essential-informatiton-for-parents-and-guardians-walton-primary-wakefield

Governors

How we work
We meet together as a full governing body every half-term. The governing body has also established a number of working committees.  The committees are Learning & Teaching, Standards, Resources and Leadership. These committees cover  the finer elements of governance, discussing in detail issues such as admissions, discipline and complaints, quality of teaching and much more. Each governor serves on one or more committees and in addition, has a specific area of interest – for example: safeguarding; school standards; or community issues.

 

Working together
Our school motto is “Moving Forward Together”. This is about everyone – parents, staff, governors and the wider school community – working in partnership to ensure that every child can succeed and reach their full potential. To achieve this, and to carry out our role as governors effectively, we need to know what issues are important to you (so we remain responsive) and ensure that you know what issues the governors are discussing (so that we remain accountable).

 

 

Keeping in touch
The website is a good way of keeping up to date with all aspects of school life. If you have a concern or a point of view to share, please come and speak to us. We are all contactable through school and are happy to discuss any issues or ideas you may have.

 

There are lots of ways of sharing your views with us. As many of our governors are also parents of children at school, so we can often be found around at the beginning and end of the school day. We will also be arranging specific opportunities and times throughout the school year to hear from you and keep in touch. Alternatively, you can always leave us a note at the school office or drop us an e-mail to the school address and we will get in touch with you.

 

Becoming a governor
Being a school governor is an important role but you do not need to have any particular skills, knowledge or experience to become a governor. What you need to bring is: a commitment to school life; the ability to work with others; patience and enthusiasm; a willingness to learn; a commitment to working openly and democratically; and, most importantly a willingness to spend what time you can offer getting involved in school life.

 

The most important thing to note is that governors are a team, not a collection of individuals or groups with separate agendas. However much we may differ in our opinions and experiences we are united by our commitment to the school and the responsibility we share for its long-term success. In short, we have a common purpose.

Meet Our Governors

Steve Johnson - Chair of Governors:

I have been Chair since February 2016 prior to this I held a position on the Governing body looking at the enrichment of the curriculum, I work as a civil servant and have been in this role since 1999, prior to this I worked in a microbiology lab as a food chemist.
As you may be aware I have played rugby most of my life and have had the honour to represent not only my county but also my country on numerous occasions. I love to see all the children in the school enjoy them selves and will do anything in my remit to ensure all are able to fulfil their potential whilst at Walton Primary Academy.
My personal goal whilst undertaking this role will be to see Walton achieve outstanding governance which in turn will help the school on the pathway to achieving outstanding outcomes for all.
I will always challenge and support the Headteacher and promote a culture of openness and fairness, whilst ensuring a safe and decent environment for those who attend.

Tony Harpham
I have over 15 years’ experience of primary education as a teacher, coordinator, phase leader, Assistant Headteacher, Head of School and Headteacher in Sheffield, Barnsley, Wakefield and Kuwait. In all settings, the progress and outcomes for all learners has improved dramatically. I truly believe that I have one of the greatest jobs!
I place a huge emphasis on the role of governance and its impact on the outcomes for all learners. Governors should be part of the fabric of school life and constantly seek to challenge. Since arriving at Walton, I have worked with governors to identify key areas of strength and also areas of development through self-evaluation and a skills audit that have provided the school with an action plan for governance that will enable the school to develop outstanding leadership at all levels.
I am a huge music fan and attend many concerts and festivals. I love to travel and have travelled extensively in Europe, the USA and Asia. I enjoy cooking as a way of relaxing at the end of the working day.

Angela Fahy - Associate Governor
I have been privileged to work in education since 2001, when I qualified as a teacher. My career has led me to develop specific interests in; encouraging and developing parental engagement with primary education, teaching early reading skills and fostering a lifelong love of reading, teaching children with special educational needs and also early years education.
I have spent most of my career working in Barnsley and have had several leadership positions in various primary schools including Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator, Early Years Leader, Deputy Head, Head of School and Acting Head. I moved to Wakefield in April 2015 to join Walton Primary Academy as Deputy Head and it is lovely to work in a school with such friendly and enthusiastic children. I am passionate about providing opportunities for all children to succeed and this is the core purpose of my role as Inclusion Leader. My aim is for all children at Walton to achieve their potential academically and socially, regardless of their differences and any barriers to learning.
I am an associate governor and my role on the governing body is to provide governors with information about the progress and attainment of specific groups of children and also outline the work school is doing to ensure that all children’s needs are being met. This year I am hoping to deliver some governor workshops on initiatives in school that ensure everyone feels included and safe, such as our anti-bullying work.

