Cherry Burton C of E VC Primary School

'Roots to Grow and Wings to Fly'

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Who are the governors at Cherry Burton CE Primary School?


We have three foundation governors appointed by the parish and diocese. One governor is appointed by the local authority and three governors are parents, elected by the parents and one members of staff chosen by the rest of the school staff. There are also 3 co-opted governors. All members of the governing body are appointed for a period of four years except the head teacher who is an ex-officio member.

The Chair of Governors is Mrs Christine Bennison


What do governors do?


Governors oversee the development of the school but don’t manage it day-to-day. Governors are responsible for providing strategic management, being a ‘critical friend’ and making executive decisions.


The governing body makes sure the school provides a good quality education, and sets the school aims and policies together with the Head teacher. There are different categories of governor on a governing body, some elected and some appointed. This mix ensures a diversity of views and experience, but doesn’t mean that governors of a particular category “represent” that group. For example, parent governors don’t act as representatives of the parents of the school and don’t report back to them – rather, they bring a broad parental perspective to discussion and debate.


Governors are responsible for promoting high standards of educational achievement and enabling the head teacher and the staff to deliver these, as well as planning the school's long-term future, overseeing its aims, values and ethos, and monitoring its performance.  This involves:

  • setting the school’s vision and aims
  • establishing & maintaining the school’s ethos
  • setting the school’s plans and policies
  • monitoring and evaluating school performance
  • agreeing budgets, policies and objectives and making sure these are met


Meetings of the full governing body are held at least once a term, normally in an evening, with governors normally giving up around 6-8 hours per month. Governors can also sit on some of the committees that look at things like finance, curriculum, staffing and premises. Occasionally, being a governor can be hard work. There may sometimes be a lot of papers to read, meetings to attend and, sometimes, difficult decisions to be made. 

The Governing Body October 2023


Local Authority and Chair Mrs Christine Bennison
Co-opted and Vice ChairMrs Kate Dixon
Headteacher  (ex-officio)   Mrs Dawn Joy
Co-opted GovernorsMr Denis Healy (Resigned), Mr Andrew Garvey, Bev Rowley
Foundation Governors 

Rev Richard Parkinson, Mr Alan Todd, Dr. Jane Todd

Parent Governors  Mr Peter Stallard, Mr Ryan Daniels
Associate GovernorsMrs Donna Sandbach
Staff Representative Mrs Sarah Shepherdson



None of  the Governors have registered any business or pecuniary interests.


There are no material interests arising from relationships between governor or governors and school staff.

Governor Pen Portraits



Mrs Christine Bennison – Chair of Governors

Local Authority Governor

Appointed by The Governing Body

Date of Appointment 27/2/2018

Term of office ends 27/2/2025


I have over forty years of experience within education, having taught all ages from 2 years to 18 years and for the last ten years of my professional career, I was the Headteacher of  local village schools.


On retirement I undertook service as a school governor of an Academy, but was delighted to take up my present role, as Chair of Governors here in January 2018.


I am passionate about enabling children to have excellence in education in order to achieve the best possible outcomes for them.  Often this has meant using a great deal of creativity, innovation and forward thinking.


I have always enjoyed working alongside teams of people from very differing communities and close working with members who hold varied roles within these communities, in order to learn together and gain benefits for all.


I enjoy cooking, gardening and have an interest in the Arts,  I ran a Youth Drama group locally for 12 years, not only to promote the theatre but hopefully to give the children increased confidence and the ability to work and communicate well with others.


In my retirement I now childmind two grandchildren (11 years and 7 years) two days a week, and this certainly keeps me very active and on my toes.



Dawn Joy - Head Teacher

Staff Voting Head


Date of Appointment 1/1/2017


I joined the school in January 17 after previously being a Deputy Head at a large school in Bridlington. I am committed to ensuring all children have the opportunity to access a curriculum that is engaging and that provides them with the key skills, knowledge and independence they require to flourish in future life.


Outside of school I enjoy weekends away in my touring caravan, exploring undiscovered areas of the country where I can go for long walks with my cockapoo, Eddie.



Rev Richard Parkinson

Ex Officio Governor

Appointed by The Diocese

Date of Appointment 24/01/2018

Term of Office Ends 23/01/2022


I have been the Rector of St. Michael and All Angels here in Cherry Burton, Curate for St. Mary’s Etton and Dalton Holme, and Chaplain to Bishop Burton College since November 2013 having served as Curate at All Saints in Ilkley for three years in West Yorkshire.


 I am married with three children, two still at Cherry Burton Primary and the eldest at Longcroft Secondary School.


Before becoming a priest in the Church of England I was a business leader in retail – mainly in independent bookshops – and latterly working in I.T. specialising in network infrastructure. Originally from Northern Ireland and having lived in various parts of the UK such as Belfast, Swansea, Leeds and Durham (studying theology and the formation of religious doctrine on the way) I have a broad perspective on community and a passion for education.




Bev Rowley

Co-opted Governor

Date of Appointment October 2022

Term of office ends October 2025


I have worked in an admin role at Cherry Burton School for 22 years and, since 2009, have fulfilled the role of School Business Manager. In addition to my management of all aspects of the school’s finances, I enjoy a pastoral role, supporting both staff and pupils in any way that I can. I feel a deep commitment to Cherry Burton School and like to take an active role in all aspects of its life. Out of school, I enjoy family-life and going for long walks with my black Labrador Lily.





