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Kingsweston School

Governor Profiles

Amy Beveridge

Role on governing body: Co-opted Governor appointed March 2023.

Background: I’m a parent carer living in North Somerset with my 2 children and fiancé, having relocated to the South West 5 years ago from Northamptonshire. I enjoy coastal and forest walks, music events, going to the theatre and exploring new places with my family.

Education and Employment: As a registered mental health nurse of 17 years, I’ve experience of managing risk, staff and undertaking audits, having worked in secure and acute mental health settings. I also have a post graduate certificate in specialist community public health nursing, which led me to work as a health visitor for 5 years; and involved managing a large safeguarding caseload, with additional roles of a maternal mental health and SEND champion.

Relevant Experience: During a 12 month career break when my daughter received her autism & learning disability diagnosis, I became co chair of my then local parent carer forum, working co productively with LA and partners to support with strategic change - and used this time to train for and complete my first marathon to raise awareness and funds for a local autism charity.

Particular interest in Governing Body: As a recently appointed Governor, I am looking forward to learning more about strategic processes and policies, with a particular interest in safeguarding and parent carer involvement.

Kristy Bowers

Role on Governing Body:  Co-opted Governor since May 2022

Background: I’m a solicitor by training but have spent the last 8 years working in schools.  I enjoy early morning workouts, social history, travelling and reading.

I have lived in the area with my family for the past 20 years.

Education and Employment I went to school in Wiltshire, studied History and American Studies at the University of Birmingham and then moved to Bristol in 2000 to complete my Post Graduate Diploma in Law and then my Legal Practice Course.

I qualified as a solicitor in a large local firm in 2003, specialising in Real Estate.  I practiced for a number of years before having children and a career break.  

 In 2014 I started working in the school office of a local primary school and in 2018 moved to work in a larger all-through school that provides education for children aged from 4 to 18.  I work closely with the Senior Leadership Team - monitoring  and auditing compliance, CPD and other data as well as forming and implementing both mid and longer term strategies.

Relevant experience: I’ve always been logical and thorough and enjoy working as part of a multi disciplinary team - either collaborating to formulate strategy, thinking critically to deliver solutions or working constructively to suggest improvements.  From 2014 to 2018 I was a governor at another local school.

Particular interest in Governing Body: I currently sit on the Finance Committee and am involved in the ongoing programme of monitoring visits.   I also look forward to working as part of any smaller ad hoc Committees.

Helen Bryer

Role on Governing Body:  Co-opted Governor since September 2021.

Background:  I'm a civil servant at the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and have lived and worked overseas including in Bangladesh, Ethiopia and Zambia. I am married, with two young children. We recently moved to Bristol and are really enjoying getting outside and exploring the local area.

Education and Employment:  I work in the sexual reproductive health and rights team at the FCDO - I've worked in the FCDO and previously the Department for International Development (DFID) for over a decade. I recently spent two years working for an NGO called Restless Development, which works with young people in Zambia. 

Particular Interest in Governing Body:  As a new governor I am focused on learning as much as I can about the school, the students and teachers and how the Governing Body works. I have a particular interest in safeguarding. 

Relevant experience:  I have experience in shaping policy and strategy as a civil servant, as well as experience of building an effective governing body through my work with NGOs.  I'm looking forward to learning more as I settle into being part of the team at Claremont.    

Ally Churchill

Background: I have been working at Kingsweston school for the past 12years and have worked in different roles including TA, HLTA and more recently Pupil support mentor. I am a licenced thrive practitioner and have a passion for all things pastoral.

Elizabeth Jahn 

Role on Governing Body: Clerk to the Governors



Mary Kear

Role on Governing Body: Local Authority Governor. Currently Named Governor for Safeguarding.

Background: I am now retired and have a range of interests that include volunteering for the NHS, playing music and making art.

Education and Employment: I studied for a Fine Art degree in Bristol followed by a PGCE. I taught initially as a Secondary Art Teacher, later moving to the Primary sector. After many years in the classroom, I moved to UWE to lecture in Education.

Relevant Experience: I have experience of a wide range of educational environments and of working alongside other professionals. Also of managing teams, structuring and delivering programmes of study.

Particular interest in Governing Body The role of the arts and music in supporting learning. The Staff and pupil welfare.

Charlie McCall

Role on Governing Body: Parent Governor

Background: I am married with two young children (our oldest will be starting school Sept 2020).  I moved to Bristol in 2011 after living and working in London for years.  We love walking, running, and being in the mountains. Family disco time is also important in our house.

