School Community  »  Governors

Who are we? What do we do?

The Governors’ role is not about fundraising nor about cheer-leading for the school – although governors might well do these things! Their role is to provide strategic leadership and accountability in the school. This means they do not take decisions about the day to day running of the school but have a general responsibility for the effective management of the school. This includes involvement with the appointment of staff, finances, the curriculum and the school buildings.

Each governor is a member of the Governing Body. All decisions are those of the Governing Body as a whole and no governor can act independently of the rest of the Governing Body.

Much of the work of the Governing Body is done by committees which also usually meet twice a term with governors on the whole being a member of just one committee. At Pool we have the following committees:

Resources which includes Finance, Premises, Staffing, Health and Safety, 
Teaching, Learning and Assessment (TLA) 
Pupil Support
which includes Foundation (Church)

The standard term of office for a governor is four years. Whilst the Governing Body may at times look for various specific skills, there are no particular qualifications or requirements, other than a willingness to give time and commitment to the role, undertake any necessary governor training and be able to work with others as a team – although an ability to question and analyse does help!

For more information on being a governor, please see the National Governors Association Website 

Who’s who …?
The Governing Body of Pool School:

Headteachers have an automatic right to a place on the Governing Body. At least one staff governor place should be available for an elected teacher. Staff governors may not chair the Governing Body meetings, or committees. Staff governors are only excluded from discussions of the salary and conditions of employment of other members of staff.
Sally Fox was appointed Headteacher at Pool in February 2015 after being Acting Headteacher for a year and Deputy Head since 2007. She qualified as a teacher from Middlesex University in 1997 and has taught across KS1 & KS2 in several schools. She was previously the Deputy Headteacher at Fieldhead Carr Primary School, Whinmoor. In September 2019, Sally began studying for a Masters Degree in Education which focuses on research and evidence-based practice. She has a son in Y6 at primary school in the Bradford Authority.

Joanne Pellow (elected by the Local Authority) is the Chair of our Governing Body and the LA Representative. She trained and worked as a solicitor specialising in property development. She has lived in Pool since 1998. Joanne sits on the TLA and Resources committees and aims to make a positive contribution with her organisational and team management skills. (22/07/2011 - 22/07/2019. Joanne is now in her 2nd term of office)

Luisa Di Palma-Heath (elected by the staff) is currently Acting Deputy Headteacher and has been teaching at Pool C of E since September 2014. She has responsibility for Maths and is one of the school's designated child protection officers. She sits on the TLA Committee and is the school's official Staff Representative on the Governing Body. (21/09/17 - 21/09/2021)

Alison Finlay (elected by the Governing Body) is the school's Business Manager and is an Associate Governor. She has worked within the education authority and the Otley, Pool and Bramhope family of schools since 2004. She sits on, and has voting rights on, the Resources sub-committee. (20/09/2018 - 30/09/2019) 

Richard Parker (elected by the Governing Body) ('Mr P'), who sits on the Resources Committee, was a teacher at our school for 37 years, retiring in 2010. For 15 years, between 1995 and 2010, he was the Teacher Governor of the school and on retirement, was invited to be an Associate Governor until his current role of Co-opted Representative. Richard enjoyed every year of his teaching appointment at Pool CE School and his involvement in the broader community of Pool Village, moving to live in the village in 2001. He is Chair of the Pool Recreation Ground Management Committee (RGMC), Chair of the Pool Feast Committee, a Pool Parish Councillor and member of the congregation of Pool St Wilfrid's Parish Church. Richard is a frequent visitor to the school and since retiring has been pleased to accompany pupils and their teachers on residential visits. Apart from his activities within the village, Richard enjoys the cinema, choral singing, theatre, sport, walking and the company of his three grandchildren. (18/11/2018 - 30/11/2022)

Sharland Snow (appointed by the Ripon Diocesan Board of Education) works at Leeds City Centre Citizens Advice Bureau and her children attended Pool many years ago! She is also a Foundation Representative and is part of the Pupil Support Committee. (02/12/2010 - 31/12/2019. Sharland is in her 3rd term of office)

Moira Keith (appointed by the Ripon Diocesan Board of Education) recently retired after being a Clinical Physiotherapy Manager for Neurosciences at Chapel Allerton Hospital. She is also one of our Foundation Representatives, who is part of the Pupil Support Committee. (01/09/2017 - 31/08/2021. Moira is in her 3rd term of office)

Vikki Farrar (elected by the Parents) is an Underwriting Delivery Manager with 30 years experience in financial services in insurance and IT software. She is a Prince 2 practitioner in project management and ITIL certified. Vikki is an active member of the PTA and also has a daughter in KS2. She sits on the TLA Committee.  (14/10/2016 - 14/10/2020)

John Welsh (elected by the Governing Body) is the former Head of Telephony and Conferencing Service for Lloyds Banking Group. He retired from Lloyds at the end of 2016 after 27 years service.   He has an MBA from the Cranfield School of Management and has over 35 years of experience in computing technologies, finance and general management with a number of different companies. He lives in Guiseley with his wife and two grown-up children. He is seeking to use his knowledge and experience to support the school in the achievement of its Mission Statement and Vision. (01/01/2017 - 01/01/2021)

Janice Wardle (appointed by the Leeds Diocesan Board of Education) studied at Leeds University for a BA Honours degree and then did a PGCE in Primary Education. During her career she taught every age-group from Reception to Year 6. For the last sixteen years of her career she taught Year 6 at Holy Trinity  Church of England Primary School in Burnley, Lancashire; and for the last seven of these years, was Deputy Head and Literacy Co-ordinator. As part of her role, she also mentored student teachers and monitored support staff before retiring in 2006. (01/02/2017 - 01/02/2021)

Janice has a son, a daughter and five grandchildren. In 2015 she and her husband moved to Pool where her daughter lives and her two granddaughters attend Pool School. She has been a regular volunteer since 2015, helping with guided reading in Year 2 and Reception.

