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Meet Our Governors

"On behalf of the Governing Board, I would like to welcome you to this section of the Parsons Down Partnership website where you can find out who we are and what we do. As well as a brief pen profile of the Governors and what we bring to the role, you will find more information detailing some of our activities. As Governors, we are all volunteers but we all share one common goal: to make our schools’ Partnership a place where children are happy, safe and reaching their potential.


In accordance with the Government’s requirement for all governing boards, we have three core functions:

Firstly, to ensure the clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction. This means never losing sight of the overall aims of the school. We work very closely with the Headteacher to support and oversee their plans for the school, with a focus on development and improvement.

Secondly, holding the headteacher to account for educational performance.

Lastly, to oversee the financial performance of the school. In addition to meetings of the Finance Committee, we meet regularly with the School Business Manager and Headteacher to ensure the school budget is spent in a way that will be of most benefit to the school and its pupils.


Every child can achieve within our schools and we encourage everybody to be the best they can be. Every individual has unique qualities and our job is to encourage and recognise this. We are ambitious for our schools and for all those who attend."


Marilyn Cornwell

Chair Of Governors


Marilyn Cornwell

Chair of Governors

"Having spent all my working life in teaching, I have a passion for education and believe that we should all strive to offer the best we can to the children in our schools. My husband’s job took us to different parts of the country and I was very fortunate to work in a wide range of schools before we settled in West Berkshire with our 2 children.

From 1989, I worked in Thatcham as a teacher and then Headteacher of 2 local schools. I am, therefore, very familiar with the area, its schools and the families they serve. I hope to make a positive contribution to the Governing Board, supporting the development of the whole school community to secure the best possible outcomes for all those involved."


Catherine Bull


"I have been a teacher at Parsons Down Junior School since November 2000. I have had many roles over the course of my time at the school. I am passionate about helping Parsons Down Partnership to become the best it can be and to give the children in our care the best possible education."


Rhys Morgan

Co-opted Governor

"I grew up in Thatcham before moving away to study English Literature and Language in Wales. Life then took me to Germany, London and back to Germany before finally settling back in Thatcham and I currently work in a West Berkshire secondary school as an English Teacher and Professional Development Coordinator.


I’ve had an interesting period of time as a governor at the partnership as the schools transitioned from two sites to one, during which, I’ve had one child leave for secondary school and another nearing the end of his time at PDP. Hence, I was happy to transition from a Parent Governor to being an invited Co-opted Governor, ensuring that I can continue in the role as it’s one that I thoroughly enjoy.


As governors, we work closely with Mrs Bull and the leadership team to ensure sound strategic planning for the best possible facilities, services, experiences and outcomes for all pupils in the school. In order to do this, we’re often keen to talk to parents and harvest a wide variety of viewpoints so you may see us at school functions, events and parent consultation evenings. If so, do come and say hello - we’re a friendly and approachable bunch."


Bruce Steiner

Co-opted Governor

"I have lived in this area for over thirty five years, my two children were schooled here. My entire working career  was spent with Nationwide Building Society, I retired as Retail Director in 2009. I have eight years of previous Governor experience at a large local comprehensive. For four of those years I was the Finance Governor.


I am Chair of the Finance Commitee and a Reading Volunteer."

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Kelly Uphill

Co-opted Governor

"I have been working in Human Resources since 2002, currently I work as a Chief People Officer with a company since 2017.  My career has seen me gain experience across a variety of sectors including Professional Services, Insurance, Medical, Travel and the Financial Sector within the UK and Australia. I have direct experience of managing diverse client business groups, building and maintaining strong working relationships and influencing at senior levels to ensure I work effectively in a business capacity, which I think can assist me in my role as School Governor.


In my spare time, I spend my days with my Husband, family and friends as well as walking our dog, Frank.  We also try to travel as much as possible and spend time in our caravan."

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James Craggs

Parent Governor

"I grew up in the area and returned after university and the early part of my working career as a Primary School Teacher. At this point, I moved into the Sports Development profession where I have worked ever since. For the last 10 years I have worked as the Children & Young People Lead at a local charity, Get Berkshire Active, which is predominantly funded by Sport England. I feel passionately about the importance of physical activity for the development of young people.


I have one son in the infants at Parsons Down with another due to start in September 2025. In my spare time I enjoy running, all sports that keep me active, cooking and spending time with my family."


Vicky Rock

Parent Governor

"I have lived in Thatcham with my husband for 15 years and am lucky enough to have 4 wonderful girls at the partnership. My eldest daughter is coming to the end of her journey in year 6 and has had a superb time at Parsons Down. I have loved getting to know the team at Parsons Down and learning how the school operates. I feel honoured to now be part of that team as a parent governor and look forward to helping the school develop in the future. 


I have worked as a paramedic for 17 years and now work in clinical triage. The work is hard but rewarding and in the past 2 years I have been working towards a degree in paramedic practice, taking a keen interest in mental health and health promotion. 


My free time is spent with my husband, girls and dogs, taking our campervan on as many adventures as possible!"


Rosemary Lilley

Local Authority Governor

"I took up my Local Authority Governor’s appointment shortly after retiring in 2006 hoping that I could use some of my time to continue to support children in West Berkshire following a career as both a practitioner and manager in children’s social care.


My contribution to the Parsons Down Schools arises from my working career and ongoing involvement in children’s issues. In 1988 I came to West Berkshire and until retirement managed the local Family Centre for a national children’s charity. This involved me in work with children and parents, recruitment and management of staff and volunteers, managing a substantial budget, working with a range of other professionals and involvement in some of the strategic groups which co-ordinate services across the Local Authority.


Since retiring I have continued to work part time managing Newbury Family Counselling Service, a local charity. I am also involved with the local voluntary and community sector and represent the sector on the Local Safeguarding Children Board."


Karen Neumann

Staff Governor

"I spent my formative years and was educated in Pembrokeshire, Wales before moving to Thatcham in 1991. I initially worked with Barclays Bank in Newbury, leaving as a Personal Banker to have children, both of whom have been through Parsons Down Partnership. I began working at Parsons Down initially as a parent volunteer helper, before taking up the role of a teaching assistant in 2001. I then qualified as a Higher Learning Teaching Assistant in 2008. In 2019, I achieved a qualification in teaching. I take a special interest in English, Maths and Art and have taught in every year group across the partnership. The last couple of years I have worked in Year 6 teaching Raccoon class. 


My hobbies are travelling, keeping fit and art. I deliver after school art clubs with Key Stage Two children, which the children have really enjoyed. I hope to be able, as a staff governor, to give a first-hand insight into the Parsons Down Partnership to assist the other governors to develop the school to achieve its best potential."

Governing Board Information


Governors In Office

Instrument of Government


Governor Code of Conduct


Governor Allowances Policy

Governor Attendance Report

Terms of Reference


Minutes of Governors’ Meetings


Copies of governing board minutes are stored within our school and are available on request from the clerk. To request a copy of the minutes, please contact

Learn together. Grow together. Succeed together.
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