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Our Governing Body

School governors are people who want to make a positive contribution to children’s education. Governors are one of the most substantial volunteer forces in the country and have an essential part to play in raising school standards. The role of the governing board is key to the effectiveness of a school. The purpose of the Governing Body is to provide strategic management, and to act as a “critical friend”, supporting the work of the headteacher and other staff. School governing bodies are responsible for working with the school to ensure that it delivers a good quality education. Together with the head teacher, who is responsible for day-to-day management, they set the school’s aims and policies.
 
  • Nic Adams

    I joined WJS as a parent governor with 2 children at the school. I am currently an Associate Member of the governing body having previously been Chair for many years. My skills include recruitment and IT.

     

     

  • Alistair Johnstone

    I have lived in Writtle for 7 years and joined Writtle Junior School governing body in 2022.

    I am a founding Director at Campbell Johnston Clark, a law firm specialising in the shipping sector, which was established 12 years ago. Our head office is in the City of London with branch offices in Singapore, Miami and Newcastle.  

  • Kevin Marten (Chair)

    I joined Writtle Junior School governing body in 2015 and have really enjoyed, being part of the WJS team. I am currently Chair of the Governing Body.

    My core skills are in Construction, and I have been a Building Surveyor for 15 years.

     

     

     

     

  • Aedin Lipski (Vice-Chair)

    I am currently Head of School at Highwood Primary School.

    The core skills that I bring to the Governing Body are centred around education.

     

     

     

     

     

  • Tony Cant

    Tony was born and raised in Geelong, Victoria, Australia, travelled on a surfing trip to New Zealand in 1979 where he met his wife, and also God. They had 3 children and moved back to Australia in early 1994. Tony and his family spent 5 years in Australia doing a mix of pastoral and schools seminar work before moving to the UK in mid 1999 until going back to Australia in January 2019, and then back to the UK 10 months later.  Tony has held many posts over the years including: factory worker, fisherman, dairy farmer, youth and community development worker, seminar presenter and pastor.

    Tony was ordained in 2004 in Chelmsford Cathedral and before returning to Australia in 2019 he was the Chaplain to Anglia Ruskin University between 2010 – 2018. During this time he developed and ran the International Community Experience (ICE) volunteering projects, and grew a multi faith Chaplaincy team

    Prior to this Tony lived in East London for 11 years, working as a youth and community development worker. He was the local Farmers’ Market Manager in Walthamstow with a church stall selling refreshments and looking after the farmers and having conversations with locals about anything and everything, while the profits of their stall went to a local youth work charity.

    And now, Tony is the Vicar at All Saints church in Writtle, as well as having responsibility for the Anglican churches in Roxwell and Highwood.

  • Suzanne Evans

    My name is Sue Evans and I am thrilled to have been appointed as a governor of WJS!

    As a retired teacher of some 30+ years’ experience, latterly as Deputy Head at WJS, I feel I have a lot of valuable expertise to offer the Governing body. I now work part time in ITT mentoring trainee teachers for Essex Primary Scitt. This involves supporting trainees on their journey to QTS and in their ECT phase. Mentoring young teachers has always been a passion of mine and I love having the opportunity to visit a wide range of different schools across the county.

    I have lived in Writtle all my married life and have one daughter, two horses and three dogs! In my spare time, I love travelling, judging at horse shows, and supporting my daughter when she is competing in equestrian events.

    I am excited to be part of the Governing body and look forward to being involved with the ‘TEAM’ at WJS, a school that has a special place in my heart!

  • Alwyn Thomas

    Alwyn was born in Carmarthen, South Wales growing up on the family dairy farm with his parents and three siblings.  He has studied in both the University of Wales Aberystwyth and graduated with a BSc in 1995 from Writtle University College.  He has worked in Wales, Ireland and England in data roles, currently employed as the Head of Data Strategy for The Financial Times.  

    Alwyn returned to live in Writtle with his wife Angela and family in 2012.  His three boys attended WJS, the older two have now left with the youngest in year 3.  He is a keen advocate of growth and development and is a volunteer coach for two of his boys with Chelmsford Rugby Club. In his spare time you will usually find Alwyn discussing rugby with anyone who’ll listen or trying to keep active with some running. He has been a member of the London Welsh Male Voice choir with a highlight singing in the closing ceremony of the Olympics in 2012.

  • Vicente Kewley

    Pen portrait to follow.

