The Governing Board was constituted on 1st September 2016 and comprises the following categories of governors:

  • 1 x Local Authority governor - nominated by LA but approved by the Board   
  • 2 x Parent governors - elected by parents of students at the school   
  • 1 x Staff governor - elected by the staff of the school   
  • 1 x Headteacher   
  • 5 x Co-opted governors - appointed by the Board   

In addition, the Board has appointed an Associate member with voting rights on the Improvement Committee.  All governors and the Associate Member incorporate a wide range of skills/experience/knowledge which enables the Board to undertake its work effectively.  

With the exception of the Headteacher all Governors and the Associate Member serve for a term of 4 years. The current Headteacher is a permanent member of the Governing Board.

The Role of the Governing Board

The Governing Board has three core strategic functions, namely:

1.  establishing the strategic framework for the School by:

      (a)  setting the aims and objectives for the school and also the policies and targets for achievement of these;

      (b)  monitoring and evaluating progress in the School and regularly reviewing the strategic framework for the School in the light of that progress.

2.  Acting as a 'critical friend' to the Headteacher by supporting him in his role and holding the Headteacher to account for educational performance.

3.  Ensuring financial health, probity and value for money. 

How the Governing Board undertakes it’s Role

The role of the Governing Board is primarily undertaken through meetings and for the 2016/17 academic year this will involve:

  • 4 meetings of the full Governing Board;
  • 6 meetings of the Improvement Committee; and
  • 3 meetings of the Resources Committee.

The Committees have extensive delegation but report back to the Board on their work, thus providing all governors with an overview of the whole work of the Board.  Further details of the Committee structure are given below.In addition to meetings, all governors are 'linked' to an area of school life and make visits to the school to gain a greater understanding of the areas to which they are linked.  Link governors report back to the Board on any visits made.

To further its work all Board members are able to access relevant training, and work collaboratively with governors of other schools.

Contact the Governing Board

The Chair of the Governing Board can be contacted by e-mailing:

Member Profiles

Jenna Potter

Head Teacher

Term of office: 1st January 2018 - Present

London-born, Cambridgeshire-bred, Mrs Potter moved to North Yorkshire to train as a teacher at York University. Her first school as a trainee was Richmond where she taught French and German. Mrs Potter’s first teaching appointment was in Luton, where she taught for a year before returning to Richmond where she became head of year. On moving to Woodham School, Newton Aycliffe, as director of student support she developed an interest in raising standards and then spent a year at Wensleydale School as a deputy headteacher. She returned to Richmond School and Sixth Form College in 2010 and for the past seven years has been deputy headteacher. In December of 2017, Mrs Potter was appointed as Head Teacher of Richmond School

Lesley Abbey

Staff Governor
Term of office: 1st September 2016 to 31st August 2020
Has taught at Richmond School for 12 years, having joined the School as a newly qualified teacher in the Physical Education Department. In September 2013 Lesley was appointed as Lead Teacher for PE and currently leads a team of seven staff responsible for delivering high quality PE lessons and extra-curricular sporting opportunities. Lesley is passionate about developing teaching and learning within the PE Department and across the whole School.
Register of Business Interest

Andrew Cottrell

Parent Governor
Term of office: 1st September 2016 to 31st August 2020
Has served as an officer in the Army for 28 years, with significant leadership experience in a variety of scenarios and in personnel and financial management.  He has a strong commitment to the value of continuing education and experience of working in Higher Education in the development of leadership training for students.
Register of Business Interest

Peter Cradock

Co-opted Governor
Term of office : 1st September 2016 to 31st August 2020
Family settled in Richmond in 1980. 
Children attended Richmond School between 1983 and 1994
20 years with HM Inspectorate of Schools + Colleges, Department for Education.
Specialist in 14-19 age group provision, involving schools, colleges and industry.  
National Adviser between Departments of Education and Employment. 
Reported on standards of student achievement and appropriateness of learning programmes (curriculum).

From 1999, starting with leave of absence from HMI, and over several different periods of support, worked in Papua New Guinea.  Engaged in teaching, the writing of new National Curriculum standards, designing new education management programmes, school self-improvement strategies and food security projects.  The last project there was completed in September 2015.  This concerned the development of a new post-14 Technical and Vocational Education and Training plan.  In early 2016 undertook a similar planning project in Cambodia.
Register of Business Interest

Caroline Hall

Parent Governor
Term of office: 1st September 2016 to 31st August 2020
Former English teacher at Richmond School with experience of KS3 to KS5 literacy strategies and in teaching SEN children with wide-ranging needs.  GCSE English examiner for the last 10 years and former Committee Secretary for the local Under 5s Group. Heritage Consultant and copywriter for national heritage amenity societies with excellent knowledge of buildings, maintenance and statutory health and safety issues in the workplace.
Register of Business Interest

