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Meet the Governors

Welcome to our Governors’ section.

Please find below details of how our Governing body is structured, including the names, categories, responsibilities and terms of appointment for each Governor.

We have also provided a Register of Governor Interests and an Annual Statement of Issues for your information.

Governing Body

Chair - Mrs Katherin Daking (foundation governor)   
Vice Chair - Mr Joel Mitchell (co-opted governor)
Headteacher - Ms Linda Oliver (staff governor)
Mrs Debbie Stone (co-opted governor)
Mrs Louise Wickenden (parent governor)
Mrs Sylvia Hasler (LA governor)
Mr Clifford Parker (parent governor)

Vacancy (foundation governor)

Vacancy (staff governor)

Frankie Simmonds (Parent governor)

Rev John P Huggins (foundation governor)


Governor Pen Profiles


Katherin Daking (Chair of Governors)

Term of Office 9/5/16 - 8/5/19

I joined the governing body of Harrietsham School as a Foundation Governor.  This means that I have been appointed by the Diocese and I will have special interest in the continuing Christian ethos of the school.

Until recently I was teaching Child Care in a Further Education college.  I am keen to see children enjoy reading and for this reason I volunteer for Beanstalk in a local school.  During my time as Governor I hope to be able to contribute to the success of the school by providing support for all the teaching staff as they work towards producing happy and successful young people.


Joel Mitchell (Vice Chair of Governors)

Term of Office 3/10/17 - 2/10/20

I'm Joel and I've been Chair of Governors since September 2016. I'm a Co-opted Governor and am dad to Jasper and Emilia who are both at the school. I became a school Governor as I’m really keen to support my local school and getting involved in the running of it seemed like an excellent way to do that. I thoroughly enjoy it; it’s not always easy but it’s important and rewarding. My day job sees me help run a railway as Director of Operations and Customer Experience. I also volunteer as a Director for the Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Charity (SANDS) and I’m involved with the running of Maidstone Rugby Club’s under 8s side.


Debbie Stone

Term of Office 1/1/19 - 31/12/21

I have been involved with Harrietsham School since moving to the village in 1996, and my two children joined the school, increasing the schools role to 72!  In those days I was simply a parent but also an active member of the PTFA.

In 2000 I became a full time Year4/5 teacher at the school. In the same year I was elected to be Teacher Governor, a role I held until retiring from full time teaching in 2013. However, I very much wanted to stay involved with the school and became a co – opted Governor.

I see the Governing Body as being part of the strategic leadership of the school. It is a role that requires governors to question, challenge, support, monitor and evaluate as we work together for the overall good of the school and the community that it serves.



Linda Oliver (Headteacher)

I started my teaching career briefly in Bromley but have worked mostly in Kent. I was headteacher of a small rural primary school  for over 4 years before coming to Harrietsham in 2015.   The headteacher, by nature of the job, is always a member of the school’s Governing Body.  We are lucky to have such a range of interests and expertise amongst our governors who, as a result, are able to bring different dimensions and viewpoints to our work to help and support us in becoming the best that we can possibly be. 


Sylvia Hasler

Term of Office 24/6/16 - 23/6/19

I am your Local Authority Governor.  I am a retired primary school teacher and have also been a staff governor.  I moved to Harrietsham two years ago and I look forward to being more involved in our local community through working with our local school as well as helping with the local Guides.


Revd John Huggins

Term of Office 30/10/17

I joined the Governing Body as an Ex-Officio Foundation Governor after being licensed to be Priest-in-Charge of Len Valley Benefice, which includes Harrietsham. I have a background in leadership within science and industry, and am of course trained in pastoral care and child development and spirituality. In my previous post, I was chair of Governors of a small village school and took particular interest in monitoring EYFS. I look forward to helping the school continue to build on their school vision of quality teaching within a Christian ethos.


Mr Paul Edwards
Term of Office 12/07/19

As a parent of 2 children at Harrietsham School, I have a vested interest in the school becoming the very best it can be for my own children and those of the wider community.

As a co-opted governor, I bring my professional skills and experience that I have gained in over thirty years working for a global defence contractor. I have a background of management, auditing and business improvement.

My understanding of quality assurance processes in business will support the school in reaching an outstanding Ofsted judgement.

I believe that the heart of any community is the school and the education and nurture of our young people.






Governors Attendance


What do we do?

As governors, we are volunteers made up of parents, staff, members of the local community, and members appointed by the local authority and the Head Teacher. 

The governing body has overall responsibility for managing the school and are involved in setting the strategic direction of the school, including; policies, reviewing the school budget and achievement of objectives.

Governors are not involved in the day to day running of the school – this is the responsibility of the headteacher. Our role is sometimes described as a ‘critical friend’; this means not to criticize the head or the school. Instead we try to ask useful questions to challenge and gain a greater understanding of the school and to ensure continuous improvement. 

Being a governor requires time and commitment but it is very rewarding.

How do we do it?

The full governing body meets three times a year: one evening in September and two full day meetings in January and May. These are held during school times so observations/monitoring can take place. This method has proved very successful as governors are experiencing school first-hand which helps enormously.  These monitoring visits help us to appreciate and understand the workings of the school. We do not make judgments about the quality of teaching or the progress of individual children.

We also have 2 committees which meet between the Full Governing Body meetings to discuss more in-depth matters.

Strategy – The strategy committee discusses in detail School Improvement, Performance Data, Policies, Curriculum

Resources – The resources committee looks after the Budgets, Personnel, Premises, Health & Safety

Are Governors trained?

All governors are volunteers and whilst we bring our own unique skills and knowledge to the governing body we do not know everything! We are keen to ensure that we have up to date knowledge to fulfil our roles and therefore we undertake training sessions provided by Kent County Council and attend Governor briefings.