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Chair of Governors

Jonathan Leaper Chair of Governors (Chair of Pay and Personnel Committee)   

Local Authority/Community Governors       

Robert Brown (Chair of the Finance and Resources Committee)

Jonathan Leaper 

Alex Jefferson (Vice Chair, Chair of Curriculum Committee)

Amy Smith

Sara Warrington

Parent Governors    

Mark Versallion

Richard Pillinger   

Simon Ratcliffe 

Matt Hague   

Julia Rooney

Staff Governors   

 Louise Fox   

Mhairi Armstrong

Kat Smith

Emma Eames

Associate Governors

Julie Barrows

Ex-Officio Governor (Headteacher)

Maxine Warner

Clerk to Governors

Liz Walker

Welcome to the section of the website where you can find out more about the school’s governors, and the work that we do. Within England, there are over 300,000 School/Academy Governors, who form the largest volunteer force in the country.

As an Academy, Alameda School Governors are responsible for the overall strategic direction of the school. We are responsible for ensuring that the school is run in accordance with the Articles of Association and the Funding Agreement with the Department for Education

The Alameda governing body has a key role in monitoring the work of the school and ensuring that the leadership of the school is effective in ensuring that all children are making the best progress possible, that they are safe and that the academy has a clear strategic direction. Ultimately we deliver the vision “that Alameda is an inspiring and dynamic learning environment where all individuals are valued and everyone has the opportunity to achieve their best”.

As an academy governor we act as the critical friend to the headteacher and the senior leadership team, and provide support and challenge.

The key responsibilities of the governing body include:

• ensuring the quality of educational provision

• challenging and monitoring the performance of the academy

• ensuring good financial health

• supporting the SLT in selection & management of staff

The individual Governors, and subsequently members of a Governing Body, work collectively to perform a strategic role and carry out key functions such as:

• discuss and set the aims and objectives for the Academy.

• set the required policies for achieving those aims and objectives.

• set the required targets for achieving those aims and objectives.

• monitor and evaluate the progress that the Academy is making towards it’s set aims and objectives.

We have worked collaboratively with the staff and leadership to develop the schools’ aims and values:

·         Engaging with and supporting the school’s values

·         Achieving our best in everything we do

·         Collaboration & Community

·         Preparing for Change

The Governing Body meets at least once every term.

There are several categories of governor, appointed by different groups that have an interest in the school. These are Community Governors, the Local Authority (“LA”), Parents, and Staff.  All governors have equal status.

The body consists of the following members;

Chair of the Governing Body

The Chair of the Governing Body is Jonathan Leaper: Jonathan has been a past parent Governor an on the governing board since 2009 and became the chair of the Academy in July 2014. Jonathan is the European Operations Director for Xerox Corporation managing over 4000 people. He has a BSC in Geography from Sheffield University.  Jonathan is also Chair of the Pay & Personnel committee and also is the link governor for Maths and English which are his focus subjects.

To contact the Chair of Governors please email; jleaper@alamedamiddleschool.org.uk

Parent Governors:

Mark Versallion: Mark became a Parent Governor in 2015 with a business background in companies suchasBAE Systems plc, Capgemini PLC and ten years as Managing Director of a London marketing agency. Healso has many years experience on the boards of charitable organisations and NHS trusts, as well as 14 years as a Royal Navy officer in the reserves.  Mark has been a senior member of Central Bedfordshire Council since 2011, specialising in education and social care and has two children at the school.

Richard Pillinger: Richard has recently become a parent governor and sits on the Curriculum and Standardscommittee. He has an MBA in Educational Management. Richard has 20 years experience teaching in both the state and private sector in Primary, Secondary and in Middle Schools. He has two children, one of whom has recently started Alameda in Year 5. 

Matt Hague: Matt Hague has two children at Alameda and became a parent governor in 2016. Originally from Sheffield, Matt and his wife have lived in Ampthill for close to twenty years and he is involved in coaching children at both the rugby and football clubs, as well as Alameda’s after school rugby club. Matt is  a co-owner of a global software & services business and focuses primarily on Product strategy, Marketing and Innovation.

Chris Duffy: Chris Duffy has three children at Alameda and one at Redborne. He was recently elected as a parent governor in September 2016. He has nearly twenty years teaching experience as a secondary and upper school PE teacher and currently works at Vandyke Upper School in Leighton Buzzard. In addition to improving the life chances of students and offering lots of sporting opportunities, he regularly supports his children with their various extra curricular activities including Football, Cricket, Netball and Music. Chris fully encourages and supports leading a healthy and active lifestyle. 

Simon Ratcliffe: Simon has lived in Maulden for 18 years and has a son at Alameda.  Simon became a parent governor in 2016 and is a member of the Finance, Premises, Pay and Personnel Committee as well as being the governor responsible for Health & Safety and Safeguarding.  With an MA in Psychology and a background as a Chartered Accountant, Simon works with a number of organisations both large and small as a Board Advisor to assist in shaping the strategic direction of these organisations.  He is also a licensed rugby coach and coaches both at Ampthill Rugby Club and Maulden Lower School.

Julia Rooney: Julia has been a parent governor at Alameda since 2015, although in total she has 9 years’ experience of school governance in three different schools. She has two children at Alameda and a third at Redborne. Julia’s background is in project management, strategy and process improvement. She is Vice Chair of governors and sits on the Curriculum and Standards committee, with a particular focus on standards in Maths and English.

Local Authority / Community Governors:

Robert Brown: Rob is the Chair of the Finance and Resources Committee. He was formerly a Parent Governor, two of his children having been at the school. He has a degree in Geography from the University of Manchester, and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. He is the Managing Director of Landers Accountants Ltd , an independent and long established firm of Chartered Accountants and Registered Auditors  based in Toddington, looking after owner managed businesses, and not-for-profit organisations.

Alex Jefferson: Alex has been a Community Governor at the Academy since the start of 2014. Alex is the European Benefits Manager for the infrastructure company AECOM and is a qualified actuary with a combined science degree from the University of Liverpool. Alex is also a member of the Finance Committee and leads Science and Geography as his focus subjects.

      Being a governor at Alameda is both rewarding and fulfilling, we are always pleased to receive comments and observations from parents. In order to facilitate this, any of the governors can be contacted via the school.

We welcome enquiries about joining the governing body and are constantly looking for new governors to diversify our membership in terms of age, skills, life experience and ethnicity. We are also keen to maintain our representation of parents of students.

If you wish to know more, or are interested in becoming a governor, please contact us care of the School Office or

Amy Smith: Amy has recently joined the governing body as a community governor having moved to Ampthill 2 years ago. Amy is a commercial property solicitor for the international law firm, Dentons, based in Milton Keynes. Amy is a member of the Finance Committee and has a focus on safeguarding across the school."  

email us at jleaper@alamedamiddleschool.org.uk


  1. The Companies Act 2006
  2. Articles of Association
  3. Register of Interests 2016-17