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Southfields Primary School

Southfields Primary School

Our Governors

John Durance


Co-opted Governor

John was born and has worked in Peterborough for most of his life.

Educated at Deacon’s Grammar School, he then studied at the Leicester School of Architecture, graduating in 1970 and being elected a Chartered Architect in 1971.

John’s late wife was an outstanding primary school Headteacher in Peterborough, which has given him a substantial insight into the issues surrounding education.  He has a son and daughter and four grandchildren, two of whom are past pupils of Southfields.

After a brief spell with Peterborough Development Corporation, John joined a long-established but very traditional architect’s practice. As Chairman, and with the support of his fellow directors, they transformed the practice into a modern business with many national-profile clients. He was always interested in developing people and his firm were the first architects in the UK to gain Investors In People accreditation.

John has always been active in the local community. He was a founder director of the Training and Enterprise Council promoting the provision of locally focused training and education to suit the needs of local industry and commerce. He went on to chair the North West Anglia Health Authority for eight years, focusing on the healthcare needs of the communities of Greater Peterborough, Fenland and North West Norfolk.

When the Peterborough Development Corporation was disbanded, it left a gap in the promotion of Peterborough nationally and internationally. Peterborough Development Agency was set up to fill the gap and John was its chair for five years.

John believes that it is vital that our children are given the best possible start in life by having a thorough grounding in the basic skills as well as an understanding of the world around them. Their primary school days should be stimulating, exiting and, above all, happy. This should give them an appetite for life-long learning, which is so important in our rapidly changing world. It should also enable them to be successful in life and valuable contributors to our community.

Southfields has been acknowledged as an outstanding school and John did not hesitate to accept the invitation to become a governor in 2015 and was elected chair in 2016.

John hopes to continue to support Southfields in its continued development and success as a school to which we would be happy to send our children and grandchildren.

Cllr Brian Rush

Local Authority Governor

Brian has lived in Stanground for over 35 years. He is married to Rita and is a father and grandfather.

After leaving Old Fletton Secondary Modern School, he joined Baker Perkins as an apprentice. He retired in 2014 after working all of his life as a mechanical engineer.

Brian has served as a Peterborough City Councillor representing Stanground for over 20 years. He has served on many committees. Over the years, he has been involved in many local community organisations, including Stanground Community Association (SCA), Italian Community Association (ICA) and Cardea Community Sports Association (CCSA).

Brian has been a governor at Southfields since the year 2000 and feels strongly the importance of giving a good start to life to the youngsters of the school. Brian is inspired by the inspirational Headteacher Laura Martin and the amazing team of teachers and staff. He feels privileged to be able to work with this Southfields family. Brian ensures the school is run smoothly, is a critical friend, and is always available if any member of the staff needs to discuss an issue, in confidence, whether it is about a school or personal issue. He is proud to be a member of this amazing school.

It is his vision that children of all abilities should have the best education available in a safe and caring environment. They should have an enjoyable school life benefiting from excellent teaching and enjoy a wide range of opportunities, in school or on outside trips, to develop their talents, skills and help them live their dreams.

 Laura Martin


BEd Honors – First Class Specialising in Primary Education - Mathematics and the Arts

NPQH – National Professional Qualification for Headteachers post graduate level

NLE – National Leader of Education working with other schools 

NPPR- National Pupil Premium Reviewer

DSL – Designated Safeguarding Leader

CCET - Educational Testing - Masters level Post Graduate qualification 

NASENCO - Special Needs Post Graduate Masters level Bath Spa 

SLCN Masters level - specialising in speech, Language and communication 

Hub of Expertise Speech Language and communication - Headteacher Lead for Peterborough Local Authority

Dsylexia - Tester accredited and support 

Elklan - Level1,2,3 and 4 and Communication Friendly school lead

Makaton qualifcations accredited - Level 1,2,3 and 4 

Safeguarding Makaton qualification accredited to support non-verbal/pre-verbal pupils' communication

PECs - Picture Exchange Communication trained - to support pupils with communication difficulties.

Theory and Practice of Nurture Principles - Post Graduate - Supporting pupils with social-emotional mental health difficulties.

ACES  and Trauma - Specialist Certificates - Supporting pupils with social, emotional- mental health difficulties.

Relational Practice - Specialist Certificate - Supporting pupils with social, emotional mental health difficulties.

I have been employed at Southfields Primary for many years. I have taught across all age groups and classes as big as 43 in previous teaching jobs.  I have  dedicated my 'life's work' to children, Peterborough schools and the local community. I have seen many changes to the school and worked incredibly hard with the team to maintain an amazing education for our pupils for many years.  During my time here I have worked with some inspirational leaders, teachers, support staff. Many leaders who have left the school are Headteachers today. I feel privileged to work in such a creative environment, with the most amazing team of highly skilled professionals.  Education is very important to me and I am currently studying for a Masters Degree at Bath University in areas that I feel will strengthen my leadership of SEND in our school.  I am registered with the Psychology Assocation and am trained to complete a range of educational tests.  

