Meet the Governors
The Governing Body is responsible for policy making, staff recruitment and retention and, along with the Headteacher, ensures that the school is an excellent environment for all our pupils. The Governors use their variety of experience to positively influence the curriculum, finance, staffing, buildings, and other school issues. They do this through meetings, visits and discussions with parents, the Area Education Office and Government officials. To find out more about each Governor, please scroll down the page to read their profiles.
Chair of Governors: Mr Andrew Riddell
Vice Chair of Governors: Mrs Naomi Clout
Local Authority Governor: Mr Andrew Riddell
Co-Opted Governor: Mr Stephen Taylor
Co-Opted Governor: Mrs Naomi Clout
Co-Opted Governor: Ms Jo Penny
Co-Opted Governor: Mrs Sophie Del Castro
Co-Opted Governor: Mr Richard Parks
Parent Governor: Mr Kevin Noble
Parent Governor: Mrs Kate Williams
Staff Governor: Miss Charmaine Coleman
Headteacher (Ex-Officio): Mrs Rebecca Latham-Parsons
Clerk: Susannah Adams
LEA Governor, Chair of Governors and Technical Director in the packing industry
I was appointed as LEA governor to the school in 2018 and was appointed chair in 2021. I have lived in the village for the last 25 years and both my children attended SVPS for the whole of their primary school careers. During that time, I also served as a parent governor.
I am now semi-retired having worked in the packaging industry on the manufacturing side for 40 years finishing up as technical director responsible for project management, buying new equipment and productivity improvement for a number of factories across the UK.
Now that I am retired, I am able to find time to support the school as a governor and pursue other local interests.
Vice Chair of Governors, Chair of Curriculum and Learning Committee and Medical Writer (freelance)
I have been a governor at Sutton Valence Primary School since 2018 and became Chair of the Curriculum and Learning Committee in 2020 and Vice Chair in 2021. I have 3 Children, Rory (14), Jennifer (12) and Douglas (12) who all went to Sutton Valence Primary School. My dad and I did too, so I have an emotional attachment to the school.
After completing a degree in biophysics and a PhD in protein crystallography, I worked as a research scientist at Imperial College London. I later moved into clinical research as a medical writer. I report clinical trials for the regulatory authorities who license the medicines. This has equipped me for reading, analysing and questioning the school plans and policies. I enjoy using my experience to support the school’s vision. Being a governor also gives me new learning experiences and wider challenges. I am passionate about the vision to inspire all children to seek out knowledge and to love learning. I love the importance placed on the children’s confidence and self-knowledge through adventure. The dedicated and remarkable staff always try their hardest for the children. This motivates me as a governor. A key priority for the Curriculum and Learning Committee this year is to monitor the impact of the strategies for behaviour and learning. Other priorities include monitoring the impact of the new and embedding wider curriculum, for example, computing and music, as well as the core curriculum subjects of maths, reading and writing.
Co‑opted Governor, Chair of Finance, Resources and Personnel Committee and Company MD Winterwood Farms Ltd.
I have been a Governor at SVPS since 2018 and became Chair of the Finance Committee in 2021. I have lived within a couple of miles of the school for over 35 years and had a grandson at the school until 2020.
Outside the school role, our business has a network of over 30 Companies in Poland, France and South Africa, employing over 5,000 people. Our business model is to grow soft fruit around the world and then import to our main packhouse on the border of Sutton Valence and East Sutton. The packhouse is the largest dedicated soft fruit packhouse in the UK where we employ over 300 people all year round. We are the largest UK suppliers of Blueberries to the multiples and the largest Blueberry grower in Europe. The Winterwood packhouse packs around 20,000 tonnes per annum into around 60 million packs.
In recent times COVID provided challenges, but we were fortunate that people still chose to eat healthily. Sadly, BREXIT related issues mean we cannot export fruit anymore, and lack of labour has meant a phased reduction in what we grow here as there are not enough pickers. School faces equivalent challenges and I hope that my experiences are useful when navigating the day-to-day business of running the school.
Co-opted Governor, Curriculum and Learning Committee and enjoying an active retirement
Many years ago, I started my working life as a primary school teacher in South East London following my Education Degree from Avery Hill, Eltham. I thoroughly enjoyed teaching but I also discovered I liked working with adults too. I successfully applied to join the graduate recruitment scheme in the then Inland Revenue and have had a long and varied career from being a Tax Inspector to a District Inspector and finally a Senior Civil Servant. Along the way I moved to Sutton Valence with my husband Peter and in 2011 we were joined by our Cocker Spaniel, Smudge. I stopped working in 2019 and have enjoyed many hours on our allotment, playing tennis at Bearsted Tennis Club, singing with Sutton Valence Choral Society and walking Smudge of course.
I was interested in giving something back to the community when I was approached to become a co‑opted governor in July 2021. Primary school teaching has certainly changed since I was teaching but fortunately the enthusiasm of the children to learn and the hard work and dedication of all the school’s staff has not.
Parent Governor, Curriculum and Learning Committee and Training and Development and Project Director Regeneration at The Hyde Group
After completing a degree in Biology, I choose a completely different career direction and ended up working for a housing association. Over the years I have worked primarily in stakeholder management, research and strategy and development. This has enabled me to develop a multitude of skills, such as strategic planning, financial appraisals and budget setting as well as project management, all of which are very useful in my role as a parent Governor.
Education is very important to me and I have two children at the school myself, but it is also just as important to me that the children are happy, confident, keen to learn with strong friendship groups.
Parent Governor, Finance, resources and Personnel Committee and Director of People at a care charity
I joined the governors late in the Summer Term of 2022 and have a child in Year 1. I have spent my professional life working in Human Resources, Education and Development and organisational development, payroll and health & safety, mainly in charity, educational, local authorities and central government sectors. Currently, I am a Director of People, working for a large care charity in London. Outside work, most of my time is spent with my daughter, wife and the various pets we collected over the years, while being a big SciFi fan.
Working in Human Resources, I see first-hand the benefits of people having a good education, able to challenge themselves, having life skills and being passionate about their beliefs. As Whitney Houston said (or sang), ‘children are our future’, so when the opportunity to become a governor arose, I did not hesitate.
I feel it important to support our excellent staff and management, the parents and the school to ensure we remain a fantastic school, working together and with the community, continually improving and learning, while supporting each other and putting the interests of the pupils at the forefront of everything we do.
Co-Opted Governor, Curriculum and Learning Committee and Head of Delivery Analysis, NatWest Group
Newly appointed (September 2022) co-opted governor on the Curriculum and Learning Committee. Father to one daughter who started Sutton Valence Primary School with the 2022 intake.
Following completion of a BA Business and Finance degree at Leicester Business School, I spent 6 years with Coutts Nottingham Office, moving to Maidstone when I started with Coutts Private Office as a Wealth Analyst in London in 2009. I became a Business Analyst in 2013 and Head of Delivery Analysis in 2019. I run a team of Business Analysts effecting technology change across the bank.
My professional history and natural curiosity provide an analytical foundation, coupled with a somewhat selfish motivation in the success of the school for my daughter’s education. Upon reviewing the school for my daughter’s application, I felt the strong sense of community and genuine determination to provide the best education for all children, while embedding values commensurate with my own. I look forward to utilising my skills and experience to guide the continuous improvement of the school and help realise the potential of the young individuals we nurture.
Click here for Details of Governance 2021/22
Click here for Attendance Register for 2022/23