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Staff and Governors
We are proud to have highly talented, experienced and enthusiastic staff who help Berkhampstead children to achieve remarkable things. We have a good balance of male and female teachers - a real asset for both boys' and girls' education.
Our subject specialists draw on a strong knowledge base to teach creatively. Teaching assistants support and bring their diverse talents to make learning memorable and fun.
An excellent rapport between teachers and pupils.— ISI Report, Nov 2014
About Our Staff
“The teachers are Berky’s greatest asset.”
“Berkhampstead and the incredibly supportive staff have changed the way my daughter views herself!”
“I am extremely pleased we chose Berky - the change in Jess has been nothing short of monumental.”
I am able to work in a caring and supportive environment where everyone enjoys coming to school every day. It is a job where you capture the ‘light bulb’ moments and encourage each child’s enthusiasm to continue.— Year 2 teacher
Our Governing Body is active and engaged. With a wealth of experience in the fields of education, business, finance and child development, their input into strategic planning and their role as a positive steering force is invaluable.
More than this, they get involved, they know the staff and pupils well - attending events, singing in the choir, even dressing as aliens - they are a real part of the Berkhampstead community.
Excellent governance ensures that the aims of the school are fulfilled efficiently.— ISI Report, Nov 2014
Mrs Jane Kent, BA Hons, PGCE.
Chair of Governors
I have experience in accounting, publishing and in education, having taught in the state primary sector with an emphasis on English as a second language. I was involved with the launch of a classroom based teacher training program, and was part of the Senior Management Team. We moved to Cheltenham in 2003 when we started our long and happy association with Berkhampstead School. All three of our children were educated here, my son moving to Dean Close to become chorister, the girls went on to Pate’s. I was Chair of Berky’s PTA for a number of years, not only supporting the school but forming long-lasting friendships at the same time. I now fund-raise for a number of charities, I am a church warden, and make the most of the Festivals that Cheltenham has to offer.
Nick Folland, BSc Hons, PGCE, ISI Inspector.
I am Headmaster at Sherbourne Prep School in Dorset. Previously, I was Head at St John’s on-the-Hill, Chepstow, a co-ed Prep School to 13 years with a large Day Nursery for 250 children below 3 years of age. Prior to this, I spent 10 years as Headmaster of Blundell’s Prep school, where I worked closely with Richard Cross - then Deputy. I was at Blundell’s Senior School in Devon for 10 years, teaching A-level PE and Geography and spent six of those years as boarding Housemaster. During this time I also played professional cricket for Somerset CCC.
My specialist areas are: curriculum, management and leadership support. Due to my experience in running schools, I appreciate the issues this brings, as well as having an understanding of relevant curriculum challenges and initiatives. I also have a good knowledge of the complexities of Nurseries and Early Years.
I am a former parent at Berkhampstead. My sons left in 1994 and 1997, both went onto The King’s School in Gloucester and then onto Newcastle (Medicine) and Portsmouth (Criminology & Criminal Justice). I studied Chemistry at Bristol University before doing my chartered accountancy articles with Peat, Marwick, Mitchell & Co in Bristol. I spent twenty five years working in finance for large food companies: Tate & Lyle, Unigate and Dalgety and have been self-employed since 2002. I was invited to chair the School’s Finance Committee a couple of years ago and became a School Governor in September 2015 when my wife (Sally) stood down after a long stint on the Board. I enjoy films, live music, the theatre and watching rugby.
Mrs Judith Hodsdon, BA, PGCE.
I spent most of my career at GCHQ, retiring in 2009. My last post was as a member of the GCHQ Board with responsibilities for corporate services including HR, training and information. My experience has covered budget, project and people management. I am also a trustee of the Bletchley Park Trust and of Friends of Pittville. Two of our children attended Berkhampstead.
Nigel Hosken, BA, PGCE.
I have taught Maths at Pate’s Grammar School since 1976, been Head of Maths 2001-2011, timetabler 1980-2010 and am currently Senior Tutor. I have experience in a wide range of roles within education. My interests include chess - I am involved with the Berky Chess Club, I also enjoy tennis and walking.
Mr Adam Lillywhite, BSc Hons (Environmental Management)
I spent 18 years in information systems design, then my wife and I set up the Relaxed Hotels Co Ltd, which we run today. Amid various projects I am also a member of the Cheltenham Borough Council. I have two children, who both attended Berky and are now at Dean Close, my old school. I have a strong association with Berkhampstead, I am in touch with many of my fellow parents, past and present, and would like to think that I have a good understanding of the ethos. Having played a great deal of sport, I am still passionate about rugby and cricket, I very much enjoy the outdoors, walking and cycling.
Charlotte Oosthuizen BEd (Hons), PGCE
I am currently Head of the Lower College at Cheltenham Ladies’ College, having been appointed in January 2016. Previous to this I was Headmistress at two different prep schools in Dorset for a combined total of almost fifteen years, so I have a keen understanding of the joys and challenges of running a prep school catering for children aged 3-11 or 3-13. Besides the experience of Headship at Prep Schools in Dorset, I have also held leadership responsibilities in the large primary and secondary schools where I taught earlier on in my career. In addition, I have over twenty years of involvement in the Voluntary Youth Sector, mainly in leadership and management, and I have always contributed to the wider community alongside my professional responsibilities through engagement in charitable initiatives. Furthermore, I gained an insight into aspects of local government through my work as an independent member of the Standards Committee for Bournemouth Borough Council from 2008 – 2012.
Mrs Jo Simons, BSc (Chemistry), PGCE.
I worked for 3 years as a biochemist in the pharmaceutical industry before training as a secondary school Science teacher. I taught for 6 years in Comprehensive schools before teaching Science at Berkhampstead for 17 years. My association with the school goes back to 1981 when our son joined the Nursery. I have been a Governor since 2009. I lived in America for 3 years where I volunteered in an Elementary school and became very interested in their programmes to support the Gifted and Talented. Our 3 children were all at Berkhampstead, going on to Cheltenham College, St Edward’s and Dean Close.
Educated at Charterhouse School in Surrey, I studied Religious Studies at Newcastle University. I then studied for a post graduate diploma in Law and Legal Practice Course at the College of Law in Guildford. I worked in Portsmouth for 5 years then moved, with my wife, to live in Cheltenham. I work at Willans Solicitors in the dispute resolution department.
I have two children, both in the Pre-Prep at Berkhampstead. I live on Cleeve Hill and my interests include walking, cycling, golf, watching sport and spending quality time with friends and family.
Mrs Julie Wand, MB BS.
I qualified in Medicine in London in 1982 and have worked mainly in General Practice ever since. I have been a school medical officer. Currently I work part-time as a GP and also as a Clinical Assistant at Cheltenham General Hospital. I have four children who have all been pupils at Berkhampstead. I have had a very long and happy association with the school as a parent from 1992- 2011. I have been a governor since 2009 and have an excellent understanding of the school.
Sue Williams BA Hons, Ofsted Inspector
I have been working in Early Years Education for 25 years. I first gained a Nursery Nurse qualification and went on to pursue my interest in children with special educational needs, working at Battledown Children’s Centre for a period of 7 years, during which time I gained a BA Hons Early Years degree from the University of Worcester. The role then led me to employment with the Educational Psychology service, supporting very young children with complex needs in their homes. I now work for Gloucestershire County Council as an Early Years Adviser, supporting all childcare provisions in Cheltenham. I am a qualified Ofsted Inspector. I live in Prestbury with my husband, we have two grown up children and we are grandparents.