My personal interests link to both nature and being outdoors, fauna and flora and also anything linked to 'speed' such as Cars and Motor Sports. I love track days and Motor bikes, I am a keen Mountain Biker and Snowboarder. I like everything to be organised but am also spontaneous and seize the moment. I love creativity in the arts including fashion and sculpture. I love reading especially children’s  books and Tudor history or learning about people who have changed history in the past through their good work.   I enjoy cooking and films  (I admit to finding the cinema hard work as I might have to sit for more than 10 minutes ...which I am not very good at - I like to be always on the move) I love the theatre and walking.  I love all kinds of music and think every child should learn to play and read music.

I am an extremely bouncy, happy and positive person, I try to see the good in everyone and in every situation and pride myself on building relationships and problem-solving situations. I love life and travel often. I am interested in new places and learning from all kinds of people. I love to draw and paint, I enjoy fabrics, fine art and colour. I am a highly creative person who loves galleries and exhibitions. I have an interest in history and learning about explorers, especially the North and South Poles. I am addicted to IQ tests and have an IQ of 149 and love Mensa.

I am also interested in making links with schools and learning about other faiths and cultures regionally, nationally and making global links. I love to work with pupils who find life tricky and am proud of the work we do  within school with those pupils who may have had difficulties at home or experienced trauma in their lives’, Pupil Premium, pupils with behaviour difficulties and also believe in the programmes we deliver in our work in Speech and Language is outstanding.

The school is proud that pupils go on to do well at Universities and one of the Pupils from our Speech and Language department has now completed 'Oxford University'. I believe children are the future. We need to help them to become the best they can be in a safe, caring and kind environment. I also think children should be told when they are wrong or behave in a way that isn’t kind, and I am very honest. The role of the Designated Safeguarding Lead I take very seriously, and I make sure all the children are safe whilst ensuring staff have increased awareness of safeguarding.  I value and teach protected characteristics regularly in assemblies and highlights of my day include meeting and greeting at the gate each day as well as spending lunchtime with the children playing and learning together. 

 Lauren Westley

Staff Governor

I have been teaching for 8 years now after gaining my PGCE at Anglia Ruskin University. Prior to this, I studied a BA in History at the University of Sheffield. I have been lucky enough to gain a range of experience since beginning my teaching career. I have taught in both mainstream schools and Special Education and greatly enjoyed both experiences. I enjoy applying the knowledge and skills from Special Education into the classroom, ranging from behaviour and differentiation to a very creative and hands-on approach which works so well with the Southfields environment. This is my sixth year at Southfields and I have enjoyed expanding my roles and responsibilities, such as gaining an EAL Quality Mark and leading training sessions for staff and TA’s.  I became a Governor in my second year here at Southfields and I greatly enjoy the experience. It broadens my knowledge of the deeper workings of the school and allows me to keep track of progress and expectations across all-year groups which could otherwise be challenging in such a large school.

My favourite subjects:

¨ Reading—I love to teach and explore books in guided reading and think it is fantastic to watch a child’s journey through a story.

¨ History—It is a big passion of mine following on from my degree.

¨ English—It is great fun to share how creative we can be with words and writing styles.

¨ Science – Questioning and discovering are an essential part of Science and our daily lives!

Things I love

I read History at Sheffield University and have a strong interest in the past and how it impacts our lives today. I keep this passion alive by reading outside of school, attending a book club and going to museums. I also enjoy swimming and spending time outdoors or curled up on the sofa with my cat. I love to travel and explore other cultures as much as possible and most recently I learnt to ski, which will impact future travel plans.

Mr Jason Mitchell

Co-opted Governor

Jason lives just up the road in Cardea and his son was a pupil at Southfields. Jason trained as an actor at Mountview Theatre School and then worked as a professional actor for 19 years. He then joined Peterborough Regional College as a lecturer on the BTEC Performing Arts course and the Performing Arts Degree at University Centre Peterborough, where he now works part-time.

Jason also has a theatre company called Small Nose Productions, which is a theatre company that makes new works and delivers workshops. At present, Small Nose are developing their show which is based on a book 'I Had a Black Dog…his name was Depression'.

Jason joined the Southfields’ Governing Body in January 2017. He believes that education is a broad term and happens in all areas of school life. He believes in the idea of creativity in education and that learning needs to be fun, interesting and challenging. He is particularly interested in Human Behaviour and Pupil Voice, and is currently studying for his PhD. 

Joanne Cook

Co-opted Governor

Jo lives in Hampton with her family and labrador. Having grown up in the local area, she went on to study teaching and an English degree in Twickenham. 

She is currently a teacher at a primary school within the Peterborough area and is fully invested in securing the education of the next generation. With more than 20 years of teaching experience across Surrey, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, she takes her role as co-opted Governor very seriously.

Jo's children started their educational journey at Southfields, and she soon joined the PTA and became a parent helper during their time at the school. When her children moved on with their education, she remained as a Governor. She believes in the ethos of Southfields School, the opportunities it offers its students and the way in which it brings the wider community together. 

