Home Page


In September 2015 the governing body elected to reconstitute, in keeping with statutory guidance from the Department for Education. We took this decision as it allowed us to change the numbers and types of governors we have and to appoint more people on the basis of the skills they could bring.


The Governing Body now consists of:The headteacher


  • One elected staff governor
  • Two parent governors
  • Five co-opted governors


The standard term of office for a governor is four years. The chair and vice-chair are elected annually at the first meeting of the academic year.


Contact email address:

          Mr Michael Carter - Chair

  • Co-opted by governing body as a Business governor 03/10/2014 - 02/10/2018
  • Responsibility for:
  • Maths 
  • English
  • Year group responsibility for Year 4
  • Governor attendance 2016/17 (as of 16/09/2016) 8/9 Full Governing Body meetings
  • Register of interest: married to member of school staff


Born in St Budeaux in 1960 and educated at Southway Junior/Comprehensive schools with further education at Plymouth College of Further Education. I Spent 14 years as a Quantity Surveyor until 1993 when I became employed at the Child Support Agency.
I have seen both of my daughters very successfully move through Widey Court School, the eldest has completed her Degree course and my youngest is currently at university.

I have been a Governor at Widey for about 14 years, starting as a Parent Governor and a Community Governor and now Co-opted. I have previously been Chair of Governors and Chair of the Buildings Sub-Committee.

The key issues for me at the moment are the political agenda that we have to work under, regardless of the political party in Government and the financial constraints placed upon us by them. Both of these issues have a direct bearing on the quality of education at Widey, and all schools, so it is part of my role to ensure that we achieve the best possible funding and we achieve value for money in its expenditure.

The role of the Governor can be time consuming, frustrating, challenging but more than anything, interesting and immensely rewarding to know that I can have a positive impact on the education and social inclusion of all the pupils at the school.

      Mrs Maria Dawes, Vice Chair

  • Co-opted Safeguarding Governor 14/06/2017- 14/6/2021

  • Chairs Full Governing Body meetings in other chair's absence

  • Responsibility for :

  • Safeguarding

  • Pupil Premium (Services)

  • Year group responsibility, EYFS

  • Governor attendance 2016/17 (as of 16/09/16) 9/9 full Governing Body meetings

  • Register of interest: casual employment at Widey Court School.


I have worked in the voluntary role of Parent Governor at Widey Court since May 2013, having been inspired to apply for the post after seeing how my children, as new Service Pupils, were embraced by the school. I wanted to give something back and was impressed by Widey’s willingness to target the Service Pupil Premium to support children affected by the challenges of their parents’ service to society; an approach which has earned the school national recognition and continues to see members of staff called upon to advise other schools on how to do such a great job.

I help to run the Keeping in Touch (KIT) Club for Service pupils at Widey, enjoy the opportunity to assist in bringing various forms of Service support and funding to the school (which then benefits the entire school community) and have been Chair of the Curriculum Committee. Currently, I share the roles of Safeguarding and SEN Governor, which are critical and ever-changing areas and provide opportunities to work with a range of Widey’s valued members of staff.

As a parent, being connected to education by my previous work as an English teacher and being an active member of Plymouth’s Service community provides me with good awareness as a Widey governor. I therefore value the opportunity to help ensure Widey Court Primary School offers each of its amazing pupils, and their families, the best possible experience of primary education.

           Mr Shaun Nicholls, Headteacher

  • A member of the governing body of virtue of position,  September 2013 onwards
  • Sits on all committees
  • Governor attendance 2016-17 (as of 16.09.2016) 9/9 full Governing Body meetings & 2/2 Finance Board meetings
  • Register of Interests: Director of a Pre. School & Governor at another school


  Mr Barry Sullivan - Vice Chair

  • Parent Governor - Elected by Parents - 28/09/2017 - 14/6/2021 
  • Responsibility for:
  • SEN
  • Pupil Premium (Children in Care) 
  • Year group responsibility for Year 6
  • Governor attendance (as of 28/09/2017) 1 Full Governing Body meeting
  • Register of interest: 


I became a governor in 2017 because I wanted to help Widey Court offer the best education and experience for my son in Year 1, and my baby son when he is old enough!  Since becoming a governor I have realised that this duty extends to all of the children that Widey Court serves and our local community.  As an Educational Psychologist I work with a number of schools throughout Plymouth and I am hoping that this experience will help me to support Widey Court in its vision of ensuring all children receive an outstanding education through the very best teaching and support.
I grew up down the road in Hartley Vale and attended another primary school that is part of the same Multi-Academy Trust as us.  I have many happy and fond memories of playing in Widey Woods and even the occasional game of football for the Cubs on Widey Court’s playing field!