Education and Employment: I went to school in Tunbridge Wells, Kent.  I did both my Physiotherapy and MSc degrees in East London.  I qualified as a Physiotherapist in 2001.  I worked in the NHS in large teaching hospitals for 7 years and have worked in private practice since specialising in musculoskeletal physiotherapy.  I have also worked within sport including attending two World University Games with Team GBR and being Chief Physiotherapy Officer for the School Games since 2014.

Particular interest in Governing Body: I am on the Safeguarding & well-being and Learning & Curriculum committees

Relevant experience: Early on in my NHS work I started training as a Paediatric Physiotherapist before switching to MSK.  During this time, I was a visiting Physiotherapist to special schools and community services in south London. I am about to embark on the school journey with my own children so have a keen interest in what is happening within education. 

Jo Penny

Role on Governing Body: Co-opted Governor since March 2023.

Background: I am a Primary School teacher in a large co-educational school in Clifton. I enjoy weekends spent visiting family in Cornwall and making the most of being by the sea. I am a keen traveller and animal lover. 

Education and Employment: I went to school in Taunton and studied for my degree in Primary Education in Canterbury. I moved to Bristol to start my teaching career in 2007. In December 2010, I spent 19 months travelling around New Zealand, Fiji and Australia and I worked as an au-pair in Sydney for 13 months, where I also volunteered at the local Primary school. I returned to Bristol, and Primary school teaching, in September 2012.

Relevant experience: I have 14 years teaching experience.

Particular interest in Governing Body: As a recently appointed governor, I am looking forward to finding out about Claremont and Kingsweston and I have a particular interest in pastoral care and behaviour.  

Emma Richards

Role on Governing Body: Head teacher, since September 2018

Background:  I am married with 4 teenage children.  We live in a village near Stroud, Gloucestershire.  I like to spend free time with my family, pets and friends, and getting outdoors when possible, into the Cotswold countryside. 

Education and employment:  I come from Chepstow, and went to Bath for university (Single Honours History degree) and then UWE for my PGCE (Secondary History).  I worked in mainstream Secondary Schools in Bristol and Bath until 1999 when I started working in a SEND school in Stroud.  I have worked within SEND since then, in a range of different settings, with a range of different student needs. 

Particular interest in Governing Body:  I am on all our committees.

Relevant Experience: Teaching experience of 23 years, SEND Education background of 21 years, previous experience as staff governor at a SEND school for 5 years, member of playgroup committee for 2 years, trustee member of local charity for 7 years. 

Maureen Salter

Role on Governing Body: I am a Co-Opted Governor,  currently Vice Chair of Governing Body and Chair of the Learning Curriculum and Teaching Committee. Additionally I am a Link Governor and Equalities Governor.

Background: I am a local, having lived in Bristol all my life! I am married with very grown up children and 2 amazing Grandchildren who live in Warwick and visit regularly. I spend much time in my garden growing flowers and veggies...when the winter drives me inside I love to sew, mainly flowers!! I also enjoy walking and travel, both abroad and in the UK.

Education and Employment: Educated in the Direct Grant system (long defunct!) I left school at 16 and held a variety of clerical jobs until the late 1970's when I took a career break to raise my kids. 

In the late 1980's I embarked on my undergrad degree at what is now UWE and after I graduated I spent the next 19 years teaching - in a Mainstream Primary and then in SEMH Special. Absolutely the best years of my working life, I retired in 2010.

Relevant Experience: I was Staff Governor at both the school I taught in as well as a Co-opted Governor at another Bristol Special School, including a year as Chair.

Particular Interests in Governing Body: I have a specific interest in both the Curriculum, how it is constructed and delivered and, in the attitudes, and behaviours of pupils and how this impacts learning. I remain committed to the provision of quality education for all pupils.

Nick Sampson

Role on Governing Body: Co-opted governor since July 2019 (and Parent governor from July 2015 to July 2019)

Background: I have lived in Bristol since 1996 and am married with two daughters, one of whom has autism. I enjoy films, reading and the outdoors – walking, cycling, and the occasional wild swim!

Education and employment: I went to school in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, and completed a BEng degree in Electronic Engineering at Sheffield University. I work as a technical manager in the telecommunications industry and am involved at a governance level in several international organisations developing future telecommunications technology and services.

