Bringhurst Primary School is governed by an Academy Scrutiny Committee.
Our governors are:
James DunseathDRET Appointed Governor (Chair)
Melanie RobinsonDRET Appointed Governor (Vice Chair)
Rev. Stephen BuckmanDRET Appointed Governor
Rev. Stephen Buckman
Katie SmithDRET Appointed Governor
Katie was appointed an DRET Appointed Governor on 30 November 2017 after being encouraged by an initiative run by her employer to use workplace skills within the community. She has over 20 years' experience in risk consulting and governance and is currently a Global Employee Benefits Consultant at Fidelity. Katie offers the ASC a number of relevant 'day job' skills, including risk assessment, programme governance and compliance and can provide an objective viewpoint from outside of the education sector. In return she has broadened her own skill base and knowledge of the importance of effective school governance. She has a long personal connection with Bringhurst as both of her sons attended the school. When time allows, she enjoys walking and reading and is an avid theatregoer. She spends time pitch side most weekends supporting one or both boys in their footballing endeavours.
Clare HaywoodParent Governor
Clare was elected on to the ASC as a Parent Governor on 24 April 2018. She became a parent governor after having an interest in education - particularly Literacy, SEND and Assessment. Clare is passionate about ensuring children at the academy have access to the best educational experience. She is a trained teacher and currently works for a local authority as a Senior School Improvement Partner. Clare enjoys spending time with her family, walking their two dogs, reading and gardening.
Andy UsherStaff Governor
Andy Usher was appointed a Staff Governor on 18 September 2019. He decided to become a governor to further his profession and gain an insight and experience of other issues present in schools, other than teaching and learning. Andy is a class teacher and also subject leads for PE and Computing. He has 9 years teaching experience, within the state and private sectors, spanning from KS1 to KS4. He enjoys playing, coaching and watching sport particularly cricket, football and volleyball.
Abbie UnderwoodStaff Governor
Abbie was appointed on to the ASC as a Staff Governor on 6 November 2020. She is proud to be part of the Bringhurst School community and became a school governor to become more involved in school life. She feels very lucky to be part of such a dedicated and hardworking team, who strive for the best possible outcomes for all children. Abbie has been employed at the school since January 2018. She is currently the Year 3 class teacher, and also lead on PSHE and RE as well as being a member of the senior leadership team. In September 2021, she became a SENCo, and is returning to university to start her master's degree.Â Abbie has been teaching for nine years. Before working at Bringhurst she worked in another trust school for three years.Â She completed her teacher training at Buckingham University on the PGCE programme. She lives in Kettering with her husband and children, three boys aged from 16 months to 10 years, who keep her very busy. As a family they enjoy going away in their caravan to the seas side and the Lake District. Her interests are craft activities, reading and spending time with her friends.
Emma Stephens-Dunn has been clerking academies for DRET since 2013. Emma is Clerk to ASCs for all but one of the academies in the DRET Greater Corby Region, as well as anÂ independent Clerk for several other schools in Northamptonshire, and Company Secretary for a Peterborough based Multi-Academy Trust. Emma has also served as a governor for fifteen years, in three different schools. Emma is Chair of Governors at one of the schools. She has a broad insight into school governance across all sizes, types and phases of school. She has an excellent understanding of current issues in education as well as best practice in governance. Emma has four children aged between eight and twenty and is therefore keenly aware of the crucial role played by education in shaping young lives. Emma enjoys supporting governors to fulfil their role within this through providing governance advice and guidance and an efficient governance administration service. Emma's interests and hobbies include gardening, singing, fitness, running and walking with her two dogs.
Governor Assigned Responsibilities
Safeguarding - James Dunseath and Melanie Robinson
Contacting a Governor
To contact a governor, please contact the Trust Governance Team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Scheme of Delegation
Information about the David Ross Education Trust’s scheme of delegation is available here.
Minutes of the Academy Scrutiny Committee
Should you wish to view a copy of the minutes of the ASC at this academy, please contact the Trust Governance Team, who will be able to provide you with an electronic or paper copy of the minutes.
Are you interested in becoming an academy governor?
We are looking for new governors to support our academies. Our governors work closely with their academies to support the Trust’s goal of broadening the horizons of young people through a world-class education, equipping our students with the skills and experiences to become their confident, academic best, no matter what.
If you have an interest in, and commitment to, improving education and would like to make a difference within your community, please register your interest in becoming a governor by completing our governor application form. If you have any questions about a governor’s role or responsibilities please contact us at email@example.com
What skills, experience and commitment are required?
Governors attend six Academy Scrutiny Committee meetings a year (this may vary slightly depending on the academy) and are asked to support and enrich the academy in a range of other ways including:
- Undertaking school visits outside Academy Scrutiny Committee meetings.
- Taking on a ‘link’ governor role, liaising with academy staff and other governors on areas such as safeguarding, special educational needs and other academy priority areas.
- Sitting on panels related to the school, eg, appeals, complaints, exclusions.
- Participating in the Trust’s governor training and development programme.
We are looking for local people who would be committed to supporting the Trust’s goals. You need time, enthusiasm and a deep commitment to support these academies to be the best they can for their communities. A programme of induction, training and support is provided and expenses are covered. The Academy Scrutiny Committee role outline can be found here.
How does governance work at DRET?
At DRET, the Academy Scrutiny Committee provides support and challenge to the Principal in ensuring every child makes good or better progress and that the Academy is achieving targets and continually improving. To maximise the ability of the local governors to focus on this key area the Academy Scrutiny Committee is not required to set strategy or policy, manage financial resources, staff performance and pay, Health and Safety or many of the other areas traditionally associated with a maintained school governing body as these issues are dealt with at Trust level. This means that governors are able to concentrate on the things that really matter – pupil progress, school outcomes and aspiration.
The Academy Scrutiny Committee consists of a group of people who could be parents, community nominees, academy staff, Trust staff and Diocesan members. Each Academy Scrutiny Committee normally consists of 11-15 governors creating a balanced group of experience, skills and connections to support the academy in achieving exceptional performance.
In summary, the key responsibilities of the Academy Scrutiny Committee are:
- Understanding and promoting the Trust’s and the Academy’s vision and ethos.
- Scrutiny and challenge of achievement of targets, school improvement and pupil outcomes. Escalation of any concerns to the Trustees via the Executive.
- Supporting and facilitating parental and community engagement.
The difference between a DRET Academy Scrutiny Committees and a traditional school Governing Body
By comparison to a traditional school Governing Body:
- The Academy Scrutiny Committee’s role is not to “manage” the Academy. This is done through the Trust’s executive management structure (ie Principal, Regional Directors, Executive Management Team) and the Trust Board. Therefore, the Academy Scrutiny Committee is not required to take decisions on staff or financial matters affecting the Academy. As an Academy Scrutiny Committee Member you should have an understanding of strategic issues that impact on the Academy, and be updated on them regularly by the Principal, but you are not required to have direct responsibility for them. Instead the Academy Scrutiny Committee should be in a position to assess the impact of the Academy locally; how it is contributing to the local community, how it is relating to local families and how it understands local issues.
- As the Executive Management and Trust Board takes responsibility for setting educational standards, legal compliance and financial viability, the Academy Scrutiny Committee then has the time to scrutinise and challenge achievement of targets and school improvement, investigate the standards on the ground, to see how they are working, and explore how the Trust ethos is being understood and expressed in the way the Academy operates. As an Academy Scrutiny Committee member, your view as a parent, member of staff or as part of the community is vital in this discussion.