The Governing Body at Barningham Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School consists of members drawn from parents, carers, members of the community and school staff. We meet as a whole governing body once a term and various governors are members of other committees, depending on their skills and experience. For example, the finance committee monitors the school’s budget and makes sure our money is well spent for the benefit of the children. The personnel committee deals with staffing issues such as recruitment. The premises committee looks after the building and was involved in planning the recently built Year 5/6 classroom.
We visit the school on a regular basis, acting as “critical friends”. We have areas to monitor, such as literacy or numeracy and we also help to monitor the School Development Plan. Other responsibilities include safeguarding and Special Educational Needs.
Our role is to support and challenge the school so that every child is given the opportunity to achieve his/her full potential.
The total number of governors is eleven and we also have one associate governor.
Currently (June 2021) our governors are:
Stephany Hunter Head Teacher
I always knew that I wanted to be a teacher and qualified after completing a degree in Primary Education. I started my teaching career in a large primary school in London. In 2015, I decided to relocate to Suffolk and became the Deputy Headteacher at a small school in Lowestoft. Suffolk gave me the opportunity to do what I love: countryside walks, being by the sea and exploring what the natural world has to offer in this beautiful part of the country. I’m really looking forward to my new role as Headteacher at Barningham CEVC Primary school. I look forward to building upon this work for the years to come.
Having moved to Barningham in 2011 with my husband and two children, I am taking a break from my career in finance to spend time with my children. I became a governor in May 2016 and enjoysupporting the school and seeing the children learn new skills. My interests include history, photography and personal fitness.
I am the Rector of Barningham and the United Benefice of Stanton. I worked in the Area Education Office and the Careers Office in Ipswich early on in my working life, and then once I had my children I got involved in running the local toddler group, play group and helping on the PTA. I have worked as a Higher Level Teaching Assistant at Thomas Mills High School where I worked in the Special Educational Need Department for ten years before I began my training to become a Priest.
I loved being a Teaching Assistant and the high light for me was working with small groups building self-esteem, and working one to one enabling youngsters to reach their full potential and to see them achieve their goals.
Steve Gallagher Foundation Governor
I moved to Barningham 3 years from Chelmsford with my wife. My working life was spent working in IT across Europe, India and the US, specialising in analytics. I come to Barningham CEVC school with many years’ previous experience of being a governor, specialising in finance at a Catholic primary and junior school in South Woodham Ferrers. My interests are many and diverse, but include music, DIY and Spanish. I am keen to support the school, especially in the areas of finance, IT, RE, maths and French.
I live in Hepworth with my three children. After working with children and adults with Additional Support Needs, I now spend most of my time working on the family farm, running our campsite, looking after our small herd of alpacas and sheep, and providing freelance IT support to individuals and businesses locally. I became a Governor in 2014 to support the school, the children and the staff.
I have lived in Hepworth with my husband for 17 years. I have 2 sons and a daughter and 2 grandchildren. My granddaughter attends Barningham CEVC school and my grandson will be joining the school in 2020. I am delighted to join the Governor team and I look forward to helping in anyway that I can. My interests include reading, cooking, gardening, flower arranging, painting, sewing and knitting. I have worked in both primary and secondary schools and I ran a Girls Brigade company for over 20 years.
Kevin O’Connell Co-Opted Governor
I have over 25 years’ experience of school governance, within the Infant, Primary, Middle and Secondary sectors of education in Cambridgeshire, Essex, Kent, Norfolk and Suffolk. I am passionate about education whilst supporting students within their learning, enabling them to develop into successful young adults. My previous career was as a professional musician and I taught drums to students throughout Cambridgeshire, Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk.
I have lived in Barningham for over 30 years. I am a retired Financial Adviser and have been a school governor for 2 years. I enjoy exercising, baking, crafts – especially knitting, crochet and quilting. I regularly come into school to listen to children read and help Cooking with our school cook, Mrs Chapman.
Having relocated from Pembrokeshire West Wales to Suffolk in 2017 with my husband and two daughters, we quickly settled into village life. I graduated from Harper Adams University College where I studied Agri Food Marketing and have worked for companies such as Tyrrells Crisps & Bluestone National Park Resort. Now I am a full time Mum to Phoebe and Norah I felt I would enjoy contributing to the school by becoming a governor. My interests include walking, gardening and activities with the children.
