Governors are part of the school governing body who are responsible for overseeing the management side of a school: strategy, policy, budgeting and staffing. They enable their school to run as effectively as possible, working alongside the senior leadership team and supporting teaching staff to provide excellent education to children and ensuring that they raise school standards through ensuring clarity of vision, school values and the strategic direction of the School is upheld. The governing body are responsible in holding the school leader to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils. The governing body is also responsible in overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is spent appropriately.
The Llewellyn School CEO/School Leader: Sara Llewellyn
Our school leader and founder of the Llewellyn school, Sara, is a parent herself of a child with complex medical needs and has intimate knowledge of the needs of children with complex medical needs and disabilities, and the extensive barriers that parents experience. Sara is the Designated Safeguarding Lead for The Llewellyn School and is part of the Senior Leadership team.
Sara founded The Llewellyn School in response to the closure of The Royal School for the Deaf Children, where some of the most vulnerable children with complex medical needs and disabilities were left with no school that could meet their specialists needs. The Llewellyn School and Nursery opened and was registered by the Department for Education in January 2017. Sara built two annexes including a specialist outside play area in her own garden. The space provided two classrooms with specialist equipment and specialist trained staff including a Teacher for the Deaf (TOD) and full-time therapy assistant. The school opened with 3 pupils on roll rising to 7 pupils within a year.
Ofsted July 2018 – With incredible vision and intimate knowledge of the needs of children who have disabilities, the proprietor has made the most of a relatively confined space. Inside and outside areas have been carefully designed and equipped to a very high standard.
In response to the ever-increasing demand for pupil placements and having limited space our School Leader began to fundraise with the aim to build and open a larger new school and the ‘Louie helping hands’ foundation was setup. Our School Leader successfully secured land within the Quex Park estate and started building our new school in July 2018.The 1st phase of the new school opened in September 2019 with 7 pupils enrolled rising to full capacity of 14 pupils by July 2020.
Sara is extremely passionate about ensuring that the Llewellyn School continues to grow and expands to provide more places for more children with complex medical needs. Sara wishes to encourage inclusivity not just for pupils, but their families too – by providing support and extra respite care and services for all by cementing stronger relationships with the wider community and outside agencies such as social services, Demelza house etc.
Jennifer Jupe – Chair of Governing Body
Jenny has enjoyed a long career in education, including schools (20 years), Local Authority advisory services and the charitable sector. Jenny has a diverse range of experience both professionally and personally and aims to help guide and establish the Llewellyn School as it develops. Jenny is passionate about helping The Llewellyn School in achieving its School vision and values to ensure the best outcomes for all.
Jenny has a grandchild who was born with complex medical needs, with CHARGE syndrome and is profoundly deaf. Jenny trained to become her secondary carer, learning British Sign Language (BSL), and has completed tracheostomy training and gastrostomy feeding.
Her last full-time role was as a Director of Education in Westminster with the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust (SSAT). Prior to that, Jenny was the Chief Executive of the Design & Technology Association, Curriculum Advisor to the then Department for Education and Skills and a School Advisor and Inspector. As well as her teaching qualifications, Jenny also has a degree in Information and Communications Technology Education. Jenny has been vice chair of governors at the Royal Society for Arts (RSA) Academy in Tipton, West Midlands, alongside her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Schools, Sir Mike Tomlinson (rtd); Chair of Trustees for the RSA Academies programme and former trustee of the AQA awarding body.
Colette Gosden: Teaching & Learning
Colette is a qualified teacher with over 20 years’ experience and knowledge of educational standards. Colette is passionate about ensuring that high standards of teaching and learning are met and that they are monitored and maintained. She helps to ensure that the curriculum provided by the school is suitable and delivered in an appropriate way. Colette previously worked at the Royal School for the Deaf and has a wealth of experience, she is extremely passionate about ensuring that pupils leave school with suitable literacy qualifications. She also has a degree in English and holds a National Professional Qualification for Middle Leadership (NPQML). Colette is an Outstanding Teacher and participates regularly in the Outstanding Teachers Consortium.
Michelle Palmer: Secretary to the Chair
Michelle is the secretary to the chair of governors.
She has a background in personal assistant/administration skills and is an asset to the school in helping to maintain attention to detail.
Gary Fairhall: Finance
Gary has over 30 years’ experience in the financial services industry, he is a Director / Mortgage Advisor and has his own company. He has a wealth of experience in his professional career and is a keen supporter of Louie’s Helping Hands and The Llewellyn School.
Gary is very proactive in fundraising for The Llewellyn School.
Jann Gilliland: Safeguarding
During her working career, Jann has held posts as a teacher in a large secondary school, and as a psychiatric nurse-manager within the NHS. She has completed a number of multi-agency safeguarding courses, and facilitated training.
Jann holds specific responsibility for Safeguarding within Llewellyn School. She also provides input into Health and Safety at the school and support in the completion of Risk Assessments and the At Risk Register.
Jann believes that Safeguarding is everybody’s business and that working together as a team, with appropriate training and knowledge, will ensure that the school’s shared Safeguarding Principles, its lawful obligations and its strategic aims are met. Jann aims to visit the Llewellyn School regularly to audit Safeguarding arrangements inline with Ofsted and ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ requirements and work together with the Senior Leadership team and Governing Body to ensure this is met.
Sue has worked within the specialist educational sector for over 25 years. For 20 years she worked at the Royal School for Deaf Children Margate starting as a Learning Support Assistant and worked her way up to senior management where she achieved the National Professional Qualification for Senior Leadership (NPQSL). Sue is a qualified assessor and internal verifier.
Currently within the Llewellyn School she is part of the Senior Leadership Team and is the Quality and Curriculum Manager. She is trained to level 3 in British Sign Language (BSL). She is also a medical assistant with a diverse range of experience. Sue is a coordinator with excellent leadership skills and has a practical approach to getting things done. She is extremely passionate about working towards positive outcomes for all and strives to ensure that high standards are held. She maintains and encourages good working partnerships with all levels of staff and other internal and external parties whilst managing small or large teams of staff. She is responsible for gathering, researching, assessing information, views of others and data to produce summary reports to inform and write self-assessments reports. Sue can identify and plan development requirements to improve production of services within the school to help reach the school vision and values.
Natalie has worked within the education sector since 2005. Natalie worked closely with the Vice Chancellor and Operations Director at Canterbury Christ Church University before deciding to work part-time to start a family. Whilst her children were young, Natalie decided to train to become a teacher and completed her training at Canterbury Christ Church University; with her first teaching role at the Kent refugee action network. She has a BA (Hons) in Primary Education. Since 2016, she has worked for two mainstream schools in Kent, and has also worked as a private 1:1 tutor – training for the Kent Test.
Natalie is the current Deputy Head at the Llewellyn school, is part of the senior leadership team and teacher in Birch Tree Class. Natalie is enrolled on the National Professional Qualification for Senior Leadership (NPQSL) which will lead onto the National Professional Qualification for Headship (NPQH) next year.
Natalie has worked with many of the pupils at Llewellyn School and has incorporated their individual behavioural and physical needs into all her planning. She prides herself on being the best teacher she can be, by providing engaging and stimulating lessons. She will go ‘above and beyond’ for the children she is teaching, which has proved successful as the student’s attainment levels improve year after year. Natalie is passionate about enhancing the children’s academic development, providing them with a safe, happy environment to learn in, and preparing them for future, post education when they leave our school.