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Governor Pen Portraits

Being a school governor or trustee is a challenging but hugely rewarding role. It gives you the chance to make a real difference to young people, give something back to your local community and use and develop your skills in a board-level environment. As a governor we form part of the largest volunteer force in the country: there are over a quarter of a million volunteers governing state funded schools in England.

Schools need governing boards that have a balance and diversity of knowledge, skills and experience to enable it to be effective. Ofsted (the national inspection body for schools) has repeatedly noted that the most effective schools demonstrate effective leadership and management - including by the governing board.

Anyone aged over 18 can be a governor or trustee (but there are some exceptions) and you do not need to be a parent. There is no requirement for you to have an understanding of the education system, just the necessary skills, character and time to contribute. There is plenty of training available to help you learn about education. Schools need and benefit from a range of professional knowledge on their governing board including education, finance, human resources, legal, marketing and public relations, property and estates management, and organisational change.

We have created short pen portraits for each member of our governor board. Through this we hope that you can get to know more about the team supporting the leadership of the Academy and the skills and experience they bring. 

 

Steve Whiffen - Clerk To Governors

 

  

Kevin Bishop Parent Governor Appointed 12/07/2017
How are you connected with the Academy?  My connection dates back to September 2015 when my daughter joined Lipson. This then gave me an insight into how the school worked.
How does you current or previous occupation support your work as a governor. I work for the NHS and have a broad range of knowledge and skills that I can use to help the school with it's future plans.
Are there any school visits which have helped you to understand elements of the operational areas of the academy? If so, how have these visits supported you to lead future strategic development? I have toured the school and talked with pupils and staff to get an understanding as to how the school works on a day to day basis. I have also met with the senior leadership team member who is responsible for Pupil Premium to get an understanding of how the school spends this money.
Please provide some information on what drives you to be a governor at Lipson. I was very keen to be involved to help the school provide the best opportunities and experiences for all pupils. My role is to be able to represent the views of parents and pupils.

  

Tim Cook Co-opted Governor Appointed 23/11/2020
How are you connected with the Academy? 
How does you current or previous occupation support your work as a governor.
Are there any school visits which have helped you to understand elements of the operational areas of the academy? If so, how have these visits supported you to lead future strategic development?
Please provide some information on what drives you to be a governor at Lipson.

  

Lucie Garland Co-opted Governor Appointed 11/02/2020
How are you connected with the Academy?  I am a Lipson alumna, having been a student here from 1999 to 2006. After living, studying and working in Oxfordshire for 11 years, I returned to Plymouth and was keen to find an opportunity to give back to a school which had such a positive impact on my life.
How does you current or previous occupation support your work as a governor. I am in my sixth year of Primary teaching, and am passionate about all children and young people having access to an engaging and inspiring education. My previous experience as a Governor of a Primary School, Secondary Academy and University, as well as a Trustee of a Students' Union, has given me a wide range of experience in the oversight of education from nursery to postgraduate level.
Please provide some information on what drives you to be a governor at Lipson. Throughout my own experience as a student at Lipson I always appreciated the holistic approach to learning; valuing life skills and building character just as highly as formal qualifications, and encouraging every student to achieve their potential. The ongoing journey of Lipson and its wider community has not strayed from this course, and now as a Governor I feel privileged to be able to support and challenge the school as this journey continues.

  

Darren Hobbs Co-opted Governor Appointed 25/02/2020
How are you connected with the Academy?  I have a number of close family and friends who have attended Lipson as students. When approached to become a governor I felt that my skill set coupled with my knowledge of Lipson would make me a good fit for the position.
How does you current or previous occupation support your work as a governor. I am a chartered accountant with 18 years experience across multiple business sectors.
Are you a link governor?  I am a link governor for finance. 
Please provide some information on what drives you to be a governor at Lipson. The opportunity to add value and provide financial expertise, assisting with the effective management of Lipson academy.
Are you a member of any professional body which may support your role as a governor? Yes, I am a Chartered Accountant

 

Stuart Koehler-Lewis Co-opted Governor Appointed 23/11/2020
How are you connected with the Academy? 
How does you current or previous occupation support your work as a governor.
Are there any school visits which have helped you to understand elements of the operational areas of the academy? If so, how have these visits supported you to lead future strategic development?
Please provide some information on what drives you to be a governor at Lipson.

  

Kate Lyon  Parent Governor Appointed 30/06/2018
How are you connected with the Academy?  I am a parent of a year 8 child and my second child will join the school in 2019.
How does you current or previous occupation support your work as a governor. I have worked as a primary school teacher for 20 years and am passionate about education and every child's right to a great education. I have been a governor at a Plymouth primary school for 7 years and have supported them through Ofsted visits and joining a multi academy trust.
Please provide some information on what drives you to be a governor at Lipson. I believe in the child focused ethos at Lipson and want to support this so that it can continue in an increasingly difficult time for education. Lipson strives to keep the child at the centre of everything they do and considers the well being of their students as paramount. As a governor I hope to support( whilst constructively challenging) the school to do this.

 

Ian Marshall Co-opted Governor Appointed 23/11/2020
How are you connected with the Academy? 
How does you current or previous occupation support your work as a governor.
Are there any school visits which have helped you to understand elements of the operational areas of the academy? If so, how have these visits supported you to lead future strategic development?
Please provide some information on what drives you to be a governor at Lipson.

 

Helen Morris Co-opted Appointed 18/12/2018
How are you connected with the Academy?  I became involved at Lipson after I visited as a prospective parent in Summer 2018. I was incredibly impressed by both the extremely high standard of work that the students were producing and also the obvious dedication and passion of staff during my visit.
How does you current or previous occupation support your work as a governor. I am a Lawyer at Plymouth City Council with some general knowledge of education law and regulatory and constitutional issues.
Please provide some information on what drives you to be a governor at Lipson. I was appointed as a Co-opted Governor in January 2019. I have lived mainly in Plymouth for around 20 years and was very keen to become involved with the school following a visit with my daughter. I was so enthused by the school that I wanted to see if there was a way that I could help to make it the very best school that it can possibly be and do what I can to help it prosper. I believe I have a broad set of skills that are transferable to add value to Lipson. Away from work I like to spend time outdoors with my family.
Are you a member of any professional body which may support your role as a governor? The Law Society of England and Wales.