Chair of Governors
I am Sam Buckman, the Chair of Governor’s here at Bethersden School.
I have been a governor for about 5 years and I’ve been chair since 2015. I have a daughter in year 4 at school and my son has just moved on to secondary school having served his time at Bethersden.
I am part of the governors leadership and management group and also the finance team, with a special governor focus on Pupil Premium. I also take a role as an early years governor, which gives me the wonderful opportunity to spend time with the youngest members of our school community.
I live just a two minute walk from the school, which is not only handy for the school itself, but puts me in the middle of the lovely village of Bethersden, where I enjoy getting involved in many aspects of village life.
Robert Clark is the Year 5/6 Class Teacher and has been at Bethersden since he qualified in 2014. Robert is a great supporter of lifelong learning, having studied at the universities of Kent and Cambridge late in life after careers in the armed forces and probation service. Robert passionately believes that every child has potential to succeed and should be given every opportunity to do so.
Sophie Beale has been the Deputy Headteacher, and class teacher, at Bethersden Primary School since April 2013. Previously she was teaching at a school in Ashford for 2 years and Maidstone for 4 years where she also served on the governing body for both schools. She has taught children in all years from EYFS through to Year 6 and has 10 years’ experience in education. She is currently one of the subject leaders for the Maths team but has passionately led English and Read Write Inc for the last 4 years.
Wendy Grace has been a member of the governing body for over 10 years. She first joined the team so that she could understand better and be a part of the educating of her children. She has been associated with Bethersden Primary School for 19 years, first as a parent, then as a leader at Bethersden Playschool and for the last 8 years as a staff member. Her three children all attended Bethersden Primary School, the eldest daughter is now a physiotherapist and her twin son and daughter are in further education. She is part of the teaching and learning team and as a keen artist, enjoys teaching and promoting art throughout the school.
Sally Carysforth has been a parent governor at Bethersden Primary for 2 years. She lives in Shadoxhurst with her husband and 2 children who are at the school. She worked in investment banking before having children and has since retrained, working from home as an alternative mental health practitioner and teacher. She is part of the personal development, behavior and welfare team and is also the training and development governor.
Andy Jones has been a Governor for nearly two years and has a daughter at the school. His son is soon to join the school in September. He lives in Bethersden itself and feels lucky to be apart of this community. Andy works in Kent but sometimes further afield, mainly in secondary schools and other commercial buildings. He enjoys playing guitar and is currently learning German.
Gemma Foley has been a Governor for two years and has a son in the school with another starting in September 2018. She is currently working as Project Manager for a website company and has previously qualified as a Primary School teacher. Gemma is also Chair of the PTA and takes a keen interest in all aspects of the school.
Jenn Read has been a Community Governor since July 2017. She is part of the Finance, Teaching and Learning teams and is the designated governor for Beech class. She lives in Appledore with her husband and two daughters. She is a director of a local financial advising company.
Rev Chris Denyer is the Curate at Bethersden, High Halden and Woodchurch, and is in the final years of training to be a parish priest. Before training for ordained ministry in the Church of England, he was a primary school teacher in Ashford. He studied history and politics at university in Canterbury, and completed a Masters degree in literacy and language. He loves stories- reading, writing and hearing them- and enjoys coming in to school with the “Open the Book” team to retell Bible stories in a fun way. He has two sons at Norton Knatchbull Grammar school in Ashford and a younger son and daughter and Kingsnorth Primary School. He enjoys adventures travelling abroad, and long walks with his labrador dog Lola. He tries to play the guitar and is passionate about The Beatles and Bowie! He enjoys learning languages, and can speak French and Russian.
Steven Harris has been a parent governor since January 2016. Steven lives in Ashford with his wife and three children; two of his children attended Bethersden school. Steven also works locally in Ashford.
Ann Morgan is a co-opted Governor. She has worked in primary education for 30 years.The last 15 years she has been a consultant working with schools supporting their school improvement agenda. Ann began her career in the London Borough of Havering before moving to Essex and latterly to Kent, where she was a School Improvement Adviser for the local authority. She is passionate about supporting the school to ensure our pupils receive the best opportunities possible. Ann is an author of Maths books for primary school teachers.