Particular interest in the governor body: I am on the Finance and Resources Committee and am governor for Governor Training and Development.

Relevant experience: My job includes setting strategy and budgets, and resource and project management. I have experience of governance, including chair roles, at various levels in different types of organisations. Aa a parent of daughter who has special educational needs, I have experience of the SEND system and processes.

Peter Searle - Barnes

Role on Governing Body: Co-opted Governor since Sept 2017

Background: I am married with three children and three grandchildren. We moved to Bristol in 2010 from Worthing in West Sussex. I am a keen golfer and singer and also enjoy gardening and time with the family.

Education and Employment: I went to school in Holt, Norfolk. I qualified as a doctor after going to Cambridge University and Guy’s hospital. I was a partner in a GP practice and specialised in medical education in Worthing for the next 30 years. After our move here in 2010 I continued to work in various GP practices until 2014 and in medical education until 2016.

Particular interest in the Governing Body: I was Chair of Governors at Kingsweston School for over 2 years before becoming Co-Chair of Governors for the Claremont and Kingsweston Schools Federation. I am also on the Finance and Resources Committee.

Relevant Experience: I was a governor at another local Special School for over 4 years before joining Kingsweston School. Before I moved schools I was vice-chair of the governing body and chair of the Finances and Resources committee.

Moira Stephens

Role on the Governing Body: Co-opted Governor since May 2023 

Background: I have five children and have lived in Bristol all my life. I was a foster carer and short-break provider for 25 years in Bristol. I enjoy volunteering with Flamingo Chicks Dance School and have a love of dancing to keep myself fit. My hobby is chasing hot air balloons for Virgin Balloons around the southwest of England during the spring and summer months.

Education and Employment: I attended school in South Gloucestershire and went on to college in the mid-80s. I’ve worked in SEND schools since then. During my time in education, I have broadened my SEND knowledge at the university level, completing various specialist courses and a master’s in Educational Assistive Technology.

I am also an expert witness for a disability and assistive technology consultancy, holding a Cardiff university Expert Witness certificate. I work closely with a team of consultants providing reports for the high courts of London for medical negligence cases.

Relevant experience: I have over 34 years’ experience working in the field of SEND education. My specialist areas and qualifications are in the fields of cerebral palsy with profound and multiple sensory impairments, learning difficulties, and alternative and augmentative communication. I have a keen interest in digital technology, assistive technology, and web design.

Particular interest in Governing Body: As a newly appointed governor I am interested in finance and resourcing and learning more about strategic governance.  I also look forward to working as part of any smaller ad hoc Committees.

Graham Symonds

Role on Governing Body: Co-opted Governor since December 2019

Background:  Married, with two sons, and two grand-children. We moved to Bristol in Summer 2019. I enjoy keeping active, particularly outdoors, and being with family and friends.

Education and employment:  I went to school in Reading and to Leeds University.  Throughout my working life I worked for local authorities in a variety of departments and roles. My most recent experience has been in education, children and family teams in local authorities in the south east of England.  I retired from paid work in April 2019.  

Particular interest in Governing Body I have been Chair of the Governing Body since March 2020. I am on all our committees.

Relevant Experience: Education context; previous parent governor at my children's schools and roles on various management committees; working as part of teams; budget and staffing management.

Joined late 2019

Barry Trahar

Role on Governing Body:  Local Authority Governor, appointed by Bristol City Council

Personal Details:  Australian by birth, now of joint British/Australian nationality.  I have lived in the UK since 1975 and in Bristol since 1978

Background:  Educated in Australia and have a Diploma in Catering & Hotel Management. I am a fellow of the UK’s Institute of Hospitality. I was responsible for the management of the University of Bristol’s catering and residential services (13 departments) until my retirement in 2010.  I am a Magistrate, sitting in both the Criminal and Family Courts.

Interests/hobbies:  Travel, walking, politics, theatre, wine & food, voluntary work.  I am also a Governor at Redland Green School.

Particular interest in Governing Body:  Resources Committee - Finance, staffing and site matters

Relevant Experience:  As an LEA approved governor, my appointment was by political party (the Labour Party) and so not for any educational experience, but my 28 years at the University gave me a significant understanding of the broad political aspects relating to education.

 My most relevant experience in respect of Claremont relates to financial, budgetary and staff management, as I manage a multi-million-pound budget at the University and had responsibility for approximately 600 staff.

Co-opted Governor - vacancy

Parent Governor - vacancy