West Kidlington Primary & Nursery School About Us

Local Governing Body

West Kidlington Primary & Nursery School is an academy managed by The White Horse Federation. Each school within The White Horse Federation is managed by a local governing body (LGB) and the senior leadership team (SLT) of the school.

Working in partnership with the school principal and staff, governors ensure high standards of achievement for the children in the school. They focus on strategy and school improvement; setting priorities and monitoring progress to realise these aims. They have three core strategic functions delegated to them by The White Horse Federation Board:

  • Setting the vision, ethos, and strategic direction of the school within the context of The White Horse Federation.
  • Holding the principal and senior staff to account for the educational performance of the school and its children.
  • Ensuring the school remains within the budget delegated by The White Horse Federation and making sure the money is well spent.

If you have any questions for the local governing board, you are welcome to contact them via the clerk to governors. You can do this by leaving a note for the attention of the clerk at the school office or sending an email to [email protected].


Current Local Governors

Charlotte Christie Chair of Governors
Simon Isherwood Principal & Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead
Simon Cowley Co-opted Governor
Clare Harris Parent Governor
Dr Mairi Gibbs Parent Governor
Emma Orton Staff Governor
Martin Davis Co-opted Governor
Phil Butcher Co-opted Governor

Members of the West Kidlington Primary & Nursery School local governing body are:

Charlotte Christie (Chair)

Charlotte worked for many years for Oxfordshire County Council and is now an independent education consultant. She has wide experience of working with headteachers and governors in all types of schools and has also frequently delivered training for governors. She has been a member of 4 IEBs, one as chair. In the past, she worked with the school as the local authority adviser.

Clare Harris

Date of Appointment: 30th November 2017

As a parent governor, I have a keen interest in supporting the school to create an environment that is safe, inspiring, and encourages everyone to contribute to the school’s success. I want to ensure that all children move through the school not only achieving their academic best, but also understanding and practising broader life skills, such as confidence, kindness, and curiosity. I have two children at the school, but see this role as one that supports all our children.

Mairi Gibbs

Date of Appointment: 30th November 2017

Mairi is a parent governor and has two children at West Kidlington, currently in key stage 2 and key stage 1. Her family has also used nursery, Skips, and Magpies so has experienced all parts of the school. Mairi has a scientific background and works in Oxford as a senior manager, with a particular interest in developing a strong organisation backed by pragmatic and effective processes.

Emma Orton

I have worked at West Kidlington for 6 years. Initially employed as a long term supply teacher, working across the school, before accepting a permanent teaching position in Key Stage 2. I have experienced the school going from strength to strength in the last few years. I believe that as the elected staff governor and a class teacher, I have a valuable voice on the Local Governing Board, where I can help governors with my knowledge and experience, as the school continues to improve and move forward. I genuinely love teaching at West Kidlington and working with the wonderful children, parents and staff and look forward to what comes next for our school.

Date of Appointment: 13th December 2018

Phil Butcher

Phil moved to Kidlington in September 2018 to take up his new role as pastor of Grace Church Kidlington. He has two grown-up sons & first became a governor when his eldest was in reception class in 2002. Phil went on to serve as a primary school governor in schools in Gloucestershire and Derby. He especially enjoys being involved in looking at the progress and attainment of pupils & seeing how the school development plan is implemented to improve outcomes for all pupils.

Date of Appointment: 1st April 2019

Martin Davis

Martin is Team Vicar in the Anglican Church in Kidlington (since 2015) and Chairs the Kidlington Community Hub at St John’s which provides pre-school stay and play groups and much more since the closure of the Children's Centre in Kidlington in March 2017. Martin has three grown up children and one grandson. Previously he was a governor at a Church of England Primary School in Slough. As a Community Governor Martin hopes to continue to develop the connections between the school and so many different aspects of life in Kidlington.

Date of Appointment: 1st April 2019

Simon Cowley

Simon delivers training and leadership support to principals as well as developing whole White Horse Federation systems for assessment and portfolios of evidence. He takes the lead for ensuring The White Horse Federation is a values-based organisation. Simon is a school and national leader of education.

Simon Isherwood (Principal)

Date of Appointment. 5th September 2016

I joined West Kidlington Primary School as the principal in September 2016. I am highly motivated to improve the education provision for all children in the school. I see a tremendous spirit throughout the school and would like to provide, through my role as principal and governor, a school that is current, inspiring, and pioneering. Prior to this appointment, I was headteacher at Bladon CE Primary School for five years. I have also worked as a school improvement advisor for the local authority. My wife is a teacher and my two children attend Oxfordshire primary and secondary schools. We talk school a lot in my house!

Alison Cook (Clerk to the LGB)

Alison works as a higher-level teaching assistant at West Kidlington Primary School. Initially appointed as clerk to the governing body in January 2016, she has more recently undertaken clerking duties for the IEB and the TMB. She now acts as clerk for the LGB.

Register of Interests 2018-19 & Attendance 2018-19

NamePosition/Name of OrganisationNature of InterestDate RegisteredDate CeasedAttendance 2018-19Notes
Simon IsherwoodNone-04/10/18-6 of 6
Charlotte ChristieC Christie Education Ltd (Educational Consultancy)04/10/18-6 of 6
Emma OrtonNone20/11/18-5 of 6
Simon CowleyTregoze Primary SchoolChair of Governors18/01/17-0 of 6
Clare HarrisIn Diverse Company (part of Hardy Fisher Group)
Associate Director
Spouse employed at WKPS
30/11/17-5 of 6
Dr Mairi GibbsOxford University Innovation Ltd
St Mary's Church, Kidlington
Head of Operations
Volunteer Children's Worker
Close connection employed at WKPS
30/11/17-5 of 6
Phil ButcherNoneSpouse employed by Oxfordshire Education Authority at Oxford Hearing Impaired Base, Cherwell School01/04/19-2 of 6
Martin DavisNoneAssociate of staff member at WKPS via out of school activity01/04/19-2 of 6

The White Horse Federation Governance Information

Each school has its own local governing body (LGB). The chair of each LGB will also sit on a collective group of similar chairs, from which one representative will be elected and then co-opted onto the Board of Trustees. This process will be repeated every two years, thus affording new chairs the opportunity to be similarly elected.

TWHF Board of Trustees has clearly identified the areas of responsibility that they delegate to the LGBs. Although not in any way legally responsible, and not itself accountable for the statutory functions, the LGB has an important role to play in assisting the school to operate effectively in line with the wishes of TWHF Board of Trustees as communicated to the LGB.

To learn more, visit The White Horse Federation website.


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