The Governing Body

Val Edwards

Val Edwards

Co-opted Governor (Chair of Governors)

I have been a governor at Holbeach since 2009. Before becoming Chair of Governors in 2014, I also served as Vice-Chair and Chair of Curriculum. I have lived locally for 40 years and, until retiring from my headship in 2007, spent all my teaching career in Lewisham nursery and primary schools. Two of my grandchildren attend the school, currently in Year 6 and Year 3.

Sharon Farnley

Sharon Farnley

(Vice Chair of Governors)

My name is Sharon Farnley and I am one of the Vice Chairs of the Governing Body at Holbeach and also Chair of the Resources Committee. I have been involved in the school since my son Sam joined Nursery in 2005, firstly as part of the PTA (Friends of Holbeach) and then as a Parent Governor, having been successful in an election for the position in 2009. I am now a Local Authority Governor appointed by the borough of Lewisham. Outside school I work as a Researcher and Librarian for a law firm based in the city.

Michele Holmes

Michele Holmes

Community Governor

I was elected a Parent Governor in 2013. Since my daughter left Holbeach for secondary school in 2016, I have been a Co-opted member of the Governing Body. My professional background is in education – for many years as a teacher and school leader, and now as an advisor to schools on pupils’ personal development and wellbeing. As a Governor for Holbeach, I try to use my skills in strategic school improvement and to honour my commitment to inclusion and equalities.

Rosamund Kissi-Debrah

Rosamund Kissi-Debrah

Parent Governor

I am Parent Governor with responsibility for safeguarding and pupil premium. My elder daughter attended Holbeach and currently I have 2 children in year 6. I am a qualified secondary school teacher. My roles have been mainly pastoral including Behaviour Management, Achievement Coordinator (responsible for pupil premium and raising attainment whole school), Head of Year and Head of 6th Form. Currently I work in public health as a Charity Director and I am a Safeguarding officer at St Swithun’s church.

Kate Josephs

Kate Josephs

Parent Governor

I am a parent governor elected in November 2016. I have children in Reception and Year 2. I am a senior civil servant with a professional focus on public service policy and delivery. I have worked at the heart of both the UK and United States governments, and have expertise in data analytics, performance improvement, programme management, leadership and governance. I am currently a Director in the Department for Education.

Ben Pitcher

Ben Pitcher

Parent Governor

I was elected parent governor in 2016. My professional background is in Higher Education, and I teach and write on the subject of race and racism. I bring to Holbeach my experience of using teaching and learning to challenge social inequalities.

Katie Drew

Katie Drew

Associate Governor

I am a community governor co-opted in March 2017. I grew up in Catford and continue to love living here. I worked for the Local Authority for 24 years and had a long and fulfilling career in libraries holding many positions including Early Years Librarian and Children and Young Person’s Librarian.
Most recently, I oversaw Community Engagement as part of the Senior Management Team. I developed services and worked with a wide range of community groups. I continue to work in Community Engagement in a freelance capacity. I have been involved in the school since my son (now 13) joined the Nursery. I have two daughters at the school and I am also vice-chair of the Friends of Holbeach.

Steven Orpwood

Steven Orpwood

Community Governor

I am a co-opted governor responsible for mathematics, GDPR and website compliance, and have two children at Holbeach in reception and year 3.
I feel strongly that a happy, supportive and intellectually challenging primary experience gives children confidence, a love of education, and a lifelong willingness to learn. I am excited to play a small part in serving the school and parents, and helping Holbeach to remain a school parents feel confident sending their children to.

Lorrene Francis

Lorrene Francis

Staff Governor

My youngest son attends Holbeach Primary School (Year 5) and two of my eldest children, son and daughter also attended Holbeach Primary School. I had my eldest son when I was just 15 years old, and although Holbeach was aware of this I never felt ashamed or uncomfortable when I enrolled my son to the school. I was treated with respect and amazed at the kindness and understanding of the staff at Holbeach. This was 18 years ago.

Now, I have been working at Holbeach since 2014. I started as a Midday Meals Supervisor and am now a teaching assistant. I have continued to receive the upmost support and encouragement to continue with my personal development. This is why I have put myself forward to be a staff governor. I am passionate about Holbeach, their ethos and drive to continue to make the school a great place to be for our students, parents and staff.

Glenys Englert

Glenys Englert

Community Governor

I became governor in September 2019 and have particular responsibility for health and safety.
I retired after a long career with Lewisham Libraries, during which I was a Children’s Librarian and later a member of the Senior Management Team.
As a librarian I always placed great emphasis on developing and promoting learning opportunities for children and adults as a way of overcoming disadvantage and inequality. Also I volunteered as a youth worker, and served on management committees for a community bookshop, a literacy centre and the Lewisham Early Years Alliance.