The staff and Governors at Westgate work very closely together. Any of them can be contacted through the school office. Several of them are also parents of pupils and are often around at the beginning and end of the school day.
A summary of our declaration of interests for the current academic year can be found at the bottom of this page.
Helen Carpenter (Headteacher; no fixed term of office) I have been head teacher at Westgate since 2011 and in that time it has been my privilege to lead the school through exciting developments and projects, putting children's wellbeing and learning at the heart of everything we do. As head at Westgate, I attend all governor meetings. I enjoy meeting with Governors as they represent a good cross-section of the local community. Also, working with Governors helps us on the Leadership Team step back from day-to-day issues and allows us to look carefully at all our decisions. The most important part of working with governors is that, together, we continually look for ways of making things better for the children at Westgate.
Susan Carson MBE (Equalities Governor/ Parent Governor; 25/09/2015 - 25/09/2019) With both public and private sector experience to contribute, I am keen to add value to the local community. As a retired Army officer I am very comfortable with responsibility, decision making, planning, strategy and policy, all of which I feel is useful in a governor. I have committee experience and am well practised in getting the best outcomes for individuals in a collective setting. I hope to translate my skills as Finance Director of a small business into the school environment to assist in constantly improving the school. I have a practical, common sense approach and a strong sense of the right thing to do – however challenging that might be. Above all, I intend to serve the school and its pupils with the drive and enthusiasm required to ensure Westgate continues to thrive.
James Gould (Parent Governor; 04/10/17 - 04/10/21) It's clear to me that for my son and his peers, the first years of education are crucial to their later academic achievements and just as importantly to their development of social and other life skills. As a parent who is passionate and supportive of Westgate Primary School, I believe that I can represent the views of parents/ carers and families in their child’s journey through Westgate Primary School with the team. Throughout my twenty-two years' service in HM Armed Forces , I have a proven track record of managing teams and driving through change in some challenging experiences and believe that this experience will be of value to Westgate Primary School’s Governing Body.
Daniel Hackney (Deputy Headteacher; Staff Governor 22/10/2018 - 04/10/2022) I joined Westgate School in 2008 as Deputy Headteacher and currently teach Year 6. As a member of the Leadership Team, I work with all the Staff and parents to develop the school. As Staff Governor I attend full board meetings and am part of one of the sub-committees. I feel very proud to be helping Westgate retain its status as a caring and progressive local community school.
Anne Hodgson (EYFS Governor/ Co-opted Governor; 28/02/2019 - 28/02/2023) I have lived in Otley most of my life. I am an Ofsted registered Child Minder and I have been taking and collecting children to Westgate for over 25 years, so I have very strong links with the school. I also see firsthand how the children progress and enjoy their time at Westgate school. I am more than happy to promote the school to parents who use my childminding service. I was proud to be asked to be a community governor and hope my skills from working with a wide age range of children are useful.
Alice Joughin (Co-opted Governor; 03/12/2015 - 03/12/2019) I moved to Otley in July 2015 and was eager to get involved in the community. I currently work in an international law firm and so hope my commercial knowledge, along with experience of dealing with HR policies and procedures in a managerial capacity will allow me to assist the governing body in decision making. As I don’t come from an education-based background, I hope to bring a different perspective to the meetings. I volunteer for Business in the Community with the Right to Read project and so understand the significant impact small changes in schools can have on the pupils. I look forward to helping Westgate continue its good work.
James Millson (Co-opted Governor; 04/10/17 - 04/10/21) I am a chartered surveyor with experience of working in commercial property management at a large international practice. I have a young daughter who will be entering into primary education in the 2019/2020 intake. My wife and I are very settled in the local area and already have some involvement with local organisations including the delivery of our parish council news letter. I have a keen interest in sport, charity work and supporting my local community. The organisation I work with is also involved in the England Rugby schools programme. Outside of work I am a keen triathlete, footballer and love the outdoors.
