Henry Cavendish Primary School

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Governance

Who We Are, What We Do

Governors are the largest volunteer force in the country. Every school has a governing body, made up of members of staff, members of the local community, parents of children at the school and people appointed by the local authority. At Henry Cavendish, as with every school in the UK, we need to be aware of what’s going on in the school, what’s working and should be encouraged and, perhaps more importantly, what isn’t working and needs to change. Our role is to support and challenge Mr Apsley and his senior leadership team. We’re not there to rubber stamp decisions, and we have to ask difficult questions and discuss issues so that we arrive at sensible and constructive outcomes which will help Henry Cavendish maintain its high standards and continue moving forward. It is important we get things right. How we do our job affects the interests of pupils, staff morale and how the school is seen by parents and others in the community.

We are legally required to:

  • Set strategic direction, policies and objectives
  • Approve the school budget
  • Review progress against the school’s budget and objectives
  • Appoint, challenge and support the Headteacher

 

We are not responsible for the day-to-day running of the school. That is entirely down to the Mr Apsley and his Senior Leadership Team.


If you have a question or a problem you should first talk to your child’s class teacher, the office staff or the Headteacher. If you don’t feel able to talk to any of the school staff and have something that’s on your mind, then please do contact us. You can send us an email to gbody@henrycavendish.co.uk.

 

From June 2014 the Governing Body consists of 15 members and include:

  • 4 parent governors – elected by parents of children attending Henry Cavendish Primary School
  • 1 LA governor – appointed by the London Borough of Lambeth
  • 1 Headteacher – ex-officio
  • 1 staff governor – elected by school staff
  • 8 co-opted governors – elected by the Governing Body

Meet the Governors -  Statements

Alice Evans

I have two children at the Balham site. I am a responsible investment leader for an asset management group, where I focus on social issues in the corporate sector such as human rights and public health. I sit on a number of investment industry committees and am a member of a funding panel within the National Institute of Health Research.

 

Charlaine Nkum

I am a Human Resource Advisor, currently specialising in Equalities, Diversity and Inclusion. I currently work in the Public Sector. As a governor, I aim to support the Pupil Premium agenda, ensuring that we close gaps where possible and continue to make resources accessible and inclusive for every child within our school.  I am currently a member of the National Association of Schools and Clerks.

 

Gay Wenban-Smith

I am an economist working in the energy sector and live in Clapham. I am an experienced school governor, and I am active in trying to improve governor understanding and input in support of pupil achievement and wellbeing. Currently I am a member of Lambeth Schools Forum, an observer on the Lambeth Schools Partnership Board, and Chair of the Lambeth Governors Forum Executive.

 

Halema Askar

I have two children at Henry Cavendish and also attended the school as a child. I have gained knowledge from my line of work, involved in initiatives to support Diversity, Equality and Inclusion, and  as a parent governor, feel empowered to utilise this, to help children with their personal  development, academic attainment and overall school experience.  In addition, I work in the financial services business and can therefore also bring my professional experience to the Governing Body.

 

Lorna

Burg

I have worked at Henry Cavendish for the last 25 years and both of my sons attended Henry Cavendish. I was part of the recruitment panel for the last 2 headships.  I enjoy being a governor and supporting the strategic direction of our school. I believe that every child should have the best start to their learning journey.

 

Mark Hayhurst 

I work in property development solving complex issues, driving efficiencies and embracing new methods of working making use of modern technologies where necessary to achieve this. I have two boys at Balham and am the Governor lead on Health and Safety. I am passionate about the school environment, its buildings and the positive impact on those who attend the school. Key to this is providing everyone with a fantastic environment to allow teachers and children to focus on delivery and learning.

 

Matthew Apsley

My career experience is varied: I have taught the vast majority of primary year groups and have extensive Headship experience, including leading both private and maintained schools. I believe we are all learners and should be constantly looking to develop and improve what we do and what we offer.

 

Ruth

Knox

I am a parent of two Henry Cavendish children, and have seen them grow up through the school from Saplings to Year 6.  As a Governor, I help the school reflect the views and values of parents in their decision making. My particular interests lie in how the school supports children, parents and carers with Year 6 transition and I was delighted to see more help coming from the school this year.

