Governing Body

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.

Laura Boddy (Parent Governor & chair of the curriculum committee; 30/09/2019 - 30/09/2023) I’m an experienced Secondary English teacher, holding varied roles within three very different schools in my 14 year career. I was previously a lead teacher with responsibility for Teaching and Learning at a school in central Bradford working with a high percentage of students with varied educational and social needs. I am currently responsible for developing a broad and balanced school curriculum, which means I have taught and worked with students across a huge range of abilities and needs. I feel I bring a fresh perspective and additional expertise in the field of learning to the governing body. 

Sally Clough (Co-opted Governor; 21/05/2020- 21/05/2024) I really enjoyed my school years, which started at Westgate Primary school, and I pursued my interest in science through to post-graduate research where I was involved in wide ranging projects working within university and NHS settings. I currently work part-time as a corporate governance manager for a large research funder, which has given me insight into board management, business planning, risk assessment and ensuring high standards of governance. My eldest has been happy at Westgate since nursery and my youngest is keen to get through the door, so I appreciate the environment that Westgate is creating for pupils and I am pleased to support them to continue to improve and hope my experience will be useful in my role as governor. 

Gaynor Cross (Co-opted Governor; 05/10/2020- 05/10/2024) I have worked in further and higher education for over 10 years and I am currently a lecturer in Marketing and Business at Leeds Trinity University. I am responsible for the academic quality of an undergraduate programme, which also involves supporting students pastorally. I have a strong interest in widening participation and supporting pupils to reach their potential. I live in Ilkley with my husband and three young children. I hope that my experience in the education sector - along with my passion for quality in education - will contribute to the continued success of Westgate Primary School. 

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.

James Millson (Co-opted Governor & chair of the property, health & safety committee; 04/10/21 - 04/10/22) 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 & chair of the pupil support committee; 04/10/21 - 04/10/25) 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; 30/06/2020 - 30/06/2024) 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.

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 & chair of the finance & personnel committee; 04/10/2021 - 07/10/2025) 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.


Louise Shackleton (Parent Governor; 13/10/2020 - 07/10/2024) I have over 20 years of experience in the NHS working as a Nurse currently working as an Advanced Clinical Practitioner as a part of a National Service in Haematology based at St James’s Hospital. As a parent I am interested to the school being a happy and fun place to learn and grow for all and as a governor want to play an active role in school life. From my experience as a nursing team leader for the last 11 years I bring skills in being able to listen and team building to work together to get the best outcomes for all children and staff in school. Working in a multidisciplinary team I am used to critical thinking whilst being confident to ask the challenging questions ensuring the parent voice is heard. Being available to listen to parents and pupils, bringing different skills from my work life and caring about the welfare of all involved at Westgate school are the key qualities I believe a Parent Governor must possess. Above all, I want to make a positive contribution to the school. 

Ray Smith (LA-appointed governor; 15/07/2021 - 15/07/2025) No retired after 38 years soent in primary education! My career included 7 years here in Otley, 8 years as deputy head in Wetherby and 23 years as a head teacher in Bradford. I am now an Otley Town Councillor and was first elected in about 1980! It is a delight and honour to serve as a governor of such a well thought of, popular and successful school. 

Rob Wilks (Chair/ Complaints Governor/ e-Safety Governor/ Co-opted Governor; 04/10/2021 - 07/10/2025) 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.

Full governing body meetings are informed by the work of the committees within the governing body. All governors sit on at least one committee. The committee structure is as follows:
  • Finance & Personnel Committee (including the Pay Committee)
  • Teaching. Learning & Assessment (Curriculum) Committee
  • Pupil Support Committee
  • Property, Health & Safety Committee
Membership of these committees are agreed annually and recorded in the first governing body meeting minutes of the academic year, including details of committee chairs.
In addition, individual governors may hold specific responsibilities relating to aspects of school's work. These are also recorded in the first governing body meeting minutes of the year.
The agreed terms of reference for the committees and full governing body can be found below.
The school senior administrator is an associate governor who attends finance & personnel committee meetings, while the school site superintendent attends the property, health & safety committee as an associate governor. Neither have voting rights.