     Mr Andrew Moore

  • Co-opted by governing body as Finance Governor
  • Chair of the Finance Committee
  • Responsibility for:
  • Finance
  • Maths

    School Improvement Plan

    Health & Safety

  • Year group responsibility, Year 1
  • Governor attendance 2016/17 (as of 19/09/2016) 8/9 full Governing Body meetings & 2/2 Finance Board meetings
  • Register of interests: Trustee of 'You're Hired' Plymouth Charity


I have been a Parent Governor for about 6 years, currently in the role of Chair of the Governing Body. My involvement started through my son joining Widey Court and I was looking to put something back into the school. I have seen many changes at the school and I believe that we are a lot stronger now. We have better facilities for our children and teaching methods and range of opportunities to learn are far greater than ever seen before. We have very robust pupil assessments in place that ensure all children are meeting their targets and, where they are not, plans are put in place to bring them back on target. As Governors it is our duty to ensure that the school is doing all it can to improve the education of our children ensuring that when they move on to their next school they are well prepared.

Away from the school I am a divisional manager for Atkins which is a global engineering company with an office in Plymouth. We specialise globally in railway signalling and communication systems and as such I regularly travel around the world. However this does not stop me staying involved in my governor duties and last year I attended a governor meeting from a Portacabin in the desert of Saudi Arabia via Skype. When back in Plymouth I am a huge Plymouth Argyle supporter and go to all the home games with my son. On Sundays I help out with coaching/managing at Devonport Dragons junior hockey club where my son and daughter both play.

                    Mr Jonathan Thomas


  • Parent Governor - Elected by Parents - 28/09/2017 - 14/6/2021 
  • Responsibility for:
  • Finance
  • Pupil Premium(FSM & Disadvantaged) 
  • Year group responsibility for Year 2
  • Governor attendance (as of 28/09/2017) 1 Full Governing Body meeting
  • Register of interest: Married to a member of school staff


I became a Parent Governor in 2017 as I wanted to support the school in providing the best possible educational experience not just for my eldest son, but all the children attending the school.  My youngest son is due to start school in September 2018 and we want him to enjoy the same positive experiences that my eldest son has had throughout his years at Widey Court.  My personal connection to the school extends beyond my children, in that my wife works at the school and shares the same passion I have for the continued success of Widey Court.


Professionally, I have worked for the Lloyds Banking Group since 1994 and am currently responsible for managing the Bank’s relationships with its largest clients in the public, not-for-profit sector across the South West.  Typical clients include county, district and city councils, other government organisations, further education colleges, universities, charities and large housing associations.


Outside work family is everything, but I also enjoy playing golf, cooking and travel.  We live in a small village on the edge of Dartmoor, where we designed and had our house built in 2007.


         Mrs Georgia Carney  


Elected to Governing Body by staff - 01/11/2017 until 31/10/2021

  • Responsibility for
  • EYFS
  • E-Safety
  • Year group responsibility for Year 5
  • Governor attendance (as of 08/03/2018) 3/3 full Governing Body meetings 
  • Register Of Interest: member of staff

        Mrs Hayley Gilbride, Deputy Headteacher


Associate Governor - Invited to attend meetings by the Governing Body - 28/09/2017  

  • Non voting governor
  • Governor attendance (as of 28/09/2017) 1 Full Governing Body meeting
  • Register of interest:   None

             Mrs Alyson Lawrence 

  • Co-opted by Governing Body as IT governor - 25/09/2017 until 24/09/2021
  • Responsibility for:
  • Finance
  • E Safety
  • Pupil Premium (FSM & Disadvantaged) 
  • Year group responsibility for Year 3
  • Governor attendance (as of 16/09/2016) 8/9 full Governing Body meetings & 2 Finance Board meetings
  • Register Of Interest: member of staff


It has been my pleasure to have been employed at Widey Court since 2001 in an IT capacity. I have worked with all year groups over the years and experienced many changes to the computing curriculum which is the area I have been involved with. The school's IT infrastructure has also undergone significant improvements, from the era of one very small room in which 14 desktops were shared between 28 children to a purpose built 'Davis' suite capable of hosting a class of 30.

Devices such as tablets and laptops introduced into daily school life present opportunities and challenges associated with the evolving curriculum and the budget constraints upon the school.

Previously as a governor of both the buildings and finance committee I have been able to see the impact and effects of the decisions made by the government, staff and governing body to the life of the school.

            Mrs Julie McDonald - Clerk


Commenced July 2015

Retired Governors


Governors who have served on Widey Court’s Governing Body in the last twelve months are:


Mrs Sara Allen -  0/09/2013  to 11/09.2017 Attendance (as of 16/09/2016) attended 7/9 Full Governing Board meetings

Mrs Veronica -  28/11/2015 - 29/11/2019 Attendance (as of 03/05/18) attended 2/5 Full Governing Body meetings