Governing body

What do Governors do?

Our school’s governing body is a group of volunteers who work together with the school's headteacher, deputy and staff to determine and define the aims and conduct of our school, with a view to promoting high standards of educational achievement. Individual governors bring their own experience and expertise to the group.  We endeavour to use each governor's skills to maximise their effectiveness and impact on raising standards in our school.

Our governing body holds the school to account for the quality, standard and effectiveness of the teaching and learning. Through the governing body, the school is accountable to the Saffron Academy Trust, the parents of the pupils and to the wider community.

In practice, the governing body works with the headteacher and trust to determine how the school should develop to ensure continued improvement in standards and provision and with the head and staff agrees plans, policies, targets and procedures that work towards that development.

The governing body is also responsible along with the trust for ensuring that the school fulfils its legal obligations, for the provision of the curriculum, managing the school budget, staffing, the social care and development of the pupils, and other statutory requirements such as

developing school policies, setting targets, managing performance and so on. The governing body is also responsible for evaluating the progress of the school, making sure that effective monitoring is taking place and making strategic decisions on the basis of this evaluation.

Governors are most useful to the school by being supportive yet challenging, neither blindly accepting nor entirely critical of the way the school functions. If the governing body gets the balance right it can both support the school and promote its improvement effectively.  We require our governors to be 'a critical friend', in order to support and challenge our school to strive for improved standards in education for all children.

Zoe Di Paola on 01376 322687 to find out further information.

Our Chair of Governors can be contacted by email:

Governor Bios

Rachel Foster – Chair of Governors, Chair of Standards and Education committee, member of Headteacher’s PMR panel                           

Previously a parent governor I am excited to take on the role of Chair of Governors.  I already enjoy an active role within the school as a governor since 2016 and member of the PTA since 2015. I have spent a career working with people of all ages and am currently employed within a high school.  I enjoyed studying child psychology as part of my degree.  My son is currently in year 3 and I continue to feel passionate about helping the school and its students to achieve their potential.

Chair of governors – appointed 1/9/2020

Meeting attendance

2023-2024 = 8/8

2022-2023 = 10/10

2021-2022 = 10/10

2020-2021 = 9/9

2019-2020 = 5/6

2018-2019 = 11/11

2017-2018 = 10/10

Paul Foster – Chair of Resources and Pay COMMITTEE                                                           

Appointed by the local authority as an experienced financial professional I have spent my career in the banking sector supporting small businesses, SMEs and multi-national companies.  I have worked with clients from numerous sectors including education, not for profit and local authorities which I hope will provide me with a unique skillset to add value to the school.  I have witnessed the positive attitude and desire of the staff to help the students as a parent of the school and I will look to embody these values as part of the governing body. 

Reappointed as governor – 15/09/2020

Meeting attendance

2023-2024 - 7/8

2022-2023 = 7/8

2021-2022 = 8/9

2020-2021 = 7/7

2019-2020 = 7/7

2018-2019 = 9/9

2017-2018 = 7/7

Catherine Pimblett – Member of Resources, standards and Pay committee.                  

Appointed as co-opted governor in 2018 with experience in finance.  I wish to support the school in ensuring the welfare of its pupils and to guarantee that every child has the opportunity to fulfil their potential, whatever their circumstances.

Appointed as governor – 3/10/2018 - reappointed 15/9/2020

Meeting attendance

2018-2019 = 7/7

2019-2020 = 6/7

2020-2021 = 7/7

2021-2022 = 9/12

2022-2023 = 8/11

2023-2024 = 6/8

Victoria Powell – Member of Standards and Education and resources Committee.  Safeguarding governor                                              

Having 2 children currently at Beckers Green Primary school, I was appointed as parent governor in 2018.  I believe that every child has a right to achieve a good education and that every parent be offered the opportunity to support that. As a parent governor I will endeavour to ensure that the strong partnership between staff and parents continues, with parent views and perspectives clearly presented to the governing body. 

