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An inspirational place to learn and play, helping us make the most of everyday “All things are possible to those who believe.” (Mark 9:23)



Thorner C of E Primary School has been part of Elevate Multi Academy Trust from July 2018 and is happy to be part of the educational vision of the Trust, whilst retaining it's own strong identity.   


The core functions of the local governing board are:

  1. To ensure clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction.
  2. To hold the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the Academy and its pupils.
  3. To oversee the financial performance of the Academy and make sure its money is well spent.
  4. To ensure the Christian ethos is upheld and taught to its pupils. 


Chair of Governors: Dawn Scargill

Contact:  or Thorner C of E Primary School Kirkhills, Thorner, Leeds LS14 3JD



Together, the Governors are responsible for:

  • Setting aims and targets for the Academy and checking the academy’s progress towards attaining these.

  • Monitoring how well the Academy's policies and plans are working.

  • Accounting for the performance of the Academy and the Governing Body.

  • Working with the Headteacher to make sure that teaching at the Academy is effective and good quality and the children are making the best possible progress.

  • Taking general responsibility for the Academy and its budget.

  • Challenging and supporting the senior management team and taking opportunities to show interest in and appreciation of staff and pupils.

  • Promoting the interests of the Academy and its pupils in the wider community.


Types of Governors 

There are several different types of Governor:

  • Parent Governor

    Elected from parents at the school by parents at the Academy.

  • Staff Governor

    Elected from staff at the school by staff at the Academy.

  • Co-opted Governors

    Appointed by members of the Governing Body. They are intended to be representative of the local community and may add particular kinds of expertise.

  •  Foundation Governor    Foundation governors are representatives of the Church of England. 

           The local vicar is normally appointed as the 'ex-officio' foundation governor;

           The other foundation governor will usually be appointed by either Leeds or York Diocese, following consultation with the local PCC.


Pen Portraits:

Dawn Scargill :Parent Governor and Chair of Governors
I am privileged to have become a Parent Governor and Chair of the Governing Body at Thorner in November 2014. My background is in commercial property law where my work often involves making challenging decisions, finding consensus and understanding/interpreting legal documents. I also run my own business providing after school maths, English and science tuition in the Oakwood area of
Leeds, which has only increased my passion for education. My reason for becoming a governor was to try and give something back to both the Academy and community, and to contribute some of my own work experience/skills to the local governing body. As a governor, my duties involve supporting the Headteacher and staff, in our vision to provide an inspirational education for all the children at
Thorner, ensuring that all children have the opportunity to be the best they can be, each and every day. 


Andy Nicholson: Foundation Governor 

I am the vicar of Thorner Church, as well as Barwick in Elmet and Scholes. Before training for ordination I was a Secondary School Teacher of RE and previous to that an English Teacher in Spain and China. My interests include hill walking and the Asturias region of Northern Spain. I was born in Sheffield and through my grandfather I am a freeman of the City of York.


Susan Graham:  Foundation Governor 
I have been associated with Thorner School since my child started here in 2006 and have been a foundation governor for seven years. My youngest child is also still a pupil at the Academy. I am a Chartered Accountant by background with over 15 years’ experience in advising businesses and organisations in both the private and the public sector. I am committed to helping to make the Academy the best it can be for the benefit of all our children.

Michelle Manson: Co-opted Governor
I have worked in education, training and employability for 20 years, predominately managing the successful delivery of government funded training programmes. I am Trustee on the Board of a local children’s charity, which supports children with physical disabilities and learning difficulties, where I provide a lead on business development and fund raising. I have lived in Thorner for over 2 years and in East Leeds all my life. My 2 children both attend Thorner Primary School, I am extremely passionate about education and learning and as part of my work as a governor at Thorner Primary.  I am also the lead governor for children with special educational needs and disabilities.

