CofE Primary School

Feeding Minds, Touching Hearts

Contact Details


Welcome to the Governance Section

In accordance with the Government’s requirement for all governing bodies, the three core strategic functions of the Gunthorpe C of E Primary School  Governing Body are:

  1. Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
  2. Supporting and holding school leaders to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils;
  3. Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.


About the Governing Body

Our Governing Body at Gunthorpe is made up of: The Head Teacher, one staff member, two parent governors (elected by the parents) 1 co-opted governor and 5 foundation governors (appointed by the Diocese). Governors are volunteers and do not get paid.

Co-opted governors are appointed by the Governing Body and are people who, in the opinion of the governing body, have the skills required to contribute to the effective governance and success of the school.

We operate a ‘circle model’ of governance (no committee structure other than the required statutory committees) and hold 2 Full Governing Body meetings per term (6 a year), we alternate the focus of each meeting between teaching and learning and finance.

To carry out our duties we have a number of delegated roles and responsibilities.


Governors Declared Business Interests and Attendance at Governing Body meetings


This includes details of Governors who have stepped down from their role in the last 12 months.





Contact The Governors

Our Chair of Governors is Tara Cook.

Our Vice Chair of Governors is Hayley Taylor.

If you need to contact the governors please leave a message with the office by telephone or by e mailing

Governing Body Terms of Reference

About us

Claire Bills

I am headteacher at Gunthorpe CofE Primary and am passionate about working with staff, governors and parents to make Gunthorpe the very best school it can be. I started in September 2018 and bring a range of experience from working in both inner city and county schools, one of which had over 600 pupils. We strive to ensure every child achieves their potential both academically and personally whilst at Gunthorpe and live out our whole school vision every day.


Tara Cook- 

I am the Chair of the Local Governing Body and Chair of the PPCD committee. I have been a Co-Opted Governor at Gunthorpe since September 2017.  I have previously been a governor in another local school. I am an HR professional and work within the education sector for a local Multi-Academy Trust. I bring to the Board knowledge and skills of HR, the education sector and employment law, policies and procedures.


Hayley Taylor

I have been a foundation governor at Gunthorpe school since September 2014. I am currently working at a local secondary school, however my background is retail management. I bring to the governing body working knowledge of the education sector along with HR and school finance skills.


Mel Brown

I am the Deputy Head of Gunthorpe C of E Primary School. I have worked at the school for 11 years and taught across all age ranges, leading the school for 1 year. I started at the school in Infant 1 and then moved into Infant 2. Currently I teach across the classes and thoroughly enjoy working with every child in school. Previously I have worked in other Nottinghamshire schools following the completion of my PGCE in 2003. I also hold a degree in Economics and I am currently studying towards an Executive Coaching qualification with ILM.

Within school, I lead on English and am the deputy DSL Designated Safeguarding Lead) in Mrs Bills absence. I have the role as the GDPR officer and work closely with Universities to co-ordinate all our student placements. In addition, I have also been a student and NQT mentor throughout my time at Gunthorpe.

As a parent of Primary aged children myself, I recognise the importance of developing the whole child and feel this is something that Gunthorpe children are actively encouraged to do. We hold academic achievement in high regard but not at the detriment of recognising other important achievements and talents. 



Andy Booth

I joined the Governing Body in February 2020 and know the school from my time spent there as a volunteer listening to children read and as the parent of a former pupil.  I am a retired Assistant Headteacher with over 30 years’ experience of working in secondary schools. During my career in education I have undertaken pastoral and curriculum roles, have held leadership and management positions and served as a teacher governor. It is this experience that I hope will benefit the school moving forward.

Mary Pettifor

I joined the team of governors in December 2020.

Having lived in Gunthorpe for over 25 years, I have been associated with the school both as a parent and a grandparent of former and current pupils.

I am fortunate in having had a long career as an equestrian coach and coach educator followed by another fairly long career in project management in property building and management. I am a Christian, and member of the family of Gunthorpe, Caythorpe and Lowdham churches. This gives me a broad set of skills that I hope will provide support to the school going forwards

Jo Simson

It’s been a great pleasure to come into Gunthorpe School to deliver assemblies and meet the staff and the children. I have worked with children for many years, as a childminder, Junior Church, Holiday Club and Messy Church Leader, mother and grandmother. I was appointed a Foundation Governor by the Diocese of Southwell in December 2020. I feel privileged to have this opportunity to become a ‘critical friend’, encouraging the continuing development of the school as a place where children can grow and thrive.