T: 01388 814285 | E: office@stcharles.bhcet.org.uk


Governors work closely with headteachers, school staff and representatives from the local authority (LA).

Related Documentation


Statutory Guidance for Governing Bodies
St Charles RCVA Primary School adhere to the statutory guidance from the Department of Education. This means that governing bodies must have regard to it when carrying out duties relating to the constitution of governing bodies in maintained schools.

The Constitution of Governing Bodies of Maintained Schools (Updated Aug 2015)

How To Become A School Governor

If you require further information on the roles and responsibilities of School Governors or you are interested in becoming one, visit the Durham County Council website School Governor section.

Governing Body Committee Structure
You can find out more about each governor and their roles and responsibilities below.

Miss Vanessa MainsFoundationDiocese of Hexham and Newcastle11.07.2016 – 10.07.2020HT Performance
Finance & Premises
Chair of GovernorsNoneNone
Fr Harry O’ReillyFoundationDiocese of Hexham and Newcastle10.03.2015 – 09.03.2019Appeals-NoneNone
Mr Phil McDonaghFoundationDiocese of Hexham and Newcastle19.04.2016 – 18.04.2020Admissions
HT Performance
Finance & Premises
Mrs Michelle BowmanFoundationDiocese of Hexham and Newcastle23.09.2016 – 22.09.2020Appeals
Finance & Premises
Standards & Curriculum
Chair of PremisesNoneNone
Mrs Sharon CantwellFoundationDiocese of Hexham and Newcastle03/07/2017 – 27/06/2021Appeals
Finance & Premises
Mrs Sarah MaxfieldParent GovernorDiocese of Hexham and Newcastle22.05.2017 – 22.05.2021Staff Pay Review
Standards & Curriculum
Miss Anna RobinsonAssociateDiocese of Hexham and Newcastle-Admissions
Standards & Curriculum
-Paul Robinson – PER ProductionsNone
Mrs Bernadette HillStaff GovernorDiocese of Hexham and Newcastle01.09.2018 – 01.09.2022Finance & Premises
Standards & Curriculum
Mrs Patricia EdwardsFoundationDiocese of Hexham and Newcastle18.05.2018 – 17.05.2022Admissions
Staff Pay Review
Vice Chair / Chair of AdmissionsNoneNone

Meet Our Governors

Miss Vanessa Mains
Chair / Foundation

I work for The Priory Group within the Management Accounts team and have done so for the past six years, altogether working within the same industry for the last 13 years.

I have two children my eldest is a pupil at St. Charles and I wanted the same school life experience for my children as I received attending St. Charles. To commence on their school journey in a caring environment and to have the sense of belonging to a school family, whilst learning, having fun and being creative.

I am privileged to be a part of St. Charles’ Governing body and I aim to assist the team to continue to make our school the best it can be for our children.

Mrs Patricia Edwards
Vice Chair / Foundation

I work for a local Social Housing Provider, within the Management Accounts Team.
I was born in Spennymoor and have lived here for a large part of my life.
I have 3 grown up children, who all attended St Charles School when they were young, as did I.
I am an active member of St Charles Parish in Tudhoe, and was previously a Catechist for First Holy Communion, for the Parish.
The school has changed and grown over the many years it has been open. It has provided, and continues to provide our young people with opportunities, support and encouragement, to be the best that they can be. The Teaching Staff and Governing Body, are dedicated to the Ethos of the School, and to support the pupils, by providing an environment where they can continue to learn and grow into well-rounded individuals.
I am very honoured to be able to support the School in the capacity as a Foundation Governor.

Father Harry O’Reilly

My names is Fr Harry O’Reilly and I am the parish priest at St Charles R.C. Church, Tudhoe.

I was born and educated in Ireland and ordained in 1965. Over my 40 years as a priest, I have served in the parishes of St Godrics Durham, St Roberts Morpeth, St Matthews Jarrow, St Mary‘s Sunderland, St William’s & St Anne‘s Darlington, St Gregory’s South Shield, before moving to St Charles in 2006.

My particular role as a governor (as I see it) is to promote Christian beliefs and standards and to encourage good links between the school and the parishes of St Charles and All Saints, Ferryhill.

Mrs Michelle Bowman

I was born and brought up in Spennymoor and attend St Charles Church in Tudhoe.
I have worked locally as a Personal Assistant for over 31 years.

Generations of my family have attended St Charles school which has given me a strong bond with this special school.

As Governor I endeavour to strive for excellence whilst maintaining the high standards of nurturing set throughout each year group.

I feel honoured to be part of this school’s past and future success.

Mr Phil McDonagh

I moved to Spennymoor just over 10 years ago, my wife (Anna) having been born and raised in the town.

We chose to move to the area ahead of starting a family as Anna was keen to bring our children up attending the same school as she had herself.

When our eldest child joined the school I was impressed by the excellent level of education offered, and the warm family friendly atmosphere and welcome received by all, and in 2013 agreed to become a Parent Governor.

After serving for 3 years as Parent Governor I was asked to take up a Foundation Governor role.

Professionally I have worked in the Information and Technology sector over 20+ years, and I am now a senior manager for a major global organisation. The technology and commitment to developing technology skills also, in my view, makes St Charles stand out as a school, and I could not think of a better place for my 2 children to grow and learn.

I feel humbled to be part of such a fantastic team.

Mrs Sharon Cantwell
Foundation Governor

My name is Sharon Cantwell & I have lived in Spennymoor all my life.

I am married to Martin & we have two grown up sons both of who attended St Charles School when they were young & have very happy memories of their time there. I regularly attend St Charles Church & am also a Eucharist Minister.

My career background has been in Admin/Finance & for the last 14 years as Credit Controller.

I feel privileged to be part of the Governing Body for St Charles & look forward in supporting & helping maintain the values, care & excellent education St Charles offers.

Mrs Bernadette Hill
Deputy Headteacher

My name is Bernadette Hill. I am the Deputy Head Teacher at St Charles. I have worked at St Charles for 16 years. I have experience in EYFS, KS1 and KS2.

St Charles has a very special place in my heart. It is where I attended as a child and where my children now attend. I have seen so many changes in the school over my long association, going from the old Victorian building to the ‘new’ building.

Witnessed several Head teachers and Deputy Heads making their mark and taking the school from strength to strength. As a Deputy Head and a Governor I hope to help support the continued success and development of a beloved school.

Mrs Sarah Maxfield
Parent Governor

My boys, Joseph and Oliver attend St Charles. My husband, Matt is self-employed and I’m currently taking a career break. In my spare time, I am involved in several projects at St Pauls Church Spennymoor including a community listening experiment and helping to run the After 8 group. I also find myself involved in lots of other charity events!

I am immensely proud to have been elected as a Parent Governor. I strive to make a positive contribution to the team. I believe that St Charles provides pupils with an exciting and fulfilling environment in which to learn and I am committed to the successful future of the whole school.

Miss Anna Robinson

My name is Anna Robinson and have been a member of staff at St Charles for 8 years. To also be a Governor of the school is something very special and important.

The school prides itself on the uniqueness and caring qualities that is has. I am incredibly proud to teach such wonderful children and to be part of a governing body that wants the best of the pupils in our school and aims to provide them with the opportunities to grow and develop.