Education is Jo’s profession but also her passion. She believes wholeheartedly that learning should be fun, hands-on and one that understands the holistic child. Her role as EYFS and Curriculum Link Governor allows her to see how the holistic child is encouraged within Southfields' environment and all that it offers its students.

Liam Boyle

Co-opted Governor

Liam lives in Bretton and has grandchildren at Southfields.

Liam moved to Peterborough in 1983 when the company for which he worked relocated here. Previously he lived in Nottingham, where he was born. He was educated at High Pavement Grammar School.

Liam worked for the Road Haulage Association for most of his working life, during which time he undertook a wide variety of roles, including representing the UK Road Haulage Industry on Social Regulation Committees in Brussels and on Regional Development Agencies in the UK. He established various commercial services within the Association, including a training division to provide driver and management training. He retired in 2008.

Liam has been a Governor of Southfields since October 2018. He believes that primary education should provide a broad spectrum of exciting and encouraging learning experiences that enable children to become well-rounded and to carry forward an enthusiasm for future learning.

 Emma Peacock

Co-opted Governor 

Emma has been teaching for over 11 years and has spent 5 of those years here at Southfields. I was also fortunate enough to have been a pupil here, and now I am also a parent. I have taught schools across both mainstream and special schools and have worked with children ranging from early years to KS5. I chose Southfields because of its wonderful reputation in the community and inclusive approaches. I wanted to be part of the team that gave the children in the community the best chances and opportunities throughout their primary education. It was important to me to work in a school where the children are at the heart of all the decisions being made. I have a passion for working with and supporting children that have additional needs, and I am always looking for ways to make education more inclusive practices for all. This includes helping those children who do not have additional needs to communicate with and learn about others who may be different to them. I think this is an important skill for all children to have. I decided to nominate myself as a school governor two and half years ago, so I could become a voice for the staff and share their views with the rest of the governing body. I have really enjoyed this role as it has allowed me to work in all areas of school with pupils and staff that I would not normally get to work with often. I enjoy learning about how each of the teams in school works and seeing the continuous learning journey of the children in school. In my spare time, I enjoy reading and exploring outdoor spaces with my family where we like to take our dog on long walks. I also enjoy learning about aspects of history, especially World War 2. I am interested in exotic animals and at home I have a panther chameleon and a corn snake. I enjoy reading particularly with the children in school when we get to play the parts of the different characters in the book.

 Luciana Isnovuio

Parent Governor

Luciana is a parent of a pupil in school and also a Teaching Assistant here at Southfields. She is very involved in school life and has joined the Governing Body as she would like to be able to contribute more to helping the school achieve its aim of holistically rounded children.

Luciana is a teacher by profession, with 12 years experience teaching Geography and EAL in Romania.  She was actively involved in developing and adjusting the curriculum to students’ needs. She has worked with children from different backgrounds, and she is really passionate about creating inspiring learning environments that are accessible to all and generate a love of learning for life.

Being a governor gives her the opportunity to use the skills she has developed working in schools, for the benefit of the children. Her career as a teacher in Secondary Education has helped her acknowledge how much of an impact the early years of education have on a child’s life, academically and socially, as well as emotionally. 

Being a mum of a child who attends Southfields, and seeing the way in which their schooling has become such a big part of their life, motivated her even more to become a governor. 

Luciana feels grateful for the opportunity to join the governing body at Southfields Primary School and to be able to support all the amazing work that they do.

Hayley Stapleton

Parent Governor

Hayley is a wife and mother to 2 children, both of which have attended/still attend Southfields.

She chose Southfields for her children to attend not only because she is local to the setting but because it had a good reputation at putting its pupils first. The school welcomed her eldest with open arms when he started in Yr 5 and encouraged him to thrive in his education. 

They wanted her youngest, being a SEND child, to have the best she could within a mainstream setting. Southfields went above and beyond to help her and to fulfil her day-to-day needs, and they continue to do this. 

Hayley currently owns and runs her own business within Peterborough, and has an NVQ Level 3 and diploma in Hairdressing. She has a passion for being creative. 

Hayley has recently taken on casual work as an Exams Invigilator, which she is enjoying and is hoping to improve and further her knowledge within this field. 

She enjoys reading, listening to music, sometimes writing, spending time with friends, but mainly she enjoys spending time with her family and their dog in their caravan. 

Hayley is looking forward to being a part of the Southfields 'Governing Body' family and hopefully bringing a parents' voice and perspective to the school. She is also looking forward to learning more about Southfields and its pupils and staff as well as the type of education the school looks to provide going forward. 

Co-opted Governor

Approached the Police for a representative who we are consulting with and also approached and consulting with an ECO specialist and Author 

  • Healthy Schools
  • Ofsted Outstanding 2011|2012
  • Ofsted Outstanding 2008|2009
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  • Leeds Inclusion Chartermark
  • Arts Council England
  • Financial Management Standard in Schools
  • Arts Mark
  • Music Mark
  • Oracy School
  • Elklan