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Semley CE VA Primary School

Semley CE VA Primary School

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Our Governors

We are a board of 10 dedicated individuals comprising members of the school community, church, staff and parents. Achieving the best possible experiences and outcomes for all children at Semley School lies at the heart of what we do and is our guiding principle in all our decisions.


Along with the headteacher, we set the strategic vision of the school, ensure the finances are well managed, the curriculum is delivered, performance and progress is monitored, the best staff are recruited, the Christian ethos is upheld, policies are approved and the buildings are looked after.


We have full governing body meetings twice a term and all governors serve on at least one of the three sub committees which also meet twice termly – these are 1. Finance 2. Curriculum, Staffing and Admissions and 3. Premises. Governors bring to the role a wide range of skills, backgrounds and interests. We know the school well, visit regularly and attend training sessions to keep up to date with the ever changing world of education.


The governors are allocated different responsibilities; all are linked to a particular class, and some governors have other areas of responsibility such as for a curriculum subject, Special Educational Needs or Safeguarding. Governors visit their link classes whenever possible, helping out and getting to know the children. Through meetings with the headteacher, staff and pupils, governors monitor the school’s performance and its school improvement programme.


We have a clerk to assist us in setting agendas, taking minutes and ensuring that the Governing Board fulfils all its statutory duties. If you would like to contact any of the governors please do so through the school office.


Briony Brickell

Chair of Governors



Governor Profiles 


Briony Brickell – LA Governor (Chair of Governors)

Committee: Curriculum, Staffing & Admissions, & Finance (Chair), Pay Panel

Responsibility: Safeguarding, Maths

I am a parent governor with a child in Robins and Owls. I studied History of Art and work as an education consultant for art galleries and museums. I have previously been a community governor in a school for children with special educational needs.


Molly Swann – Parent Governor  (Vice Chair of Governors)

Committee: Curriculum, Staffing and Admissions (Chair), Finance, Pay Panel

Responsibilities:  Literacy, GDPR

I am a parent governor with a child at Semley.  I read English Literature at university, and my background is in advertising and media.  I love Semley School and am looking forward to taking an active part in its governance.


Abi Carlyle-Clarke – Ex-officio (Headteacher)

Committees: Curriculum, Staffing & Admissions; Premises; Finance.


Rev Kate McFarlane – Ex-officio 

Committees:  Finance

I moved to Semley in 2021 to become Rector of St Bartholomew’s Benefice. My background is in school chaplaincy, youth and retreat work.

My husband Stephen teaches at, and my two sons attend, Shaftesbury School.


Sam Heavingham – Staff Governor (Deputy Headteacher)

Committee: Curriculum, Staffing & Admissions


Tessa Chalwin – Foundation Governor

Committee: Premises

We moved to Sedgehill 17 years ago.  I have two children and three grandchildren, the eldest of whom is at Semley School. 


Chloe Cardozo – Parent Governor

Committee: Premises

I studied Chemistry at university and studied fine art in Seville (Spain) university. I went to Semley myself and have four children either at or having been at Semley. I love to help out with art projects. We feel lucky to have a small local school with incredibly committed staff where my children have made life long friendships.


Sue Dawson – Foundation Governor

Committees: Finance, Pay Panel

I have lived in East Knoyle for more than thirty years; have taught in maintained and, sometimes, independent schools for nearly forty years, and have two adult sons who were educated nearby.


Harriet Egerton – Foundation Governor

Committee: Curriculum, Staffing & Admissions

Responsibilities: SEN, Pupil Premium & Disadvantaged Learners

I live in Semley and my three daughters attended Semley school. Having studied Agriculture at university, I then worked in property. I am delighted to be rejoining the board as a foundation governor and am much looking forward to reacquainting myself with the whole community here.


Antony Pinsent - Foundation Governor

Committee: Finance & Premises (Chair)

Responsibilities: Health & Safety

My wife Clare and I moved from the Wylye Valley to Semley in 2016.  We have two granddaughters at the school.  I am retired from a career in aerospace insurance and am now involved in a variety of local activities, including the PCC.


Shonagh Symington – Foundation Governor

Committee: Premises

Having lived in Portugal for eighteen years, we recently moved back to England and are now living in Semley, which I love. I have two teenage daughters. Volunteering in the village stores has given me a great sense of community and I'm looking forward to being part of Semley Primary School.



Clerk to the Governors - Theresa Merefield