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St Helen’s Governing Body

All schools in England have a governing body which is responsible for overseeing many of the strategic decisions of the school. The Headteacher is responsible for the day to day running of the school and all of the staff are accountable to the Headteacher.  In turn the Headteacher is held to account by the governing body and reports back to us. A key role of the St Helen’s governors is to act as a ‘critical friend’: to support, to challenge, to ask questions and ultimately to represent the school community, ensuring the school is a safe environment where every child is given the education they deserve.

The governing body is a voluntary group which works in close partnership with the Headteacher, staff and the local authority; Governors are involved with such things as staffing, school buildings, safeguarding and finance.  We do not assess teachers, (we leave that to the professionals) but we do ask challenging questions in order to ensure high standards across the school.

St Helen's governing body is made up of:


  • The Headteacher
  • One elected staff Governor
  • One appointed local authority governor
  • Three appointed foundation Governors, from the Diocese of Rochester
  • Three elected parent Governors
  • Three co-opted Governors


We also have a clerk and associated Governors who specialise in certain areas such as health and safety or finance; these members don’t have voting powers unless delegated by the FGB. They attend meetings and play an important part in our team.

Our governing body meets in full four times each year, we also have sub-committees which deal in finance and resources, performance management and staffing and a worship team. We have link governors who learn about specific areas like safeguarding, pupil premium,send provision and health and safety to name a few.  We undertake regular training to assist us in our roles and offer outreach to other governing bodies to achieve best practice.  Governors conduct learning walks  in the autumn, spring and summer terms and also attend open evenings offering a tea stall for parents and school events in support of the school.


St Helen's Governors share a common passion for the school, the staff who teach here and the outcomes of every child who come through its doors.  We also have a love of biscuits, a tendency to chat too much and regard ourselves as a very friendly bunch! We are also always on the lookout for other like minded people who care about the direction of the school and would like to play a strategic role alongside us.  If you would like to find out more, please leave your details with the school office.


St Helen’s Governors

Who’s Who?



Hayley Foyle

My name is Hayley and I have been a parent governor since 2015. I am part of the finance, safeguarding and performance management committees and I am the link governor for EYFS. I have also been elected as Co-Chair.


Joanne Shorter

My name is Joanne Shorter. I'm a parent governor and joined the governing body in September 2017. I am on the finance and performance management committees. I have also been elected as Vice Chair.



Andy Hobbs


My name is Rev. Andy Hobbs and I am the Priest-in-Charge of St. Helen's Church and a foundation governor at school. I am part of the safeguarding team and the worship committee. I have a long background in Youth, Schools and Children's work before being ordained. As I have two children at St. Helen's school you'll often see me in the playground at drop off and pick up time and am happy to chat to you about anything - whether school, church or simply football!



Shelley Holbrook

My name is Shelley Holbrook. I'm a co-opted governor and joined the governing body in September 2017. I am on the finance and resourcing committee and I am the governor for pupil premium.


Claire Henning

My name is Claire. I am a co-opted governor and I am responsible for SEND and whistleblowing  at the school as well as being part of the safeguarding team.


Jane Bennett


My name is Jane Bennett and I am the staff governor for the school and I am the community link governor. I am the teacher for Willow Class and started at St Helen's in September 2018. I have been teaching for over 20 years and during this time have been both a staff and parent governor. I am very pleased to  be part of the governing body at St Helen's.








Anna Larkins


My name is Anna Larkins and I joined as a Parent Governor in January 2019. I am an Occupational Therapist with a passion for promoting good mental health. I am the Safeguarding Lead in my current role and am part of the Safeguarding team at St Helen's. I have two children attending St Helen's and am often around during the school run times so do pop over and say hello!


The Governor's tea Party

The Governor’s Award is an award given to children who show that they are following the school core values of friendship, trust, love and perseverance on a consistent basis. One child from each class is selected by their class teacher to receive the award at the end of the Autumn, Spring and Summer terms. The winners are presented with their certificate during a special assembly which parents of the winners are invited to. The winners and their parents are then invited to enjoy an afternoon tea provided, and served, by the governors.

Constitution and Meeting Attendance