Michelle Billington
Michelle Billington

Working as part of a Senior HR Leadership Team, I’m an energetic HR Professional specialising in organisational development and change management. I am responsible for the cultural transformation strategy with a specific focus on leadership development, employee engagement and building an inclusive culture.

Cottesloe was our first choice for our son’s secondary education as we were really impressed with the vision of the Cottesloe Leadership Team and their determination to achieve an Outstanding Status with Ofsted. Our son is in Year 8 and it would be my privilege to support the school where I can as a Parent Governor.

James Dellsm
James Dell

I run a small farm (Abbotts View Alpacas) in Aston Abbotts. I am married to Joanne and we have three daughters. Amy, Jessica and, our youngest, Rosie who attends The Cottesloe. Before we set up our farm I ran a successful IT company which I sold in 2011. For several years I have been chairman of Dunstable Hang Gliding and Paragliding club. I have also served as a parent governor at Vandyke in Leighton Buzzard.

I am absolutely delighted with The Cottesloe and have seen my daughter flourish. When asked 'why she loves the school so much' she said how she feels empowered by the motivational talks during assembly. She truly believes that she can achieve and make a difference. This is not something measured by ofsted but is so important. I've also noticed how she, and all students, seem to share a great deal of respect for staff and for each other. This is, in my experience, a rare and precious thing and is producing very well rounded, confident young people who will have a positive impact on society. When selecting a school for my daughter it was this wonderful culture that won me over. It was definitely the right choice.

The Cottesloe is at an exciting stage of development as it makes continued improvement in standards. I think my daughter is right when she proudly says that the school is the best around and is getting better.

Ruth Griffiths

I am a registered nurse trained to work in the Intensive Care and Coronary Care fields and have worked overseas extensively, gaining widespread experience in Australasia. I have experience working in the field of medical recruitment, where reviewing curriculum vitae and interviewing personnel was critical to the role. I have also worked with senior consultants within the Interventional Cardiology arena both as an educationalist and as a visiting consultant on a sales basis.

I believe wholeheartedly in “the working team” and feel that to achieve the best results in any environment that every part of that team is of value. Currently I work as a nurse on a part-time basis and am also a senior partner in a property business based in Oxford.
My eldest daughter attends The Cottesloe School and I am keen to help the school on its journey to an Ofsted result of Outstanding via Good in any way that I am able.

Kim Hardingsm
Kim Hardings

I have been working at The Cottesloe School for around a year as Attendance and Pastoral Support Officer and have experience working in school support staff teams for seven years in total. I look forward to fully engaging with the existing governing body in providing a perspective on school life from a support staff viewpoint.

Personally, I am married and have three children, the youngest of which is currently in Year 7 at the School. I am actively involved in a number of village organisations, including Stewkley Football Club where I have co-ordinated the refreshments rota for each Saturday morning during the junior season for the past three years. In addition, our family actively support Stewkley Vicarage Cricket Club, from a playing, coaching and management perspective, I have been regularly involved with organising fundraising events, the most recent of which have been a Barn Dance and a Sunday Breakfast.

As a prospective and current parent, and now staff member, I have been very impressed by the progress made by The Cottesloe School over recent years in terms of academic achievement, however I do believe that there is still much more that we need to improve on.  In the short term, I am looking forward to the challenge of helping the school achieve the ‘good’ Ofsted rating it deserves, then to drive standards even higher.

Paul Kitchen
Paul Kitchen

I am a Newport Pagnell chap, but have lived with my wife in Newton Longville for 15 years. My daughter is in her second year at The Cottesloe School, and loves it. We are a busy family, bouncing between Scouts and friends, and nearby family. I play piano for various comedy events, and now and again play in Piano Bars, with the most magnificent singers and players, which is my first love.

Work for me is co-running a small branding agency in Milton Keynes, with my two business partners. We work with SME’s, corporates, and not-for-profit organisations. Marketing challenges keep me interested, and those do crop up daily, so an ideal place to work, plus our office is in Bletchley Park, which is such an inspiring place to be.