Judy Hooton

Co–opted Governor
Term of office 1st September 2016 to 31st August 2020
5 secondary schools as a teacher, middle and senior leader, and Board member.
Appointed as Director of CCDU Education Training and Consultancy within the University of Leeds.
Director of Stockton on Tees Education Action Zone, a collaboration of 18 cross phase schools.
National team member of the Development of National Professional Qualifications for Headship (NPQH), Higher Level Teaching Assistant (HLTA), Early Years Professional Status (EYPS), Newly Qualified Social Workers (NQSW).
Chair of 3 IEBs for other authorities.
Ongoing current work in area of leadership development.
Interests: Travel, gardening and experimental vegetable growing and the theatre.
Register of Business Interest

David Lawrenson 

Local Authority Governor and Vice-Chair 

Term of office: 1st December 2017 to 30th November 2021

A retired Local Government Officer with 45 years’ experience both at District and County level. Has served as a governor at Richmond School for several years and is also a governor and Chair of a ‘good’ local primary school. Serves on the Resources Committee of the Governing Board and is ‘Link Governor for Performing Arts/Art. 
Register of Business Interest

Andy McCarthy

Co-opted Governor
Term of office: 3rd May 2018 to 2nd May 2022
Long-standing professional background in school improvement services.
Register of Business Interest

James Robson MBE


Co-opted Governor and Chair 
Term of office: 1st September 2016 to 31st August 2020
A North East businessman and entrepreneur who has spent the last 30 years working in the chemical industry.  A former chair of governors at Red House School in Norton.  

Whilst Mr Robson lives outside the district he is passionate about the importance of a community lead educational partnership.

Mr Robson has recently been voted North East Mentor of the Year by the Enterprise Forum and he is keen to engage North East employers further into school life here in Richmondshire.
Register of Business Interest


Lesley Sweeting

Clerk to Governors
Employed by North Yorkshire County Council
Lesley has a background in both secondary and adult education.  She has clerked part-time for NYCC for more than seven years after moving to North Yorkshire. Lesley is currently a foundation governor at Middleham C of E (VA) Primary School. 



Resources Committee 
(a) Membership: Andrew Cottrell, Austin Gordon, David Lawrenson, Ian Robertson, James Robson, Dean White (Associate with voting rights on this committee)
(b) Meetings: Once termly (3 meetings annually)
(c) Quorum: 3 governors
(d) Delegation: See Scheme of Delegation.
(e) Terms of reference:

1. To ensure the sound management of the School’s financial situation by the regular monitoring and evaluation of financial performance through the use of the School’s Financial Value Standard (SFVS). 
2. To establish regular reporting procedures. 
3. To oversee long term financial planning within the School in the context of the School Improvement Plan and the policies and objectives of the School. 
4. To consider and approve the first formal Budget Plan of the financial year and longer term financial plans. 
5. To ensure that the School complies with the principles of Value for Money and Efficiency (including the use of local and national financial benchmarking data) in using the resources available to the School.
6. To ensure that the annual self-evaluation of the School’s financial management procedures is undertaken by means of the completion and submission to the Local Authority of the DfE Schools Financial Value Standard; to identify any remedial actions required and the associated timescales for implementation. A summary report and recommendations will be presented to the Governing Board. 
7. To regularly review the Policy of and to consider appropriate levels of School balances. 
8. To evaluate the quality, cost and impact of services purchased from all outside providers, including North Yorkshire County Council’s Children and Young People’s Service, in good time before contracts are due for renewal. 
9. To consider the priorities for the use of the School’s allocation of Devolved Formula Capital funding. 
10. To consider the annual insurance requirements. 
11. To receive the report of the Local Authority’s auditors and to act upon any recommendations made therein. 
12. To determine and adopt the School’s Charging and Remissions Policy, and to annually review. 
13. To determine the School’s Lettings Policy, and to review annually. 
14. To carry out an annual review of the School’s Budget Management Policy. 

1. To provide support and guidance to the Headteacher on all matters relating to the school premises. 
2. To prepare and maintain, in conjunction with the Headteacher, an Asset Management Plan for the School. 
3. To approve the costs and arrangements for maintenance, repairs and redecoration, within the allocated budget and to oversee the preparation and implementation of building contracts. 
4. To formulate and implement proposals for the use of the Devolved Formula Capital funding. 
5. To prepare, monitor and review an Accessibility Plan which will meet the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 and the Special Educational Needs and Disability Act 2001. 
6. To agree procedures to be followed for carrying out emergency work and to make recommendations to the Governing Board about delegation to the Headteacher for taking appropriate action on behalf of the Governing Board in the event of an emergency. 
7. To be aware of the specific responsibilities of Governors and the Local Authority in relation to premises and ensure that the Local Authority is informed of any matters for which it has responsibility. 
8. To receive reports and findings of inspections and audits and to liaise with the Headteacher to ensure that appropriate remedial action is taken.
9. To regularly monitor the School’s security measures and implement appropriate. action when necessary. 
10. To liaise and consult with the Local Authority’s Strategic Planning Team as appropriate. 
11. To discharge the responsibilities of the Governing Board regarding litter and refuse under the Environmental Protection Act 1990. 
12. To prepare, adopt, implement and review a plan for the reduction, re-use, refurbishment or recycling of waste. 
13. To assist the Governing Board and the Headteacher to discharge their duties under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 and other associated legislation, in collaboration with the Local Authority. 
14. To consider the Local Authority’s health and safety policies and guidance, and to prepare and review a School Health and Safety Policy, for consideration by the Governing Board. 
15. To ensure that the necessary school safety management system is in place to implement the health and safety policy. 
16. To ensure that risk assessments are carried out and implemented. 
17. To monitor the effectiveness of the school’s health and safety arrangements and performance. 
18. To review any health and safety reports from the Headteacher. 
19. To receive periodic recorded inspections reports of buildings, plant, materials and equipment and to ensure that the premises are safe and do not put the health of persons at risk whilst they are on the premises. 
20. To ensure access to competent persons to assist the school with their health and safety measures. 
21. To attend or commission appropriate training for Governors. 

