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Great Oaks From Little Acorns Grow

Who's Who: Governors

The Governing Body is like a Board of Directors for the school, and helps to decide how the school should be run. The Governing Body meets twice a term, but individual Governors also attend school at other times. Our Governing Body is made up of parents, staff at the school, local council representatives, community representatives, and businessmen and women. The Governors are responsible for raising standards at the school by setting the strategy of the school, ensuring the Headteacher delivers this strategy, and by managing the budget. Governors usually serve for four years. The Governors are always interested to hear from people who are considering becoming Governors, or have skills to offer, or just want to talk about an aspect of school life; please contact the office to make an appointment.



I'm Melanie Collins and I work at the Research Councils on the Global Food Security Programme. I've been a Governor at St Paul's since November 2016. I have two young boys - my older son is currently at St Paul's, and my husband is a teacher in another local secondary school.


I am Chair of Governors, and I sit on the Site and Finance, and Curriculum and Standards Committees.


When I first looked around St Paul's, I was really struck by the value that the school placed on the children's emotional wellbeing. Mr Upton said to me that he viewed negative behaviour as an unmet need, and that meeting that need will lead to an improvement in behaviour. I really wanted to be able to do something to ensure those values were maintained and clearly echoed through everything that the school did, and I love how being a Governor enables me to bring my skills and experience from the non-teaching world to help the school to ensure its strategy echoes its values. I've also gained a far deeper understanding of how primary education works and have found that the skills I have picked up as a Governor have had a positive impact on my other work.

My name is Lynn Evans and I am the C.E.O of The RISE Trust. The Trust runs the Children’s Centres for the north of Wiltshire as well as having our own pre-schools in Chippenham, providing PSA support in primary schools, doing youth work, and mentoring projects in schools.


In my role as a governor I chair the Staffing Committee. We meet once a term to discuss all aspects of staffing including deployment, attendance, CPD, well-being, and staffing structure. In order to have a positive contribution we work together collaboratively - problem solving, asking challenging questions and offering support.

What I enjoy about my role is meeting other people who are passionate about giving children the best start in life. I am really enjoying beginning to meet staff and learn more about what makes St Paul’s School unique. I hope to be able to continue to visit when I can and be a listening ear whenever possible.


My name is Julie Wheeler, and I am Governor with responsibility for overseeing safeguarding and our provision for children with Special Needs. As a retired teacher I have always enjoyed the company of children and I come into school regularly as a volunteer. I like to hope that I can make a difference to the lives and the educational achievement of our children at St Paul’s.

My name is Ian Durnell and I am a Senior team manager at Waitrose.

I am a Co-opted parent governor and I have two children at the school

Being a governor is important to me as I enjoy being part of and seeing school improvements that directly impact the children.

My name is James Harris, I work for Newport City Council and have been a Governor at St Paul’s for many years. My three children all went to St Paul’s and really enjoyed the experience.

I am Chair of the Site and Finance Committee that ensures the buildings and equipment are up to date and safe and that the finances of the school are well-managed.

I like being able to make a positive difference to the learning experience of children attending St Paul’s school.

I'm Neil Rushowski White - I have two children attending St Paul's, and one child who has recently departed for secondary school.

I'm a parent governor, and this year I have a specific focus on the data that the school uses. This covers both the internal data used to guide teaching to the children's needs, and the external data upon which we are assessed.

It's great to be able to contribute back to the school and the wider community. Being a governor also brings me into contact with St Paul's staff who I would otherwise never meet, and seeing their focus and dedication is inspiring. Visiting St Paul's during the day - when it's fulfilling its primary purpose of teaching our children - never fails to leave me energised, and slightly in awe of the staff!

My name is Ann Cutler and I am the Staff Governor. I am a part-time Teaching Assistant and started working at St Paul's in April 1999.

I have served on the Governing body for nearly nine years. I also sit on the Site and Finance Committee and more recently the Staffing Committee too.

Being a Governor has enabled me to give something back to an establishment I am very passionate about. I have a background in Banking and volunteering with youth organisations. I enjoy using this knowledge, plus my varied experience from working at St Paul's, when we are assisting the Head Teacher with some decision making for running the school.


My name is Jenny Buck and I have one child at St Paul's; my eldest left the school last year for Hardenhuish. I am a member of the Site and Finance Committee and am the governor focus for Health and Safety and Attendance. I enjoy being a Governor because you really are involved in decisions about how the school is run.