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Thatcham Park Governors

On behalf of the governing board I welcome you to the Thatcham Park website.

The governors of Thatcham Park School are a diverse group with experience both of education and of business, who work hard to ensure that Thatcham Park gives the best to all of its pupils.

The governors believe that the foundation of this is a learning environment in which all children feel safe, creating a calm and supportive atmosphere for learning. This is alongside a staff team who are dedicated to each child reaching their maximum potential.

We believe that children will thrive at school through a partnership between children, teachers, parents, carers and governors, and look to develop this across both the curriculum and through the various extra-curricular activities that the school offers.

If anyone would like to contact either me or any of the other governors this can be done through the school office.

Yours sincerely
Martin Parsons
Chair of Governors

Alison Webster - Headteacher

The Headteacher is an Ex-officio governor which means they are a member of the governing board by virtue of the position held in school and do not need to be elected.

Martin Parsons

Chair of Governing Board

LA Governor

Committee: Pupil Progress and Learning, Finance and Resources & External Relations and Pastoral Care

History and Educational Visits Link Governor














My career in Education spanned 44 years in both the State and Private sectors.  I have worked in a number of Primary Schools across the South of England incuding 25 years as Head of Pre-Prep in two Berkshire Independent Schools during which time my Department was awarded 'Outstanding' Status by Ofsted.

My qualifications include a Certificate of Education  an Honorary B.Ed from the University of Winchester and a RSA Diploma in Specific Learning Difficultes; I also hold qualifications in Behaviour Managment and Parenting Training.

Outside of School I worked nationally as Chair of the Pre-Prep Committee of the Incorporated Asociation of Prep School (IAPS) and for fifteen years as the Editor of a national magazine for teachers in Independent Schools.  In this capacity I organised and chaired many national residential conferences and training courses.  I am a published author of many articles in education magazines and reference books.

I worked internationally for 8 years as an Education consultant in a group of 100 Independent schools in India, delivering training to Teachers and Principals in School Management and Behaviour Management.  I also successfully embedded a literacy programme across the schools which recieved recognition for the outstanding improvement in standards from the British Council.  I have delivered consultancy in China and to Education companies in the UK.

I am now retired from Primary Education but  continue to write about and deliver training in, dress pattern design and fitting.  I live in Thatcham and am very involved in the upbringing of my two grandchildren who are pupils at Thatcham Park School.

Although officially retired, I remain an Hon. Life Fellow in the School of Humanities at the University of Reading.  My research specialism is the effect of war and conflict on children. I have written numerous books on the topic and taken part in many TV and radio programmes, in the UK, Europe and the USA.

I was formally Dept. Head at the Institute of Education at the University of Reading and was responsible for curriculum development in the Humanities and all Teacher Training, both Primary and Secondary.  Before becoming an academic I had a very successful teaching career from Assistant Teacher in History and Geography to Assistant Deputy Head in a large comprehensive school. 

I am the Vice Chairman of the Reading School Foundation.


I am married with 2 daughters and 4 grandchildren and when not working I make stained glass windows in my studio at home and try to play golf.


Marion Scott-Baker

Vice Chair of External Relations and Pastoral Care 

Co-opted Governor

Committee: Pupil Progress and Learning and External Relations and Pastoral Care

English Phonics and Reading, and Pupil Premium Link Governor








Mark Bennet

Foundation Governor

Committee . Pupil Progress  & Learning and External Relations and Pastoral Care.

Maths Link Governor




















My career has been in education, for many years as a teacher and senior manager in the secondary sector. More recently I fulfilled the role of Local Authority ICT advisor, working with both primary and secondary schools, Currently, I run my own business as an educational consultant, where I work at both strategic and practical levels, mainly assisting schools in developing ICT both in terms of the curriculum and hardware provision.I have specific interest in all aspects of internet safety, encouraging our young people to be safe and responsible users of web based tools and resources..

My passion has always been that of enabling people to make good use of their skills and talents, so much of my life is spent empowering others, especially in their use of ICT, as and when appropriate to them.

Working in and around schools all of my life, I have an interest in school governace and joined the Thatcham Park board to see what I could bring to the team from my skills and experiences.

I have been Team Rector of St Mary's Church since 2011, and was previously a curate in Chapel Allerton (Leeds) and Team Rector in Great Parndon (Harlow).  Before training to be a vicar I worked as a chartered acountant (a qualification I still maintain) and I have been a passionate mathematician all my life.  I am also a Director of The Kennet School Academy Trust and a governor of Kennet School as well as being a Berkshire representative on the Oxford Dicesan Board of Education. 

I learned to work with schools in Leeds, where the deputy head treated me like a young teacher and gave me feedback on everything I did, and I learned about governance in rather hard circumstances in Harlow.  I engage with various online governors forums and education blogs to keep informed and up to date. The church should not be in education if it cannot do a good job - and that means the church in Thatcham supporting Thatcham Park School in practical was from the youngest child to the most senior adult. My schools gave me a great chance in ife.  Our pupils deserve the same

Sue Nicholson

Vice Chair of Governors

 Chair of Pupil Progress and Learning

Co-opted Governor

Committees: Finance & Resources & Pupil Progress and Learning

Computing Link Governor

Ian Lawrie


Chair of Finance

Co-opted Governor

Committee: Finance & Resources


Geography Link Governor














 I have been a governor at Thatcham Park since 2012. I have two children.  My youngest is stil at Thatcham Park, whilst my eldest moved up to Kennet in 2016.  I am pleased to be able to support the school in it's continued development and am keen that every child has the opportunity to learn in a positive, happy and caring environment.