Appointed as parent governor – 3/10/2018 - reappointed 15/9/2022

Meeting attendance

2018-2019 = 8/8

2019-2020 = 3/5

2020-2021 = 7/7

2021-2022 = 7/8

2022-2023 = 4/7

2023-2024 = 4/7

Daniel Humphreys – Vice chair. Member of Resources, standards and headteacher's pmr

Appointed as a co-opted governor with experience in Health and safety and property maintenance.  My children are currently in Year 3 and Year 1.  I am passionate about making sure our children have a safe and inspiring learning environment.  I look forward to playing an active role in the school helping to ensure our children, and future generations, get the right foundation at the start of their life in education.

Appointed as governor – 20/09/2019

Meeting attendance

2019-2020 = 4/5

2020-2021 = 7/7

2021-2022 = 4/7

2022-2023 = 5/7

2023-2024 = 1/7

Claire Smyth – Ex Officio = Headteacher

Meeting Attendance

2017-2018 = 14/14

2018- 2019 = 12/14

2019-2020 = 7/7

2020-2021 = 10/10

2021-2022 = 12/12

2022-2023 = 11/11

2023-2024 = 9/9

Rosie Hatchman – member of Standards and Education and resources committee                         

Appointed as staff governor in 2019.  Being a teacher myself, I am looking forward to bringing real experiences, thoughts and suggestions to the governing body straight from the classroom, helping to make our school even better than it is now. I am looking forward to working with the other governors and the Becker’s team to improve the school further, not only for the children, but for our parents also.

I would like to get Beckers Green more involved with the community and already have links with a care home for children in our early years.  I want to let people in our community know just how good we are, raising our profile outside of our own building.

Appointed as staff governor – 26/03/2019

Meeting attendance

2019-2020 = 5/5

2020-2021 = 7/7

2021-2022 = 7/7

2022-2023 = 5/7

2023-2024 = 6/7

EMMA CARVALHO - Member of Standards and education and resources committee                                              

Mrs Carvalho is Deputy head and SENCO and was appointed as a staff governor on 14/9/2021

Meeting attendance

2021-2022 = 10/10

2022-2023 = 8/10

2023-2024 = 7/8

John Styman - Member of standards and education and resources committee                               

Mr Styman was appointed as a Co-opted Governor on the 23rd November 2022.  

Although I do not have a child attending the school, I would very much like the opportunity to support Beckers Green in achieving the outcomes you wish to as a school and I feel my knowledge and background in children's care will allow me to do this.  I am designated lead for safeguarding for my company and am very much aware of how to manage staff, set budgets and write policies.  My own service works with the strong belief that Every Child Matters. 

Meeting attendance

2022-2023 = 6/7

2023-2024 = 7/9

Ravi Thokala - member of standards and education and resources committee                         

Mr Thokala was appointed as Parent Governor on 10th November 2021.  I am interested in knowing about the education system in more depth having moved to England ten years ago.  I am a software architect and am looking forward to working as part of a team.  I would like to play an active role in helping the school to continue to improve and develop. 

Meeting attendance

2021-2022 = 7/7

2022/2023 = 6/7

2023-2024 = 4/7

GEoffrey Reeves - member of standards and education and resources committee                                                

Mr Reeves was appointed as a Community Governor on 22nd November 2023.  His grandson attends the school and he is keen to support the school and its community.  As a local business owner he knows Braintree well.

Meeting attendance

2023-2024 - 4/4


Shane Lake - member of standards and education and resources committee                                     

Mr Lake was appointed as a Community Governor on 22nd November 2023.  Following a very successful career in business, Shane Lake now dedicates his time to his family and supporting local charities and communities. He mentors through Kids Inspire and is keen to support local initiatives. Shane is a keen sportsman and plays tennis and cricket, he also enjoys travel.

Meeting attendance

2023-2024 - 4/4



Previous governors

  • Jan Banks - 15/09/2020 - 21/07/2023
  • Paula Templeman - 11/11/2020 - 15/12/2021
  • Ian Ireland - 11/11/2020 - 8/4/2021
  • Natalie Gardner – 23/11/2017- 15/09/2020
  • Mike Eldred – 06/02/2016 – 31/08/2020
  • Louise Quilter – 10/10/2015 – 31/07/2020
  • Karen Barefield – 18/3/2015 – 18/3/2019