School Governors

The role of the Governing Board

The Governing Board has three core strategic functions:

  • To set the vision and strategic direction of the academy.
  • To hold the Principal to account for the educational performance of the school.
  • To ensure that the financial resources of the academy are well spent.


Powers of the Governing Board

The Governing Board is recognised in law as a corporate body, which means it has a legal identity separate from that of its governors.

It also means that individual governors have no power or right to act on behalf of the Governing Board except where the whole Governing Board has delegated a specific duty to that individual. The Governing Board can also decide to delegate certain responsibilities to committees that it has established.

Governors will, therefore, take collective responsibility for the decisions reached by the Governing Board to publicly support decisions.


Our Local Governing Board


Simon Atkinson - Chair of Governors

Hello, I am Simon Atkinson and your Chair of Governors at Blackgates.

I have been a Government employee  in West Yorkshire for just short of 29 years.  I am passionate not only about my community but also this school. I have had a lot of experience with dealing with children at all ages throughout my career and have a 22 year old son.

Blackgates is a fantastic School and I am always amazed about the determination and dedication of the staff and Leadership Team to make it an even better school. Please help me and the staff to achieve the very best school for your children. 

Margaret Oliver - Community Governor

I worked part-time at the school from 1978 until my retirement in 1999 as a Peripatetic Music Specialist. I directed a 60 strong choir and taught singing and recorder.

I have written, produced and directed major musical performances over the years and know the ethos of the school throughout.

I was, until 2011, County Training Manager for Central Yorkshire Scouts, managing a team of 15 adults and providing Modular Leader Training for the County’s Adult Leaders. Prior to this appointment and over a period of 30 years I undertook Trainer Training provided by the National Scouting Executive.

I have been a Community Governor at Blackgates since 2007 with two long term absences due to major surgery and the terminal illness ( and subsequent death) of my husband. I continued to run the school choir ( on a voluntary basis) after my retirement until my first absence for surgery.

I have served on two disciplinary hearings over the past 5 years.

Since the appointment of the new head teacher, I have helped with Literacy in Years 1, 2, and 3 – with particularly emphasis on PP children. I currently go into school one and a half days per week – 25% of this time now includes weekly singing with KS1 and KS2 –and a little help with basic French. 


Janet Town - Co-opted Governor

I have been a governor at various schools throughout my teaching career both as a Teacher Governor and a Parent Governor. I enjoyed both roles for different reasons. I feel I can bring this experience to school but in a different way as a Co-opted Governor getting to know the school and how it works within the community which I would be interested in promoting. I was a SENCO before I retired, in a large primary school in Bradford and I was also responsible for the PSHCE curriculum. I hope that I can bring some of that experience to the Governing Body and school. I am also a Safeguarding Awareness Co-ordinator for Central Yorkshire Scouts and a member of Soroptimist International of Dewsbury and District.

I would like to become involved in the school community and hopefully bring my previous experience to the school. I also want to give something back to education and being a Governor is an ideal way to do this.


Gail Leathley

Hello, I’m Gail, a new addition to the team of Governors at Blackgates Primary School. I was inspired to become a Governor following a presentation regarding ‘ Inspiring Governance’. I was looking for a school that appealed to my inner self and that could use my skills to make a difference. For the past 28 years I have been involved in project management, financial and strategic planning. Helping companies find opportunities to aid growth and innovation.

I have one daughter, now at University who has been educated both at a private school and Local Authority led school and I have seen the challenges that both provisions have had to tackle.

I was looking for a school that was open to change and who were looking for individuals to help enhance their growth potential. I am looking forward to working with parents, pupils, teachers and governors to help make Blackgates an outstanding provision for primary education.


Member of the resource committee

Member of the pay and performance management committee 

Governor for sports premium


Lisa Rumford - Co-opted governor 

I am currently a Vice Principal in a large 3 form entry Primary school in Bradford.  I have had 12 years of SENCO experience and have built 2 successful Designated specialist provisions for children witness Autism and Physical disabilities.  Blackgates shows a clear strength with SEND.

I am Designated Safguarding Lead for my school in addition to leading on Attendance, Early Years and Curriculum design.

I am experienced in school improvement, analysis of data and keep up to date with key information relevant to my role in education, so this can be used to support in my governor role.

 I have invested my children’s education in Blackgates and I would like to invest my expertise to help Blackgates staff and pupils in the best way that I can.


Governor for Safeguarding

Governor for Behaviour and safety - including attendance 

Katy Jordan