Primary Representatives on the Schools Forum

The following candidates have nominated themselves for the three primary school vacancies on the Cheshire East Schools Forum. More information is available about each candidate by clicking on their name.

Ballot papers for each maintained primary school governor in Cheshire East are being sent into school w/c 12th May and must be returned to the clerk to the schools forum, c/o Cheshire East Council, 1st Floor, Delamere House, C/o Municipal Buildings, Earle Street, Crewe, CW1 2BJ, by NOON on Wednesday 4th June 2014.

Nigel Briers

I welcome this opportunity to put my name forward as a Primary School representative on the Cheshire East Council Forum. I believe that both my experience and interest in the education and the needs of our community will enable me to take a positive and helpful part in improving and developing the work of our Schools.

I spent my working life as a secondary school teacher in a number of schools throughout the country including three schools in Cheshire (Norton Priory Tarporley and Dane Valley). I was Headteacher of Dane Valley High School in Congleton (now Eaton Bank) for some six years, before I moved to Calday Grange Grammar School on the Wirral as the Headteacher where I stayed for over 15 years. I retired early in 2002 and have become an active member of the local and wider community of Cheshire.

I hold a number of positions in the community of Cheshire. I am currently one of the Chairs of the Schools Admission appeals panel for Cheshire East and West. I am currently a Magistrate sitting on the Bench at Crewe. I was until last year the Chairman of the Cheshire East Standards Committee. I am an active member of my local community serving as a committee member of my local village hall, and a Governor of Bickerton Primary school for some 30 years.

This long experience and association with various aspects of Cheshire life will I believe help me become an effective member of the Schools Forum

I believe that I am a good communicator and my wealth of experience as a member and a Chair of several committees both at a local and a National level will be of value. The members of the Forum must be able to make careful and considered judgements and be willing to listen to all views. My experience as a Chair on the Magistrates Bench and my role as Chair of the Schools Admissions Panels have given me considerable opportunity to develop such skills. I do believe in the need for transparency in public life and I do uphold the view that public life demands and requires the very highest personal and professional standards.

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Dorothy Flude

I am an elected member of Cheshire East Borough Council representing Crewe South Ward before retirement I was the Service Manager for Disability Services in South Cheshire employed by the County Council.

Chair of governors at Pebble Brook Primary School and Westminster Nursery in Crewe.

I am passionate about education and helping children and young people realise the doors that are open to them through education irrespective of their background and academic ability.

The wards that I represent are in super output areas with high levels of deprivation the changes in the demography are seen in the very high numbers of children who do not have English as a first language these factors are added pressures in our primary schools.

In my past employment I was responsible for some of the provision of services for children who had special needs, physical disabilities, learning difficulties and mental health. I have had in-depth experience of the problems that schools and families experience.

I am a Regulation 33 visitor to children’s homes and was the lead councillor in the borough compiling the report with reconditions into the Cheshire East Fostering services.

I was also a member of the team that reported to the Local Government Association about rural deprivation we found that transport, fuel poverty, health particularly mental health are issues that can go unrecognised and can have effects particularly on young children.

If elected with your support I will continue to lobby for our primary schools.

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Tony Jones

My name is Tony Jones and I am a governor at St Oswald’s Primary School near Nantwich. I became a school governor eight years ago to help local children and families have the same great education that my family had received.

I believe passionately that all children have equal right to a good education, if I am elected to the Forum I will do all that I can to ensure that governing bodies and other stakeholders have the chance to have their say in the policies and decisions that affect them.

In my daily life I am the Development Manager of a small scientific instrument company in Middlewich. I am used to analysing problems, communicating the key details to others and negotiating solutions that work for all parties. These principles apply to any organisation whether it’s a limited company, a school governing body or the Forum.

The Schools Forum is the education community’s voice, advising Cheshire East Council it helps form policy and make decisions which have a big effect on education in the borough. I hope you vote for me but if not I urge you to vote for someone. For three years the person you elect will represent your schools in a time of great change and challenge for education. Children, families and schools deserve their voice to be heard.

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Donald McLeod

Local Authority School Governor at Chelford since 2002. Chairman 2007-2012. Finance Governor 2010 & continuing.

Chelford School was a ‘School Causing Concern’ when I became Chairman, the numbers on roll having fallen from 70 to 32 and with a large budget deficit. With LA advice, the Head Teacher was retired on health grounds; an ‘Acting’ appointment was made (later made permanent); the school finances were brought under control; and numbers increased to the current 51 level. New housing is scheduled for Chelford and the school plans to accommodate higher numbers of pupils, restoring Capacity to 90 and PAN to 15.

I work with the Head-Teacher and the Chairman and other Governors on the financial planning and management of the school. I work with the School Bursar on the detailed financial management of the school, including SFVS preparation.

I have attended training courses offered by the LA in financial and other matters.

I would like to contribute to overall schools’ financial planning through membership of the Forum, with the aim of achieving stable and equitable outcomes for all East Cheshire LA schools from the available financial resources.

Other activities: General Commissioner of the Income Tax (retired); Chairman Age Concern East Cheshire (now Age UK East Cheshire) (retired). Chairman Macclesfield Community Health Council (retired); Chairman Tabley House Collection Trust (retired). Choirmaster – Chelford Church.

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Richard Roberts

I have been a Governor of Dean Valley for over three years and on the Finance Committee for all that time and am now Chairman of that Committee, and Vice Chair of Governors. My career has not been in education but in finance. This has involved an Economics degree and an Arts degree and am a Chartered Accountant.

I have been intrigued by the method of finance in State education and would like to understand more readily the difficulties that Cheshire East faces in its receipt of funds for education and how it decides how it should be allocated. These are not easy questions but in the various courses I have been on I have seen frustration from some schools with regard to funding and I should like to at least understand it so that it can be explained to all in jargon free language so ameliorating any feeling of injustice that does arise with parents and sometimes schools.

I would hope therefore to be constructive and am confident that I shall have the time for that and for attendance.

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Janet Smith

My name is Janet Smith and I am Vice Chair of the Governing Body at Brierley Primary School in Crewe. I have been a member of that Governing Body for 5 years and Vice Chair for 3. I am now recently retired (August 2013) having spent 36 years as a secondary school teacher, the last 34 of which have been in Cheshire East. My commitment to the education of the children of our area has played a most important part in my life and I would like this involvement to continue.

I now have a little more time to dedicate to the role of Governor and I believe that a position as representative on the Forum would be further step in my contribution to the education of children in Cheshire East.

My final role in my teaching career was as Deputy Head and as such I have a broad understanding of the issues that face everyone involved in education today and particularly the issues within Cheshire East. The changes in SEN funding, the changing provision for Free School Meals and the importance of providing the very best education for all students whether that be in mainstream or elsewhere will have an impact on all schools in Cheshire East.

I believe my knowledge and skills would have a positive impact on the work undertaken by the Forum.

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David Spall

May I seek your support for election to the new Cheshire East Schools Forum.

Being a active member and Treasurer of the Cheshire East Association of Governing Bodies since its inception. The need to have an informed body of people on the New Forum will ensure the monies given to schools under the Dedicate School Grant are correctly allocated by the authority. A further duty of the Forum is to advise the authority officers and elected members of the effect and cost implications in the longer term of possible changes they wish to make to the DSG allocation.

My previous experience on the Cheshire East School Forum would help me with this.

Having been a Primary School Governor at Alsager Highfields for over 20 years and Chair for the last 5 years I hope I have the experience to be of value in ensuring Governors and schools interests are being protected.

I have been and remain an elected Governor at The Co-operative Academy Stoke on Trent for 5 years and able to bring this experience to the Forum.

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