Jonathan Alton - Parent Governor
I have two children who attend Walton Primary Academy and they love the school and I wanted give something back to the school community so I joined the governing body. Also, I want to assist the school in its efforts to make learning enjoyable and achievable for all the children.
I believe that a good education is of vital importance so that everyone is able to have options available to them in their life. The experiences of children in primary education has a huge impact on the lifelong learning journey of everyone in the community so I hope, as a governor, is to assist the school in its quest to continue to provide excellent learning opportunities for each child.
I have worked in education since 2001 and been teaching since 2004. This gives me a wide knowledge of education especially as I have worked in both post-16 and pre-16 education. In my current professional role I am involved in improving and promoting the standard of teaching and this aids me in my role as a governor at Walton. I have also been involved in community sports projects in the past and I currently run an annual charity golf event and my organisational skills are of benefit to the school’s governing body. However, I think the most important aspect that I bring to the governing body is that I am a parent as well as an education professional and I am able to see both sides of decisions regarding education

Mandy Scholey - Community Governor
I am a parent of three children who have all attended Walton Primary Academy. I have voluntarily assisted in school every Wednesday afternoon for the past five years, helping with reading and craft activities. I have also assisted at school events where needed.
I believe that every child is unique and that he/she should be able to develop within a happy, safe working and learning environment and have an ongoing educational experience in which they can achieve their full potential. Such an experience should involve parents, teachers and the wider community working in partnership to that end. From my personal experience Walton Primary Academy is striving towards this goal.
My employment background has allowed me to attain and develop skills in business, managerial, customer service, administration and the boundaries of confidentiality. Through all aspects of my employment and voluntary work I have developed the ability to communicate with people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds.
My favourite subject is English for which I am link governor.
As a School Governor I am able to offer a range of skills and experience. I desire the best education for the children of Walton Primary Academy and the best working and learning environment for both staff and children alike.

Sarah Vause - Community Governor
My two daughters attend Walton Primary Academy and it is a key part in helping them to be successful in their lives and achieve their hopes and ambitions in the future. I believe that all children, irrespective of ability or background, should have equal opportunities in education. I want to help the school to deliver value for money and achieve the best possible outcomes for the children. I have a genuine passion for continuous improvement and love to ask questions. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve the school.
I have ten years of experience as an Internal Audit professional, providing independent assurance to Senior Managers in how they are managing their risks and can operate their businesses more effectively. I have worked in a range of regulated industries, spending 6 years with Leeds City Council, 4 years with Yorkshire Water and am currently with Centrica (British Gas). I have reviewed areas such as Business Continuity, Procurement, Contracts and Project Management, as well as conducting Fraud Investigations. I have audited a number of schools across Leeds and assessed their Financial Management Standards. I have a business degree and further education diploma with the Chartered Institute of Internal Audit, including other qualifications in areas such as Health and Safety. When I’m not at work, I enjoy running and am a member of Ackworth Road Runners.

Phil Wiehl - Community Governor
I have worked in the public sector for over 30 years and my current role as a traffic officer for Highways England involves working rolling shifts. This enables me to undertake governor activities during the school day and I have taken on the responsibilities of Health & Safety governor.
I have lived in Walton for 27 years and been involved with the village schools since our daughter started at the Infants in 1994. Originally I was a member, then chair, of the PTA and then a Parent Governor, becoming a Community Governor when our son left the Junior School in 2006.
I have seen a great change in the educational facilities of the village from the original two schools to the present day Academy and have enjoyed being part of the team that has helped the school go from strength to strength, becoming a more central part of the community, to the benefit of the children and the village. As a vice-chair of the school governors and director of Waterton Academy Trust I firmly believe that a strong sense of community is important for children and that the links with other schools in the district will be to the benefit of all the children and communities.
I am proud to be part of the current team and look forward to the exciting future ahead for Waterton Academy Trust and the associated academies

Dave Fernley - Associate Governor
I have been a teacher since 2010 completing my PGCE after I finished my masters in American Literature. During this period, I have spent time in a number of schools across Sheffield and Wakefield. Over the last six years I have developed a keen interest in the different methods of tracking and monitoring the assessment of attainment and progress of children.
I came to Walton in September 2013 and felt immediately at home in an environment where the children were encouraged to enjoy every possible opportunity to learn. Over the last few years I have had a number of responsibilities in school alongside my role as class teacher. I have been the maths and computing curriculum leader, assessment leader, upper key stage 2 phase leader and Assistant Head. My number one goal in each role has always been to ensure that our children are given the opportunity to achieve, succeed and be happy every day they come to school.

