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Composition of the Governing Body

Heron Hill's Governing Body has up to twelve members who serve for a four year term.

The Role of the Governing Body

  • To support the school in meeting its statutory responsibility to provide the best possible education for each individual child.
  • To be fully accountable to the Local Authority, the parents and the wider community for the way in which it carries out its functions as a Governing Body.
  • To act at all times in accordance with the requirements laid down in acts of Parliament, statutory regulations and the school's instrument of government.
  • To maintain and develop the ethos and reputation of the school.
  • To ensure that the school's interests are properly represented at both local and national level wherever and whenever appropriate.

We currently have two vacancies for co-opted governors. If you are interested in applying for this vacancy, please contact Clerk to Governors via for an application form.  Use this email address to contact any of the governors. 

Members of the Governing Body 

Patricia Merritt - Headteacher

Areas of special interest within school: As the Headteacher - everything.

Declaration of Business Interests: Nil. Declaration made 11/03/2024.

Michelle Wilkinson - Deputy Headteacher, Co-opted Governor

Term of Office: 10.03.2023-9.03.2027

Areas of special interest within school: Mathematics, Raising Attainment, Teaching & Learning, Key Stage 2 Team Leader, Pastoral Care.

I taught in large schools in Newcastle and Liverpool before coming to Heron Hill. I have taught classes from Year 1 to Year 6 and love to be part of children’s development. We aim to have lots of fun learning!

I also love motorcycling, cooking and spending time in the garden.

Declaration of Business Interests: Nil. Declaration made 15.03.2024.

Kathryn Ritchie - Chair of Governors, Co-opted Governor

Term of Office: 3.11.2021-2.11.2025

I have recently retired after 39 years working in education as a primary teacher, Headteacher, Senior Inspector of Schools, Director of Education Services and CEO of Service Children’s Education worldwide. I have loved every aspect of my career and my driving force has always been to get the best for children in my care. I am fortunate in that my efforts were recognised, and I was awarded an OBE for making a difference to the outcomes for Service Families’ children.

Outside of the education world, I enjoy travelling, reading, walking the fells, playing tennis, golf and skiing.

Declaration of Business Interests: Nil. Declaration made 11.03.2022.

Sara Metcalfe - Elected Staff Governor

Term of Office: 15.12.2023-14.12.2027‚Äč

Areas of special interest: Reception class teacher, EYFS, Learning through Play and Art (including art projects shared with the wider community).

Declaration of Business Interests: Nil. Declaration made 15.03.2024.

Sarah Corbett - Co-Opted Governor 

‚ÄčTerm of Office: 10.06.2022-9.06.2026

Areas of special interest: Year 3 class teacher, Geography Lead, Maths Support Team.

Declaration of Business Interests: Nil. Declaration made 15.03.24.

Douglas Rathbone - LA Governor, Chair of Finance Committee

Term of Office: 5.10.2022-4.10.2026

Areas of special interest within school:

I live up towards Oxenholme station with my partner, Sally. Before we moved to Kendal we lived for a bit in Windermere, where Sally grew up. I was previously in finance amongst other things, and Sally was a solicitor. We enjoy going fell walking, sailing and share a great love of reading. I particularly enjoy cooking as a creative way of relaxing - with the fringe benefits, of course, of eating the results. I am also an Elder of the United Reformed Church in Windermere, a Kendal Town Councillor for this area (and this year will be Mayor of Kendal) and a District Councillor for Kendal South & Natland.

I joined the Governing Body in 2018 and had previously been Chair of Governors of a school in London when it converted to being an Academy. My interests were specifically in literacy but I obviously sat on all committees in those days. It is great to be back being able to help with the overall scrutiny and the successful running of this school as a Local Authority Governor. My background is in finance so I work together on that with fellow Governors in what are challenging times nationally. 

Declaration of Business Interests: Nil. Declaration made 15.03.2024.

Natalie Greenwood - Elected Parent Governor, Chair of Curriculum Committee

Term of Office: 16.10.2020-15.10.2024

As a parent of two children in Heron Hill School, I am interested in learning and contributing to all areas of the school experience. I put myself forward to be a parent governor as I felt my professional skills in the Early Years Foundation Stage, combined with my passion for outdoor forward-thinking learning, would make me a valuable member of the committee. I was elected in 2021.

Areas of special interest within school: My role as governor includes curriculum, poverty proofing and single equality. I want to ensure we have a thoughtful and methodical approach when planning our curriculum, which excites children at every stage and is accessible for all, ensuring the best possible education for all the children at Heron Hill.

Declaration of Business Interests: Nil. Declaration made 15.03.2024.

Edward Vittery - Co-opted Governor, Chair of Staffing Committee, Vice-Chair of Governors

Term of Office: 7.12.2021-6.12.2025

I am married with two young children who both attend Heron Hill School. I currently work as a manager of a Country House Hotel in the Lake District. This role is very varied and hopefully provides me with a range of experience that I can bring to the governing body. Though I have no formal background in education, I have long been passionate about learning and opportunities for young people and in the past I have volunteered in several groups for children and young people. In school, I can currently been seen reading alongside children in Year 6 and supporting in maths and English lessons.

In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my children and when time allows enjoying a number of different sporting activities. I love the area in which we are lucky to live in and can regularly be seen exploring the countryside on 2 wheels.

Declaration of Business Interests: Nil. Declaration made 12.12.2021

Duncan Shaw - Elected Parent Governor, Chair of Premises Committee

Term of Office: 9.07.2022-8.07.2026

Areas of special interest within school: Design & Technology, Physical Education

Declaration of Business Interests: Nil. Declaration made 12.12.2023

Chris Stanger - Co-opted Governor

Term of Office: 10.11.2023-9.11.2027

Areas of special interest within school: Premises, Kenya Link

Declaration of Interest: Nil. Declaration made 15.03.2024.


Governor Attendance Record 2022-2023

Committees 2023-2024