Governing body

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What does the governing body do?

The governing body has three core roles defined by the Department for Education.

Establishing the strategic direction, by:
– Setting the vision, values, and objectives for the school
– Agreeing the school improvement strategy with priorities and targets
– Meeting statutory duties

Ensuring accountability, by:
– Appointing the headteacher
– Monitoring progress towards targets
– Performance managing the headteacher
– Engaging with stakeholders
– Contributing to school self-evaluation

Ensuring financial probity, by:
– Setting the budget
– Monitoring spending against the budget
– Ensuring value for money is obtained
– Ensuring risks to the organisation are managed

Governing bodies play a strategic role, focusing on holding the Headteacher to account. We are not involved in the day to day running of the school, which is the responsibility of the staff. Governors use their skills to create accountability, not to do the School’s job for it. For example, a governor with financial expertise should use their skills to scrutinise the School’s accounts, not to help prepare them.

Our governing body consists of a maximum number of 20 members that include eight parent governors, one local authority governor, one staff governor, one headteacher seven co-opted governors, and two foundation governors. Each governor serves for a term of four years, re-electable for a further four years.

The governing body as a whole is accountable for the performance of the school. We act as a corporate body and this means that governors are not able to act or make decisions as individuals, only as a body. Once decisions are agreed by the governing body, they become the decision of the whole governing body whether or not an individual governor voted in favour of the decision.

Our full governing body meets twice a term. Some governors have specific areas of responsibility and report back to the governing body at such meetings. (See governor profiles). Some work is undertaken in subcommittees (see terms of reference for subcommittees.)

Click here to download the Governors Annual Report 2015-16.

To contact the governors, please go via the Clerk to the Governors, email, write to West Exe School, Hatherleigh Road, Exeter, Devon, EX2 9JU , or leave a message on 01392 660100.

Who are the Governors?

Dr David Kernick

Community Governor
Chair of Governors

David Kernick studied Chemical Engineering at the University of Exeter before graduating in Medicine from the University of Wales.  He has been a general practitioner at St Thomas Health Centre for over thirty years and has had teaching and research commitments at the local medical school. His major interest is in migraine and headache and in conjunction with West Exe College has published a number of papers which form the basis of UK policy guidelines to support the management of headache in schools.

He is married with three children and lives in Longdown. Outside of work he enjoys tennis, tinkering with his vintage Austin cars and playing guitar in the St Thomas Health Centre band – “Bad Medicine.”

Mr Allan Hart

Foundation Governor

Almost twenty five years of age Allan and his wife moved here from London. Allan worked in the newspaper industry and Janice was deputy catering manager at the Hillingdon hospital group. They took over an ailing vegetarian restaurant and after four, enjoyable but hard working, years ran out of energy and money.

Allan spent time volunteering for a learning difficulty charity and got a job in mental health, Janice changed direction, studied hard and now teaches horticulture at Bicton College. Working in the NHS he got involved with the Unison union and became a branch officer specialising in health and safety. Allan has been a governor throughout our recent challenging times and is very happy to have been voted chair of governors as he can boast about our recent good Ofsted.

The role of governor is challenging but very rewarding and we are always looking for new governors.

Dr Hazel Bending

Parent Governor
Chair of Personnel and Finance Committee

Hazel is a Parent Governor, she is a senior lecturer at the University of St Mark and St John, Plymouth, where she has worked for the last 12 years, teaching psychology on a wide range of degree programmes.  Prior to this she had a number of professional roles within the health and social care sectors.

She was recently awarded a Doctorate in Education by the University of Exeter on her research on the experiences of men in a female dominated profession. She lives in St Thomas with her husband, who attended St Thomas High School and two children, one currently in her last year at Exeter College and one in Year 8 at West Exe School.

Mr Phil Lewis

Parent Governor

Phil is a Parent Governor with two children at the school. Phil is a Chartered Quantity Surveyor who works in private practice for clients throughout Devon and Cornwall. As a Governor, he takes a lead on the use of data.

Mr John Wiseman

Parent Governor

John Wiseman is a professionally qualified Probation Officer and has worked for the Probation Service since 1979, including 5 years in New Zealand. He is currently the Chief Executive of the Dorset Probation Trust and soon to be Chief Executive of a newly formed Community Rehabilitation Company covering Bristol, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire.

Outside of work John’s other big passion is hockey and he plays for Isca Hockey Club and has represented England at both junior (under 18 and under 21) and vintage (over 50s) levels.

John believes in an education system that enables all children to fulfil their maximum potential regardless of ability.

He lives in St Thomas with his partner, Penny, and her 2 daughters, Ruby (12) and Emily (8).

Miss Lisa Cooper

Co-opted Governor

Lisa grew up in Plymouth and studied French, Spanish and European Studies at university in Bristol where she also completed her PGCE the following year.  She moved to Exeter having secured a job at West Exe School where she has worked in the MFL department for the last 12 years.  She teaches French and Spanish and remains ever passionate about languages and working with young people.

Mr Ben Lias

Co-opted Governor

Ben grew up in South Wales. He first came to Exeter in 1996 to study accountancy at the University of Exeter. He then switched directions and did a second degree in Youth work and applied theology, before gaining a PGCE in RE. He joined West Exe School in 2003 and is now an assistant head of humanities. Ben is also involved with a number of extra-curricular activities that the school runs

Mr Adam Stone

Co-opted Governor

Born in Exeter, A​dam is CEO of ​award winning digital services company ​Rokk Media Ltd based in Alphington​ with staff that include ex-West Exe pupils.

Adam ​​sits on the steering committee of the Exeter College Enterprise Academy and is a board member of Plymouth University’s Entrepreneurial Futures Centre.

​Adam lives in Alphington with his wife who once attended St Thomas High School and his two daughters who are at West Exe School.

Mrs Nicky Archard

Staff Governor

Nicky has lived in Devon all her life. She attended Priory High School (Isca) and continued her education at Exeter College.

She has worked at West Exe School for 10 years starting as Student Receptionist progressing to Attendance Officer as part of the Student Services Team.

She is married with three sons; the youngest is in his first year at Exeter College.

Mr Richard Carpenter

Parent Governor

Richard was born and educated in Torbay migrating to Exeter over 40 years ago. Now living in Exwick with his wife Jane, a Teaching Assistant at Exwick Heights, and 3 teenage children Alana, Jack and Laurel all of whom attend West Exe School.

As a founder, co-founder and director of numerous local companies Richard continues to be involved in various aspects of the local economy and is retained by Devon Trading Standards to boost their Buy With Confidence and Better Business for All schemes.

Mrs Kerry Cutland

Clerk to the Governors

Kerry has lived in Exeter all her life.  She attended St Thomas High School and then continued her education at Exeter College.  She worked for South West Water for 17 years in various secretarial roles.  Kerry also has an administration role for her husband’s Plumbing and Heating business.

She is married with 2 children aged 5 and 9 who attend Alphington Primary School in Exeter.

Mrs Janet Loosemore

Parent Governor

Coming to Devon from the West Midlands 20 years ago for a career change from banking to agriculture, I studied at Bicton College and Seale-Hayne graduating with a first class BSc in Agriculture.

I went on to become a Chartered Accountant and am now a Fellow of the ICAEW. Having worked in several accounting practices for over 15 years, I now have my own small practice.

Married to a Devonian who has his own Vehicle Repair & MOT garage, with a 10 year old daughter attending Alphington Primary School, Exeter.