Governing body

All Governors are volunteers and have a vital role to play in making sure every child gets the best possible education. For maintained schools this is reflected in the law, which states that the purpose of maintained school governing bodies is to ‘conduct the school with a view to promoting high standards of educational achievement’.. 

The Board of Governors should have a strong focus on three core strategic functions:

  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, and the performance management of staff; 
  3. Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.

These functions are reflected in regulations for maintained schools that came into force in September 2013 and in the criteria Ofsted inspectors use to judge the effectiveness of governance in both maintained schools and academies.

How well the Board of Governors does its job has a real impact on the success of a school. Although our Governors are volunteers, they must each have a high standard of professionalism. Our Board of Governors can and should be held to account for its effectiveness.

Governors hold an important public office and their identities should be known to everybody within the Mary Exton community, and wider within the local community. We have provided details here of the current members of our governing body, their roles and responsibilities, and time in office. More information on individual Governors can be found here.  

Structure of the Board of Governors

The Governing Board conducts all business through Full Governing Board meetings. All dates for Full Governing Board meetings are set for the academic year in advance.

Our Governing Board consists of two parent governors, one staff governor, our two co-headteachers, three co-opted governors and a local authority governor. We are currently in the process of formalising the membership of an additional co-opted governor and an additional parent governor. To maximise our effectiveness we also have an associate member who does not hold any voting rights but brings additional experience to our board.

Governors visit the school throughout the year conducting link visits; sitting on interview panels; attending assemblies and special occasions, and assisting with various school trips and school projects. In addition, each year we have a 'governors in school' day, when governors spend the day in school. During the day, governors spend time with the senior leadership team and visit classrooms to see first-hand how various strategies are being implemented, and to consider how these help our children with their learning. The day also provides an opportunity for governors to have lunch with the children and talk with them in a classroom setting.


Governance arrangements

The Mary Exton Governing Board is a committed group of unpaid volunteers. Alongside undertaking specialist tasks and responsibilities and regularly visiting the school, each governor is expected to undertake regular training to ensure they continue to develop their skills.

Each governor attends meetings of either the Resources Committee or the Curriculum and Standards Committee. Each governor also strives to attend all the Full Governing Board meetings throughout the academic year. You are able to view details of which meetings governors attended during the last academic year in the table below. 



The Board of Governors*: 
Kirstie Buckridge Co-Chair of Governors (co-opted)
Philippa Cahill Co-Chair & Chair of Resources Cttee (parent)
Danika Williams Chair of Curriculum & Standards Cttee (parent)
Diane Graham Local Authority governor
Jenny Morgan  Co-opted governor
Julia Reffell Co-opted governor
Hayley Carr Co-opted governor
Angharad Paterson Co-Headteacher
Tracy Clements Co-Headteacher
Anne-Marie Day Staff governor
Tom Ritson

Deputy Headteacher (Associate Member)


*Updated September 2023


Types of governor:
  • Staff governors - Selected by election from teaching and support staff paid to work at the school. Do have voting rights.
  • Parent governors - Selected by election (or appointment if insufficient people stand for election) and drawn from parents and carers of children at the school. Do have voting rights.
  • Co-opted governors - Appointed by the governing body to represent community interests. Do have voting rights. Co-opted governors can also be parents.
  • Local authority governors - Appointed by the local authority. Do have voting rights.
  • Associate members - Appointed by the Governing Board but hold no voting rights at Full Governing Board meetings.
Contacting the governors

If you would like to speak to any of the governors, please feel free to approach us at school events, or contact the school office.  The school will ensure messages are passed on and the governors will respond to you within five working days. If it is an urgent matter regarding safeguarding then the Co-Chairs can be contacted directly via email on

We do not currently have any vacancies but if you are interested in becoming a governor please contact the school office to register your interest.