The Governing Body

 Welcome to the Governors’ page

As a Governing body we are committed to making a positive contribution to the school and your children’s education, both their learning and wellbeing. We seek to support the school community as a whole, pupils, staff and parents and maintain strong links with our local community - St Bartholomew Church and Albourne village. We share the school’s vision and values and this informs our priorities and decisions. 

All Governors are volunteers and our governing body includes representatives from parents, staff, the local community, the Local Authority and Diocese. 


What do we do?

  • We are strategic
  • We act as a critical friend in the development of the school
  • We hold the school to account and as a governing body are accountable to the whole school community
Our specific roles are to:
  • Set a clear vision, ethos and strategic direction of the school
  • Work with the headteacher, Mrs Claxton, to promote and maintain high quality education for all our pupils 
  • As a Governing body, to hold the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the pupils and the performance management of staff
  • Ensure final oversight of the financial performance of the school and the effective use of school resources

Our Governors have a range of backgrounds and skills, including business and education, and this enables us to be effective as a governing body. 

Individual Governors have no power or responsibility. It is only the full governing body that has legal duties and powers. However, all Governors share in that corporate responsibility. 

The school's direction is agreed by the Governing body, Headteacher and Senior Leadership Team, who also make sure the school is meeting its targets.

The Headteacher and staff manage the school on a day-to-day basis.

The Governors meet six times a year for full Governing body meetings. These meetings cover all matters of governance. Our flat structure removes the need for sub-committees. Working parties are actioned as necessary to address specific areas. Regular training enables governors to keep up to date with current thinking in education and church schools. Each Governor takes on a specific monitoring role for different aspects of school governance. Governors are also part of various working parties during the year; this shares the workload and helps us to be more effective.

We welcome your feedback about the school and if you have any queries about our role or require further information, please do not hesitate to speak with us or our Clerk to Governors – Yudi Irvine, via the school office or  


Gill Bradnam - Chair of Governors



Gill Bradnam - Chair of Governors
As Chair of Governors I am committed to working with my fellow governors, the headteacher and the school to: ensure high quality all round education for all our children, so that they can succeed in school and in the future; prioritise the needs of vulnerable pupils; support the wellbeing of pupils, staff and governors and encourage opportunities for the spiritual development of all in our school community.

My background is in education. I am an Educational Consultant, a former headteacher and Section 48/SIAMS inspector; with experience across all phases of education. I have been a school governor for over 15 years.


Matthew Cutress - Vice Chair of Governors
I have been on the Governing body for 20 years, 15 of these as Chair of which I have recently retired from, but I continue to serve as Vice Chair supporting the new Chair. All three of my children attended Albourne School and I felt that becoming a governor gave me an opportunity to give something back to the school.

Having retired from jointly running my family business, I am working with Sussex County Cricket Club as a disability coach.


Stuart Harper - Co-opted Governor

As a previous parent governor I have taken an active role in assisting the school covering areas of my expertise including the school premises, health and safety and accounting.  All of my 3 children have attended Albourne School since 2007.  I have been co-opted onto the governing body for a third term of office. Due to the hard work, diligence and expertise of the teachers and support staff my role as a Governor has been enjoyable and rewarding and I have received support and training from both the school and the local authority. As a business director, surveyor and contractor I have forged an excellent working relationship with the schools business manager helping to oversee improvements to the schools facilities to provide a welcoming, safe and inspiring environment.

In my time as a Governor there have been many changes and improvements that have benefited the pupils education, wellbeing and local community.  It has been a pleasure to serve in such a rewarding cohort and look forward to continuing into the future. 


Peter Griffiths - Foundation Governor

I have been on the governing body for over 5 years.  I am a County Councillor, so have a good understanding of local needs. I am an experienced School Governor specialising in safeguarding and special needs.


Geoff Zeidler - Foundation Governor

I was appointed by the ASCAT Parish in December 2017, live in Albourne and have 3 children who all went to the school.  As a result, I look forward to contributing to its success and supporting development of its Christian principles. My career has been in Finance and Business Management in both the Public and Private sectors and so expect to focus on Governance.  I am also involved in many of the local groups and so hope to help extend the school's Community links.


Amy Browne - Staff Governor

I am currently Reception teacher at Albourne CE Primary, having spent 2 years previously in Year 1.  I was fortunate to start my teaching career at Albourne, and have simply loved working here since.

As a staff governor, I want to be a voice for other members of staff, as well as provide the rest of the governing body with an honest picture of the impact from policy and decisions being made.


Ruth Schofield - Co-opted Governor
I became a Co-opted Governor early in 2020. I am keen to offer my experience of 40 years in primary education to further support this successful school. I was a class teacher for 28 years, both here and in International Schools abroad. I was Headteacher of a school in West Sussex for 12 years. Since I retired, I have continued to be involved in training the next generation of teachers.
Louise Whitmore - Parent Governor
I became a parent governor in Autumn 2020. I have two children at Albourne and I want to play a greater role in supporting the development of this wonderful school. I’ve taught History for nearly 20 years in a sixth form college and also secondary schools. I feel I am in a good position to not only use my knowledge and perspective as a parent but also have a real understanding of working in a school. I am currently taking a career break but continue to work as an A level examiner.
Sophie Jupp - Parent Governor
I became a parent governor in Autumn 2020. I currently have two children at Albourne (one in key stage 1 and one in key stage 2 of the school). I have worked in the Financial services sector since finishing university and continue to do so. I volunteered to take on this role as I wanted to help and support the school. I have a big passion for the outdoors, sport and education. I hope to bring a working parent's perspective to the team. I am very much looking forward to helping all the children currently and in the years to come have the most positive school experience.