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Meet the Governors


Governors work with the Headteacher to manage the school budget and premises, appoint staff, help the school to set strategic priorities, and to review admissions, attendance and exclusions. The Governing Body plays an important role in monitoring the school’s progress and helping to set targets to ensure the school provides an excellent learning environment for all the children. Governors also play an important role in ensuring the school has robust policies and practices in place for safeguarding children, and that the school is a safe place to work, learn and play. 


The Governing Body includes parents (nominated and elected by parents of the school), teachers and school staff representatives, governors appointed by the local education authority and community governors (co-opted because they have links, skills or expertise that will benefit the school).


The Governing Body of Pontprennau Primary School brings together individuals with a diverse range of skills and experiences to support the School in achieving its aims and objectives. The Governing Body shares a common goal to see the School achieve excellence; providing the children with the very best school life along with a first class facility for the community of Pontprennau.


Once a year, the Governing Body will send a formal written report to parents.


Our team consists of:

Joanne Nicholas (Chair of Governors and Parent governor)

I am a mum of two, and am a parent governor. I’ve lived in Pontprennau for many years and am delighted to be able to support the school. I have a love of sport and so enjoy spending family time outdoors and being active.  In my day job I am Head of Corporate Governance for a public sector organisation. I hope I am able to use these skills to support the work of the School's Governing Body as strong governance is the foundation of high performing organisation.

This is an exciting, and vitally important, time for our children and for the community of Pontprennau.  As well as providing our children with the very best education and opportunities I'm confident that the School will become the common uniting factor that will give a real sense of community for the area.


Lizzie Dykes (Headteacher)

I started my teaching career in London, before two Deputy Headships of schools in Bristol and Caldicot.  I was then happy to return to my home town of Cardiff when I was appointed as Headteacher of St. Monica’s Primary School.  After seven happy years there, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to lead and shape Pontprennau Primary School.  I am committed to ensuring that the children receive the best possible start to their education, in a school which provides a safe, stimulating and nurturing environment at the heart of their local community.  I very much look forward to working with the Governing Body over the coming years to create a school which is very special to everyone who joins its “family”.


Martin Cocks (Parent governor)

I am a resident of Pontprennau and have two children in the school. I therefore care passionately that the school and the community facilities are successful.


Professionally, I project manage complex construction projects where I am wholly accountable for health and safety and their financial success. I am pleased to be able to use this experience to chair the Finance committee and the Buildings and Health and Safety committee.



Louise Thomas (Parent governor)

I have lived in Pontprennau since 2005 with my husband and two children, who attend Pontprennau Primary School; my son has been there since the school opened in 2015. I have a PhD in Pharmaceutical Microbiology and work in the Brewing Industry as part of a team ensuring our products are manufactured to the highest standards, through compliance with Quality Management Systems, Good Manufacturing Practices and Food Safety Standards.

Being a Parent Governor is both a privilege and a fantastic opportunity to shape the future for our children. I am extremely happy to be supporting a great team of teaching and support staff who are providing a wonderful learning environment. My hope for each child is that they become happy, confident and successful young people through their experiences at Pontprennau Primary School.


Pat Hoffer (Community governor)

I am very pleased to be a community governor at Pontprennau Primary School. I have been teaching since 1995 and during this time I have worked with four different governing bodies.  I believe my educational and life experience is of great benefit to the Governing Body.  I have seen many changes relating to the role of school governance, it can be a very steep learning curve, but this is what makes the role so rewarding. 
These are very exciting times in education; we have a New Curriculum for Wales, which clearly places the child at the centre of everything we do.  Pontprennau School is new, vibrant and growing, we are shaping the future.  It is a pleasure to visit the school during the day, to see the pupils working purposefully and adults supporting and challenging young people in such an appropriate way.   It is a privilege to work with a hardworking, committed group of Governors who are clearly focused on doing the very best they can to support the pupils, staff, parents and community of Pontprennau Primary School, so that we can all achieve ‘A Rainbow of Possibilities.’ 


Jo Bailey (Teacher governor)

I am thrilled to be working in Pontprennau Primary School and I am excited by the opportunities that we will create for the pupils, staff and community. 

I have been teaching in the Primary sector since 2002. I started my career teaching in Key Stage 2 before moving into the Foundation Phase after the birth of my daughter in 2010. I have had a variety of roles in my career including coordinating maths for the whole of the primary school, being responsible for assessment, becoming Foundation Phase leader in 2011 and being seconded for a year as Deputy head in 2012. 

I am delighted to be on the Governing Body of Pontprennau Primary as a teacher governor and I look forward to working with the team. 


Philippa Green (LA governor)

I have lived in Pontprennau for the past 10 years and really enjoy being a Local Authority Governor for Pontprennau Primary School. My background, as a Senior Human Resources Business Partner for Schools and Education Services, within a Local Authority in South Wales, provides me with expertise in supporting all people management matters at the school. My knowledge and experience gained from working with other governing bodies and education professionals means that I have an understanding of how a school can provide the best environment and learning opportunities, which enables children to achieve their highest potential, through enjoying their time in education. This is my aspiration for all of the children at Pontprennau Primary School. 
Having recently become a parent myself, I fully appreciate the importance of all children having the chance to develop their abilities and succeed, whilst embracing their individuality. I aim to work with the other governors and staff at Pontprennau Primary School to guide and support the school to be the best it can be, putting it’s pupils at the heart of everything it does.


