The Governing Body is the strategic decision-making body of the school. Its role is to:
- set the schools overall strategic direction, and to then work with leaders to communicate this vision, ethos and strategic direction to the whole school community and develop a culture of ambition;
- provide a balance of challenge and support to the school’s leaders, understanding the strengths and areas for improvement at the school;
- understand the impact of teaching, learning and assessment on the progress of pupils currently in the school;
- ensure that the school manages its finances effectively and that the school is properly using the pupil premium, primary PE and sport premium;
- be transparent and accountable, including in recruiting staff, its governance structure, attendance at meetings and contact with parents.
Governors are volunteers who bring their outside experience into school to act as ‘critical friends’. Membership of the Governing Body is drawn from different parts of the community including parents, staff and co-opted members with specific skills. The Governing Body meets six times throughout the school year.
All Governors may be contacted by writing to them directly using the school address or by contacting the school on Telephone: 01527 68430.
Meet the Governors
Andrew Evans – Chair of Governors – Trust Local Governor
Chair of Governors – Trust Local Governor
Before acquiring a retail business, I previously worked in education for 17 years. After graduating from university, I trained as an English teacher. I held posts as a teaching assistant, teacher and assistant headteacher in secondary schools in Birmingham, before moving into Higher Education as a lecturer at the University of Warwick in 2012. Most recently, I was head of Initial Teacher Education at a university in south-west England. This involved overseeing teacher training for over 600 early years, primary and secondary teachers each year. I have experience as a governor at two other schools. My professional background has equipped me with a good deal of policy knowledge, which I hope to use to support the school in my role as governor – a critical friend helping the school to drive itself forward.
Mat Alsop – Vice Chair of Governors – Trust Local Governor
Vice Chair of Governors – Trust Local Governor
I have lived in Brockhill for the past 15 years and been a member of the Birchensale Governing Body since 2015 when my daughter first joined the school in year 5.
Originally starting my working career as an Environmental Health Officer and then moving into IT and Project Management, I now lead a team of project delivery professionals for a software house.
This background has led me to my involvement in Health & Safety within the school, as well as Science and I retain a keen interest in technology.
Kate Alsop – Trust Local Governor
Trust Local Governor
Originally from Yorkshire, I moved to the Midlands over 25 years ago and then settled in Redditch 15 years ago with husband Mat. I am a qualified accountant and have worked in the public sector in higher education and the NHS. I am currently finance manager at Warwick Medical School, University of Warwick. I have been a member of the Governing body since 2019 first as a parent and now that our daughter has moved to high school, as a Trust Governor. I was also a governor at Abbeywood First School for 4 years. Our daughter spent four happy years at Birchensale so I know the school well. I am also a great advocate of the 3-tier school system, having been through it myself many years ago.
Dominika Plenzler – Trust Local Governor
Trust Local Governor
I joined the Birchensale Middle School Governors team in November 2018, firstly as Co-opted and now a Trust Local Governor. This is all thanks to my son, who currently attends Birchensale Middle School. Our experiences with the school prompted me to put myself forward as a candidate for the role of Governor. I was born in Poland and came to the UK over 16 years ago; my ‘education related experience’ differs from the one that I grew up in. I believe that my history, knowledge and cultural experiences makes the board even more diverse. My desire, passion and enthusiasm for education has been inspired and engrained by my father, a teacher of over 40 years. Before I came to the UK, I was able to gain some experience within a Human Resources Department. Since then I have been working in various customer service roles across varying industries such as legal, banking and finance. Currently I work for the Legal Ombudsman as a Senior Adviser in the General Enquiries Team. I have also recently been selected as a Wellbeing Champion. I have always loved to support others and to be an active member of the community that I live in.
Helen Smith – Parent Governor
I have spent most of my life in Redditch and went through the 3-tier education system, so really appreciate the importance of middle schools and the role they play in our children’s education. I have a son who attends Birchensale and twin girls who attend Holyoakes. I have the privilege of being a parent governor at both schools. It is a pleasure to support the school in any way I can during these challenging and turbulent times. I’m also a parent helper and enjoy listening to the children of Holyoakes read on a weekly basis. I run an IT consultancy company with my husband and have recently rekindled my love of foreign languages and am taking an online course in conversational French.