Dec 2020: A note from the Governors: This week we say cheerio to Mrs Parr who has been our inspiring Head Teacher for the last ten years; we are very sad to see you leave us. Thank you Frances for your long service and dedication to everybody in the school community, and we all wish you a very long, healthy and happy retirement. And we send best wishes to all staff, parents, carers and children for a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Julie Surridge, Chair of Governors
Nov 2020:A note from the Governors: We hope the children enjoyed their first week back and have adapted to the school routine ready for the countdown to Christmas. As a Governing Body we are looking for a new parent governor to join our team as Sarah Elliston has decided to step down after working with the governors for the last four years. We thank Sarah for her valuable contribution to the school. We also welcome Ed Stanley to our Governing Body as a co-opted governor, bringing with him interests in the school as both a parent and a member of the military, and we look forward to working with him. If you have skills that you would like to offer the governing body we are looking for both a parent governor and a foundation governor to join our team, please get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Julie Surridge, Chair of Governors
Oct 2020: A note from the Governors: We hope you enjoyed the half term break and are ready to embrace the term that historically has always been full of Christmas activities that the children could share with their parents. It is sad for us all that today’s COVID-19 restrictions prevent parents and carers enjoying the various school productions, but we hope that you continue to keep safe and well. As Governors, we are delighted to tell you that we have appointed a new Headteacher to lead the school forward from January 2021. We welcome Miss Stephany Hunter to our school and we thank Mrs Parr for her incredible service to the school and wish her a long and happy retirement; look out for the letter coming home today with more details. Within our governing body we have vacancies for both a parent governor and a foundation governor to join our team, so if you have skills you would like to offer to the governing body please get in touch with me at email@example.com. Julie Surridge, Chair of Governors
Sept 2020: A note from the Governors: What an extraordinary year 2020 has been so far, with many of the children returning to school for the first time in over 5 months. Mrs Parr and the staff have worked incredibly hard to implement procedures so that the school is a safe place for the children, and we are sure the children will enjoy being back at school amongst their friends, and quickly adapt to the new practices of regular hand sanitising and respecting social distances. We of course welcome our new children in Rabbit class to the school as they venture into this exciting phase of their lives, may you all enjoy the fun that is to be had as you learn new skills in school. And as governors, we resume our recruitment plan to find a new Head Teacher as Mrs Parr takes her well-earned retirement at Christmas. Our selection panel has selected candidates for interviews which will take place in September, and we will keep you informed of our recruitment progress. Mrs Norris, one of our foundation governors has resigned from her role for health reasons, and we thank her for her invaluable contribution to the school over the years. We have vacancies for both a foundation governor and a co-opted governor to join our team, so if you have skills you would like to offer to the governing body please get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org. We wish all the children and staff a safe, happy and productive year. Julie Surridge, Chair of Governors
Mar 2020, election of new parent governor: Note from the governors: Due to one of our parent governors approaching the end of their term of service, we are in a position to elect a new parent governor. If you are interested in joining the governing body please contact me for further details and an application form. Julie Surridge, Chair of Governors.
February 2020: A note from the Governors: further to our update at the beginning of the year, we would like to inform you that we are still advertising for the post of Headteacher to join us in Sept 2020, and interviews are now scheduled for the end of March, not in February as previously advised. We will of course keep you updated of further developments in due course. Julie Surridge.
