Local Governance

The Role of the Local Governing Board 

The Local Governing Board of St Cleer and Darite Primary Academies is a group of enthusiastic volunteers who bring a range of skills and expertise, and who are dedicated to supporting both the schools, and indeed supporting the whole of Bridge Schools Trust. Governors meet approximately every half term, to support and challenge the school leadership team, with the aim of improving outcomes of all our pupils. 

Governors report to the Trustees of Bridge Schools. Their key role is:  
1. To provide a balance of challenge and support to school leaders, understanding the strengths and areas for improvement in the school.
2. To be able to articulate these to all stakeholders.
3. In areas where the role of the LGB is to monitor an activity the expectation is that this is an active role. Monitoring could confirm that the item has been successfully addressed or the LGB could make a recommendation or suggestion for improvement.

Bridge Schools Governance

Darite Primary Academy is part of the Bridge Schools MAT. For more information about the structure, see the Governance page. Details of the memorandum of association, funding agreement and accounts, please visit the trust website here.

Darite Local Governing Body (LGB)

Darite and St Cleer Academies share a LGB. The governors are from a wide range of backgrounds, professions and links to the school. They involve parents, teachers and other interested parties. They meet termly and the governors play a huge role in monitoring and supporting the school. The LGB also works closely with other Governing Bodies across Bridge Schools Trust to strengthen good practice.

This page is where you can find out about the LGB that supports Darite.

As part of the Bridge Schools Trust, the following details can be found on the trust website (www.bridgeschools.co.uk).

  1. Register of interests for accounting officer.
  2. Memorandum of association.
  3. Funding agreements.
  4. Annual accounts
  5. Annual report

Offering Advice and Guidance

Our parent and community governors have a range of different backgrounds and experience and bring many beneficial perspectives to the life of the school.

The role of the Governing Body:

  1. Ensures clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction 
  2. Contributes to the school's self-evaluation and understands its strengths and weaknesses, including the impact of their own work 
  3. Supports and strengthens the school leadership, including developing their own skills 
  4. Provides challenge and holds the Headteacher and other senior leaders to account for improving the quality of teaching, pupils' achievement and pupils' behaviour and safety, including using the data dashboard, other progress data, examination outcomes and test results
  5. Uses performance management systems to improve teaching, leadership and management 
  6. Ensures solvency and probity and that the financial resources made available to the school are managed effectively 
  7. Operates in such a way that statutory duties are met and priorities approved engages with key stakeholders 
  8. Uses the pupil premium and other resources to overcome barriers to learning, including reading, writing and mathematics.

LGB Monitoring at Darite Primary Academy

The governing body has a crucial role to play in the life of our school and the effectiveness of governors in carrying out their responsibilities is a central part of the overall effectiveness of the leadership and management of the school. 

Their key role is to oversee the strategic development of our academy. This involves monitoring and evaluating the school’s effectiveness, and offering support and challenge. As well as providing this through LGB meetings, monitoring is a key aspect to their work.

Meet The Governors

Mr Adrian Hinds

Chair of Governors

I was appointed in 2014 as a Parent Governor at Rydon Primary School, a 420-pupil school in Kingsteignton, Devon. I was elected to the role of Chair in 2016. At this time, the school was part of the Templer Academies Schools Trust (TAST), a MAT comprising two secondary and two primary schools. Upon taking on this role, I prioritised establishing clarity regarding roles and responsibilities, and sought to develop improved insight amongst the Governing Board members. During this period, I also served on the TAST Board, and chaired the TAST Audit Committee, before stepping aside to lead the Governing Body through a challenging period of change arising from a merger of trusts to form Education South West (ESW), which now comprises four secondary and six primary schools. I am currently taking a lead in developing local governance across ESW, seeking to improve cooperation between the Local Governing Bodies, and between the Local Governing Bodies and the Trust Board. I have also implemented a Trust-wide Governor training programme, and have designed and delivered “Basics of Governance” training within this programme.

In developing governance across the Trust I have been working with a National Leader of Governance, and with the DfE-funded GovernorSpace leadership development programme. I am an Associate Board Member of Devon Association of Governance, and have recently been appointed as the Primary Academies Governor Representative on the Devon Education Forum.

Outside of school governance, in my “day job” I have over 15 years of experience in leading teams of scientists and software engineers, and of committee work at local, national and international level. My work roles have also involved a number of interactions with the Education sector. My teams have included qualified trainers who are responsible for development and delivery of training materials for a variety of audiences, and I have visiting positions at the Universities of Exeter and Leeds which both involve interaction with both undergraduate and postgraduate training activities. As a public sector employee, I benefit from my employer offering flexibility to enable me to work around Governor duties.

Mrs Jo Burtoft

Parent Governor
Term of office 20-06-18 to 19-06-22
Responsibility: Early Years Foundation Stage

My name is Jo Burtoft and I am a primary teacher within Bridge Schools Trust. I have worked in education for 18 years, more recently focusing on The Early Years Foundation Stage. My twin boys started at Darite in 2015 and are thoroughly enjoying their experience of school life. As a governor, I am looking forward to supporting Darite and St Cleer School to maintain their ongoing success and ensuring each child's love of learning is fulfilled.

Mr Geoff Coles

Community Governor and Acting Chair
Term of office 18-09-17 to 17-09-21 

Commander Geoff Coles Royal Navy, BSc MSc PGA CEng CMarEng. Retired after 35 years in the Navy as an Engineer (Gas Turbine Specialist). Two sons and a daughter-in-law serving in the Armed Forces and five grandchildren in junior schools in England, Scotland and Germany.

