Governing Body - Who's who

Mrs Valerie Royston

Chair of Governors - Local Authority Governor

Curriculum, Standards & Engagement Committee, Finance, Personnel & Premises Committee; Headteacher's Performance Management; Governor Training; Equality and Diversity link governor.

After taking early retirement, I became a classroom volunteer which was a joy and offered me much more than I could have imagined. Over time, this experience of life inside a primary school led to my interest in becoming a governor.

I have been a governor at Perran-ar-worthal since December 2017 and I became Chair in October 2019.

I look forward very much to continuing to develop my understanding of the school and the work of its skilled and committed staff as they guide and support their pupils to not only achieve academically but also to develop all round life skills and enjoy a rich and happy school life.

In my working life I spent several years in banking , then into graphic design and printing and finally I headed the team of business advisers for Business Link in the county . I was a magistrate for 22 years, specialising in family work for the last 6 years. I live in Idless with my husband, Ashley. I have four children and four grandchildren .

I am an enthusiastic ( if very average ) member of the village Community Choir and I also play bridge at the club in the village . One of my greatest pleasures is watching live theatre.

Mrs Mary Arthur

Parent Governor

Curriculum, Standards & Engagement Committee; Safeguarding

I have three boys, two of whom are at Perran-ar-worthal currently and the other who will join them in a few years. As such, I have a keen interest in supporting the school and helping it to grow and improve in the long term.

Having worked as a primary school teacher for the last 10 years, predominantly in the Early Years, I am looking forward to applying my experience and knowledge to the role of a parent governor and contribute readily to the strategic direction of the school.

My husband and I have both lived in the local area our whole lives and thoroughly appreciate how special this school is and the valuable role it plays in the wider community. Our spare time is generally spent outside in all weathers with the boys, particularly if it involves the beach.

Mrs Dawn Aytoun

Community Governor

Curriculum, Standards & Engagement Committee; Health & Wellbeing

I have worked in education for 14 years, across a variety of roles and contexts. During this time, I have become incredibly passionate about the key part education can play in young people’s mental health and wellbeing, and the development of the skills to maintain these into adulthood.

I have always worked with children, studying Development Psychology at the University of Portsmouth. I started my journey in education working with children special educational needs. I had the brilliant opportunity to work with the British School in Netherlands for 18 months developing their Wellbeing and SEN practices, and then returned to the UK 8 years ago where I focused on mainstream education and developing my skills in school leadership.

Having achieved various qualifications in Educational Leadership, Mental Health, Psychology and Wellbeing, I was keen to share my expertise and be part of a community working together to achieve the best possible outcomes for our children.

I moved to my dream cottage in Trehaddle last year, after my husband secured a post at the University of Exeter, working in Penryn. We are both keen kayakers and open water swimmers, but generally enjoy exploring nature and the outdoors in any way possible. We are very much looking forward to covering as much of the coast as possible, both on land and on water.

Mrs Sarah Childs

Community Governor

Curriculum, Standards & Engagement Committee; Overall Effectiveness

I have one daughter at Perran-ar-worthal, Bethany, and one son at Penryn College, Harrison. Through my role at Penryn College I have a longstanding working relationship with Perran-ar-worthal school and was keen to become a governor to contribute to the life of the school.

Along with my husband we moved to Cornwall in 2003 after starting our careers in Bristol. I originally took up the role of Head of Music at Penryn College and subsequently developed into a range of other roles which includes working across the Penryn Partnership teaching music from EYFS to GCSE. I now work as a Lead Practitioner developing teaching and learning across the school and partnership.

As a family we embrace all the joys that Cornwall can provide. We are avid sea lovers and can be found most often either sailing or surfing. If not on the water we are chasing the children around the county with either rugby, hockey, cricket or dancing.

