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Martins Wood Primary School

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Martins Wood Primary School

Our Governors

Welcome to our Governors’ section. 

On this page you can find out more about our governing body, how it is structured, who the governors are and who they represent, their roles and responsibilities and their terms of appointment.

Who are our governors?


Sharon Heraty - Chair of Governors


Sharon joined the governing body 29 years ago as a parent governor when both of her children attended the school.  She is now a grandmother to 5 grandchildren of primary school age, or younger.  Sharon has worked in banking and pensions throughout her adult life.  Sharon works closely with the Senior Leadership Team and often attends their weekly meetings.  She has accompanied Y6 on many of the residential trips to Hindhead and also makes costumes for our school productions. As well as being Chair of Governors Sharon is also Chair of the Finance Committee and has responsibility for Safeguarding (including child protection and safe recruitment).


Mark Laws - Vice-Chair


Mark is a parent governor and has been a member of the governing body since October 2013. In November 2015  he became vice-chair.  Mark has two boys in the school and both thoroughly enjoy their time at Martins Wood.  As part of his role Mark has been supporting the governors to respond to those elements of the Ofsted report (October 2015) that applied to them to support the school  in returning to an Ofsted judgement of at least good in the future. In addition to being Vice Chair Mark is a member of the Finance Committee and Chairs the Premises Committee (including Health and Safety).


Mrs Cheryl Lund - Staff governor


Until recently Cheryl was a Parent Governor  but in September 2016 she took up a part-time teaching position at the school, having taken a career break to be at home with her children. Cheryl has a daughter who has moved on to secondary school and a son who is in KS2. Both of her children enjoy school. As Cheryl had been on the governing body at the time of the last inspection the staff were convinced of the logic of her remaining a governor to follow through the post-Ofsted Action Plan and give stability to the governing body and she was therefore elected to represent them. In addition to being a governor Cheryl has been a key player among the Friends of Martins Wood and has chaired the group over the last few years.

Cheryl is a member of the Achievement Committee and a trustee of the Friends of Martins Wood.

In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her family and friends.  She is a keen camper, in good weather!


Dr David House - Parent governor


David has lived and worked in Stevenage for many years. His two children have grown up in the town, attending Martins Wood since 2011. David was elected to the Governing Body in 2016 and hopes to bring an action-oriented skill set to this dedicated team.

David's background is in science, studying Chemistry at University. He is passionate about education, having taught and mentored many young scientists.

David likes to keep busy with all manner of home improvements, but most of all enjoys escaping with his family to a rural retreat in Snowdonia!

David is Chair of the Achievement Committee.


Richard Wallace - Local Authority governor


Richard is a Local Authority governor and brings a wealth of experience in education to our governing body. He has lived in Stevenage since 1971, working as a teacher in a local secondary school. Richard's three children all went to schools in the town.


Richard is chair of the Human Resources Committee.



Simon Burgess - Parent governor

Simon is a lecturer at a further education college.  He believes that some of the students he teaches have been failed by our education system.  He wants to ensure that we identify children with difficulties early and prepare all children for success in a challenging economy, not just academically but as balanced people.  Simon has three children at the school in Y3, Reception and Saplings. 




Alex Tonge - Parent governor

Alex is a parent governor with two children at Martins Wood who have blossomed during their time at the school. As an Operations manager Alex has a specific interest in Health and Safety, whilst ensuring the school is getting best value within limited budgets.
As a person with a passion for the great outdoors, he appreciates the benefits outdoor play and learning can offer in conjunction with traditional academic school life. Alex is a member of the Finance and Premises committees



Natalie Stephens - Parent governor


Natalie is a newly elected Governor. More information to follow shortly. 


Lisa Winston - Co-opted governor


Tom Evans - Headteacher


As headteacher Tom attends all committee and full governing body meetings.


Andrew Carless - Deputy Headteacher, Associate governor


Andrew is an associate member of the governing body. He attends all full governing body meetings so that he has a detailed knowledge of the running of the school. He also attends meetings of the Finance and Premises committees. Andrew has voting rights in all the meetings that he attends.


Priscilla Simmons - Clerk to the governing body


Priscilla is the clerk to our governing body. She is employed through Herts for Learning and ensures that accurate minutes are kept of our full governing body meetings.


