Meet the Governors

The Governing Body composition

The Governing Body currently comprises six Foundation Governors appointed by the Bishop of Plymouth Diocese,  the Head Teacher and the Deputy Head.  Parent Governors are elected every four years or on the resignation of a Parent Governor (whichever is earlier). All parents of the school are eligible to be a Parent Governor and will be invited to nominate themselves for such a role should a vacancy arise.


The Role of the Governors

The School Governors at St. Catherine’s are parent, staff and foundation (Church) representatives who have put themselves forward to take a more active role and involvement in the general well-being of our school and our pupils and staff.

The Governors are responsible for the effective running of the school, both financially and educationally.

Our valued Governors provide expertise, a critical friendship and a great deal of support to the school leaders and to the wider community that the school serves.

However their chief concern is to ensure that the pupils of St Catherine’s have the very best learning opportunities. They also support the leadership in ensuring that the school complies with initiatives and legislation such as the Freedom of Information Act and the safeguarding of children.


The minutes of each meeting are available for inspection in the school office.


Our Governors here at St. Catherine’s are extremely approachable and welcome opportunities to share information about their business and to discuss school matters.


Each Governor is a Portfolio holder which they oversee
Leadership & Management Mrs Pauline Baldwin
Catholic Life Mrs Pauline Baldwin
Teaching, Learning & Assessment Mrs Alex Harris
Finance Mr David Clark
Human Resources  Mrs Heather Palmer
Premises, Health & Safety Mr Simon Pope
Safeguarding Mr John Sinclair
Outcome for Pupils: Data Mr Paul Gosling
Communication & Marketing Mr Rupert Pepper
  • Mrs Pauline Baldwin

    Chair of Governors & Foundation Governor

    I was appointed as a Foundation Governor in 1979. I have served as Chair of Governors since 1996. I was a member of the Diocesan Schools Commission for many years. I currently serve as Vice Chair to the Governors and also act as the SEN Governor. My parish is St Catherine’s Wimborne where I am a Eucharistic minister and organise the flower arranging group. I have three children, five grandchildren and one great child who all attended St Catherine’s School. Being involved with the school for so many years, I have seen it grow from strength to strength. With the improved learning over the years I have noted the increased confidence of our children both in the school and as they leave to start the next phase of their education.

    Pauline Baldwin

    Appointed 1979, reappointed every four years.
    Appointed as Academy Foundation Governor 1st April 2014
    Chair of Governors until 5th September 2016.
    Elected as Vice Chair September 2016
    2016/17 Attendance 100%

  • Mrs Heather Palmer

    Vice Chair of Governors & Community Governor

    I have recently been appointed as a Community Governor and am very much looking forward to contributing towards the success of the pupils of St. Catherine’s.
    I am married and have one daughter and two grandchildren, both of whom now attend St Catherine’s following our move back to Dorset after spending a number of years in Hertfordshire.
    I have recently retired after a long career as a Human Resources professional serving as a Board Member in my two most recent roles. I have a keen interest in education and it’s role in developing each child to their full potential.

    Heather Palmer

Foundation Governors
  • Mr Simon Pope

    Foundation Governor

    I was appointed as a Foundation Governor in 2006 and I am Chair of the Premises Committee and it is not unusual for me to bring a screwdriver or plunger to a meeting! I also serve on the Staffing, Performance Management and Marketing Committees. I have also served as Trustee of St Catherine's Kindergarten.

    In 1998 I joined the Parents Association and Parent Council. I served as Chair of the PA from 2003 - 2006 and continue to support both groups today.

    I am married with two sons. We live in Ferndown and attend the Church of St Anthony of Padua in West Moors. As a former pupil of St Catherine's in 1976, it was a natural choice for me to send my own children to "my old school". My two sons attended the school between 1996 and 2007. We quickly realised the ethos at St Catherine's was like an extension to our own family , but never more so than when our youngest son was diagnosed with Aspergers and Tourettes in 2004. The support offered to my family by all the Staff was fantastic: The tuition and care afforded at Primary school meant our son could progress to Secondary School and subsequent further education without the requirement of additional support and medication. He continues to flourish! It is this ethos and family spirit I aim to support and promote throughout the whole School Community.

    Away from School, I manage a Bournemouth based Cleaning and Janitorial Supply Company. This is our Family business, established by my Parents in 1984. My hobbies include amateur dramatics, motorsport and I have recently starting running. I volunteer to help with parkrun and junior parkrun at Moors Valley Country Park and also with Bournemouth Tourism as a Festival Maker and Bournemouth Ambassador.

