Highbury Grove Governing Body

Governors are volunteers and give their time to support the school. The governing body is made up of parents, school staff, members of the broader community and a representative nominated by the Islington Local Authority.

The role of the governing body is to:

  • Ensure clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction.
  • Hold the Headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils, and the performance management of staff.
  • Oversee the financial performance of the school, making sure its money is well spent.

Governors do not get involved in the day-to-day running of the school. In the first instance, any problems or queries relating to your child’s education or experience at the school should be referred using the normal school systems, starting with the class teacher or form tutor and ending up with the Headteacher.

Each governor serves for a term of four years (which can renewed if that governor seeks to be re-elected or re-appointed). Parent governor elections are held periodically when a serving parent governor is reaching the end of their term of office. Similarly, the staff governor is elected by the staff within the school. Community governors are co-opted by the governing body.

Should you wish to express an interest in becoming a governor at Highbury Grove School, or if you wish to contact the governing body for any other reason, please use governors@highburygrove.islington.sch.uk or telephone the School on 020 7288 8900.

Meet the Highbury Grove governors:


Chair of Governors at Highbury Grove School since July 2015. She jumped at the chance to join the HGS governing body when it reconstituted. Having lived around the corner from the school for 20 years, she has seen it grow and change, becoming a real force in the community. She welcomes the opportunity to get to know the staff and students at Highbury Grove even better, and looks forward to every visit. When she isn’t at Highbury Grove, she works as a partner in a marketing consultancy, providing support to banks and investment management firms. She also chairs several charities committed to alleviating poverty and ill-health in Islington and London.


Chair of the Resources Committee. John joined the governing body in January 2014. Prior to becoming a governor at Highbury Grove, he served as a governor at Drayton Park Primary School for six years, including a period as chair of Finance Committee. He is also a trustee of the charity at the Bridge School Islington. John is a Regional Director with Royal Bank of Scotland and carries responsibility for corporate banking teams covering Technology & Media, Charities & Education & Public Sector. He is a member of the bank’s regional board for London which manages the NatWest Skills & Opportunities Fund – a grant giving body that supports charities & social enterprises across London involved in education, entrepreneurship & employability.


Chair of the Curriculum & Standards Committee


Chair of the Student Discipline & Safeguarding Committee. Sue became a governor in 2013 and was nominated by the local education authority to become a governor on the reconstituted governing body in 2015.  She was a professor at the University of Birmingham for many years, and has also worked in the private sector, as the co-founder of a successful consultancy company, and as a senior civil servant in the Cabinet Office.  She is now retired and works as a volunteer in bodies which support the NHS.  She is a former co-chair of the campaigning organisation Keep Our NHS Public and has just become co-chair of the independent think tank the Centre for Health and the Public Interest.  Her academic specialism was public service management and she continues to publish in that field.  She has a strong commitment to working to overcome inequality and the role of education in doing so.

The other Governors are:

Aimee Lyall, Acting Headteacher (R, C&S, SD&S)

Sarah Bentley (Co-opted, R, C&S)

Penelope Guarnay (Co-opted, R)

Harriet Gugenheim (Parent, C&S)

Thomas Laurer (Parent, R, SD&S)

Inara Khan (Co-opted, C&S, SD&S)

Fiona Sail (Parent, C&S, SD&S)

Tara Weeramanthri (Co-opted, R, C&S)

Antonia Wilson (Staff, R, SD&S)

Observers are:

Sarah Counter, School Business Manager (R)

Matthew Little, Head of School, KS4 (R, C&S)

Leila MacTavish, Head of School, KS3 (C&S, SD&S)

All Governors attend full governing body meetings and must be a member of one of the three main committees of the governing body. These are:


This committee oversees the school finances, ensuring that the school operates within all applicable financial regulations and is achieving value for money. It oversees the maintenance and development of the school site and premises to secure an environment which is both safe and conducive to learning. It is also responsible for the adoption and implementation of staffing policies and procedures, ensuring that the school adheres to all principles of good and fair employment practices.

Standards & Curriculum

This committee oversees pupil achievement, ensuring the school provides a high quality learning experience and delivers a broad and balanced curriculum in keeping with the school’s aims, all pupil needs and legal requirements.

Student Discipline & Safeguarding

This committee oversees the school’s statutory safeguarding duties, while also considering behaviour, attendance, student well-being and other aspects of the school as an inclusive community.

Additional committees are convened as required, including Complaints, Discipline and Pay Review committees. Working parties for tasks of short duration are also occasionally convened.

City of London Academy Highbury Grove

8 Highbury Grove | London | N5 2EQ

Telephone: 020 7288 8900

Part of:

City of London
Academies Trust