Mrs Helen Forster

Parent Governor

Curriculum, Standards & Engagement Committee; Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

I am mum to Amelia aged 6 currently in Robins, Charlotte aged 3 who will hopefully be starting the school in September and Hugh who was born this August. With so many years of education ahead I look forward to the opportunity to be involved in the school’s future and help it continue to succeed.

I am an Officer in the Royal Navy and moved to Cornwall in 2009, falling instantly in love with the county! I am an Aircraft Engineer by trade and my career within the Navy has enabled me to work with and manage large teams, intimately understand risk management, and comply with regulation and governance with the absolute safety of personnel at the core.

I have been a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Ambassador for 10 years and am deeply passionate about providing opportunities for children to participate in STEM activities. The Parent Governor role is a position that I feel I can positively apply my experience, military ethos, discipline, and enthusiasm to and as I learn and develop within the position I am looking forward to adding value where I can.

Mrs Philippa Laval

Community Governor

Chair of Curriculum, Standards & Engagement Committee; Headteacher's Performance Management; Overall Effectiveness

I have a son who is now in Year 11 at Penryn College and daughter who is Year 6 here at school . I was originally elected as Parent governor when my son was in Year 1 , but now am a Community Governor. I am also the chair of the Curriculum committee and Maths Governor.

I originally moved to Cornwall (Mylor) when I was 6 where my parents farmed. I went on to study Engineering at Bath university and then did a MSc in IT at Herriot Watt in Edinburgh. We moved back from London when my son was due to start reception at Perran-ar-worthal school and have never looked back! I work 4 days a week from home for EY a large accountancy firm as an IT project manager.

We both love living in such a vibrant village and both enjoy all of the walking, coastal and cultural aspects that Cornwall has to offer. I also feel very honoured to help support such a wonderful school by being a Governor.

Mrs Emily Lord

Parent Governor

Finance, Personnel & Premises Committee

I have two children, one currently at Perran-ar-worthal and my second will join her in a few years. Through my passion for development in sport I have a keen interest in helping our village school maintain its excellent values and thrive as much as possible.

I have worked within education for the past 12 years, specifically with the 16-19 age group. Running a vast array of successful Sports Academies has enabled me to gain experience in transport, budgeting and facility management. I am hopeful that I will be able to bring my experience and ideas to aid the development of the school.

Having moved from Birmingham in 2008, I developed a strong bond to the area. My husband and I married in the local area in 2012 and we fully appreciate how lucky we are to raise our children within the village. We are a sporty family that likes to stay active. I am keen to help with activities and am a big advocate for how sport can help holistically within education.

Mr Philip Madeley

Community Governor

Chair of Finance, Personnel and Premises Committee; Pay & Performance Committee; Schools Financial Value Standard

I spent most of my professional career in The National Health Service, as an accountant, latterly spending over 15 years as a Finance Director. In what I would describe as “semi retirement”, working part time for a few years on the King Harry Ferry.

I have lived in Perranwell Station for over 25 years and have seen both my sons progress initially through the school on to successful careers and married lives, still in Cornwall.

I spent some eight years as a governor at Penair School and have had some involvement in other voluntary roles. Spare time has always revolved around sport and I currently spends quite a few hours on the golf course every week!

Mrs Susie Matthews

Community Governor

Curriculum, Standards & Engagement Committee; Special Educational Needs & Disability (SEND)

I have three children – our two sons Jack and Dan are in years 8 and 7 at Penryn College and our daughter Anna is in year 5 at Perran-ar-worthal School. When Jack started at Perran-ar-worthal School in 2013, I was really keen to get involved with school activities and joined the Friends of Perran-ar-worthal School (FOPS) – I have been the treasurer for FOPS since then. I am also a regular volunteer for Fab Fridays and for school trips, etc.

When the opening for a governor came up, I considered it a way to give a bit more back to the School and also, from a selfish point of view, a way to gain an understanding of the intricacies of the running of a small primary school and an understanding into modern education; and so I applied. I became an associate governor initially and a fully-fledged governor a short while later.