Paul Spurrier: Co-opted Governor
My association with Thorner Primary School began in 2014 when my child joined. I was delighted to be given the opportunity to become a co-opted governor in November 2015.
Professionally, I am one of HM Inspectors of Health and Safety, and have been for over 26 years working across a range of industry types. I have over 18 years of frontline management and policy development experience in HSE. This has included operational research, improving targeting,  developing policy and strategic approaches to changing government policy. I hold professional qualifications in project and portfolio management and sit on recruitment and promotion interview panels for new and existing staff. I hope my experience will be of use and benefit to the local governing body in helping the Academy develop and be the best that it can. My interests include skiing, horse riding, sailing and infrequent visits to the gym. My sporting passion is rugby union, having played it for many years before putting something back into the sport and becoming a coach for minis and juniors teams.

Carol Daniel:  Staff Governor
I have been a member of staff at Thorner CofE Primary for 14 years now and in that time have enjoyed a number of fulfilling roles across both KS1 and KS2. For KS1/EYFS I run an afterschool club, which is aimed at those children who are not necessarily sports minded, but just want to have fun whilst learning different skills. In addition I co-ordinate the upper KS2 Play Leaders and have become a member of the Academy's OPAL team, which I am very enthusiastic about, as I am passionate about promoting arrange of outdoor activities/learning. I do enjoy and thrive on the challenge that comes with every aspect of school life and am passionate about our Academy's vision: An inspirational place to learn and play, helping us make the most of every day.


 Gemma Whawell: Acting Headteacher 
I joined the team at Thorner C of E Primary School in September 2013. I feel extremely fortunate to work in my role as Deputy Headteacher and Special Needs Coordinator (SENCo), with such wonderful children, staff, parents and governors. I enjoyed my school days so much and knew from a very young age that I wanted to be a teacher. I find it both a pleasure and privilege to work with children. Since qualifying as a teacher in 2007, I have taught in almost every year group across the Primary phase. I previously worked as Class Teacher and Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo) at St. Joseph’s Catholic Primary School in Harrogate and was a Leading Teaching for Early Years in North Yorkshire. Living and working in the community of Thorner is an absolute privilege. I am incredibly proud to be part of a hard working team who are dedicated to making Thorner Primary School the best it can possibly be for the children at the Academy. I always seek to make school a positive and enjoyable experience for the children that I work with and do all that I can to support each individual in overcoming any barrier to learning. I am passionate about enabling children to reach their full potential and helping them develop the values and skills to support them in their future life.


Sam Capstick: Associate Member
I began my teaching career as an NQT at Thorner School over 20 years ago and over the years I have accumulated a wealth of skills, knowledge and experience. I was Assistant Head for nine years and am currently a member of the Senior Leadership Team. I have taught in years 3, 5 and 6 and am currently teaching in year 6. The children at Thorner matter to me. I care about their learning, their welfare and their entitlement to enjoy their time in our school. I believe it is my job to make a difference to their lives. I have been on the governing body since 2010 and during this time I have been involved in the recruitment of staff and been on both the Teaching and Learning Committee and Resources Committee. I have enjoyed working closely with members of the governing body when recruiting and selecting new members of staff, short listing, interviewing, observing lessons as part of the process and helping to make an informed decision. As an experienced governor and member of staff, I believe that maintaining high quality relationships with a local governing body that continues to offer challenge and support is a vital component for the long term success of the Academy.


Sharon Robertson: Executive Headteacher 



 Local Governing Body

Our Local Governing Body is made up of the following members: 

Governor Category Term of Office Specific
Ends Responsibilities
Mrs Carol Daniel Staff 08/03/2023



Mrs Susan Graham Foundation 06/11/2022


SEND, Pupil Premium, Resources, Maths, Attendance


Mrs Sharon Robertson  Executive Headteacher Ex officio


School Improvement, Safeguarding 


Mrs Michelle Manson Co-opted 18/09/2021


Vice-Chair, SEND, Pupil Premium, Data, Arts, Attendance


Rev Andy Nicholson Foundation Ex officio


Child protection / safeguarding, Humanities, Equalities



Miss Sam Capstick

Associate Member


Miss Dawn Scargill Parent 06/11/2022


Chair, Child protection / safeguarding, Head teacher performance management, Training, Complaints, English, EYFS, Equalities

Mr Paul Spurrier Co-opted 21/10/2019


Health & Safety, Sports funding, PSHE


Mrs Gemma Whawell  Acting Headteacher   Ex officio








Register of Interests 

Governors Attendance Record for 2018-2019

Governor Attendance Record for 2017/18