To contact Geoff please use secretary@stleerprimary.co.uk With the subject line "FOA Chair of Governors" or write to: 
Mr Geoff Coles, 
Acting Chair of Local Governing Board, 
 c/o St Cleer Primary Academy, 
 Well Lane, 
 St Cleer, 
 PL14 5DU

Mrs Nickie Doney

Community Governor
Term of office: 14-02-19 to 13-02-23.

Nickie is originally from Plymouth and moved to the Darite area about ten years ago. She is a qualified Children’s Social Worker who works within the family courts and has many years’ experience working within child protection and safeguarding. Nickie has two young daughters, one currently in Year 2 at Darite and the other in nursery. Nickie is pleased to join the governing board and is hoping to make a positive contribution to Darite and St Cleer schools, particularly in terms of assisting with safeguarding across the schools.

Mrs Claire Ivey

Staff Governor
Term of office: 27-07-17 to 26-07-21

I have worked as a TA at St Cleer since 2006 and previously I worked as a TA at Callington Community College for 5 years. St Cleer school is very close to my heart as I have fond memories of when I went to school there in the 1970's. There have also been four generations of my family that have gone to St Cleer school.

Mrs Lauren Johnson

Vice Chair of Governors: Community Governor
Responsibility: Safeguarding Governor.
Term of office: 04-09-16 to 03-09-20

Lauren is originally from Stoke-on-Trent and has served in the Royal Navy as a Logistics Officer since 2001. She moved to the outskirts of St Cleer with her husband, Kevin, in 2006 and their daughter joined the Reception Class at St Cleer School in September 2016. She is delighted to be able to join the governing board because she is passionate about education as getting it right is so important to the individual child and the community at large.

Mrs Louise Marks-Saberton

Community Governor
Term of office: 12-02-19 to 11-02-23

My name is Louise Marks-Saberton. I have two children at Darite who joined in Reception in 2014 and 2017. The school is very dear to my heart having attended myself in the 1980s. I work as a teaching assistant and in my spare time I do a lot of camping and walking with my family.

Mrs Hayley Stacey

Community Governor
Responsibility: Disadvantaged Pupils Champion
Term of office: 09-11-16 to 08-11-20

Hello. My Name is Hayley Stacey and I currently have one child at St Cleer school. I am a self employed animal portrait artist and freelance photographer. My creative side has always complemented my love of animals and the outdoors and after an early career in British Eventing and training competition horses I am currently studying to become a riding coach. As well as my horses I have a passion for running. I run and race with the East Cornwall Harriers and I currently help with the school's cross country running club with my husband. I believe that incorporating sport within education will not just improve a child's physical health but have a positive effect on their learning in all areas.

Mrs Michele Spencer

Staff Governor, Headteacher

I have been a teacher and leader in Education for 17 years and am delighted to be the Headteacher here at St Cleer, in this new and exciting chapter for the school. Originally from the south east coast of Ireland, life in Cornwall feels very natural and almost home-from-home already. A diverse experience gained from being and Acting Headteacher and Deputy Headteacher in London schools along with a passion for the outdoors has led me to Cornwall and to St Cleer. I look forward to building on what works well here as well as building capacity and ensuring children are given every opportunity to reach their potential. 

Mr Tom Whipps

Staff Governor, Headteacher

Tom is originally from Sheffield but trained in Manchester. He taught for several years in larger schools across Oldham and Manchester before moving to Looe Primary. He has now taught in 5 of the 14 schools in the trust and has been head of school at 3 of these.

Many thanks go to the following Governors whose terms of office have ended in the last 12 months: 

Clare Semple - Staff Governor - term of office ended 24-02-19 
Tori Price - Community Governor - term of office ended 13-06-18

Record of Governors' Attendance at Local Governing Board Meetings
Key: P = present; Apols = apologies accepted; Apols x = apologies not accepted; x = absent
Jo Burtoft2 out of 367%
Geoff Coles3 out of 3100%
Nickie Doney3 out of 3100%
Jimmy Edwards0 out of 30%
Claire Ivey1 out of 333%
Lauren Johnson1 out of 333%
Steve Murray3 out of 3100%
Louise Saberton3 out of 3100%
Hayley Stacey3 out of 3100%
Catherine Stoate 3 out of 3100%
Mike Thom1 out of 333%
Tom Whipps3 out of 3100%
SPRING TERM 2019LGB 14-02-19LGB 28-03-19
Jo BurtoftPP
Geoff ColesPP
Nickie DoneyPP
Jimmy EdwardsApolsApols
Claire IveyApolsApols
Lauren JohnsonPApols
Steve MurrayPP
Louise SabertonPP
Clare SempleApols 
Hayley StaceyPP
Catherine Stoate PP
Mike ThomPApols
Tom WhippsIn attendance -  P
HoS from 25-02-19
SUMMER TERM 2019LGB 08-05-19
Jo BurtoftApols
Geoff ColesP
Nickie DoneyP
Jimmy EdwardsApols
Claire IveyP
Lauren JohnsonApols
Steve MurrayP
Louise SabertonP
Hayley StaceyP
Catherine Stoate P
Mike ThomApols
Tom WhippsP


View the following documents within your web browser or download to read later

Darite and St Cleer LGB Register of Interests 2019.20 (1).docx
Darite and St Cleer LGB Register of Interests 2019.20 (1).docx
Darite St Cleer LGB Membership Nov 19.pdf
Darite St Cleer LGB Membership Nov 19.pdf




Our Values...



We are inspired by the awe and wonder of the world.



We are bold and innovative in our approach to find new solutions to the challenges we face.



We are the best we can be.



We take responsibility for our actions in an environment of mutual respect.



We overcome all barriers to reach our potential, developing a capacity to improve further.



We are passionate about learning.

© 2020 Bridge Schools trust is a company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales. Registration number 7736425. It is an exempt charity.