Lois Smith - Staff Governor
I have been a teaching assistant at Walton Primary for over 18 years; a role that stemmed from my being a parent helper, both at Walton Infants and Walton Junior School. I qualified as a Higher Level Teaching Assistant in 2005 and was promoted to Lead HLTA in 2013.
During my time so far at Walton, I have worked in all key stages; from Foundation through to Upper Key Stage 2. In 2012 I was asked to work in Class 9 with Year 6 children, after working in Key Stage 1 for thirteen years, which I then did for a year. That brought new challenges for me to say the least. Then, in 2013, I moved into a Year 5 – Year 6 class where I stayed for two years. I am currently working in Class 9 with Year 6 once again where I have been for the last eighteen months and thoroughly enjoying it; still.
I believe that not only should we be teaching children academic skills, but life skills too and that children should be celebrated and allowed to shine no matter what their skills or capabilities. I have very high standards and expectations of all those who are at Walton Primary Academy including children, staff and governors.

Giles McVicar - Foundation Governor
I became a Foundation Governor in September 2016. Upon leaving school I started work in the banking sector with RBS, where I remained for all 21 years of my career before retiring in 2012. My final 10 years were spent working in business banking, where I held the position of Senior Business Relationship Manager for my last 5 years. Working with and supporting a varied portfolio of small/medium sized businesses, through some challenging economic times, gave me a good insight into effective business management. I hope to bring any relevant knowledge gained to the governing body and specifically the resources committee.
I have lived in the area all my life and my two sons have recently attended the school. Seeing them both absolutely thrive here convinced me to seek to join the governing body, enabling me to offer something back and help play a part in seeing every child flourish.
Having first hand experience in the area, I am also link Governor for SEN.
My interests include being a trustee of Walton Community library, involvement with a homeless persons charity, a keen golfer, walking my dog, gym, Pilates, and I enjoy playing and watching most sports.

Vicky Cocliff - Foundation Governor
My family have been in Walton for three generations. I love the close community, of which I see this school as the core. I am proud that my son and nephews attend Walton Primary Academy and I want to assist the school in going from strength to strength. I am passionate about children being all rounded, achieving their potential in all aspects of education, building their confidence and allowing them to discover their individual personalities.
I work for the Police Service and I have good knowledge and experience of a wide range of legislation, safeguarding and partnership work. I am also an actress and I feel the great work the school does around creativity for the children is important.

Dear Parents,

In order for you to be far more aware of the role of Governors here at Walton Primary Academy I intend to keep you updated with all information that will enable you to understand our role in school and also our commitment to improving outcomes for children.
At our recent full governors meeting on Wednesday 21st September we agreed to adopt the local authorities code of conduct in regards to our actions whilst residing on the committee which can be found on the local authority website, Colin Moran attends the trust meeting for governors and feeds back on any trust issues, this was focused on training and the need to ensure we have a rounded and balanced approach to governance. There were no significant issues arising from the last meeting other than it was important for all governors to submit biographies to Mr Harpham so they could be published on the school website.
Headline data from the summer results was discussed and views were exchanged that suggested future cohorts must have better results.
Mr Harpham offered the school improvement plan for 2016/17 which was read and agreed, we also had a governance action plan which we populated to show progress on objectives set.
As governors we agreed to ensure that visits to school were regular and purposeful to offer the support both to staff and give assurances to parents that standards were being met.
Budget plans were discussed briefly and comments were made that it remains extremely tight this year and we are still awaiting for the final budget to be ratified by the Trust.
We agreed that all governors would undertake the prevent training package which underpins the importance of safeguarding.
Lastly we discussed the appointment of new foundation governors, we had 6 applications submitted and only 3 posts. Firstly, we appointed Giles McVicar as he would be able to offer a significant amount to the resources committee and has experience of business and financial planning. The second position went to Vicky Cocliff she has a lot of experience dealing with safeguarding and points of law which would help us develop areas we need to expand on. Lastly we appointed Chris Hale who is a local member of the community who used to attend the school, he has some very fresh and exciting ideas on not only school development but also in the community.