Home Page

Governing Body

Mrs Alison Thornton - Chair of Governors

Mrs Shelley England - Head Teacher




Mrs Gemma Burns – Teaching Governor 


I'm Gemma the Staff Governor and am also the Special Educational Needs co-ordinator at Keyham Barton School. On Mondays I also work as a counsellor in private practice. I have been trained as a teacher since 2000, which seems like a long time! I love working with children, teachers and parents and (as a team) figuring out how best to help the children in our care, so they thrive and flourish. Originally I worked in 'Education Action Zone' schools in inner-city Manchester, before I moved to Derbyshire and finally to my home here at Keyham. I love yoga (I get up ridiculously early every day to make sure I can practise), spending time with my family - body boarding or walking. I also love films - My favourites are The Goonies and Wallace and Gromit - The Curse of the Were Rabbit. :-D

Mrs Alaine Cocker - Foundation Governor

I am a recent addition to the Governing Body and I have three children, two of whom attend Keyham Barton. I am a fully qualified Teaching Assistant and I am currently employed at Peter Pan Playgroup as a Playgroup Assistant. I have experience as a volunteer with many organisations and I am actively involved in the community with 1st Keyham Scout Group and the Friends of Keyham Barton fundraising group. As a parent and a practising Catholic I believe it is important that our school should look after the social, emotional and spiritual welfare of our children as well as providing the best academic education possible. I look forward to working with the Governing Body of Keyham Barton to achieve the best educational experience for all our children during their time at the school.

Mrs. Tina Tuohy - Foundation Governor



I came to Plymouth in 1970 and have lived in North Prospect for 40 odd years before moving when my house was demolished due to Regeneration. I have been a parishioner at Holy Redeemer all this time and my children and one grandchild also went to Keyham Barton School.  I used to be a governor at the old North Prospect Primary School before it became the Mayflower Academy and found it very interesting and rewarding. I would have like to have joined Keyham Barton earlier but never managed to be available when one of the posts became free. On this occasion I jumped at the chance and while my children  were at the school I had always enjoyed my visits and in particular the Nativity Plays and School Mass. I am on the Parish Council and a Eucharistic Minister.  I used to teach archaeology at University of Exeter and now although retired I still do some teaching online.  I am keen on gardening, wildlife and dog walking.

Mrs. Brooke Morrison-Hill  - Parent Governor


I have 2 sons both of whom attend the school. I have worked in the finance industry for the last 17 years and hope that I can transfer some of my skills and experience to help the school to continue to improve. I wanted to join the governing body as I wanted to contribute to ensuring that we can provide a safe and fun environment for all the children who come here to enjoy.

Mrs Anne-Marie Sowden   -  Community Governor



My association with Keyham Barton started in the late 90’s when my oldest son started school, followed a few years later by his brother. I believe it remains as special now as it felt then. 


While my sons were at school I was on the FKB committee and for a time was Chair, I was also a parent governor at the school. Although my sons have long since left Keyham Barton it remains a special place in my heart. When I saw that they were looking for governors I did not hesitate to apply. I hope in my current role as Commercial Operations Manager for a local company I will be able to offer knowledge to the school, it has now and will always have my full support.

Governors who have resigned in the previous 12 months

Charlotte Hefford   30.04.18

Fr. Tim Lewis          01.05.18

Iain Yearling            27.09.18


The Role of the Governing Body

From 1st April 2014 all the Catholic Schools in the Plymouth Diocese became part of the Catholic Multi Academy Trust, known as ‘Plymouth CAST’.

Who are Governors?
School Governors are people from the school’s local community who wish to make a positive contribution to children’s education. They MUST be over eighteen years at the date of their appointment, but there is NO upper age limit. Each term of office lasts for four years.

Governors are the largest volunteer force in the country!
They have a very important part to play in raising school standards through three key roles which are –

1. Setting Strategic Direction 
This is for the short, medium and long term. It involves setting aims and objectives and setting policies and targets for achieving those aims and objectives. There needs to be clarity of vision, ethos and direction.

2. Ensuring Accountability 
Contributing to the school self-evaluation, understanding strengths and weaknesses, reporting to stakeholders i.e. young people, parents and staff

3. Monitoring and Evaluating School Performanc
Measuring and challenging progress and reviewing School Improvement Plans by holding the Head Teacher and Leadership Team to account for improving the quality of teaching, achievement and behaviour and safety.

What do Governors do?
Our Governing Body normally meet in full once a term with smaller committees such as Premises or Finance & Personnel meeting in between.

Our Governing Body

  • works as a team and is accountable for the performance of the school to

    parents, carers and the wider community.

  • ensures that all safeguarding requirements are met.
  • plans the school’s future direction and makes decisions on the school's budget

    and staffing requirements.

  • decides how best the school can develop and supports the pupils’ behaviour and

    spiritual, moral and social development.

  • makes sure that the school provides for all its pupils including those with

    special needs.

The Head Teacher is responsible for the overall management of the school and for day-to-day management.
Each of the governors has a responsibility for a specific aspect of school life and regularly meets with staff and visits classrooms, the staffroom and the dining hall.
Governors are at the heart of how a school operates and it is vital that we get things right.

Who are our Governors?
Our Governing Body is made up of Foundation Governors who are appointed by the Diocese; parent governors who are elected by the parents of children at the school; staff representatives and community governors.


The Governing Body may be contacted through the Clerk to Governors, Mrs Lindsey Johnson, via the school address or email

How to become a Governor

If you are interested in becoming a governor, please contact the school office in the first instance. 



If you would like to contact the Governing Body please do this via the Clerk to Governors Mrs L Johnson on the email address above or using the form on our 'Contact Details' page.


Governor attendance at meetings