    Appointed January 2007, Reappointed February 2011
    Appointed as Academy Foundation Governor 1st April 2014
    Elected as Chair September 2016, stepped down as chair September 2017
    2016/17 Attendance 100%

  • Mr David Clark

    Foundation Governor

    I was selected in 2014 as a Foundation Governor for a period of four years. I am a retired Chartered Accountant and during my working life, I spent many years with a major aerospace and defence systems company. I am also a governor of Queen Elizabeth's School in Wimborne. I have lived in Wimborne since 1977, my four children all attended St Catherine's School, and I currently have a grand-daughter at the school. I look forward to making a contribution towards the running of the financial affairs of the school during the remainder of my time as a governor.

    David Clark
    Appointed as Academy Foundation Governor 1st May 2014
    Chair of Finance Committee
    2016/17 Attendance 100%

  • Mr John Sinclair

    Foundation Governor

    I was appointed as a Governor in December 2015. Although new to the Governing Body at St. Catherine’s, I was a Governor for 25 years, including Chairman for the last 6 years, at Our Lady of Ransom Catholic Primary School in Essex. Married with 5 children and 10 grandchildren, we moved to Dorset in 2010. Four of my grandchildren have attended St Catherine’s, so I have been associated with what I have seen as a warm, friendly and caring school, through them. I am an Actuary by profession and enjoyed a successful career in the City of London before taking early retirement. I am still involved in business as an independent Chairman of 3 regulated companies and have also served as a Trustee of Brentwood Catholic Children’s Society and Havens Christian Hospices (adult and children). I look forward to helping the school to encourage every child to learn, grow and flourish in a stimulating and supportive environment.

    John Sinclair
    Appointed as Academy Foundation Governor 1st December 2015
    Safeguarding Governor
    2016/17 Attendance 100%

  • Mrs Alex Harris

    Foundation Governor

    I am a Foundation Governor and began my term on the 1st September 2016. I am a member of the Peoples and Curriculum Committees, the latter of which I am chair. Up until July 2016, I was the Acting Head Teacher & Year 6 teacher at St. Catherine’s. I have taught Year 6 for 12 years. I have had a long association with St. Catherine’s and was the staff Governor for a number of years. Both my boys, who are now in their 20’s, attended St. Catherine’s and have many happy memories of their time there. I am a practicing member of St. Anthony’s Roman Catholic Church, West Moors and a newly appointed member of the St. Vincent de Paul Society within the parish.

    Alex Harris
    Appointed in 2002 as Staff Governor, reappointed 2006, 2010.
    Appointed as Academy Foundation Governor September 2016
    Chair of Curriculum, Standards and Pastoral Committee
    2016/17 Attendance 100%

  • Mr Rupert Pepper

    Foundation Governor

  • Mr Paul Gosling

    Parent Governor

    I was appointed as Parent Governor in 2016, having been involved in school life at St Catherine’s for nearly 10 years.
    My eldest child has now left St Catherine’s to attend St Peters and my daughter is still a pupil at the school. During their time here I have witnessed the positive impact the school has on the children who attend it and I am keen to ensure that this continues in my role as Governor.
    Professionally, I am an experienced Company Director and have recently set up a specialist recruitment company focusing on the Environment and Sustainability sector.
    Away from work, I am an avid follower of all sports, particularly rugby and am a Lead Coach in Wimborne RFC’s Youth section.
    We have a school to be proud of and I am looking forward to being part of its future.

  • Mrs Melanie Dare

    Staff Governor & Deputy Head

    I am the newly appointed deputy head teacher of St. Catherine's, as of the first of September 2016. An experienced teacher having taught all year groups from Reception to Year Seven, I am now based in Year Six. I have worked in a variety of different schools in Berkshire, Essex, Hampshire, Bournemouth and Poole. In recent years I have been a member of the Senior Management Team of a large two-form entry school where I was responsible for Key Stage 2 and Assessment.
    I am married and have two daughters, both of whom are teachers - one primary, one secondary. I attend the Annunciation Parish in Bournemouth and am a member of the church choir.
    I have previously served as a Staff Governor and know the important job they do first-hand. I am looking forward to representing the Staff, building up a good working relationship with all members of the Governors. In addition to serving on the full Governing body, I am a member of the Curriculum Committee.

