Meet the Governors
We are a very active governing body, meeting formally twice each term, but maintaining a high profile within the school at various school and fundraising events. Our current members are:
|Lara Gardiner||Vice Chair|
|Michael Lawrence||Vice Chair|
|Andy Jones||Teaching Staff Governor|
|Rachel Malatesta||Parent Governor|
|Victoria Hedlund||Parent Governor|
|Cherry McCredie||Trust Governor|
Head Teacher, ex-officio
Michael has been a co-opted governor since January 2018 and both of his children have attended Ivy Chimneys. Michael works at the financial services regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority, in the area responsible for supervising the activities of firms like banks and financial advisers. Although education and finance are obviously very different areas, Michael is keen to use his background in regulation, and his knowledge of how successful organisations are run, to benefit the school. In addition to being one of our Vice Chairs Michael sits on the governing body's Communications working group. He has a particular interest in ensuring that Ivy Chimneys' transition into the new multi-academy trust is a success.
Lara has been a governor at Ivy Chimneys since 2014. She is an experienced teacher, currently teaching in another local primary school , and a qualified SENCO. Her involvement with Ivy Chimneys goes back to 2007 when she undertook a placement here as a trainee teacher. Lara has children at Epping Upland Primary (another school which is part of our multi-academy trust) and Epping St John's Secondary School. She is also involved in the Epping Anglican Church Team as warden at All Saint's, Epping Upland. As well as being one of the governing body's Vice Chairs Lara also has responsibility for SEN and disadvantaged pupils.
Andy is the deputy head teacher at Ivy Chimneys. His association with the school started when his oldest child began attending in 2006; joining a well-established school with a rich history of tradition and a caring ethos. When his younger child began school Andy started teaching at Ivy Chimneys part-time, moving to full-time teaching (year 3/4) the following year. Since then Andy has taught every year group in the school, albeit only occasionally in EYFS, and has seen many changes in that time. His passion for PE and interest in science helps with his subject responsibilities and, although his children now both attend Epping St John's Secondary School, he continues to play an active role in all areas of Ivy Chimneys. Andy is our teacher governor and helps our governing body to gain an insight into how the school is progressing and how future plans could lead to further development. He is both proud and pleased to be able to say that Ivy Chimneys would still be his first choice of local school, upholding the welcoming atmosphere, traditions and character that make it a special place for staff and children alike.
Victoria was elected as a parent governor in November 2018 and has a child in year 2. Victoria's strong background and diverse experience in education drive her role as governor. Her interests lie in progressing STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths) interventions, reflected in her studies for a PhD in science education with the University of Warwick. She works alongside prominent educationalists at Goldsmiths University as a lecturer in Education, to progress creative, interdisciplinary pedagogy. Having worked as a successful Teacher of Physics (Head of Physics, Gifted and Talented Co-ordinator) for many years at an Outstanding school, she is well-grounded in high expectations for inclusive education; an ethos that permeates through her role as governor.
Victoria has developed the Communications working group, focused on parent-governor communications.
Cherry is most easily recognised as an Epping Town & District Councillor, covering the Ivy Chimneys area. She brings a wealth of experience to our Board from her various other roles, including as Chair of the Epping Forest & Brentwood Independent Advisory Group (a support group for the police) and as member of the pan Essex Strategic Independent Advisory Group at Police H.Q. She is a prominent member of the community as: a member of CountryCare (conservation for local Nature Reserves), a committee member of Friends of Swaines Green, a volunteer in the Market Garden, and a tree warden. Now retired, her former career and interests lie in horse training and the teaching of horse riding, including to children.
Rachel is a parent of twin girls who started their school journey at Ivy Chimneys in 2018, and who she has seen blossom in its happy and sociable environment. Rachel was absolutely delighted to be elected as parent governor in January 2021 and with a career in nursing spanning 30 years in a variety of NHS and private industries, she is acutely aware of the challenges that the school will face in this time of great change. She is passionate that safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is critical, whilst protecting the quality of teaching and learning provision. With a background in clinical management, governance and audit, she is experienced in building collaborative relationships. Rachel believes these should be based on fairness, trust and honesty, whilst always challenging decisions and consistently acting in the best interests of the school. Rachel has joined the Communications working group and is a member of the Safeguarding and Pay committees. Currently taking a career break to focus on her family and further her postgraduate studies in childhood development and psychology, she is eager to continue her voluntary roles within the school and local community.