Forestdale Primary School


Governing Board

The Governing Board carries out a very important job behind the scenes in supporting and challenging the school staff to improve the outcomes for children.

A Message from the Chair of Governors

I am happy to have this opportunity to speak to you on behalf of the Governors. 


I have been a Governor at the School for almost four years and was elected Chair at the governing board meeting on 16 September 2020.  Prior to this I had been Vice Chair for three years.  I am retired and previously worked as Director of Finance at a local housing charity.  I am a co-opted member of the Board at Forestdale and I also have two grandsons who attend the school. 


This past year has been hard for us all and, along with all schools, we are facing a period of challenge and change.  It has been particularly difficult for our children who missed so much formal, face-to-face education.  The Head and her team have continued to work tirelessly to ensure that all pupils could receive the high standard of education that was recognised in our last Ofsted inspection in January 2017.  It is the job of the Governors to support the Head to build on the school’s strengths and to continue to provide all pupils from all backgrounds with the quality education they deserve.  It is also our job to monitor the School’s performance and challenge the Head when appropriate.  [The governing body was pleased with the “Good” outcome from the Ofsted report however we are all striving for ‘Outstanding’ and have excellent plans in place to take the school forward.]


I thoroughly enjoyed being at the school gate to welcome all pupils back into school in September and I am pleased to have met a number of parents.  It was also an absolute pleasure to witness this year’s reception classes attending school for the first time.  The joy on their faces and their eagerness to go into school with their teachers gives me the confidence to know that together we can overcome the problems caused by the pandemic and continue to nurture pupils to attain their full potential and to move on confidently to senior school in due course.


I can be contacted through the school office ( and I look forward to continuing to share the achievements of the school with pupils, parents and staff during this coming year.


Dennis Simmonds 

September 2020


 Forestdale School’s Governors    

The Full Governing Board comprises eleven voting members including:

  • 2 Parent governors (appointed by parents)                                 
  • 1 Local Authority Governor (appointed by Croydon)
  • 1 Staff Governor (appointed by staff)                                             
  • 6 Co-opted Governors (appointed by the Governing Body)
  • Head Teacher 

The Governors at Forestdale Primary School are a friendly and dedicated group of volunteers responsible for overseeing the management side of the school: strategy, policy, budgeting, safeguarding and staffing, in order to enable the school to run as effectively as possible.  They are motivated to contribute time and knowledge by the enthusiasm of the school community and to make a difference to the education of Forestdale children. 

The Full Governing Board is the school's accountable body.

The Board has 3 core functions:

1. Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;

2. Holding the Head Teacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils, and the performance management of staff; and

3. Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.


The Full Governing Board has a code of conduct that sets out the expectations, commitment and behaviour required to enable the Board to effectively carry out its work within the school and the community. These standards are upheld by using the Seven Principles of Public Life (also known as the Nolan Principles)


Governors act as ‘critical friends’ to the Head Teacher and senior leadership team, bringing a range of skills and expertise from their professional and personal lives to the Governing Board.  Each governor has one or more defined areas of responsibility linked to the School Development Plan, generally based on their skills and expertise, and as an integral part of their strategic monitoring of these roles and to ensure robust school accountability make termly Governor visits and report back to the Board.

The Full Governing Board meets together at least twice a term, currently online, and are supported by a professional Clerk, who ensures statutory responsibilities are met.  There is a wide range of training available and support in the role along with networking opportunities.

The Governing Board are always looking out for new governors, if you would like more details on becoming a governor please click here or contact Dennis Simmonds, Chair of Governors (please see above).

 Who We Are    






  • Mrs Sarah Aburrow
    Co-opted Governor (Deputy Head)
  • Mr Aseposi Aderinola
    Parent Governor
  • Ms Lisa Chick
    Co-opted Governor
  • Mrs Sue Eardley
    Local Authority Nominated Governor
  • Mr Geoff Hopper
    Parent Governor
  • Mr Faheem Mirza
    Co-opted Governor
  • Mrs Vanessa Phoo Par
    Co-opted Governor
  • Mr Dennis Simmonds
    Co-opted Governor
  • Mrs Lara Smith
    Co-opted Governor
  • Mrs L. Hagreen
    Staff Governor
  • Ms V. Esparon
    Ex Officio Governor (Head Teacher)
  • Mrs S. Scott
    Clerk to Governors (non voting)
  • Mrs C. Hart
    Senior Leader Observer (non voting)
  • Ms S. Gardner
    School Business Manager (non voting)





For details of terms of office, attendance and relevant interests please see here

 Our activities in the past year    

In the last year the governors have met eight times, once in person (March 20), the rest remotely by phone or video call.

We have supported the Head Teacher and staff through the challenges of the COVID-19 lockdown, reopening physically and developing and delivering online learning.  This has included detailed planning and assurance underpinned with risk assessments and review.

  • We have overseen budget setting and annual accounts, and reviewed and accepted our standing orders (how we work)
  • We have reviewed and monitor the safeguarding, special needs and inclusion policies and their implementation
  • We have reviewed and approved all school policies (see elsewhere on this website) that were due for review
  • We have monitored the refurbishment for reuse of the empty caretaker’s house
  • We have overseen planning and delivery of elements of the curriculum; individual governors focus on specific areas
  • We have reviewed and refreshed the school development plan to set priorities for this school year, and monitor progress through data and monthly reporting including surveys and other feedback.
  • We have linked with other schools and supported observers at our meetings from other governing bodies.

 Contact us     

If you would like to know more about what the Governors do, /or if you might be interested in joining us, please get in touch with us through the school office or email the Chair of Governors, Dennis Simmonds, on