Denis Healy

Foundation Governor

Appointed by The Diocese

Date of Appointment 1/9/2020

Term of office ends 31/8/2024


I have been involved with the school since the early 1990s when my two elder children went through the school. For part of that time I was a member of the Friends of the School.

More recently, my youngest daughter attended the school from 2011 to 2015.


I have a business development and marketing background, with  manufacturing companies. I currently work for the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, helping engineers at all levels to reach their potential. I am particularly keen to see primary schools recognise the importance of science, maths, engineering and technology in helping to shape future careers.


I also have a political aspect to my life, and in October 2016, I was elected for the Liberal Democrats as an East Riding of Yorkshire Councillor in the Beverley St Mary’s ward. I hope that my work as an East Riding councillor will provide a particular insight to my role as a governor of our school.


When I’m not doing the day job or being a Councillor, I enjoy learning the piano (I am working towards Grade 3) and relaxing with the family.


Donna Sandbach - Deputy Headteacher

Associate Governor


Coming to teaching 20+ years ago, following a career as a police officer, I have enjoyed working in secondary, middle and primary schools throughout Yorkshire and the Midlands.  I joined our school in 2016, in the role of teaching Deputy Head, and have served on the governing body since that time.


With a degree in Forestry, I am a huge believer in the importance of the natural environment in our children's development both academically and emotionally.  We are incredibly lucky to have such fabulous school grounds at Cherry Burton for our staff and children to utilise, in so many creative ways.


I'm also maths enthusiast, who loves leading the subject in school and having the opportunity to work with our dynamic staff and pupils, to create a productive buzz around our lessons.


Away from school, I love windswept walks and spending time with my daughter.


Alan Todd - Foundation Governor

Foundation Governor

Appointed by The Diocese

Date of Appointment 18/11/2022

Term of Office Ends 17/11/2026


I am married to Jane and have three young children all at Cherry Burton Primary.  Together we also attend St. Michael and All Angels.  We moved to Cherry Burton two years ago from Durham and have settled very well here in East Yorkshire.


I worked for fifteen years as a Mechanical Engineer designing and developing construction machinery.  I was mainly focussed on machine stimulation and 3D visulisation technology.


Along with Jane I founded and served as a director of Do Re Mi Day Nursery from 2013 until 2023.  We grew from a small seting, expanded through the years, and achieved Ofsted Outstanding.


I have recently volunteered with Cherry Burton Cubs and in my spare time I enjoy cycling, walking and spending time with my young family.



Dr. Jane Todd

Foundation Governor


Appointed by The Diocese

Date of Appointment 18/11/2022

Term of Office Ends 17/11/2026


I am a foundation Governor at Cherry Burton Primary, and attend both St Michael’s in the village and Beverley Minster, where I am a Worship Leader and also on the leadership team for the 9.15 informal service. I also lead worship for the Deanery monthly informal services. 


I graduated from Durham University with a first class Education Degree and QTS, and went on to do my Masters Degree in School Leadership and Management (with a focus on the NPQH). I completed my Doctorate in Education in 2012 which focussed on musical progression in the primary school.


I have taught in a variety of state and private schools, teaching from Nursery to Year 6. In my latter school role I was Director of Music, as well as Senior Management Team (Deputy Head) with my main responsibility being the Curriculum, where I introduced a practical ‘creative curriculum’ throughout the school. My last school based role was Acting Head.


I moved on from this to two opposite ends of the education spectrum; lecturing at Durham and Newcastle Universities in the Education and Music departments, and alongside setting up a Day Nursery. Over 10 years, the nursery grew from 38 to 74 places, was graded ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted, and followed a Curiosity based approach.


I am a passionate Educator, and believe in a holistic education that is creative and inspiring, promoting curiosity and placing value on child-led activity and the freedom to explore, discover and create.














Andrew Garvey 

Co-Opted Governor

Date of appointment 20/10/2020

Term of Office Ends 19/10/2024


I retired from full time employment in 2008, but continued working in my own consultancy business until 2019.  During my working life I was involved in marketing, communications, strategic development and general management.


My involvement in volunteering has increased over the years and I was a trustee of the Butchers and Drovers Charitable Institution for sixteen years until July 2020.


My interest in education was stimulated by the request from a recruitment agency who was seeking suitable suitable volunteers to take on the role.  So I took on the challenge and joined the team at a large school in Bridlington, ultimately I took on the responsibilities of the Chair.  I held this position recently.  This is a challenging role and I enjoyed the responsibilities linked to being a school governor, which is why I joined the team at Cherry Burton.


Away from School I am involved with the National Coastwatch Institution at their Hornsea branch.  I am the station Media and PR Officer and recently undertook an eight month stint as the Station Manager during the COVID crisis.


I am married with 2 daughters and four grandson's ranging from 9 to 16 years of age.  We have an exciting time when we are together enjoying many challenges.

Peter Stallard

Parent Governor

Date of Appointment 15/06/2021

Term of Office Ends 14/06/2025


I live in the village with my wife and two children.  Both of my children attend the school and, like me, are very happy with the provision in place.


I have worked for 15+ years as an English teacher, in various large secondary schools.


I became a governor to ensure that I could challenge and hold all stakeholders to account.


Personally, I have an interest in football.  Also, I spend as much time as possible with my family.