This section gives you an overview of why the Governing Body exists, who we are and what we do. We welcome any interest in our work and if you would like to know more, have specific questions, or are interested in becoming a school governor then please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Nigel Smith
Chair of Governors

Why Are We Here?

School governors have general responsibility for the conduct and performance of the school. We do this through three core responsibilities:

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction (as outlined by the National Governors' Association);
  • Holding the Executive Headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils; and
  • Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.

Governors are not expected to be involved in the detail of the day-to-day management of the school – this is the responsibility of the Executive Headteacher and senior leadership team. The Governing Body works in partnership with them, acting as 'critical friends', to support and challenge the work of the school. In practice this means continually monitoring and evaluating the work of the school against agreed targets and actions, setting and agreeing policies.

Our school is an Academy within a multi-academy trust – the Diocese of Leicester Academies Trust (DLAT) whose Board are ultimately responsible for the school. Our local Governing Body is a DLAT committee and responsibility has been delegated to us by the DLAT directors to:

  • Promote high standards of educational achievement, strategic planning and financial control;
  • Ensure that the school has identified what the Christian ethos means for the school in its context and community;
  • Ensure the school meets statutory requirements.

For more information, see the Diocese of Leicester Acadamies Trust website (external link).

Who Are We?

Our governors are representative of all the groups involved in our school: staff, parents, local community and Church. They are all volunteers who give their time, energy and skills free of charge to benefit the children of our school. The number and type of Governors is determined in our Memorandum of Understanding from the DLAT. The term of office is four years. We currently have twelve governors comprised of:

  • Six Director-appointed governors, appointed by the Directors of the Diocese of Leicester Academy Trust (DLAT);
  • Two staff governors, elected by the staff at our school;
  • Two parent governors, elected by parents of the school;
  • Two ex-officio members (there by nature of their job) – the Executive Headteacher and the Vicar.

We have a Clerk to Governors who is paid to carry out administrative tasks for governor business.

What Do We Do?

The whole local Governing Body meets once per term, but we manage a lot of work through our Committees and every Governor is a member of at least one Committee. The membership of each committee and their terms of reference are reviewed every year. Our committees are:

  • Finance, Pay and Personnel - where we review staffing, including staff well being and recruitment when necessary, set and monitor the annual budget and approve expenditure.
  • Estates and Health & Safety - where we check health and safety around the school site, and look at the learning environment for the children, maintenance and development of our buildings.
  • Standards and Values - where we look at pupil progress and attainment, the curriculum, school improvement and consider the church school distinctiveness of our school. This Committee is currently run jointly and made up of both Waltham and Redmile governors.
  • Extended Schools - which monitors the running of the Pre-school and After School Club.
  • Joint Committee - which oversees the Executive Headteacher partnership with Redmile.

From time to time, we also form working groups to work on specific strategic projects as they arise, eg. Headteacher recruitment.

School Visits and Learning Walks

Governor visits allow us to see the school at work, gain relevant knowledge and understanding to be able to perform our governing role effectively and fulfil our monitoring functions. We set out a programme of governor visits for every year, each focused on a particular subject and undertaken by the relevant subject link governor. In practice, many of our governors also frequently attend other activities going on in the school to ensure that they know the school well. They also accompany the staff and children on school visits.

Governor Training

We have a governor responsible for training and attend regular training and development events to support us in our role as governors, organised by the Governor Development Service, the DLAT and within school.

Partnership Links

We work in close partnership with the DLAT Directors who attend our meetings and offer guidance and support when required. We also work with other governing bodies around our local area which helps to inform our strategic work as well allowing us to broaden our knowledge by exchanging experiences with governors in settings similar to ours.