I was born in Canada, grew up in South Wales and in my adult life have lived throughout the UK, settling in Thatcham some 15 years ago.I was educated through the state system going on to obtain a degree and then a masters. I am a Chartered Surveyor and a Chartered Town Planner and work in London running my own development consultancy business. I am (despite my age and injury list) a keen sportsman and now concentrate on cycling, mountaineering and skiing.

Sue Ball

Co-Opted Governor

Committee    EXPC

With three chidlren who attended Thatcham Park C of E School (the last finishing in summer 2019) I am extremely motivated to support and help the development of the school and feel that I have developed my Governor skill set over the last 7 years.  A firm believer that every child deserves the opportunity to grow and develop both academically and socially through school, I aspire to act in the role as a "critical friend" that the school deserves in its' Governors.

I was born in Birmingham, was educated through the state system and attended Sheffield University where I graduated with a degree in Business. My career has spanned thirty years in the oil and gas industry incuding spending time working in Norway and the United States of America.  We moved to Thatcham in 2009 upon our return to the UK.  In my spare time (what little remains after family and a daily commute to London) I am a coach at Thatcham Harriers Football Club.

Patrick Grincell

Vice-Chair of Finance snd Resources

Co-opted Governor

Committee: Finance & Resources


Science Link Governor










Recently retired from 10 years as a headteacher and 18 years as a primary school teacher in West Berkshire Schools, I still have a passion and a drive to help schools be the best that they can be and therefore ensuring children have opportunities to shine.

I have worked across all three key stages teaching Foundation, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2. The impact that adults have on children's lives is immense and that is why it is important for governors to be able to both support and challenge the school using their wide range of skills.  Obviously, my skills centre mainly around Education.  However, I worked in the City for an airline and through this I gained knowledge of computer systems.  I then worked for a further four years in the IT industry which is when smaller companies were just beginnng to realise the power of computers and how they could be used to store data and easily communicate with others.

After a career break of just 2 and a half years when I had my daughter I realised that now was the time to fulfil my lifelong passion to teach children.   I feel privileged to have been asked to be a Foundation Governor at Thatcham Park and I hope now to be able to use all these skills to contribute to the further development of this amazing school. 


RE and Collective Worship and PSHE/British Values Link Governor

Sheila Ellison

Co-opted Governor

Committee: Pupil Progress and Learning & External Relations and Pastoral Care

Art and DT Link Governor





 I have always had a special interest in children. I have three children of my own and have fostered three children. I am on the management committee of Home Start, the Detached Youth Project  and early chairman of Thatcham Youth.  I have been a governor at Kennet school since 2005 and at Thatcham Park since 2012. I  I have particular interest in both Thatcham Park and Kennet schools as I feel it's important that Thatcham children have the best possible education. I feel as a governor I can contribute to that.


I joined Thatcham Park staff team in 2014, having previously worked in music education for 17 years. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here, working across the age ranges and with the fantastic and welcoming team. When the opportunity arose for a new Staff Governor I was keen to become involved, both to expand my understanding of the 'behind the scenes' work that goes into the running of the school and also to support the Leadership Team and staff members at what is such a critical and fast-paced time of change in education.




Sian Smithers

Chair of External Relations and Pastoral Care

Parent Governor

Committee:  External Relations and Pastoral Care and Pupil Progress and Learning.

Oracy and English Writing and GPS Link Governor
























I have been part of Thatcham Park School community for 14 years I currently have a daughter in upper school.  I also have 3 boys who all attended Thatcham Park starting in Foundation 1, all are now doing well at Kennet School I believe this is due to the fantastic start that they had at Thatcham Park.  I began working with the PTFA when my daughter was in Foundation 1 and spent 2 years at the Chair.  I carry out voluntary work within the school when required.

I currently work at little Ks after school club.  I believe all children should have access to a good education and extra curricular activities.


Rhiannon Dargan

Staff Governor

Committee: Pupil Progress and Learning & Finance and Resources


Music Link Governor










I have two daughters both of who attend Thatcham Park. I have lived in Thatcham for over 25 years and have a solid knowledge of the local area and community groups. I decided to become a parent governor because I wanted to help make Thatcham Park as good as it can possibly can be, for the benefit of all the children.

I have 14 years’ experience as a primary school teacher in an Ofsted rated outstanding school. I have been a mentor to newly qualified teachers; have supported other schools in their literacy development and run assessment and moderation training. and I am currenty Key Stage One Leader. 

I have sat on charity committees and volunteered for over 15 years at my local disabled sailing centre. I am therefore familiar with presenting and digesting materials at committee level.

It is my belief that the children of Thatcham Park should have fun while they learn; make friends in a safe and nurturing environment whilst striving to achieve academic excellence. I would like to be part of a governing body that ensures these are met.

I am friendly, approachable and will strive to promote open communication between the school, parents and pupils.

More than anything I am driven to see children of all abilities succeed. 

Amanda Lush

Parent Governor

Committee EXPC and Finance and Resources


SEN, MFLand PE Link Governor

Instrument of Government

Minutes from meetings

Copies of minutes from all governing board meetings are available by contacting gclerk@thatchampark.w-berks.sch.uk

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