1. To approve a strategy for the overall staffing structure and to ensure its implementation and review. 
2. To approve requests to recruit and advertise vacant and new posts within the allocated budget. 
3. To prepare job outlines, person specifications and shortlisting criteria for any recruitment exercise. 
4. To liaise with the Local Authority for all senior staff appointments. 
5. To be involved in the shortlisting and interviewing of shortlisted applicants in compliance with current employment law. 
6. To undertake an annual assessment of staff salaries in accordance with the agreed pay policy. 
7. To regularly review those policies affecting staffing.

Improvement Committee

a) Membership: Lesley Abbey; Peter Cradock; Caroline Hall, Judy Hooton; Andy McCarthy;
b) Meetings: Half termly (6 meetings per annum)
c) Quorum: 3 governors
d) Delegation: See Scheme of delegation.
e) Terms of reference:

1. To monitor, evaluate and develop the School Improvement Plan, Action Plans and all other matters in relation to school improvement;
2. To ensure that the requirements of pupils with Special Education Needs are met so far as is practicable;
3. To consider and determine complaints relating to the Curriculum;
4. To consider performance data relating to academic standards and achievement, leadership and provision;
5. To consider and deal with matters in relation to the Every Child Matters agenda;
6. To consider and determine such other matters delegated to the Committee under the Scheme of Delegation;
7. To commission appropriate training for governors.

The following Committees are Joint Committees with Richmond School and 6th Form College, Bedale High School and Wensleydale School and 6th Form College - 2016/17 
Note: Joint meetings do not have to be held and are at the discretion of the    originating school.
Staffing Committee (Note: The Headteacher and the  Director of Children and Young People’s Service (or a representative) (in the case of potential dismissals) have a right to attend the meeting and offer advice)

a) Membership:  3 Governors (including at least 1 governor from the school which originates the subject matter) as available but excluding any Headteachers or staff governors;
b) Meetings:  as necessary
c) Quorum: 3 governors
d) Delegation: Full delegation on all matters.
e) Terms of reference:

1. To consider matters relating to staff discipline;
2. To determine whether an employee should cease to work at the School;
3. Should the need arise, and in consultation with staff, to draft and review policies for redundancy and other terminations and to establish the criteria for selection, for approval by the Governing Board
4. To apply the agreed criteria in the selection of staff for redundancy or other terminations.

2. Staffing Appeals Committee (The Headteacher and the Director of Children and Young People’s Service (or a representative) (in the case of potential dismissals) have a right to attend the meeting and offer advice)

a) Membership: 3 Governors (including at least 1 governor from the school which originates the subject matter) as available but excluding any Headteachers or staff governors and any governor who has been involved previously in matters to be determined by the Committee).
b) Meetings:  as necessary
c) Delegation: Full delegation on all matters.
d) Quorum:  3 governors
e) Terms of reference:

1. To hear appeals against initial decisions of the Staffing Committee or the Headteacher about matters relating to the discipline of staff, dismissal of staff, other terminations or staff redundancy in accordance with the adopted procedures;
2. To consider any appeals pursuant to salary decisions under the Teachers Pay and Conditions document;
3. To uphold or dismiss an appeal.

3. Pupil Discipline Committee

a) Membership: 3 Governors as available (including at least 1 governor from the school which originates the subject matter but excluding any staff governors or Headteachers and any governor who has been involved previously in matters to be determined by the Committee.
b) Meetings:  as necessary
c) Delegation: Full delegation on all matters.
d) Quorum:  3 governors
e) Terms of reference:

1. To consider the actions of the relevant Headteacher in excluding a pupil;
2. To consider representations made by parents and the Local uthority;
3. To determine whether the pupil should be re-instated immediately, re-instated by a particular date or not re-instated.
4. In the case of a fixed term exclusion which would result in the student being excluded from the School for a total of 5 days or less in any one term to consider representations made by the parent(s)

4. Complaints Committee

a) Membership:  3 Governors as available (including at least 1 governor from the school which originates the subject matter but excluding any Headteachers or staff governors and any governor who has been involved previously in matters to be determined by the Committee).
b) Meetings:  as necessary
c) Delegation: Full delegation on all matters.
d) Quorum:  3 governors
e) Terms of reference:

1. dismiss the appeal in whole or in part;
2. uphold the appeal in whole or in part;
3. decide on the appropriate action to be taken to resolve the complaint;
4. recommend changes to the school’s systems or procedures to ensure that problems of a similar nature do not recur.”