MEET OUR GOVERNORS...
Chair of Governors - Revd S Gillingham - Chair
Hello, I am Reverend Stephanie, Rector to Widford Parish. I have been here at Westlands for 9 years and have always been involved with our school as well as other local schools. Prior to becoming a Rector, I worked as a teacher for 21 years specialising with deaf children and later all children with a sensory loss.
Currently, I am Rector to Church of the Holy Spirit and Saint Mary's church, Chaplain to Chelmsford College, and lead minister to deaf and deafblind people living in the Diocese of Chelmsford. I am married with two children and two grandchildren, love swimming, sewing, singing and walking. This year, I take up the role as Chair of Governors after serving as Vice-Chair last year.
Dr J Lardge
I joined the Governing Body in December 2017 as the Local Authority governor. Since then, two of my children have joined Westlands, so I have both a governor and parent perspective on the school.
I am a secondary school science teacher, specialising in physics, and was also elected to Chelmsford City Council in 2019 as a representative for the Waterhouse Farm ward (in which Westlands is situated).
I am on the committee for Personnel, Finance and Premises.
Mr A Higgs
As a former student and father of a son and daughter who attend the school, I have a strong connection to Westlands Community Primary School and my role as parent governor allows me to have an input into how the school continues to achieve its aims.
I’m a STEM Ambassador (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), promoting these subjects country-wide and I’ve previously carried out STEM presentations at the school.
I am also an Education Ambassador for the Bloodhound Education project – an organisation that aims to use the next British Land Speed Record challenger to inspire a generation of new scientists and engineers.
In my professional life as a Project Manager, I work to supply complex software solutions to government and emergency services organisations, interacting and communicating successfully with people at all levels.
Mr S North-Cornell
I'm proud to be a parent governor at Westlands Community Primary School, having been elected in May 2021. This year, I am the Safeguarding governor and I currently sit on the premises, finance, and personnel (PFP) committee.
I have professional experience of engaging with children in schools, presenting PSHE lessons in the classroom and keeping children safe, at both a practitioner and strategic level.
I'm committed to working collaboratively with the governors, headteacher and senior leadership team to drive the strategic development of the school and ensure a high standard of achievement.
Mrs K Cooney
I have been a parent governor since May 2021. I am a member of the Curriculum Committee and this year, the governor responsible for SEND.
I have two daughters attending the school and I have been very impressed with the quality of the teaching and the enthusiasm of the staff. I took on the role of governor as I am keen to be involved in striving to continually improve the school’s offer.
Mrs M Gaskin
I am proud to have been the Headteacher at Westlands for over five years now before which I was Headteacher at a school in Basildon. In my first headship, I was delighted to work with the team to move the school from Requiring Improvement to Outstanding in just two years and I was equally delighted with the our last inspection here at Westlands which graded us as Good in all areas and Outstanding in Early Years. The excitement and sense of reward in working as part of a dynamic team and seeing a school move from strength to strength for the benefit of the children makes my job the best! I have been teaching for over twenty years and I am as passionate about education today as I was in my first year.
Mr J Bottjer
My name is Jacques Bottjer. I am an assistant headteacher of a one form entry, church school in Basildon. I have over ten years teaching experience and a passion for education. I have previously served as a member of a governing body for a small arts charity and, for a time, owned and managed my own company offering teacher training and specialist workshops concerning the teaching of poetry to schools across the country. I am currently leading the teaching of English; managing my school's curriculum and leading teacher professional development at my school whilst studying for my NPQH and CCRS certification in my spare time. I am the father of a nursery-aged child and live with my family in Basildon.
Mr T Flitman (Associate Member)
I was Headteacher at Junior and Primary schools in Essex for 20 years, retiring from Headship at the end of 2019. I now work as a School Advisor supporting schools across the county.