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governing board

commitment - dedication - support

The Governing Body is a keen, enthusiastic and very supportive group of people who take their statutory responsibilities for the school very seriously. The group is formed from parents, staff, members of the local community and one Local Authority representative. Through their regular visits, the governors become familiar with the life of the school and its philosophy. They share the whole school vision for development and work hard to ensure continuous improvement.

The three core strategic functions of the Governing Board are:

  1. Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;

  2. Holding the Headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils, and the performance management of staff; and

  3. Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.

Paddy Beels OBE, Chair of Governors

As a mum of 4 grown up children, plus 2 more younger ones, grandma of 8 grand children and now retired Headteacher of Wingate Nursery School, I have lived my life with a passion for raising children – happy, confident, independent, creative and curious children. Dedicated to Childhoods spent wallowing in Nature, I have shared my thinking over many years with Early Years Educators throughout the world. But my work and my heart has belonged here in Wingate, and being a Governor here offers the opportunity to extend my involvement and commitment with this community into new directions.

Ruth Williamson, Vice Chair

My first experience at Wingate was back in 2003 as a student, where I was able to gain experience of life in a nursery school, before starting my teaching career in Durham. Following 7 years teaching in the early years, I was Headteacher at a school in Sunderland for 8 years, before it sadly closed following a lengthy battle to keep my much loved and well respected school open. I live with her partner, Danny, two dogs, Lexi and Lola and 3 horses, Lacey, Spring and Oreo. And now I’m excited to be able to share my passion for early years as a governor with Wingate.

Paul White, Co-opted Governor

I am a Governance Professional who was previously Clerk to the Governing Body of Wingate Nursery School as well as a number of other schools in County Durham. I am now employed by a Multi Academy Trust with responsibility for governance, policies, website compliance and GDPR. During my time as clerk, I was inspired by the outstanding work being carried out at the Nursery and by the passion of the Staff and Governors. I believe that getting governance right is important because of the significant impact it has on the quality of educational provision and the opportunity and life chances of children.

Nichola Hesslewood, Staff Governor

My loves in life are the outdoors, music and family time. I love my local area and spend most of my spare time exploring local beaches and woodland with my family. As the Early Years Teacher at Wingate Community Nursery School, I work alongside a team of educators, delivering creative, child-led learning in our unique ‘Wingate way’.  Our Nursery School really is a very special place and it continues to be so because of the shared vision of our team, parents, governors and the wider community.  I love being part of the decision-making and monitoring that keeps our all-important School Values at the heart of everything we do. 

Amanda Taylor-Saunders, Co-opted Governor

Awaiting profile

Emma Johnson, Local Authority Governor
Nina O'Brien, Parent Governor

Awaiting Profile

Kathryn Lapworth, Parent Governor

Awaiting Profile

The Governing Board Structure 2023-24
Governor Attendance 2023-24

Schools are required to display a record of Governor attendance at meetings each academic year.

✓         attended the meeting
A/A     apologies sent and accepted at the meeting
DNA    did not attend
n/a     not expected to attend - not a member of the committee

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Archived Attendance Records
Governor Declaration of Interests 
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