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Our Governors

The Priory Primary School is a maintained voluntary-aided Church of England School. This means that, while we are supported by Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Local Authority and the Diocese of Winchester Education Board, our Governing body is ultimately responsible for the strategic direction of the school.

Each governor is responsible for contributing to the Governing body’s discussions and in meeting its three core functions. The Governing Body is legally accountable and must operate in the best interests of the school.

The task of the Governing Body is to lead the school strategically, focusing on 3 core functions:

  • Ensuring clarity of the vision, ethos and strategic direction.

  • Holding the executive leaders to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils and the effectiveness and efficient performance management of staff.

  • Overseeing the financial performance of the organisation and making sure its money is well spent.

The Governing Body meets in full and does not currently have sub-committees. Governors have areas of responsibility where they support and oversee the activities of the school. The current areas of responsibility are detailed here.


Governor Roles


Parent Governor

Parent Governors are elected by other parents at the school, except in certain circumstances where they are appointed by the Governing body, for instance, when the number of vacancies is greater than the number of parents standing for election. Any parent or person with parental responsibility, or a carer, of a registered pupil at the school at the time of election can stand as a parent governor. Parent governors can remain in office until the end of their term of office, even if their child leaves the school. The role of the parent governor is not a spokesperson for the views of parents. They are the same as any other governor on the body, providing a ‘parental viewpoint’, i.e. representative of parents rather than the representative of parents.


Staff Governor

Teaching and support staff who are employed to work at the school under contract of employment, at the time of election, are eligible to stand for election to the Governing body. Their role will end either at the end of their term of office, of if they leave the school. The role of a staff governor is the same as any other governor, strategic leadership and holding the Headteacher to account but also includes providing a ‘staff viewpoint’. It is important for prospective staff governors to fully understand the role prior to appointment. Staff governors are not a spokesperson for the views of all staff.


Co-opted Governor

Co-opted governors are appointed by the Governing body. They are people who in the opinion of the Governing body, have the skills and experience required to contribute to effective governance and success of the school. Those eligible to be staff governors can be co-opted governors. Co-opted governors act in the best interests of the school and wider community but should not be required by others, such as the appointing Governing body or community, to take a particular stance on issues discussed at Governing body meetings.


Headteacher Governor

The Headteacher is a governor by default, although they do not have to take up the role. They can resign from their governor role. The role of the Headteacher is to implement the strategic framework established by the Governing body, which they will help develop as a member of the Governing body. The Headteacher is responsible for the operational and day-to-day running of the school. One of the Headteacher’s responsibilities it to provide information to the Governing body so that it can meet its three core objectives.


Local Authority Governor

A (LA) Local Authority Governor is nominated by their LA to the Governing Body. A LA Governor is representative of the Local Authority and is the same as any other governor; they provide an ‘LA viewpoint’ and they should participate in the same way as other governors. They are not required to be affiliated to a political party, although they should be aware of local issues.


Foundation Governor

Foundation Governors are either appointed or take the role by virtue of an office that they hold (ex-officio), e.g. the local vicar. Where appointed, foundation governors in the school are appointed by the Winchester Diocesan Board of Education after consultation with the Parochial Church Council of Priory Church, Christchurch. Foundation Governors are appointed to secure compliance with the school’s trust deed and to preserve and develop the religious character of the school.

Geoff Tabor

Chair of Governors

Elected September 2022


Foundation Governor

July 2021 - July 2025

Father Charles Stewart

Foundation Governor (Ex-Officio; Priory Church)

October 2015 - 

Tim Hewitt

Foundation Governor

July 2023 - July 2027

Sally Hawkridge

Local Authority Governor (BCP Council)

August 2021 - August 2025

Natasha Halliwell

Parent Governor

October 2023 - October 2027

Dominic Jones

Vice-Chair of Governors

Elected September 2022

Foundation Governor (DEC)

May 2021 - May 2025

Anita Penny

Foundation Governor

May 2023 - May 2027

Genevieve Ross

Foundation Governor

July 2023 - July 2027

Chloe Savin

Staff Governor

September 2024 - August 2028

Matthew McLean

Associate Governor (Voting Rights Only at General Meetings) (By Appointment)

September 2023 - 

Sarah Richardson

Headteacher (By Appointment)

September 2023 - 

Suzanne Gosling

Foundation Governor

May 2021 - May 2025

Simon Earl

Foundation Governor

May 2021 - May 2025

Leonie Hurrell

Parent Governor

July 2023 - July 2027

Kay Towler


May 2019 - 

Other Recent Governors

The following governors have stepped down within the last three years:

  • Jenna Field (Staff Governor; September 2020 - August 2024)

  • Barbara Robertson (Foundation Governor; - July 2023)

  • Sarah Andrews (Parent Governor; - July 2023)

  • Sue Solly (Foundation Governor & Chair of Governors; September 1998 - July 2022)

  • Kate Woodhead (Foundation Governor; November 2020 - May 2022

Key Documents

Please find below key documents related to our governing body:


Terms of Reference


Register of Business and Financial Interests


Attendance Record

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