Debbie Hillerby (elected by the Governing Body) is a co-opted member of the Governing Body. She is currently School Business Manager at another Leeds Primary school and therefore brings to our Governing Body a wealth of experience in financial and HR procedures. She is also currently developing knowledge and skills in Health and Safety through the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH). Debbie has 3 daughters, 2 of whom have left university, with the youngest starting in September (08/02/17 - 08/02/21)

Sarah Mather (elected by the Governing Body) is an associate member of the Governing Body. She is a teacher who has worked with adults and children in schools, colleges and in the community. She has three grown-up daughters who all attended Pool School. (20/09/18 - 30/09/2019)

Pat Featherstone (elected by the Governing Body) is a co-opted member of the Governing Body. She is a Registered Nurse who trained at St James’s Hospital Leeds and has a BSC (Hons) in nursing and an MA in Independent Healthcare practice. She has worked for many years in the NHS, most recently as a Deputy Director for Bradford PCT, commissioning services for people with very complex care needs and those at end of life. She also had responsibility for safeguarding adults and represented the PCT on the safeguarding adults citywide multi-agency committee. She is now working independently as a healthcare consultant and also as a Specialist Advisor for the Care Quality Commission (CQC). She has lived in Pool for six years with her husband and has two adult children and two grandchildren. (26/09/2018 - 30/09/2022)

Sarah Mallinson (elected by the Parents) Sarah qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 2009. She trained with RSM in Leeds, and is now a Senior Manager in Audit. She works with a range of corporate clients but also specialises in the Charities and Education sector. Sarah has been an active member of the PTA and has a daughter in KS1. (01/01/2019 - 31/12/2023)

Sarah Parker (elected by the Governing Body) Sarah qualified as a secondary school English teacher in 1997 and has taught in a variety of schools across the UK since then. She is currently a Deputy Head at an independent school in Harrogate and has a particular interest in pastoral welfare and safeguarding. (20/03/2019 - 20/03/2023) 

Nicola Berry (elected by the Governing Body) (10/07/19 - 10/07/2023) - Nicola has a wide and varied working background. Her current role is working in the public sector in partnership with the NHS in a 24/7 acute hospital in Wakefield. Working for the facilities company, the experience she has brings together health and safety in the workplace, procuring the best deals in relation to services and contracts along with the customer feedback / experience of all who visit the hospital. She had experience working with schools in the Wakefield district through the same facilities company, providing the best deal possible for the schools in terms of cleaning, catering and maintenance through a framework. She is a mother to 3 primary school children who attend school in Horsforth and wanted to provide her time, experience and expertise to a school in the local area.

Jatinder Ubhi (elected by the Governing Body) (10/07/19 - 10/07/2023) - more info to follow

Chris Walker (elected by the Governing Body) (20/07/19 - 20/07/2023) - Having been a teacher himself, Chris is a strong believer in providing children with the best possible educational opportunities. As well as a background in education, Chris also worked as a civil servant within the Department of Health. He is currently working back in the educational field in a number of schools within North Yorkshire. He aims to bring the skills and experience he's accrued over a number of years to support the Governing Body, in providing the children at Pool-in-Wharfedale CE Primary School with the best possible education.

Simon Walker (elected by the Governing Body) (18/11/2018 - 24/07/2019) Term ended

Kirsty Sutton (elected by the Governing Body) (18/11/2014 - 30/12/2018) Term ended

Penny Netherwood (elected by the Parents) (25/01/2017 - 25/01/2021) Resigned December 2018

Helen Chadwick (elected by the Governing Body) (18/11/2014 - 18/11/2018) Resigned September 2018

Matt Pepper (elected by the Governing Body) (23/09/2015 - 23/09/2019) Resigned April 2018

Beth Furnival (elected by the staff) (14/10/2016 - 14/10/2020) Resigned September 2017 (Maternity Leave)

Nicola Wood (elected by the Governing Body)  (21/09/2016 - 21/09/2020) Resigned May 2017

Kirsty Bellamy (appointed by the Governing Body) (23/09/2015-23/09/2019) Resigned September 2016

Register of Interests

Luisa Di Palma-Heath and Alison Finlay are also members of staff.
Debbie Hillerby's partner is the Director of Monks Security Ltd. She is not employed by or linked financially to this company in any way.  

To enable our Governors to be an active part of our school and well-known to our pupils, they are assigned to classes and stay with that class throughout their school journey at Pool. The Governors often come into school to work alongside the children; accompany them on school trips and attend class and whole school assemblies or Collective Worship.    

Rec Governors: Jatinder Ubhi and Chris Walker
Y1 Governor: Richard Parker and Vikki Farrar
Y2 Governors: Janice Wardle and Nicola Berry
Y3 Governor: Debbie Hillerby and Sarah Mallinson
Y4 Governors: Pat Featherstone and Sarah Parker
Y5 Governors: Moira Keith and John Welsh
Y6 Governors: Joanne Pellow and Sharland Snow
How to Contact a Governor

The school Governing Body is working hard in partnership with staff and parents to ensure that the school and pupils reach their full potential. We welcome constructive feedback and are keen to respond to any concerns.

If you wish to discuss your child, we would encourage you to speak directly with your child's class teacher, or with the Headteacher, in the first instance.

Some governors have children in the school and would be happy to be approached in the playground. The Governing Body is also represented at parents' evenings and school events. Alternatively, please ring the school office on 0113 2843151 and a message can be passed on.
Pool-in-Wharfedale CE Primary School Arthington Lane, Pool-in-Wharfedale, Otley, LS21 1LG