Jan 2020: A note from the Governors: A Happy New Year to you all! We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and that you are well rested for the start of a new year and, of course, a new decade; may this year bring you all new strengths to achieve your hopes and dreams, building on the lessons that life has given in previous years. As governors, we are working on the changes this year will bring to the school, and we will be very busy this term as we continue the recruitment process for a new Head Teacher to join us in September. Interviews are scheduled to take place in February and we will keep you informed of any decisions made. Also last term we welcomed new staff governor Gemma Jackson to the Governing Body, and we thank her for her contributions to our meetings. We wish all the children and staff a happy and positive year ahead. Julie Surridge
July 2019: A note from the Governors: Hasn’t it been a wonderful summer term for the school? We congratulate Mrs Parr and all the staff at the school for their very much deserved success in the recent Ofsted inspection and we are so pleased that the school has been able to provide new play equipment and the new outdoor classroom for the children to enjoy. We look forward to seeing the KS2 children demonstrating their talents in the school performances this week, as well as being entertained by the Barningham’s Got Talent show and the always emotional Y6 leavers’ assembly. We wish all of our Y6 children all the very best as they approach the next phase of their education, and finally, we wish all of you a very happy summer holiday. Julie Surridge, Chair of Governors
May 2019 – Refurbishment around School There will be some refurbishment of the Rabbit Class outside area and parts of the trim trail after Easter. These have been funded partly through the government PE Grant, Capital Expenditure funds and the local councillor grant – plus some careful housekeeping by the Finance Committee. The governors have also identified a few areas, such as the lighting in Rabbits and Squirrel class, the flooring in the corridor and the double door near the toilets as projects for the coming year. We believe that these changes will enhance the school building and make the school inviting, safe and welcoming to all. Please bear with us as the work is completed and keep all children away from the building areas to be safe.
April 2019 – A note from the governors: Welcome back to the summer term everyone! We hope that you all had a wonderful Easter holiday and enjoyed may fun activities with your families. We welcome Claire Walker to our Governing Body as a co-opted governor; although now retired, Claire has had a wealth of experience working in and with schools and children throughout her career. We are also pleased that Sandy Atwell has agreed to extend her tenure as the local authority appointed governor for a further four years. We wish all of the children a positive and productive summer term and look forward to seeing the children involved in more outdoor learning, including science, art and PE now that the sun has arrived. Julie Surridge, Chair of Governors
January 2019 – A note from the Governors: A Happy New Year to everyone! We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and that you are well rested for the start of a new year. Last term we welcomed Sue Kenyon to the governing body as a co-opted governor. Sue recently moved into Barningham and is a retired teacher, specialising in Science; we look forward to working with Sue as she brings her wealth of knowledge from education to the governing team.
We wish all the children and staff a happy and positive year ahead and we look forward to seeing the children’s lives enriched as they learn and develop a little more each day. Julie Surridge
September 2019 – A note from the Governors: Welcome to the new school year and a particularly warm welcome to our new children in Rabbit class as you venture into this exciting phase of your lives! We hope you all had a wonderful summer holiday and made lots of family memories. We welcome our new foundation governor, Rev Cathy Bladen and we look forward to working with her as she settles into her role of Rector for the United Benefice of the 8 parishes. We are also looking for a co-opted governor to join our team, so if you have skills you would like to offer to the governing body please get in touch with me at email@example.com.
April 2018 – A note from the Governors: Welcome back to the summer term everyone! We hope you all had a wonderful Easter and enjoyed many memory making activities with your children. We have welcomed Jules Unwin to our governing body as a co-opted governor; although now retired Jules has had a wealth of experience working with children throughout her career. We are pleased to confirm that Neel Shearer has agreed to extend his tenure as parent governor for a further 4 years. We have now set up email accounts so that you can contact the governors directly. The main account is firstname.lastname@example.org. Each governor also has their own email account so please check our section of the website to find out those details if required. We wish all the children and staff a happy summer term and we look forward to seeing the children getting involved in more outdoor sporting activities as the weather warms up. Julie Surridge, Chair of Governors
January 2018 – A note from the Governors: A Happy New Year to everyone! We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and that you are well rested for the start of a new year. Last term we welcomed Karl Saggers to the governing body as a parent governor and we look forward to working with Karl as he brings his knowledge of health and safety to the governing team. We wish all the children and staff a happy and positive year ahead and we look forward to seeing the children’s lives enriched as they learn and develop a little more each day. Julie Surridge, Chair
We asked parents and carers about different aspects of the school. The comments were favourable and positive, with a number of suggestions for possible steps forward as a school. The governors really appreciate this dialogue and welcome your thoughts at anytime. Just pop them in a letter/ email or speak to one of us.