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West London Free School - Kensington Primary Academy

The Knowledge Schools Trust

We aim to provide children with a classical liberal education, regardless of background or ability.

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Governors and Governance

DECLARATION OF BUSINESS INTERESTS AND OTHER GOVERNANCE INFORMATION

To see a register of business interests and other governance information, click here.

ALEX CONABEARE, CHAIR OF GOVERNORS, CO-OPTED GOVERNOR

Alex grew up in London, attending an independent school centrally which gave him a broad and varied education. He studied Physiology and Pharmacology at university in Bristol before returning to London and developing a career in Marketing and Digital within Financial Services and Professional Services. A father of two, he is proud that his daughter is a founding pupil at the Earl’s Court Free School and believes that the principles set out for the school are very important for the well rounded and confident development of our children. 

The role of governor for the schools has given him the opportunity to apply his skills in support of the schools' vision and development and he is proud to hold the position.

Term of office, three years. Appointed April 2021.

EMMA MADDEN, CO-OPTED GOVERNOR, VICE CHAIR

Emma is currently Head of School at Fox Primary School and has a daughter and a son at the West London Free School Primary. She has lived in West London all her life. Emma studied English Literature at Cambridge University, before completing her PGCE and Masters of Teaching at the Institute of Education. She has been the Head of School at Fox Primary, Notting Hill, for 2 years, and Deputy Head for 7 years before that. Fox has been the highest performing primary school nationally for 3 years running and is Ofsted rated Outstanding (2009). In her role, Emma delivers extensive training to qualified teachers around London and works in an advisory capacity to many schools, coordinating school-to-school support. She has particular strengths in use of school data, curriculum design, monitoring teaching and learning and staff development. She has served as Governor and Associate Governor on her own governing body for the past 10 years.

Term of office three years. Appointed September 2022.

OLIVIA GAUTIER, CO-OPTED GOVERNOR 

Olivia was born and raised in London, where she attended a local English primary school, before going on to study at the Lycee Francais Charles de Gaulle, where she obtained her French baccalaureate. She has a bachelor’s in International Relations and a Masters in Management from the London School of Economics. Her career has been in Corporate Finance and Investment, across which she spent several years working in China and more recently joined Diageo in London, as part of their Mergers and Acquisitions team.

Olivia believes strongly in promoting equality and opportunity through education and hopes that her background and experience will contribute effectively to the school’s vision, goals and performance.

Term of office four years. Appointed June 2021. 

RIKDEEP LIT, CO-OPTED GOVERNOR

Rik was born in Canada but has lived in the UK since a young age. He has attended a mixture of state and independent schools, giving him a broad experience of education in the UK.

Rik has lived in London ever since moving to the city to study Economics at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He has used this background to build a career in the investment management industry, where he currently serves as a Director at BlackRock. His primary role is to build investment portfolios to help European pension schemes meet their funding requirements. Using his professional finance skills and passion for education, Rik looks forwards to helping ensure the continued success of the WLFS Primary, ECFS Primary and KPA in his capacity as a governor.

Term of office four years. Appointed June 2021. 

JANE EMMETT, CO-OPTED GOVERNOR

Jane Emmett is the Headteacher of Fulham Prep School. She founded the school in 1996 and has over 30 years of experience in education, having taught in both the independent and state sectors.

Fulham Prep was ranked 'Outstanding' by Ofsted during its most recent inspection in 2014. In the report, Jane's leadership of the school was singled out for praise: "The Principal knows the school extremely well and provides the senior leaders with clear direction and the right mix of support and challenge to inspire them to pursue excellence."  Jane is also a director of the Knowledge Schools Trust. 

Term of office four years. Appointed September 2021.

DEE PURDY, PARENT GOVERNOR

Dee joined the Knowledge Schools Foundation Trust as a trustee in 2017 and was formerly the Chair of the PTA for Earl’s Court and West London Free School Primaries. During the schools’ early years, Dee established the Schools Enrichment (SEP) Programme which successfully tapped into the skills, time and networks of the parents and carers to support with improving the schools’ facilities and enrichment programme.

Dee grew up in South Africa where she attended a local school and later completed a Bachelor of Arts in Fine Arts (Hons) degree at the University of Cape Town. She moved to London in 1998 where she met her husband. They have two daughters who attend West London Free School Primary. Her career has included IT project and process management roles within the international financial sector, with 8 years experience within IT Governance.

 

Through her roles within the school and as a parent at WLFSP Dee has always been committed to helping the schools to grow and develop their strategic vision and she is looking forward to continuing to do this as a parent governor.

Term of office four years. Appointed June 2021.

LILY STAFF, STAFF GOVERNOR

Lily was raised in Essex, where she attended the local state school. She studied Theology and Religious Studies at Cambridge University, before working in theatre production. Afterwards, Lily completed a PGCE at the Institute of Education through the Pimlico SCITT. She worked as a KS2 teacher at Millbank Academy in Westminster for three years, before joining West London Free School Primary last year. Lily is Year 6 Kendall Class teacher and Maths Lead. 

Term of office three years. Appointed September 2022.

DUNCAN FERGUSSEN, STAFF GOVERNOR

Duncan is currently class teacher for Year 5 at Kensington Primary Academy, as well as being subject leader for History and Geography. He attended grammar school in Kent, before completing a BTEC Diploma Foundation Studies in Art and Design at the Kent Institute of Art and Design, and a BA (Hons) in Textile Art at Winchester School of Art. Following a period holding an art studio in East London, and working at Tate Modern Art Gallery, he completed his PGCE in Primary Education at the Institute of Education in London.

