor)

I'm thrilled to be joining the school governing body through the NHS Ambassadors volunteer programme. As an NHS professional with 18 years of experience under my belt, I'm passionate about making a positive difference in the lives of others. In my role, I've spearheaded the rollout of several high-profile national programmes that have transformed the NHS for healthcare organisations, professionals, and patients. I've seen firsthand the power of collaboration, innovation, and dedication to achieving remarkable results. Now, I'm eager to channel that same energy and expertise into supporting our school and its amazing students. I believe my experience in leadership, project management, and communication can be invaluable assets to the governing body. I'm eager to learn, collaborate, and be a part of shaping a bright future for our students.

Aanchel Bhabuta (Co-opted Governor)

I have lived in Hertfordshire since 2021 and am looking forward to supporting my new and amazing local community.  I have a background in accounting and finance, with a focus on technology automation.  I am keen to utilise these skills to support financial reviews, find ways to bring efficiencies with technology and work with a fantastic team of people to make Knebworth even more amazing for the children of this great school.  Having been blessed with a wonderful education, pushing me to explore STEM, I would love to give back and help the Knebworth children have all the best opportunities.  As part of this, I am keen to continue to push for an inclusive and warm culture, where every child and teacher can come to school feeling happy, safe and supported.

Brian Buckingham (Vice Chair & Parent Governor)

I have a son who currently attends Knebworth School and a young daughter.  As a STEM Ambassador, I am keen to utilise my background in Aeronautical Engineering and my contacts for the benefit of the school.  Being a Chartered Engineer with the Royal Aeronautical Society, I mentor engineers through their professional registration, and I am keen to advocate children’s engagement in STEM activities.

 

Sarah Connolly (Co-opted Governor)

I moved to Knebworth six months ago, and am delighted to be involved in the local community.  I am a senior civil servant, and have a background in online safety, which I hope will be useful in supporting the safeguarding agenda in the school.  At home, I have two step-children, a cat and a love of reading.

 

 

Katherine Day (Staff Governor)

 

 

Reeshi Harania (Co-opted Governor)

I have lived in Hertfordshire since 2014, and I am elated to join Knebworth Primary School's Governing Body in order to deliver the best experience for future generations.  Having worked in financial services for over 10 years in risk, compliance and assurance, I am keen to share my experiences in supporting the school to deliver the strategic plan and, through continuous improvement, benefit the wider community.  I am married and have two large dogs who keep me active!

 

Aubrey Holt (Co-opted Governor) 

I'm thrilled to become a Co-opted Governor on the Schools Governing Body. My journey with dyslexia has given me profound insights into the transformative power of effective school management, sparking my desire to support others. With a background rooted in sustainability and local governance, I bring a unique perspective to the table. My experiences have fuelled my passion for creating supportive environments where every student can thrive. I am eager to leverage my skills and expertise to contribute to the school's growth and success. On a personal level, I am sociable and enjoy indulging in history and travelling with loved ones.

Pam Jardine (Co-opted Governor)

I have recently retired from the NHS Integrated Care Board in Hertfordshire in May 2023.  Prior to that, I have had a career in Economic Regeneration and Business Development in Nottingham and have also spent 4 years volunteering abroad on VSO’s Secure Livelihood Programme in Guyana.
I feel that this role will provide me with a good opportunity to remain active in the community where I have lived for the last 10 years, close by my son and daughter-in-law, whose children attend Knebworth Primary School. I have also previously served as a co-opted school governor in Nottingham at a large Secondary School whilst my children were at school and have served on Sport England’s Regional Board and Sport Nottinghamshire’s Board. I now look forward to doing my best as a School Governor for Knebworth Primary School.

James Lawson (Associate Governor)

I am delighted to join the governing body at Knebworth Primary School. I have worked in the education sector for 5 years with a background in finance and health and safety. Within this time, I have gained experience of governance and look forward to sharing my knowledge with Knebworth. I am also the chair of governors at another local school and a school business manager at a voluntary aided church of England school. When time allows, I enjoy walking, cooking and playing sports!

 

 

Dharsh Perera (Vice Chair & Co-opted Governor)

I moved to Knebworth 7 years ago after realising the amazing benefits of living in a village. I have 3 boys where there is never a dull moment. In my spare time I enjoy music, art and vintage motorcycles.  I will do my absolute best to put my 17 years experience in the SEN world to good use where I hope my acknowledgement in this area will somehow benefit the school and help others in their journey.

Nicola Watson (Parent Governor)

I have lived in Knebworth for 15 years and am committed to being involved in the local community. I have spent the last three years serving on the committee of Stepping Stone Preschool and during this time have gained experience working with staff and other parents to oversee the school’s policies, manage its finances and get involved with day-to-day running of the preschool. In my professional life, I have worked for many years in local government and charitable organisations in a management role and now work as operations director for an occupational health provider.

 

Ann Whelan (LA appointed Governor)

I am delighted to join the Governing body of Knebworth School. My 2 children have previously attended the school and, as a result, I wanted to give something back to the school.  My background is in Human Resources and most recently in safeguarding.  I hope to be able to support and learn more about our village school.  In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my family, walking and cooking.

 

Trisha Sewell (Clerk to the Governing Body)

With a rich professional background spanning 20 years in Human Resources at a prominent blue-chip organisation, I transitioned into a new chapter of my life as a dedicated mother of twin boys. Deepening my involvement in education, I ventured into school governance by becoming a governor at my boys' village school for 5 years.

 In this role, I assumed the responsibilities of the link governor for Special Educational Needs and took the helm as the chair of the education committee. These experiences provided me with a profound understanding of educational dynamics and a passion for contributing to effective leadership within schools.

Recognising the symbiotic potential between my business skills and the education sector, I transitioned into being a Governance Professional, viewing it as the perfect avenue to offer my HR acumen and stay actively involved in shaping the educational landscape. I extend my clerking services to several schools in Hertfordshire and London, broadening my scope and impact. I am thrilled to be part of the Knebworth family. I look forward to leveraging my unique journey and expertise to contribute significantly to our educational community.

Clerk to the Governing Body: clerk@knebworth.herts.sch.uk

 

Minutes from governor meetings are available on request by emailing the Clerk to the Governing Body.  They can be emailed at: clerk@knebworth.herts.sch.uk 

Interested in becoming a school governor? 

There are over 250,000 volunteers governing in schools in England.  By joining them, you can make a valuable contribution to school leadership.  The National Governors Association have put together this short film about the role which gives an insight in being a school governor:

The role of school governors and trustees - YouTube

Knebworth School currently has vacancies on its Governing Body.  Please contact the Clerk (clerk@knebworth.herts.sch.uk) if you are interested and would like more information.