Emily Skyte – Parent Governor
I have lived in the Bromsgrove and Redditch area all my life. As parents we chose Birchensale and the three-tier system for our daughter, who joined from her primary school in 2019. I believe happiness and a sense of belonging at school is important for every child; I wanted to join Birchensale’s governing body because I believe this sense of belonging is evident in the school’s vision and core values. My professional background is Finance, with experience in oversight, risk, and project management. I was a governor for three years at my daughter’s previous school, so come with an awareness of the responsibilities of school governors. Ultimately, I want to make a positive contribution in supporting the school; its pupils, staff and the community it serves.
Mark Brazier – Headteacher – Ex Officio
Amy Evans – Staff Governor
Rebecca Evans – Staff Governor
Pete Clifton – Associate Non-Voting Governor
Associate Non-Voting Governor
Rachel Smith – Associate Non-Voting Governor
Associate Non-voting Governor
Pauline Begley – Associate Non-Voting Governor
Associate Non-voting Governor
Local Governing Body (2021-2022)
|Name||Appointed||Term End||Term||Type||Areas of Responsibility|
Chair of Governors
|13/10/2020||12/10/2024||4 yrs||Trust Local Governor||Full Governing Body, Curriculum, Safeguarding|
Vice Chair of Governors
|16/09/2020||15/10/2024||4 yrs||Trust Local Governor||Full Governing Body, Pupil Discipline, Hearings Panel, Appeals Panel, Finance, Premises, Personnel, Health and Safety, Science|
|Kate Alsop||09/10/2019||08/10/2023||4 yrs||Trust Local Governor||Full Governing Body, Chair of Finance Committee, Pupil Discipline, Hearings Panel, Appeals Panel, Pupil Premium, Numeracy|
|Dominika Plenzler||15/11/2018||14/11/2022||4 yrs||Trust Local Governor||Full Governing Body, Finance, Premises, Personnel, Pupil Discipline, Hearings Panel, Appeals Panel, Careers|
|Helen Smith||09/10/2019||08/10/2023||4 yrs||Parent||Full Governing Body, Chair of Curriculum Committee, Finance, Premises, Personnel, Pupil Discipline, Hearings Panel, Appeals Panel, SEN, LAC|
|Emily Skyte||20/01/2021||19/01/2025||4 yrs||Parent||Full Governing Body, Curriculum, Finance, Premises, Personnel|
|Amy Evans||19/09/2019||18/09/2023||4 yrs||Staff Governor||Full Governing Body, Curriculum|
|Rebecca Evans||12/06/2020||11/06/2024||4 yrs||Staff Governor||Full Governing Body, Finance, Premises, Personnel|
Head of Year 5
|Mark Brazier |
|Full Governing Body, Curriculum, Finance, Premises, Personnel|
School Business Manager
|Associate Non-voting||Full Governing Body, Finance, Premises, Personnel|
Deputy Head Teacher
|Associate Non-voting||Full Governing Body, Curriculum|
Assistant Headteacher & SENCO
|Associate Non-voting||Full Governing Body|
Record of Pecuniary and Material Interests (2021-2022)
|Name||Relevant Business Interest to include|
Name of Organisation
Nature of Business
Nature of Interest
|Other educational establishments governed||Relationship with this or other school’s staff to include:|
|Mat Alsop||None||None||Spouse to Kate Alsop (Governor)|
|Kate Alsop||None||None||Spouse to Mat Alsop (Governor)|
|Andrew Evans||Owner of an independent retail business||None||None|
|Helen Smith||None||Governor at Holyoakes First School||None|
|Mark Brazier||None||None||Spouse to Kate Brazier (Staff)|
|Amy Evans||Husband is a director of Electronic Recycling Ltd.||None||None|
Record of Attendance (2021-2022)
|Name||Meetings Attended||Out of a possible|
Wendy Rigby resigned 01/09/21. Full governing body attendance (2020 – 2021) – 2/6
Pattie Hill resigned 01/12/20. Full governing body attendance (2020 – 2021) – 0/2
Sue Amor resigned 31/08/20. Full governing body attendance (2019-2020) – 5/6
Tim Jones resigned 31/08/20. Full governing body attendance (2019-2020) – 6/6
Jim Preston resigned 31/08/20. Full governing body attendance (2019-2020) – 5/6
Mark Semens resigned 27/01/20. Full governing body attendance (2019-2020) – 1/3