About the Governors




The Governing Board at Chudleigh CE Community Primary School consists of a total of 12 governors made up of the Headteacher, one staff governor, four parent governors, three foundation governors, two co-opted governors and one local authority governor, with most governors having a four-year term of office.  You can find out about the members of the Governing Board below.


Pat Smethurst

I was appointed as Co-opted Governor in February 2015 and am pleased to be able to serve the school community in this role. In September 2018, I was elected Chair of the Governing Board, having previously served three years as Chair of the Children’s Committee and Vice-Chair of Governors.

Both of my local grandchildren are pupils of Chudleigh School. I have enjoyed being involved with the school through them. I have been a teacher all of my professional life and have worked in both Primary and Secondary phases. I was a Headteacher of a large Key Stage 2 school until my retirement and, as an experienced Headteacher, worked alongside leadership teams in other schools in a supportive role.

My previous Governor responsibility was for Curriculum and I am enjoying fresh challenges in my role as Chair. I thoroughly enjoy supporting the work of the school through its Governing Board.


Cliff Barnes

I served as a parent governor from 2004 to 2008 and was re-appointed in 2013 as a foundation governor. I trained as a quantity surveyor and have a background in business and am currently a director of a development agency and run my own consultancy business. I was also formerly a director of an international property consultancy and prior to that self-employed as a partner in a medium sized property consultancy business.

 I am Vice-Chair of the Governing Board and my main responsibility as a governor is for standards and achievement, working with the headteacher. I thoroughly enjoy this opportunity to serve the school and local community.


Seonaid Beasley

I was elected as a parent governor in 2005, and since 2008 I have been a community or co-opted governor. Currently I have responsibility for managing the Personnel aspect of the governing board’s work.

I run a small training consultancy which specialises in support for leaders and managers in coping with the pressures of their role, and staff development within health and social care settings. 


Sarah Lea-Weston

I was elected as a Parent Governor in 2017 and my area of responsibility is premises, working with the school business manager and premises manager.  My daughter is a key stage 2 pupil in the school; my son formerly attended the school and has now progressed to secondary school.  I have worked for the NHS as an information analyst for 12 years. Before that my background was in the private sector in direct marketing and various analytical roles.

I am enjoying the opportunity of playing an active role within the Governing Board in holding the leadership team to account for the educational performance of the school and pupils through the challenge and monitoring of the school improvement priorities.


Helen Day

After gaining a Music degree, I qualified as a teacher from Leeds University in 2003.  Since moving to Devon in 2006, I have worked in both large and small primary schools and continued my studies to gain a Masters degree in Education.  I work in a small rural school with responsibilities for leading English. I also work as an English Specialist Leader in Education supporting the teaching and learning of English in local Devon and Cornwall schools.

 I was delighted to have been elected as a parent governor at Chudleigh Primary School. I have two children who currently attend the school and I am hoping that my new role will allow me the opportunity to support the ongoing development of the school.  My specific area of responsibility is Safeguarding although I am interested in all aspects of school governance.

 As a family, we love living in Devon and being part of such a lovely and busy community in Chudleigh.


Jo Huxtable

I have been a parent governor since March 2017 therefore my time in office is half way through. I have for 2019/20 taken the ‘Chair of the Resources’ committee role until the end of the academic year.

Having previously worked for a large retail company for the past 20 years as a Leadership Regional trainer and a short time working for the wildlife trust, I decided to take a complete career path change, and completed my NVQ level 3 in March 2017 and I am currently a TA in Yr 1 at Decoy Primary School, which I very much enjoy and find extremely rewarding.

Being a parent governor is enlightening and contributing to the decisions which support the continued development and success of the school enables me to give something back after my eldest attended Chudleigh some years ago and my youngest currently in year 3.

My family and I enjoy being part of the Community here in Chudleigh, and will continue to make happy memories in the years to come.


Elaine Jeffery

I have been a Local Authority Governor since March 2018. I am currently the Chair of the Children’s committee and have particular responsibility for matters relating to special educational needs. I enjoy contributing to the school development and being part of the local community.

My background is in education in particular special needs education and I have taught in secondary schools, pupil referral units and special needs residential schools. I have also worked overseas in both Uganda and Cambodia as an education adviser.

Now I am retired I use the time to explore the beautiful Devon countryside, read more and spend time with my family.


Hayley Jones

I was first appointed as a Foundation Governor in 2009 so am now in my third term of office. I work part-time in marketing communications and also undertake self-employed work on behalf of Babcock LDP as a governance associate, which includes training new Governors and undertaking reviews of governance in schools across Devon. Many of my business skills have been useful in my work as a school Governor and I have also learnt lots of new skills along the way!

During my time as a Governor, I have been involved in various aspects of the work of the Governing Board with responsibilities including safeguarding, Committee Chair, Vice Chair and Chair of the Board. I am currently the Governor responsible for finance. I thoroughly enjoy my work as a school governor and find it rewarding to be able to have an impact on the school experience of both my children and all the children in our school. 


Craig Taylor

I have worked at Chudleigh CE Community Primary for three years as a Year 6 teacher and now teach Year 4. I have taught in a wide range of schools and settings and hope that my broad experience can support the school as it moves forward.

As the elected Staff Governor, I hope I can also support the maintenance of positive links already established between the governing board and staff. I look forward to seeing the school from a new perspective and to helping form the best possible educational experience for all the pupils at Chudleigh CE Community Primary.


Paul Wimsett

I have been the Vicar of Chudleigh, Chudleigh Knighton & Trusham since 1999. I have been involved in Church Schools, which I strongly support, for almost 30 years. Unsurprisingly, I have a particular role in developing the Christian Ethos of the school. 

 I am also a Director of the First Federation Trust of primary schools across South Devon (including Chudleigh Knighton). Quite a long time ago I gained a B.Sc (Econ) in Economics and Politics as well as an MA in Theology. 

 Both my daughters have been pupils at Chudleigh School. Outside the world of church and schools, I follow from a distance a non-league football team and like many vicars have a great fascination for railways. You may also see me taking a Golden Retriever on walks around Chudleigh, which is my nod in the direction of keeping physically fit!


Terry Parkes

I was elected as the Curriculum Governor at the beginning of November 2019, this is my first term as a Governor and I am looking forward to the challenges that lie ahead.

I have a child in year 2 and another that will join the school in 2021. I run a local Electrical Contracting company and any spare time I have is spent outdoors as I am a keen mountain biker and snowboarder.