Business and other interests

Governors are required to declare at each meeting if they have a business or personal interest that may bring them into conflict with or lead to them benefiting personally from any decision made by the governing body. There are currently no such conflicts of interest within the governors.

None of our governors are on the governing body of other schools.

What do our governors do?

The purpose of the Governing Body is to ensure that the school delivers high quality education for its pupils.


Governors have four main roles:


  • To promote the welfare of children; they must consider any safeguarding guidance; they are accountable for ensuring that their school has effective child protection policies in place. Governors will receive training so that they are aware of the full extent of the nature of safeguarding and that it permeates everything the school does including, among other areas: child abuse, e-safety, Prevent policies, anti-bullying, recruitment, health and safety and whistleblowing. Governors are required to acknowledge their reading and understanding of ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ a copy of which will be available to them. Governors will also be required, rather than acknowledging that aspects of Safeguarding are happening because they have been told that this is the case, to be able to provide evidence that they have seen the safeguarding policies put into practice in the school.
  • To work with the school community to provide a clear vision, ethos and strategic direction for the school


  • To hold the Headteacher and his team to account for the performance of the school in a collegiate and challenging way to facilitate the successful achievement of every pupil


  • To secure best value by making sure that the school finances are managed in a way that achieves best value for money with maximum benefit for our children.


The governing body of Martins Wood seeks to develop positive relationships between governors and school leaders, characterised by trust, openness and transparency. The governing body systematically monitors the progress of the school towards meeting agreed development targets. Governors provide challenge and feedback for the senior leaders by asking for information and providing constructive feedback. Sharing information enables the governors to make a strong contribution to robust planning for improvement in a supportive and challenging way.


Governors also carry out a number of other important duties, which include:


  • Hearing appeals and complaints
  • Forming policy on the school’s curriculum
  • Setting standards for pupils’ attendance, behaviour and discipline
  • Making sure school buildings are welcoming and safe
  • Setting and monitoring the school’s aims and policies


If you would like to contact the Chair of Governors you can write to her  at the school and mark your envelope confidential.  Alternatively, you may wish to email her at


How does our governing body work?


The full governing body meets at least once in each term. In addition to their main meetings there are four committees which will also meet at least termly.  The committees are made up as follows;


Achievement Finance Human Resources Premises (inc. H&S)

This committee oversees standards of attainment and the academic, social and emotional progress of all pupils.



This committee meets regularly to plan and monitor spending and ensure that the school provides value for money and receives value for money from suppliers and contractors.


This committee is involved in the safe recruitment of staff. They also oversee the appraisal process for all staff, including the headteacher.



This committee plans and reviews the continued development of the school building and grounds, ensuring that the school complies fully with all relevant H&S legislation and guidance.



Membership Membership Membership Membership

David House - Chair

Cheryl Lund

Lisa Winston

Simon Burgess*

Natalie Stephens

Tom Evans



Sharon Heraty - Chair

Mark Laws

Simon Burgess

Alex Tonge

Andrew Carless

Tom Evans



Richard Wallace - Chair

Sharon Heraty

Simon Burgess

Tom Evans





Mark Laws - Chair

Sharon Heraty

Alex Tonge

Andrew Carless

Tom Evans





* Simon is also our Pupil Premium Champion.


Governor terms of office and attendance at meetings


We are required to report on governor terms of office and attendance at meetings. These are shown in the table below.


Attendance at full governing body meetings April 2017 - April 2018

  Terms of office 26/4/17 4/10/17 24/1/18 6/6/18
Sharon Heraty

Co-opted governor

25/09/15 - 24/09/19

/ / / /
Tom Evans Headteacher / / / /
Graham Lawrence

Co-opted governor

26/04/17 - 26/04/21

/ / / /
Lisa Winston

Co-opted governor

11/11/15 - 10/11/19

/ / / Ap
Cheryl Lund

Staff governor

13/2/15 - 12/2/19

/ / / /
Mark Laws

Parent governor

4/10/13 - 3/10/17

/ / Ap /
David House

Parent governor

31/3/16 - 30/3/20

/ / / /
Richard Wallace

Local authority governor

27/4/16 - 26/4/20

/ / Ap Ap
Andrew Carless

Associate member

7/10/14 - 6/10/18

/ / / /


Simon Burgess


Parent governor

26/9/16 - 25/9/20

/ / / Ap


Simon Hook

Parent governor

26/9/16 - July 2017

/ Ab