Welcome to the Governors' section.
Dear Parents and Carers,
Since being elected as in 2020 it has been a great privilege to work alongside the excellent team teachers, senior leaders and, course, children at Otford Primary School. The whole school community has shown incredible resilience and strength through the challenges the pandemic, and it has been a pleasure to see school life starting to return to normal over recent terms.
Best practice recommends a change every one to two years so that the board can continue to draw on new energy and perspectives, and with this in mind I have recently stepped down from the voluntary role .
Vice , Hannah Thomas and Finance & Resource Committee , Paul Jackaman have been elected to Co- the Board moving forward. They share an incredible amount experience and will be a huge credit to the school.
I am delighted to continue working with the board in the capacity school governor.
With very best wishes,
Helen Roberts is the Headteacher of Otford Primary School and has been in post since June 2016. Prior to this, Mrs Roberts was in leadership positions in a variety of schools in both London and Tunbridge Wells, these roles included being Acting Headteacher on two occasions, a Head of School and a Deputy Headteacher in two large primary schools. She is also a parent with two children. Mrs Roberts has worked in many schools over the past 30 years, her first role was as a Year 2 teacher in her home county of Yorkshire.
Paul Jackaman qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1997 with Deloitte’s, having obtained an honours degree in Business Maths from Kent University. In a 25 year career primarily in banking and commodities he has spent time living and working in London, New York, Tokyo, Australia, Singapore and most recently Hong Kong where he was the Chief Financial Officer of a listed company, from where he recently returned and now lives in Eynsford with his wife and three daughters. He is currently Co-Chair on the Board of Governors.
Hannah Thomas was born and brought up in the local area and her oldest daughter now attends Otford Primary School. After graduating from Oxford University with a degree in Japanese, Hannah spent nearly 15 years working in NHS leadership roles focused on developing and improving patient services. She has advised executive leaders on strategic development, efficiency savings and business development. Her work has included projects to improve wellbeing and engagement and she has a personal interest in wellbeing, SEND and inclusion. Following a career break, she now works as a freelance writer and editor and has held a number of voluntary roles in the local area. She has lived in or near Otford for most of her life and has two children at Otford Primary School, where she has been a co-opted governor since 2019.
Hanna Campbell is a civil servant, who currently works in the Department for Education. Across her career to date, she has worked for the United Nations in Kosovo; within the charity sector for a leading education charity and has taught English to speakers of other languages in Senegal, China and the UK as a qualified ESOL teacher. Hanna now lives near Otford and became a co-opted governor in 2022.
Charlotte Knight is a business development manager for a top City law firm, specialising in environmental, social and governance. She has over ten years experience working with lawyers and their corporate clients to shape business development strategies and executing marketing campaigns, events and social media channels. Having grown up near Colchester, Essex, she recently moved to Otford from south east London, and lives with her husband and toddler daughter.
Frances Plowman is the Senior Administrator at the London Policing College. Before her current role she worked for 15 years in primary education in Kent and Surrey, with the last 8 as a school business manager responsible for setting us the administration function of a brand new primary school. She is experienced in school budgets, health and safety and personnel. She has lived in the Sevenoaks area for the last 20 years and has two adult children who attended local primary and secondary schools.
Pippa Taylor is the Office Administrator at Abstruct Consulting, an Engineering firm in Sevenoaks. She has two children, both who attend Otford Primary School. Before starting a family, Pippa spent 10 years working as Advertising Sales Manager for 'The Independent', 'The London Evening Standard' and 'The i' Newspapers. She worked across all sectors but specialised in Education and Recruitment. Pippa was elected as a Parent Governor in 2017.
The Committee Model
At Otford Primary School, we have a dedicated Governing Body which strategically supports our school. The Governing Body follows the committee model. The two committees which Otford Primary has are:
The Finance, Resources and Personnel Committee (Chair – Paul Jackaman)
The Curriculum Committee (Chair – Hannah Thomas)
The Full Governing Board and each of the committees meet a least 3 times a year. Governors work with the staff and the Local Authority to help secure the best possible education for the children and has general responsibility for the conduct of the school with view to promoting high standards of educational achievement.
An agenda for each meeting will include all the tasks which the governing body is required to consider, and the governing body will ‘commission’ assignments or activities arising from the business of the meeting, which will be recorded in the minutes.
In addition to ‘commissioning’ activities or actions on their behalf, the governing body has delegated monitoring activities to ‘monitoring pairs’ or ‘individuals’. This applies to statutory functions, and the priorities of the School Improvement Plan.
There are three core functions of a governing body as reflected in OFSTED's inspection handbook are:
• Setting vision, ethos and strategic direction, engaging stakeholders, and ensuring statutory duties are met.
• Holding heads to account for teaching, achievement, behaviour and safety; challenging and strengthening leadership; contributing to school evaluation.
• Ensuring financial solvency and probity with effective management of financial resources, including the Pupil Premium, to raise standards.
If you are interested in becoming a Governor at our school, for more information please contact Mrs Roberts (Headteacher) or Chair of Governors, Mrs Hannah Thomas. Contact details for governors are available from the School Office.
Otford Primary School Governing Body Details
Term of Office
Positions of Responsibility
Mrs Catherine Hampton
Mrs Helen Roberts
Mrs Charlotte Knight
|18.07.22 - 17.07.26
|Mrs Hannah Thomas
|11.9.19 - 10.9.23
|Parent of Pupil
Ms Philippa Taylor
13.12.17 – 12.12.25
Parent of Pupil
|Mrs Frances Plowman
Mrs Hanna Campbell
Mr Ben Harrison
19.4.17 – 27.05.23
Safeguarding, SEND, LAC, Pupil Premium and Sports Funding
Mrs Rachel Philips
12.4.13 – 21.4.15
Mr Paul Gaskin
12.4.13 – 7.7.15
Mrs Rebecca Wilde
5.12.14 – 13.4.16
Mr Rob Wilson
12.4.13 – 13.7.16
Mr James Wall
12.4.13 – 26.9.26
Ms Hannah Chalkley
07.13 – 07.17
Mrs Marie Simms
Mr Keith GristockCo-optedGoverning Body7.7.15 – 6.7.19 F&R, Policies Mr Paul CluleyCo-optedGoverning Body14.7.15 – 13.7.19 (resigned 11.7.18)L., Data Mr Carl RobertsCo-opted Governing Body19.4.17 – 18.4.21 (resigned 11.7.18)Chair of Finance and Resources, S, Staffing, HTA Mrs Tula FitzpatrickLocal Authority GovernerKent County Council19.4.17 – 18.4.21 (resigned 18.9.18)S, F & R Mr Johan BjorklandParentParent body
L, ITParent of pupilRev’d Richard WorssamCo-optedGoverning Body2008 – Aug 2019L, Safeguarding Mr Jerry HansfordCo-optedGoverning Body5.12.16 - 4.12.20 (Resigned Dec 2019)F&R, Safeguarding Mr Christopher WoolardCo OptedGoverning Body19.4.17 – 29.9.20Chair, S, HTANoneMr Colin ParksCo OptedGoverning Body19.4.17 – 29.9.20Vice-chair, S, F&R, Py, School Expansion and Health and Safety Mr Joseph KershawCo-optedGoverning Body15.05.19 - 25.11.20Safeguarding, Health and Safety Rev'd David Guest Mrs Tracey BalcombeStaffStaff13.7.17-17.12.21Training and DevelopmentEmployee