    Appointed as Staff Governor 1st September 2016

  • Mrs Sarah Sparks


    I was appointed as the Head teacher of St Catherine’s from September 2016. I am married to Ian and we have one child James (5) . My first teaching experience was in Poole where I taught across Early Years and Key Stage 1. I then taught here at St Catherine's from 1998 - 2002, after which I moved on to my first Deputy Headship in Lymington. In 2006 I moved to a large primary school in Bournemouth as Deputy Head and spent two terms as Acting Head. Most recently I was the Deputy Head of a large CAST school in Bournemouth. I have taught in all year groups, with a variety of responsibilities. In all roles I have worked closely with the school's Governing body and have always enjoyed working with the Governors to improve the provision for our children.

    Appointed as Staff Governor 1st September 2016
    Meeting Attendance: 100%
    Committees: People's, Curriculum, Standards & Pastoral, Finance and Premises.

  • Mrs Carol Box

    Clerk to the Governors

    Parent Governor - December 2010 - January 2015
    Foundation Governor - January - November 2015
    Clerk to the Governors - appointed November 2015

    I joined the Governing Body at St Catherine's School in December 2010 as a Parent Governor position became vacant and I had 2 children in Key Stage 1 at that time. Prior to my children starting school I enjoyed a rewarding 20 year career at JPMorgan in Bournemouth. I made the decision to leave a busy managerial position so that I could settle my children into school life. After serving a 4 year term I was appointed as a Foundation Governor through St Anthony's Church in West Moors. I am now the Clerk to the Governors. I have served on the Curriculum Committee throughout my time as a governor with periods as the Safeguarding Governor, on the Marketing Committee and working on school policies. My children had a great start to their education at St Catherine's school. I am pleased that I am able to continue to work with a governing body and staff that are dedicated to the future successes of the children throughout the school.
    Carol Box

  • Fr Canon Noakes

    (Foundation Governor) retired

    I have known St Catherine's School since the mid 1990s and have been a Foundation Governor since becoming Parish Priest of St Catherine's Wimborne in 2005. I am keen to maintain and extend the good links between the school and St Catherine's Parish and West Moors Parish. I am a member of the Admissions and Staffing Committee.

    I am also a Governor of St Edward's School in Poole and am attempting to build stronger links between St Catherine's and St Edward's, to encourage more pupils to consider St Edward's for secondary education.

    Appointed 2005, reappointed 2010.
    Appointed as Academy Foundation Governor 1st April 2014
    2016/17 Attendance 100%
    Resigned December 2016

  • Mr Andrews

    Parent Governor (retired)

    I am a parent governor and joined the governing body in May 2015. I was born and raised in Dorset and I have spent most of my working life in the area.

    I am married with two children both of whom are at St Catherine's. As a family, we attend Saint Anthony of Padua in West Moors. I am glad to be able to take part in school life as a parent governor and sit on the finance and premises committees. I think it's very important that at St Catherine's we continue to strive to help each child in school reach their highest possible potential and believe the importance we place on this has helped us achieve the successful and well-balanced school we have.

    Appointed as Academy Parent Governor April 2015
    Resigned July 2016

  • Mr Rob Asquith

    Parent Governor (Retired)

    I was appointed as a Parent Governor in 2012. I have served on the Curriculum and Marketing Committees during my time at St. Catherine's. I am married with 1 daughter. We live in Wimborne, where I work as a Planning Director for a local Property Agency.

    Appointed as Parent Governor 2012
    Resigned May 2016

  • Mr Baron Levine

    Co-Opted Governor (Retired)

    I am a Director in the construction industry, trading in the Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch area for over 35 years. I was appointed as a Governor at St. Catherine's in 2005 as an LA Governor and latterly as a Co-Opted Governor under Plymouth CAST. I have served on the Premises committee and also as Early Years Governor.

    Appointed as Dorset Local Authority Governor 2005, reappointed 2007, 2009
    Resigned January 2016

  • Mrs Fionnuala Hough

    Foundation Governor (retired)

    I live in Ferndown with my Husband. We are both retired and my association with St. Catherine's began many years ago when my children attended the school. I have since been involved with Kindergarten, formally the Nursery and I have been a Foundation Governor since 2001. I have served on the Curriculum Committee and also held responsibility as the SEND Governor.

    Appointed as Foundation Governor 2001, reappointed 2005, 2009, 2013.
    Appointed as Academy Foundation Governor 1st April 2014
    Resigned July 2016

  • Mrs Rosie Lennon

    Headteacher (Retired)

    Mrs Rosie Lennon was the Headteacher from 1st January until 31st December 2015