Governing Body Members

Name of Governor Type of Governor
Nigel Smith Chair of Governors, Local Governor
Anna Butler Vice-Chair of Governors, Local Governor
Mike Alexander Local Governor
John Barr Local Governor (incumbent)
Debra Meakin Local Governor
Andrew Quine Parent Governor
Julie Hopkins Executive Headteacher
Hollie Geeson Deputy Headteacher
Denise Garnett Staff Governor
Helen Edwards Co-opted Governor
Rosie Thompson Clerk

All of our Governors have an enhanced DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check.

Also see:

Governor Profiles

Mr Mike Alexander

I have lived in Waltham since 1996, and have been a foundation governor for over ten years. I am a qualified accountant, and have recently retired after working in the NHS for the past 33 years. I am licensed as a Church of England Reader, and am lay chair of Waltham Parochial Church Council. With my wife Chris, I run a monthly Messy Church which is a fresh expression of church offering something for everyone - young and old and in between... it’s a creative, fun and friendly way of exploring faith and celebrating and praising God. I also help at the local Beaver Scout group. I am married with a 18 year old son who is a former pupil of the school .

Mrs Anna Butler

I have lived in Waltham for the last 18 months with my husband, son and two step children. I work for a multi-academy trust as a School Improvement Advisor, overseeing maths and the pupil premium strategy. Prior to this, I was Vice Principal at a secondary school in Nottingham and have 15 years’ experience teaching maths in a variety of schools in different contexts. I am passionate about providing a quality education for all children and feel privileged to be a governor at our school where this is achieved by a team of such dedicated staff.

Mrs Denise Garnett

I have been a teacher at Waltham since August 2015, and very soon after joining the school became involved as the staff governor. I am very passionate about being part of the team that continues to deliver sustainable success at Waltham. Along with the guidance and support of the school governors, the staff work extremely hard to create a safe and inspiring environment and I am grateful for the opportunity to represent the views and ideas of the teaching team.

Mrs Julie Hopkins

I am the Executive Headteacher of our school and Redmile CE Primary School. I work very closely with all governors to ensure that our children have the best education possible, enabling them all to make progress and enjoy their learning in the process. I contribute to all committees and maintain regular contact through meetings, emails and telephone conversations. I live in the Vale and my daughter attended a local village primary school, as well as Belvoir High and MV16, so I consider myself to be in a unique position to offer full support to governors through my extensive knowledge of what it means to be part of a village community. I am very honoured to work with such a dedicated team of governors.

Mrs Debra Meakin

Hi I am Debra Meakin and I joined the team at Waltham in November 2015. I'm Mum to Ruby and wife of Bob. We have lived in Freeby since 2008. Whilst living at the farm I have run my own childminding business. I hold a BA Hon's in Early Years Education and am a Childminder Mentor for the Local Authority, as well as an active committee member of Freeby Village Hall. My day to day job provides me with a wealth of experience to support my role as early years governor. I am delighted to work with a group of super people at Waltham to ensure the best for every pupil.

Mr Andrew Quine

I live in Waltham on the Wolds with my wife Rachel who works as an admin officer in the school office and have three children, two of whom are currently in school. As an elected representative of the parents, I take an active role on the governing body as a parent governor. I work for Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service and manage the Fire Investigation and Fire Safety teams. With a background in Health & Safety and training I support the governing body in these roles and also sit on the Estates/H&S sub-committee. I am proud to be a part of our local school and keen to work in close partnership with its pupils, parents, staff and governors to support the school and help it grow.

Mr Nigel Smith

My wife and I moved to Waltham in 2006 from the south of London. In 2010 we launched our own sustainability consultancy and work in a converted barn office next to our house. We have two children, Oscar and Isla, who both attend the school and love every moment of it. As a parent and governor I am passionate about supporting and ensuring the viability of rural schools like Waltham. I am vice chair of the Finance, Pay and Personnel sub-committee and also sit on the Estates/H&S sub-committee. I also run the after school football training on Monday evenings and the school BBQ at the annual maypole event. I believe we are lucky to have such a very special school, exceptionally unique and providing a first class educational and caring environment for our children.