St. Gabriel's Catholic Primary School

Governor Profiles

Elizabeth Smith (also known as Lisa) Foundation Governor - (Joined in 2010) (Appointed by the Diocese)

Chair of Governors


This is my 9th year as a Governor of a school that has always been close to my heart – initially as a Parent Governor, now as a Foundation Governor. I feel very privileged to be the current Chair of Governors at St. Gabriel's. My own two boys spent many happy and successful years here and I've seen first-hand how devoted and caring every member of staff are. I firmly believe that the spiritual journey that the children take here equips them for life beyond the gates of St. Gabriel's.

Theresa Miller - Foundation Governor (Joined in 2010) (Appointed by the Diocese)

Vice- Chair of Governors


I am a mother of two sons both of which attended St. Gabriel’s Catholic Primary School. I manage the pre-school and afterschool club situated on the grounds of St. Gabriel’s

I am committed to catholic education with a strong belief in the choice offered through a catholic school, now and for future generations of children.

I feel privileged to have been a foundation governor for three years, and I am very impressed by the strong catholic ethos that the school embodies, the outstanding care shown to the children and the schools consistently high standards of education. I believe my work place skills support the Headteacher and staff of the school. Being actively involved as a governor has given me a greater understanding of other important roles in school life.

Father Michael White Foundation Governor - 2014 - (Appointed by the Diocese)


Gee Bernstein - Foundation Governor (Joined in 2002) (Appointed by the Diocese)


Over my time as a Governor I have been a Parent and a Non-Teaching Staff Governor. The main reason I became a Governor was to support the children of the school by using my Human Resources experience.

I am committed to developing a broad and balanced curriculum for the children of St Gabriel's, in order to help maintain the high standards we set, as this helps children achieve their true potential.

Rob Vernon - LA Governor (Joined in 2013) (Appointed by the Local Authority)


The main reason I became a Governor was, after many years being a part of the Friends of St Gabriel's and helping to raise funds for the school, to now put my business and personal skills to use in order to help make a positive impact to the running of the school.

I would like to actively contribute as a school Governor in order to maintain and improve the high standards we have at St Gabriels, helping our children thrive and be the best that they can be.

Steve Pursglove - Foundation Governor (Joined in 2010) (Appointed by the Diocese)


I was previously an elected Parent Governor and an active member of Friends of St Gabriel’s. My own daughter has now completed her journey through St Gabriel’s and I have seen her flourish. I want others to do the same.

In my role in the police I see the worst society has to offer. This makes the value of the mission statement of the school, its Catholic ethos and its safeguarding work all the more apparent, not only in providing an excellent education but also caring, loving children.

I am determined to do everything I can to support the school and staff to maximise the potential of every child.

John Hayes Headteacher - Governor (Joined in 2009) (Appointed by the Diocese)

William Bright Deputy Headteacher – Associate Member (Joined October 2016) (No voting rights)


Mairead Hitchings - Foundation Governor (Joined in 2013) (Appointed by the Diocese)


The main reason I became a Governor was because I have many skills which could make a difference to the school.

I would like to ensure that the school maintains its excellent standards and continues to be a great place for our children to learn and achieve their optimal potential.

The role of parent governor is a vastly responsible one, allowing an opportunity to influence and shape the direction and development of the school to provide the best teaching and learning experience for its pupils and I am ready to meet the challenge with energy, enthusiasm and commitment.


 Natalie Bracher - Parent Govenor (Joined in November 2018) (Appointed by the Parents)


As a dedicated and enthusiastic parent of St Gabriel’s I am both grateful and committed to my role and responsibility as a Parent Governor.

Being the parent of two children who have attended this school has meant going on a journey where educating the heart has been just as valuable as educating the mind.

I was an active Friend’s of St Gabriel’s member for 5 years, striving to raise funds for resources and equipment so that all children could access their individual learning styles.

I am a Therapeutic Guidance Coach who has knowledge and experience of working with children, families and their local community to support safety and education. I now have the opportunity, as a Parent Governor, to show my appreciation by sharing these skills to support the caring and devoted environment that St Gabriel’s is


 Sean Long - Parent Govenor (Joined in November 2018) (Appointed by the Parents)


My family has had a long association with St Gabriel’s, starting with my parents and brother before I began my own personal journey as a pupil, parent and now the role of Parent Governor.

With over 15 years of management experience, I believe that my professional and personal skill sets are the ideal fit to compliment this established team of conscientious people, who strive to deliver a safe and inspiring environment for all children to learn/develop.

I will endeavour to support the evolution of our school whilst respecting and maintaining the catholic fundamentals on which it was built 

Amy Cunningham - Staff Governor (Joined in December 2019 ) (Appointed by the Staff)

St. Gabriel’s has a very special place in my heart as it was the primary school I attended along with my siblings. We always felt safe and nurtured here and built friendships that have lasted all our lives. 

The inspirational people I encountered as a child highly influenced my decision to become a teacher. I wanted to pass on my knowledge and support others in becoming the best that they can be Just as I was encouraged by my school and parish. I have been teaching for over 10 years now and I am proud and honoured that the last 7 years have been at St. Gabriel’s.  

In my role as staff governor, I hope to support my colleagues by bringing the staff viewpoint and perspective to discussion and debate. 


Tess Vigus - Clerk to Governors


Although this page is all about Governors, it is important to also mention the Clerk to Governors, who is in many ways the key person in a Governing Board.

The Clerk is not a Governor, but is employed by the school to support the Governing Board in a variety of ways. The clerk prepares the agenda for main Governing Board meetings, as well as for finance meetings, and staffing meetings.

The clerk will take detailed notes at each of these meetings, which will form the basis of published minutes. These minutes are one way that Ofsted judges the effectiveness of the Governors, so it is of utmost importance that minutes are comprehensive and accurate.

The clerk will also advise the Governors about a range of legal matters before and during meetings. The clerk also maintains the annual calendar of business, helping Governors to cover every aspect that is required throughout the year to meet legal and strategic requirements.

The Clerk has to have a very flexible approach to hours of work, as main governing body meetings are usually held in evenings as are most of the committee meetings.