Victoria Mirfield (Safeguarding & Children Looked After Governor/ Parent Governor; 04/10/17 - 04/10/21) My children have both been very happy at Westgate since nursery. I have always aimed to be interested in and supportive of the school, including acting as secretary of Friends of Westgate for several years. I am a GP in a neighbouring town and recently moved to working part- rather than full-time so now have time and skills that I could bring to being a school governor. One of my roles at work is safeguarding lead with regular training and updates, which is a key aspect of the responsibility of the governing body. In my spare time, I volunteer as a judge with young people in the City of Leeds synchronised swimming club. I hope to give something back to Westgate as my children have always loved the school and I am proud to be part of the team.
Sharon Mistry (Co-opted Governor; 23/05/2019 - 23/05/2023) I have worked predominately in business improvement, customer research and insight roles, across both public and private sectors, working for large national organisations. My experience ranges from managing projects and programmes, developing business strategies, and end-to-end service and process reviews. I had a wonderful schooling experience, with great facilities, and committed and supportive teachers. It is because of this, I want to ensure that the next generation are given the same opportunities to thrive, and feel the governor role at Westgate is an ideal opportunity to do just this. I hope to apply my extensive stakeholder management skills, experience of operating at a strategic level and most recently, within financial services, to strengthen the governing body. I am educated to postgraduate level and qualified in project management, and process improvement methodologies.
Sarah Mumford (Training Governor/ Co-opted Governor; 30/06/2016 - 30/06/2020) I have lived in Otley for over 17 years and my child went to Westgate. Having been a primary teacher, an Advisory Teacher and then Head of Learning at both Eureka! and then the National Media Museum I am now Programme Director for IVE (formerly CapeUK) in Leeds. With Arts Council funding to act as a bridge organisation, connecting children and young people with quality arts and culture, I am currently focused on supporting all schools in Yorkshire and the Humber to ensure all children have access to music, drama, art, dance, film and the arts in general. My teaching, museum education and now wider schools and arts education experience enables me to offer support to Westgate as needed in a variety of aspects and areas.
Jane O'Kane (SEND Governor/ Co-opted Governor; 28/02/2019 - 28/02/2023) I am a retired Primary School Deputy Headteacher living in Horsforth. I became a governor at Westgate in 2012. I became a governor because I believe I have the knowledge, skills and experience that will be useful to both the team of governors and the leadership team in school.
Neil Richardson (Co-opted Governor; 28/02/2019 - 28/02/2023) I have two children who currently attend Westgate Primary School and appreciate the work the school does, not only for pupils but in the wider Otley community. I have lived in Otley all my life and my wife attended Westgate School. Becoming a Governor is a great opportunity to assist the school to achieve their financial aims and give something back to the school that is, and has been, responsible for such an important part of my family’s life. I am a CIMA qualified senior finance professional with a wealth of high value-adding skills gained in a number of complex and pressured, not for profit and commercial environments within major blue chip companies, both domestic and multi-national. I hope to bring this expertise to my governor role.
Andrew Ross (Pupil Premium Governor/ Sport & PE Governor/ Parent Governor; 04/10/2017 - 07/10/2021) With three children in the school, I recognise and appreciate the excellent work Westgate School does and I wanted to give something back to help maintain those high standards. Since my eldest daughter started at Westgate I have sought to support the school, through participating and helping at Friends of Westgate events, as co-treasurer of FoW and through coming in to talk to various year groups as part of Aspirations week. Working in Higher Education I fully appreciate the importance of a good education. From my day job I can bring to the job of governor not only my experience of the education sector, but also leadership and management experience. Above all, as a parent myself, I am there to represent the views of all parents and to help ensure Westgate continues to offer the very best for all our children.
Rob Wilks (Chair/ Complaints Governor/ e-Safety Governor/ Co-opted Governor; 04/10/2017 - 07/10/2021) Both my children attended Westgate and enjoyed taking part fully in all aspects of school life. I have lived in Otley for over 20 years, played for both rugby teams and still enjoy all the events the town offers. I am a keen runner, cyclist and outdoor enthusiast. I coach for Otley Cycle Club and help to run its Youth Section. I work at a large school in Leeds as Team Leader of Computing, which gives me a unique insight into new technologies and learning opportunities in the classroom, as well as the challenges this can present to both schools and families. Teaching and learning and fun are at the heart of everything I do at work.