Gorse Hill School About Us

Local Governing Body


The governance of a multi-academy trust differs from those of maintained schools. The White Horse Federation (TWHF) believes that placing statutory responsibilities firmly at its centre, in the remit of the trustee board, allows the local governing body (LGB) to focus on providing support, overcoming challenges in the delivery of educational excellence, and achieving outstanding outcomes for all pupils.

There are direct channels of communication between the principal and the LGB chair and central services. The clerk to the trustee board will hold contact details for all members of LGBs within TWHF. However, routine communication for day-to-day school business should come from the chair of that LGB, managed by the school or through an LGB clerk, if such a position is deemed necessary.

The principal and the chair of the LGB are responsible for ensuring the quality and timely distribution of all material needed to keep LGB members well informed about the school and TWHF. The principal and the chair are also responsible for ensuring the views of the LGB are well communicated to the board of trustees. This can be done via the elected chair’s representative on the trustee board. Senior executives from TWHF will be nominated by the CEO to sit on an LGB. Trustees reserve the right to attend any LGB meeting.

The White Horse Federation has a very clear and shared understanding of what constitutes good and effective governance. Schools within TWHF will be judged to have outstanding governance when members of the LGB:

  • Talk about teaching and learning.
  • Know a great deal about the school and its community.
  • Are ambitious for the school and its community.
  • Ask questions which make colleagues reflect, and that these discussions lead to delivering the very best outcomes for every child and adult within the school community.
  • Maintain strong and effective relationships within TWHF.

In order for the shared model of governance to be effective for TWHF and the schools, it is essential that there is effective communication between the board of trustees, the LGBs, chairs groups, principals, the central team, and the executive leadership team.

Current Local Governors

Luke Graham Principal
Ian Cooke Chair of Governors, Co-opted Local Governor, Mental Health and Wellbeing Governor
Elizabeth Postgate Parent Local Governor
Sarah Ruthford Parent Local Governor
Laura Dent Co-opted Governor
Lisa Sims Support Staff Governor
Louise Evans Teaching Staff Governor
Helen Weedon Co-opted Governor

Register of Interests 2021-22 & Attendance 2020-21

Local Governors have been appointed by the board of trustees and will serve a four-year term.

NameRoleRegister of InterestsDate Interest RegisteredTerms of OfficeAttendance 2021-2022
Luke GrahamPrincipalTWHF Employee01/04/202101/04/21 - 31/03/20256 of 6
Ian CookeChair, Co-opted Local GovernorDA Cooke Wholesale01/09/201801/09/18 - 31/08/20226 of 6
Elizabeth PostgateCommunity Local GovernorNone23/09/1923/09/19 - 22/09/2023
2 of 6
Sarah RuthfordParent Local GovernorNone17/07/202117/07/2021 - 17/07/20254 of 6
Laura DentCo-opted GovernorNone11/10/202111/10/2021 - 11/10/2025
6 of 6
Lisa SimsSupport Staff GovernorNone20/06/2021
20/06/2021 -
5 of 6
Louise EvansTeaching Staff GovernorNone11/10/2021
11/10/2021 -
5 of 6

Helen Weedon

Co-opted Governor


Former Governors

Kelly York - Left 09/05/2022 (attended 5 of 6 meetings)

Raji Karruppu - Left 23/04/2021

Steve Robinson - Left 15/06/2022 (attended 5 of 6 meetings)

The White Horse Federation Local Governing Board

Each school has its own local governing body (LGB). The chair of each LGB will also sit on a collective group of similar chairs, from which one representative will be elected and then co-opted onto the executive board. This process will be repeated every two years, thus affording new chairs the opportunity to be similarly elected.

TWHF executive board has clearly identified the areas of responsibility that they delegate to the LGBs. Although not in any way legally responsible, and not itself accountable for the statutory functions, the LGB has an important role to play in assisting the school to operate effectively in line with the wishes of TWHF executive board as communicated to the LGB.

To learn more, visit The White Horse Federation website.

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