 

Jack Jervoise 

I work in small businesses and start-ups, leading Finance teams, and have lived locally for 9 years in Clapham and Wandsworth. I am excited to bring what I’ve learnt in the world of SMEs, and as a chartered accountant, to support the school in providing every child with an outstanding education.

Governors Terms of Office

Headteacher and Staff Governor

Parent Governors

Local Authority Governor

Co-Opted Governors

Associate Members

Matthew Apsley, Headteacher,
ex officio

Halema Askar

Term:

8 November 2022 to

7 October 2026

Elinor Hull

Vice Chair

Chair of Resources

Term:

From 18 October 2021 as LA Governor

to 11 June 2025

Gay Wenban-Smith

Chair of Governors

Term:

From 19 May 2022 to 18 May 2026

Michelle Raistrick

Philippa White

Term:

30 November 2023 to

29 November 2027

Lucy Williams 

Term:

8 November 2022 to

7 October 2026

 

 

Lorna Burg

Term: 

From 19 May 2022 to 18 May 2026

Jennifer Livens

 

Alice Evans

Term:

28 February 2020

to 27 February 2024

 

Matt Bacon

Term:

4 January 2023 to

3 January 2027

 

 

Ruth Knox

Term: 23 April 2020 to 22 April 2024

 

Charlaine Nkum

1 November 2021 to 31 October 2025

 

   

Mark Hayhurst

26 June 2023 to 25 June 2027

 
   

John Donnelly

26 June 2023 to 25 June 2027

 
   

Jack Jervoise 

5 February 2023 to 4 February 2027

 

Governing Board Committees

Most of our formal work is done in full Governing Body meetings, held once a term. We also have four small sub committees.

 

Performance Management Committee

The Performance Management Committee meets to set targets for the Head and leadership team and assess their performance against them. The Committee makes recommendations to the Pay Committee.

 

Pay Committee

The Pay Committee supports the Governing Body in fulfilling its statutory obligations regarding pay. Its members include the members of the Performance Management Committee plus one or two other governors, and its duties include putting into effect the school’s pay policy, recommending the annual pay budget and keeping abreast of developments in the field. It will also agree the pay progression for the senior leadership team of the school.

 

Finance Committee

The Finance Committee meets at least once a term to review and approve the annual budget. They also look at long term financial plans for the school, reflecting school priorities including staffing plans and plans relating to the repair, maintenance and development of the premises and to recommend action on these plans to the Governing Body.

 

Governing Body Business Interest – Updated December 2023

Governor Type

Nature of Pecuniary Interest

Term of Office Ends

Parent (4)

Alice Evans

Co-head of Responsible Investment at BMO Global Asset Management

February 2024

Ruth Knox

London Borough of Merton

Head of Opposition Leader's Office

March 2024

Helema Askar

Mortgage Advisor - NatWest Group

October 2026

Lucy Williams

Senior HR Administrator - Anchor Tutors

October 2026

LA (1)

Elinor Hull

Post Office Ltd – Chief Operations Officer
Quantum Exploring Ltd - Director

June 2022

Headteacher (1)

Matthew Apsley

No interest to declare

Ex Officio

Staff (1)

Philippa White

 

November 2027

Co-opted (8)

 

 

Gay Wenban-Smith

Self Employed 

Governor at King's Avenue School

May 2026

Lorna Burg

One interest declared

Governor at Henry Fawcett Primary School

May 2026

Matthew Bacon

Management Consultant - Ernst & Young LLP

February 2027

Charlaine NkumRoyal Borough of Kensington & ChelseaOctober 2025
Mark Hayhurst

Property Develpment - Hayhurst Estates Ltd (Director)

 

Associate Members (2)

Michelle Raistrick

One interest declared

NA

Jennifer Hanks

No interest to declare

NA

Mark Hayhurst

Property Develpment - Hayhurst Estates Ltd (Director)

 

 

George Morley - co-opted governor, resigned in July 2023

Rebecca Mwilla - staff governor, resigned in November 2023

Reena Virdee - co-opted govenor, end of term in November 2023

Governing Body Minutes of Meetings

Attendance - Full Governing Body Meetings

Instrument of Governance

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