In addition to the above governors, there are the following members:

Nick Taylor (Executive Head Teacher)

Claire Storer 9 Head of School)

Julie Greenhill (Staff Governor)

Stuart Lambert (Associate Governor)

Governance Statement - July 2023

In accordance with the Government’s requirement for all governing bodies, the 3 core strategic functions of the Perfect Primary School Governing Body are:

1. Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;

2. Holding 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.

Governance arrangements

The role of the Governing Body is to give Strategic direction to the School, provide constructive challenge in constantly endeavouring to raise standards and ensure finances are well managed. 

The Governing Body of Writtle Junior School was re-constituted in 2013 and is now made up of 2 staff governors (including the Headteacher), 3 elected Parent Governors, 1 Local Authority Governor, and 4 Co-opted governors. Co-opted governors may exceed the allotted number and are appointed by the Governing Body as they are people who, in the opinion of the governing body, have the skills required to contribute to the effective governance and success of the school; on our Governing Body one of the Co-opted governors is a staff member and the remainder are members of the local community.

The full Governing Body meets once each term; we also have a number of committees to consider different aspects of the school in detail. At Writtle Junior school we have a Finance, Premises and Pay Committee, which focuses on finance, premises and some pay matters; a Curriculum Committee (for teaching and learning) and a Pay Committee. We also have committees that meet if required to consider pupil discipline and staffing matters.

Our meetings and monitoring visits are now back to being in person.

Training opportunities for the governing body are also more readily available, post-covid with online and in person training attended.

Safeguarding

The Governing Body is committed to:

  • Safeguarding and promoting the welfare and safety, and the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of children and young people
  • Promoting equality of opportunity and community cohesion where the diversity of different backgrounds and circumstances is appreciated and positively valued
  • The fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law,individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance for those with different faiths and beliefs
  • Expecting all staff, volunteers and other workers to share this commitment.

Governors place great value on safeguarding and equality, we have a Nominated Governor for Safeguarding (Mr Marten) who gives a termly report to the governors about all such matters where applicable, including audits completed.

All governors have taken part in prevent training and further safeguarding training.  Part of this was linked to our National Online Safety Accreditation that was achieved this year. 

Attendance record of governors

Governors have good attendance at meetings, and we have only once cancelled a meeting because it was not “quorate” (the number of governors needed to ensure that legal decisions can be made). See details of individual governors’ attendance at meetings on the last page.

The work that we have done on our committees and in the governing body and future objectives

With covid now mostly behind us our focus has once again been on providing the best opportunities for our pupils and getting back to regular in-person meetings and school monitoring visits. There has been a lot of planning and evaluation to assess pupil needs and develop targeted, individual action plans to ensure pupils make up any education lost during the pandemic along with updating our curriculum.

We also had an OSFTED inspection at the end of term which continued to rate our school as GOOD.

Over the course of every school year we continually review our curriculum. and this year has been no different. We want to provide a broad, balanced, relevant and engaging curriculum for all our pupils. 

The Finance & Premises Committee looks at the maintenance and development of the school premises and makes decisions about how the school should use the budget. We are looking at ways to improve the classrooms and playgrounds.

One of the roles for the governors is constantly reviewing and agreeing school policies, of which there are many, this year we have considered a number of key policies, including Behaviour Management and Safeguarding and our SEND offering.

Policies, Minutes of Governing Body and Committee meetings are public documents – Policies can be found on our website, alternatively you can ask to inspect them and the minutes of all meetings at the school office.

At the end of each term the Governors and Senior Leadership Team analyse school data and the progress of each year group, looking at the impact of interventions and deployment of resources.  We use this data to plan out our School Development Plan and priorities for the next school year. 

Current and future plans for the governors

In the coming year the school, staff and governors are looking forward to becoming part of the HIVE trust and to evaluating our OFSTED feedback.

How you can contact the governing body

We always welcome suggestions, feedback and ideas from parents – please contact the Chair of Governors, Mr Marten, via the school office. (Minutes of meetings are available on request).

Writtle Junior School Governing Body during the last twelve month period September 2022 to July 2023

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School Governors - committees to which they belong, attendance record and number of courses attended September 2022 to July 2023

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Register of relevant business and pecuniary Interests during the last twelve month period September 2022 to July 2023

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Note: - Governance arrangements should include at least the following information:

The structure and remit of the governing body and any committees, and the full names of the chair of each; for each governor who has served at any point over the past 12 months:

• their full names, date of appointment, term of office, date they stepped down (where applicable), who appointed them (in accordance with the governing body’s instrument of government), relevant business and pecuniary interests (as recorded in the register of interests) including: governance roles in other educational institutions; any relevant material interests arising from relationships between governors or relationships between governors and school staff (including spouses, partners and close relatives); and their attendance record at governing body and committee meetings over the last academic year.

Together Everyone Achieves More

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