I highly respect the achievements of Mr McBurnie and his team at The Cottesloe School, and look forward to playing a part in its continued success.

David Lett

I live locally in Stewkley and one of my daughters is in year 9 at The Cottesloe. I have been a Governor for the past year and a half and decided to become a Governor because: 1) I had heard about so many positive changes at the school that I thought someone is bound to 'poach' Mr Fox so I had better be a Governor to ensure the next Head Teacher is just as good or even better (I didn't anticipate Mr Fox retiring!); and 2) I wanted to directly contribute to my daughters education by helping the school grow from strength to strength - which it is doing.

I am a psychologist and run my own consultancy business working in organisations, with communities and also with behaviourally challenged young people in schools and prisons.
I helped establish and run the local youth club in Stewkley, help organise junior cricket in the summer and set up the Stewkley Enterprise Agency that employs people to do basic maintenance work (eg: lawn mowing) in and around the village. To chill out I run, read and play golf.

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Graham Magill

I have been a teacher at The Cottesloe School for 9 years now. Teaching Physical Education has allowed me to see many students in an array of situations, both in the class room and outside. The change in the both the atmosphere in and around the school and attitude of the students has been phenomenal.
The idea of being a staff governor was intriguing. Seeing where the school was 9 years ago to where we are now and knowing where the school could potentially go is really very positive. It was this development that has made me want to be a Staff Governor, assisting the current Governors with information from a teachers’ point of view. I feel that being involved and more aware of the decisions made for the best interest of the school and particularly the pupils, will be of a great benefit to the school.

Kate Mulcahy Photo
Kate Mulcahy

I am married with two children. My youngest is in Year 9, and having seen friends' children go right through Cottesloe and on to great careers and universities, I am keen to make a contribution to the school.

After starting my career in the civil service, I spent 20 years working at Ashridge Management College, running leadership programmes, working as an organisation development consultant and joining the board as marketing director. When my children were at school, I retrained as a primary teacher - a job I absolutely loved, and which was without doubt the most challenging of my life. I now work in Bedfordshire in a local authority role supporting and training newly qualified teachers and working with schools to ensure assessment processes are thorough and accurate.

I have been a parent governor before, at my children's nursery school, and am looking forward to being involved with The Cottesloe School at an exciting time in its development.

Adrian Titley

Both my children have been pupils at The Cottesloe School and thoroughly benefited from both its academic and pastoral brilliance.
I have been a governor now for 7 years and like many, didn't have a clue about the role when I first started - but would now describe it as one of the most worthwhile and rewarding things I do.

For my day job I am a director of a marketing and benefits provision company. I am also the treasurer of a local canoe and kayaking club and a national level 2 canoe and kayaking coach - and when I find time, or the water levels are right, you'll find me shooting white water rapids on some of the most scenic rivers the UK has to offer. I'm married and, for her sins, my wife also works in education.

Mark Watson2
Mark Watson

As a Governor of Overstone Combined I have learnt many of the skills needed to be an effective School Governor including finance, buildings maintenance and curriculum, with especial interest in maths and science. I’m active in the village community as Group Scout Leader and have developed links with the school in delivering outdoor activities in support of wider learning for students. My eldest daughter actively chose The Cottesloe School because of the welcoming atmosphere and ‘can do’ attitude of the whole school; she is now flourishing in Year 9.

In my working life I use forensic science skills in a wide variety of different crime scenes and am line manager for twelve professional technicians. What’s that got to do with being a School Governor? Well, it’s all in the analysis of detail, weighing of evidence and questioning what you’ve been told; all key skills for a Governor. With the introduction of accreditation to ISO quality standards within my profession I am also leading on the development and delivery of competency training across the workforce.

I have a real passion for education, both formal and informal, and hope to be able to bring the right level of challenge and support to enable the senior leadership of the school to deliver the very best outcomes for all students, and to build upon the excellent work already undertaken.

Margaret Balding

Clerk to the Governors