Duncan has held multiple class teacher, subject leader and phase leader roles across the full primary age range, previously being based in schools both in North and East London. He is passionate about all aspects of primary education, but particularly enjoys exploring new ways to make learning creative and fun, incorporating different teaching and learning styles into planning, and developing cross-curricular links across subjects. He believes in the importance of promoting equality, inclusion, and meeting the needs of all learners to help them achieve their full potential.

Term of office four years. Appointed September 2022.

DOMINIC SHALES, CO-OPTED GOVERNOR

Dominic was born in Zimbabwe, where he lived until the age of 9. In England, he was educated in the independent sector at Malvern College before reading modern languages at St. Anne’s College, Oxford. Dominic’s career has been in marketing, communications and the media. As well as nine years with global, WPP-owned communications agency Hill + Knowlton, he also set up his own agency, Paratus Communications, which was acquired by Next 15 Group (N15). He subsequently became MD of N15 company, Lexis. In 2017 Dominic moved into the media, joining VICE Media Group to set up a new purpose-driven content platform. He left in 2020 and is now working on three start-up businesses (a media platform, an agency and an app) which focus on driving positive change. Dominic has lived in Brackenbury Village for 20 years and has a daughter at West London Free School Primary.

Term of office four years. Appointed September 2022.

ANTONIA RIDLEY, CO-OPTED GOVERNOR

Antonia Ridley was born, raised and educated in the UK.

She attended University of the West of England in Bristol where she gained a BA Hons in Social Sciences specialising in politics and history.

She worked for two years for a political consultancy before developing a career in marketing strategy and communications. She has over 20 years of experience working for small and medium enterprises and start-ups across a variety of different sectors including exhibitions, renewable energy and retail. She has diplomas in marketing, PR, photography and freelance journalism.

Antonia has lived in the borough for 15 years. She has three children all of whom have attended Earls Court Free School and West London Free School primaries and benefited from the core knowledge curriculum and the school community.

She is passionate about the community she lives in and believes vehemently that all children should have access to a good education providing them with the best possible start in life. She is looking forward to bringing her commercial experience, knowledge of the schools and local community to her role as governor.

Term of office four years. Appointed September 2022.

 

Governance

Kensington Primary Academy’s local governing body is responsible for the quality of education at the school.  The governing body is combined across all three London primaries in the Knowledge Schools Trust, including that of the West London Free School Primary and Earl's Court Free School Primary. The three schools share the leadership of our Director of Primary Education, Laura Lund and this is the most effective method of providing governance for the three schools. 

Governors focus on ensuring the schools have a clear vision, ethos and strategic direction. We hold our headteacher to account for the educational performance of the schools, and we oversee the financial performance of the schools including ensuring that their budgets are well spent.

We have eleven governor positions on the team including two parent governors and two staff governors.  We've recruited a governance team to bring the skills and experience that we need to perform the functions described above. As such, we have governors with experience of working in education, finance, the local community and business. 

Our governing body will evolve as the schools grow and develop. However, in line with both Lord Nash and Sir Michael Wilshaw’s comments about the excessive size of some governing bodies, we intend to keep our team small to ensure it is effective.

Governors exercise their responsibilities and powers in partnership with the headteacher and staff. We do not make day to day decisions on the operational running of the school unless there are weaknesses in the school, when governors then have a duty to investigate and take action. Instead, governors focus on longer-term strategic issues and on checking that the daily operations are taking place in line with the school’s vision, aims and strategic plan.

The Chair of Governors can be contacted directly at chairofgovernors@wlfs-primary.org 

PARENT GOVERNOR FORUMS

We invite current parents and carers of pupils attending the school to join us at parent/governor forums. Our forum of 2022/23 was held on Mon 3rd Oct 2022 and the presentation is available here and the recording here.

We will diarise further forums should there be the need to, but otherwise questions can be sent to chairofgovernors@wlfs-primary.org 

KNOWLEDGE SCHOOLS TRUST

Knowledge Schools Trust (formerly the West London Free School Academy Trust) is the legal entity accountable for all schools within the group, currently the West London Free School, the West London Free School Primary, the Earl's Court Free School Primary, Kensington Primary Academy and Edlesborough Primary Academy. As such, the Trust is responsible for operating all schools within the group and holds the Master Funding Agreement with the Secretary of State.

The Trust's directors have specific responsibilities for defined aspects of governance across all the schools in the group, namely, Strategic Management, Curriculum and some co-ordinated administrative functions. They set the ethos and vision for the Trust, hold the title to the land the schools are on, employ the staff and are the contracting party for services that serve more than one school in the group (catering, ICT, etc). The Trust's directors have appointed a Chief Executive Officer, who is the Accounting Officer for the Trust, a Finance Director, and a Chief Operations Officer.  HR and Legal services are outsourced to an external provider.

The directors have delegated certain functions for each school to a local governing body. The Chairs of the local governing bodies are also directors of the MAT.

You can see an organogram showing how the Trust relates to the local governing bodies here and read the Terms of Reference, which set out the relationship between the Trust, the local governing bodies and the head teachers, here.

Governor Information Pack