St Gabriel’s Catholic Primary School – Local Governing Body

Iain Sim – Community Governor

Chair of the Governing Body
Link Governor for Pupil Premium

Iain was the former Chief Executive of a local company, which undertook a range of work in the local community and worked with St Gabriel’s on some projects. He brings a range of professional skills and experience to the role of local governor. In his spare time he enjoys travel, sport and music.

Iain says, “I became a governor because I wanted to be part of a team, helping young people fulfil their potential in life. I am happy to be the link governor for pupil premium as I am passionate about ensuring all children have an equal right to succeed.
My vision for the future is that St Gabriel’s is the best school that it can be and the school of choice for parents living in the local community.”

Lindsay Phelps – Ex Officio Headteacher

Lindsay says “I am delighted to welcome you to St Gabriel’s Catholic Primary School. We are proud to be an inclusive school with a determination to provide excellent education for all the children in our care. As a Catholic School, we place Christ at the very centre of our learning and we encourage children to be the very best that they can be; growing, learning and loving in a safe and secure way.

In partnership between home, school, parish and community, we are dedicated to working together to develop children who achieve spiritually, academically, socially and emotionally. We encourage our pupils to try new things, to be creative, to be resilient and to constantly strive to improve, as whatever we do, we do for the glory of God. Our hard working staff are devoted to the families of St Gabriel’s and relationships with our parents are positive and supportive.

We have a strong pastoral link, enabling our families to work closely with school, achieving the best outcomes for all. We value school improvement and are committed to providing the highest quality teaching possible to allow successful lifelong learning to take place. Together we celebrate the many successes of our school and invite you to come and witness them for yourself”.

Lisa-Marie Berry – Parent Governor

Link Governor for Safeguarding

Lisa became a parent governor at St Gabriel’s just over a year ago after wishing to learn
more about the school and be involved in the discussions and decision making processes
regarding the children.

Lisa said “I became a school governor because of my passion and interest in providing
an inclusive provision for all children to access and thrive in education”.

Lisa has a BA honours degree in early childhood studies and brings a wealth of knowledge
that has been built up during her 17 years working as an early years leader in the local
community. She is an active parishioner and has built up strong relationships with other
parents and in the wider communities.

Jim Griffin, Bed (Chem), M I Chem E – Foundation Governor

Link Governor for Catholic Standards

Jim has been a member of the governing body at St Gabriel’s for the past 2 years. He
brings the experience of former Lay Inspector and Lead Inspector for Ofsted for 13
years to the role. In his spare time he enjoys football scouting and has an interest in current
affairs and education

Jim says, “I thought that my experience of school inspection and in the chemical industry
gave me insights and suggestions that would be useful to the school. My wife taught at the
school and we attend the local parish church.

My vision for the future of the school is to improve the pupils’ achievements. I understand
the importance of good governance within a school, providing challenge and support centred on improving pupils’ achievements, in a friendly and supportive manner.”

Julia Marshall – Staff Governor

Link Governor for Personal Development (including Well-being)

Julia has been a Governor at St Gabriel’s for over 10 years and has a BTEC Higher National Award in Accountancy. She brings her professional and volunteering experience as an
Accountancy Clerk, and Cub Scout and Venture Scout leader to the governing body. She
has an interest in Science and Nature, Piano and Music in general and Art and Design

Julia says, “My family have been connected with St Gabriel’s since the school opened in
1967, and I have lived within a five minute walk of the school gates for three decades. I
began by volunteering in the school and seven years later joined the staff. There is an
outdoor garden dedicated to my father-in-law for the voluntary work he did as part of the
school chaplaincy team. My son attended St Gabriel’s in the 1990s and my two great nieces are current pupils.

Becoming a governor meant I could expand my role and play a larger part in the school’s
development in a supportive yet challenging way, ensuring that our school and wider
community can be the best it can be. I have seen many changes over the last thirty years,
the arrival and departure of numerous staff and pupils, curriculum and policy changes, and
changes driven by social development. Our school is experiencing a very exciting time as
we move towards providing those in our care with an outstanding level of education that will
provide them with the skills to be the citizens of the future who respect and love the world in
which they live. I am very proud to be able to support each individual as they ‘Learn and
Love on their journey with Jesus’.”

Leigh O’Grady – Parent Governor

Link Governor for Quality of Education

Leigh has been a Governor at St Gabriel’s for a year. She offers a parent’s point of view as
well as bringing her professional experience as a Chartered Accountant with experience
working in a number of different businesses and roles to the governing body. When she isn’t working or helping at the school she enjoys sharing adventures with her family, reading and travel.

Leigh says, “I went to St Gabriel’s as a child and have some lifelong friends from my class.
My son attends the school and we live in the area so I know what the community is like. I
have always loved reading, so I was really keen to help with this in school. It is lovely getting to know the children in Reception and seeing them grown in confidence with their reading throughout the year.

When the opportunity arose to apply to be a parent governor I thought it would be nice to
offer something back and help where I can. I believe St Gabriel’s will continue to play an
important part in the community and provide a caring environment for its pupils, and I look
forward to seeing how the plans in the pipeline for the school develop.”

Terence Waldron, BA (Hons) – Foundation Governor

Terence became a Governor at St Gabriel’s four years ago after having been approached by the previous headteacher who he had known since schooldays. His work in public relations
for one of Teesside’s major industrial employers involves effective internal and external
communications. He is on the governing body of the local community centre in Grangetown
and is Chair of a community support group in Billingham. In his spare time he enjoys watching football, tennis, current affairs, history and he is a dog owner.

Terence says, “Although I don’t live or work in the community, I know the area where the
school is situated well and would frequently accompany an elderly aunt to Mass at St
Gabriel’s towards the end of her life. I had a Catholic education at St Thomas More,
Newlands and St Mary’s College.

St Gabriel’s is moving along the right lines and should continue to seek to improve,
particularly in those areas where it has traditionally been weaker. I see it as particularly
important from a pupil perspective, and future jobs availability, to emphasise the importance of STEM subjects to pupils.”