Kirsty O'Brien (Staff governor)

I'm very excited to be appointed as staff governor as I feel being part of the inclusion team at Pontprennau and working with the children everyday, I really care about the opportunities that are offered to the children at Pontprennau to give them the best start in life. I feel that being part of the governing body will allow me to speak on behalf of the children and say what I feel is best for them.


I've always been interested in working with children and completed my studies at university to go on to working in private day nurseries and schools. I've been a teaching assistant in every class within a primary school setting, have covered classes and have managed a nursery class for a year, so I feel I have a wide variety of experiences with children and feel I know what could help them progress in life throughout primary school.


I'm looking forward to contributing to the governing body of Pontprennau as there's nothing more I'd like to see than this school, community and these children succeeding.



Philip Buxton (Community Governor)

I was very excited to be appointed to the governing body at Pontprennau in the Autumn Term 2018.  I have spent all my working life in schools, starting as a classroom teacher in 1979 and working my way up the ladder to become a Primary headteacher in 2002. From 2015 to 2018 I worked as an education adviser at the Central South Consortium, before retiring in August 2018.

I now want to give something back on a voluntary basis, and use my knowledge, skills and expertise to support schools in my local area. I am very much looking forward to working as part of a developing team in Pontprennau.

As well as being a governor, I am also a grandad to two lovely girls, which keeps me very busy in my spare time. I am also a keen tennis player and enjoy the gym. Travelling is one of my favourite pastimes too, especially now I can travel in term time!


Derek King (Community Governor)

I am delighted to have been appointed as a governor at Pontprennau Primary School and excited at the prospect of joining the team.  As a "Bampy" to four lovely grandchildren, three of whom attend primary school, I have a keen interest in seeing children, in their early years of development, have a sound start in life. 

Having retired two years ago after working in local government finance for over 45 years, I feel I have a wide ranging knowledge and experience to offer the team at Pontprennau.  My experience is primarily around general management, governance, financial management, risk management and I have also managed a Health and Safety team.

I have been a school governor in another school for three years and I feel I have learned much from my various roles there that I can bring to Pontprennau Primary.

I was a keen sportsman in my time and still love to watch a variety of sport, including going to watch Cardiff City try to play football!  I play bowls for a local club and badminton with family and friends.  I also work for Barnardos where I get lots of enjoyment from being part of the team.

I hope to work with the other governors and staff at the school to deliver a first class education for the pupils of Pontprennau Primary, that provides each and every child with the opportunity to be the best they can be, delivered in a safe, warm and friendly environment.



John Morley (LA Governor)

I have recently been appointed as one of the Local Authority Governors for Pontprennau Primary School.  I have had two careers since I left school over 40 years ago and I have recently retired.  My first career was with the Royal Air Force, specialising in electronics and computers.  My second career and most relevant is the twenty-three years I spent working for the NHS, specialising in Corporate Governance, ensuring that the organisation complied with legislation and guidance (red tape!).

I have a grandchild at Pontprennau School and this has spurred me on to volunteer to become governor.  Our children are our future and everyone should be working to ensure that the education they receive is first class.

I come from a mining family and my father's one ambition was to make sure I didn’t follow him down the mines, this was achieved.  My ambition is to make Pontprennau School the best in the authority and ensure that the next generation achieve all they can in a safe and happy school environment.

I will work with the other Governors and of course the School Staff to ensure that this happens.


Jo Fashan

I am thrilled to have been appointed as a Parent Governor at the school. My Son, Lucas, is in Reception and is so far loving his school experience. My background is in Project Management, Team Management and Governance within the Charity Sector. I am Head of Services for Wales & the South of the UK for Whizz-Kidz, a charity who support young wheelchair users. I also lead on our curriculum for Employability within the organisation. As a senior manager, I am also a member of the Whizz-Kidz incident team and experienced in Safeguarding and Risk Assessments. I have experience of similar voluntary roles having run a Brownie unit for 20 years and acted as both Division Commissioner and County Secretary for Cardiff & East Glamorgan GirlGuiding. 


Suzannah Edmondson (LA Governor)

I am thrilled to have been appointed as a Local Authority Representative on the Board of Governors at Pontprennau Primary School. I currently work as an Assistant Headteacher in a new all-through school, with the responsibility of Years 5 to Year 8. I have previously spent three years as a community representative on the Board of Governors at Tonyrefail Primary School, gaining an understanding across all sectors of education. I am keen to support Pontprennau Primary school to continue its journey and raise standards, providing support and challenge where necessary.







Annual Reports to Parents

Annual Report - Reporting Year 2017-18

Pupils meeting the Governors!

Pupils meeting the Governors! 1 So many things to say! Cups of tea on the table...
Pupils meeting the Governors! 2 So much talking is hungry and thirsty work!