Meet the Governors
Priorities for Governors- At a glance
Name: Sandra Clarke
Skill/Areas of Interest: Special Needs Education; Post-school opportunities
2012 - 2021 - Deputy Head - Woodlands Secondary School
2008 - 2012 - Deputy Head - St John's Special School, Kempston
2000 - 2008 - Senior Teacher - Lady Zia Wernher School
1997 - 1999 - Head of Year - Putteridge Junior School
1992 - 1997 - Design Technology Co-ordinator - William Austin Junior School
Hobbies: swimming, reading, crafting, travelling, socialising
Name: Steve Gibbs
Position: Chair of Governors, Co-opted Governor, member of Curriculum Committee
Skills/Area of interest: Special Needs provision
Employment: Previously senior operational and sales manager for Post Office Ltd. Trained to be a teacher. Worked in Adult Education until February 2019.
Hobbies: Sports, reading and travelling
Name: Fr Richard Brown
Position: Co-opted Governor, Vice Chair of Governors.
Skills/Area of Interest: Safeguarding, inclusion
Employment: Parish Priest & Bishop of Richborough’s representative in the Diocese of St. Albans
Other initiatives: Trustee of Aylott James Almshouses
Hobbies: Reading, classical music, walking the hounds, travelling
Name: Kate Burchell
Position: Co-opted Governor, Member of Curriculum committee
Skills/Area of interest: I have a strong commitment to ensuring that disabled children and young people are fully able to reach their individual potential and see the role of the Governor offering support and challenge to Woodlands to help them enable their students and parents/carers to make the most of their time at the school.
Employment: Head of Service for the Disabled Children’s Service at Luton Borough
Council and Designated Social Care Officer for SEND .
Other initiatives: Luton Parent Carers’ Forum.
Hobbies: Travelling, theatre, reading and upcycling furniture.
I’m married and have 2 children; one is a nurse and currently working in Australia, the other is working and studying.
Name: Anne Donelan
Position: Local Authority Governor.
Area of interest: Special needs provision.
Employment: Family law barrister - mainly representing parents whose children are the subject of care proceedings.
Hobbies: Politics - presently Labour councillor for Northwell ward, Luton.
Governor Name: Emma French
Position on the Board: Co-opted Governor, member of the Finance, Premises and Personnel Committee
Specific Responsibilities: Finance Monitoring, Safeguarding
Employment: Computer Business Consultant, Healthcare Company
Other Initiatives: I volunteer as a Beaver Scout Colony assistant. My eldest son, Matthew, was a pupil at Woodlands. I care about all the pupils in this school, and want to understand the different challenges they face, applying my business skills to support the school in the excellent work that it does.
Hobbies: Gardening, craft
Name: Leeroy Jenkins
Position on the Board: Co-opted Governor, Member of Finance, Premises and Personnel Committee.
Specific Responsibility: Community Links; Health and safety.
Skills/ Areas of Interest: Networking, printing, marketing
Employment: Director of nextuplocal.com and NUBranding.co.uk
Other initiatives: Sponsor of Luton Town and Indians Cricket Club, The Coop Sports and Social Club, Friends of Hightown, Panthers Netball Team, Luton Foodbank, Tropical FM.
Hobbies: Music and graphic design
Name: Caroline Lowry
Position: Deputy Head Teacher
Skill/Areas of Interest:
I have a particular interest in the school curriculum and promoting functional learning, life skills and independence skills.
1999 - 2001 Adina School, Brighton, class teacher
2001 - 2004 Five Springs School - music coordinator
2013 - 2021 Woodlands Secondary School
· 2013 - 2017 Class teacher
· 2018 - 2021 Assistant Head Teacher
I love gardening, baking, going to the gym and spending time with my family and friends.
Name: Robert Parker
Position: Parent Governor (proxy)
Skills/Area of Interest: Finance, strategic direction, accountability
Employment: Finance Director of Biogen UK, a renewable energy company. Previously held a number of commercially focused finance roles within Volkswagen Group UK
Hobbies: Running, cycling, swimming, good food, travelling and larking about with my 2 children
Name: Karen Quirke
Position: Parent Governor; member of Curriculum committee; School Council link governor
Skills/Area of interest: Raising awareness of special needs and inclusion
Employment: Families in Focus - Facilitator for Teens Parent Network
Other initiatives: Parent mentoring (for parents of children with additional needs)
Hobbies: Going to the gym, baking, family and friends
Governor Name: Kerry Rees
Position on the Board: Co-opted Member. Chair of the Finance, Premises and Personnel Committee.
Skills/Areas of Interest: Post 16 and Post 18, PMLD, ensuring the ‘voice’ of the young people is heard.
Employment: Previously employed at Luton Council as the Transition Team Manager until November 2016. Now self-employed and supporting children and adults with complex needs.
Other Initiatives: Makaton Tutor, Crafter, Advocator
Hobbies: Costa coffee, crocheting, theatre/cinema, shopping, chatting.
Name: Helen Rolfe
Position on the Board: Staff governor and Vice Chair of Curriculum Committee. Responsible for Governor training.
Skills/Areas of Interest: Special Needs Education
Employment: Class teacher, Woodlands Secondary School
Other initiatives: I have past experience of safer recruitment through many years of scouting and understand the importance of keeping young people safe.
Hobbies: Walking my dog in the countryside, growing flowers and vegetables in my garden, and enjoying my caravan with my family.
Name: Bav Shah
Position: Co-opted Governor, Vice Chair Finance, Premises and Personnel Committee
Skills/Area of interest: Health and Safety , Property, Community Engagement
Employment: Chartered Surveyor - Director – Business Property Solutions
Other initiatives: Member of a number of Charity / Educational / Community advisory groups internationally
Hobbies: Travel, keeping fit, cooking and fundraising