My husband has spent many years in the Royal Navy, so when it was suggested that I take on the governor role of review of Pupil Premium funding, it seemed very appropriate. My role involves reviewing the way the school uses the funding received for Pupil Premium children and ensuring that it is used appropriately to benefit these individual children. I then added a second feature to my governor role – creative arts. This was a new area for a governor and was very interesting as the school and pupils worked towards achieving the ArtsMark award, which recognises the provision of creative arts in the curriculum at the school.

Very recently my governor role has been expanded to include the SEND governor role, which is very new to me and an exciting challenge. I am looking forward to learning about the SEND provision at the school and working with the very effective team. I sit on the CSE (Curriculum, Standards & Engagement) Committee.

Some information about my background: I am from South Wales and moved down to the South-West many years ago, living on Dartmoor and working at Derriford Hospital for 13 years. In 2010 we relocated to Cornwall and we moved to Perran-ar-worthal just before Jack started school - I don’t think we will ever leave! I work at the Royal Cornwall Hospital as a clinical pharmacist, based in the Emergency Department and Acute Medical Unit. I was Akela for the 1st Playing Place cub pack for several years and have now stepped into the role of secretary for the executive committee. I am involved in Penryn RFC as first aider for the U12s and spend Sunday mornings on the touchline cheering on our boys. I am on the Perranarworthal Cricket Club committee and represent the youth cricket – I am one of the coaches for the junior sessions at the club. I sing in the Perranarworthal Community choir and in the Culdrose Military Wives choir. Life is quite full-on with all of the above, but I feel very lucky to be living in such an amazing village and county where there is lots to do to relax.

Mr Chris Anderson

Associate Member, with voting rights on Finance, Personnel & Premises Committee

Finance, Personnel and Premises Committee; Premises and Health & Safety

As a strong believer in the long-term benefit of quality early years and primary education, I was very keen to become involved with and assist the school, and to participate within village life of which the school plays such a major role. I currently have two sons at Perran-ar-worthal School, and one at Penryn College, so have been directly involved with the school as a parent for several years.

After an initial career in the military, I retrained as a chartered surveyor, at first working in northern England before moving to Cornwall in 2012 due to my wife’s family connections. Originating from East Anglia and having moved around the UK in the pre-children days, we are very pleased to feel so at home in Perranwell Station and don’t envisage moving anywhere else!

In my professional capacity I work for a national surveying partnership, predominantly on behalf of property owners within the rural sector, covering a wide range of issues and with specific experience in planning and development. I am fortunate to travel the length and breadth of Cornwall on a regular basis in the day-to-day course of work, experiencing and learning about the history and variety of the county.

As a member of the Finance, Personnel & Premises Committee with responsibility for Health & Safety and Premises, I hope my experience and knowledge can be applied within the educational environment to help and support the school in its inevitable evolution.

Mr Mike McCandless

Associate Member, with voting rights on Finance, Personnel & Premises Committee

Finance, Personnel and Premises Committee; Pay & Performance Committee

My youngest daughter is at Perran-ar-worthal and the older two girls have moved on to Penryn College. They all absolutely loved their time here. Becoming a parent governor, in the first instance, was one way for me to contribute to the continued success of this fantastic primary school. At the end of my term, I stayed on as an associate member to support new governors and help ensure continuity on the board.

I grew up in Northern Ireland and studied Civil Engineering in Edinburgh. I spent the early part of my career working on large construction projects until a change in 2006 saw me setting up my own business. Subsequently I have gained qualifications in Multimedia Design and Therapeutic Counselling.

We moved from Devon to Perranwell Station in 2013 and love living here. As well as all the joys that Cornwall has to offer, we really appreciate the supportive community spirit in the village.

I have learnt a great deal during my time on this board and enjoy contributing to both the Finance, Personal & Premises and the Pay & Performance Committees.

Mrs Rachel Heffer


Mr Ben Teasdale

Staff Governor

Mrs Julie Tayler

Clerk to the Governing Body