The role of School Governing Bodys within the Learning Trust

School Governing Bodys contribute to the work of the Learning Trust in ensuring high standards of achievement for all children and young people in the school by: 

  • keeping the focus on school improvement
  • being a critical friend to the school, offering support and advice 
  • providing assurances to the board about school performance and about the views of staff, parents and students
  • helping the school respond to the needs of parents and the community 
  • making the school accountable to the public for what it does 
  • working with the school on planning, developing policies and keeping these under review
  • working with the headteacher school staff to exercise the powers and responsibilities delegated by the board through the process of earned autonomy; and 
  • not intervening in the day-to-day management of the school unless there are weaknesses and a suitable course of action has been approved by the Board of the Learning Trust

Trust Governance Roles

Governance Recruitment

Stobhillgate Governors


Hayley Herbertson
(Co Chair)
I qualified as a teacher of Geography in 2004 and took up my first teaching role at Harton Academy where I taught for 14 years. During my time at Harton I took on the role of Advanced Skills Teacher, Lead Practitioner and was designated as an SLE (a Specialist Leader of Education) in January 2012. As part of these roles I carried out outreach work within the authority as well as providing training and support to many trainee teachers as part of both the PGCE and School Direct programme. I didn’t think that I could find another school that I would love working at as much until I applied for a job at Chantry Middle School. I was delighted to join Chantry in January 2018 and I am very proud to say that I am the Subject Leader for both Humanities and RE at Key Stage 3. As a teacher I am a strong believer in making every lesson a valuable learning experience and I believe that young people should be inspired, enthused and challenged to become lifelong learners and be encouraged to reach their full potential. I consider it be a privilege to be part of the Three Rivers Learning Trust and I am delighted to take on the role as an School Governing Bodylor for Stobhillgate First School. My daughter currently attends the school and is enjoying every minute of it.

I am link School Governing Bodylor for Safeguarding which means that part of my role will be monitoring safeguarding systems and procedures to promote the safeguarding of children at Stobhillgate First School.
Mark Robson
(Co Chair)
I graduated in Modern History from Oxford University and initially trained as an accountant before qualifying as a teacher. I taught at King Edward’s for over 30 years, becoming Head of History and Politics, Literacy co-ordinator, and Teacher Governor. When King Edward’s converted into an Academy I was elected Staff director. Since retiring in August 2018 I have maintained my commitment to education, updating my A Level History textbook and volunteering at Abbeyfields school. My family have lived in Morpeth for many years and my daughter attended Goosehill, Newminster, and King Edward VI schools.
Sondos Bowker
(Deputy Chair)
I have spent my whole career working in education and on projects that tackle educational and economic inequality. This has included work in schools, universities and, most recently, the communities sector. I trained to teach within The Three Rivers Learning Trust and spent four very happy years working across The King Edward VI School and Newminster Middle School, where I was Curriculum Lead for English until 2021. I currently work in the communities sector, overseeing training and educational courses for refugee and asylum seeker women and children. I am passionate about equality, diversity and inclusion and I look forward to bringing my experience working with minoritised communities to my role as School Governing Bodylor. The Three Rivers Learning Trust has invested a huge amount in my personal and professional development and I am thrilled to be able to give something back as academy councillor of Stobhillgate First School.
Deborah Williams
(Deputy Chair)
After living in London for over 20 years, I moved back to my native north east
in 2008 with my husband and young son. My son started as a Gosling at
Morpeth First School, and has moved through to KEVI, where he has just
started his A levels in the sixth form.
I have been a languages teacher for 25 years, and for the last eight years I have
worked at a large independent school in Newcastle. I am passionate about the
education and development of young people, especially students with SEND,
and firmly believe that every student should have the opportunity to flourish.
I wanted to become an School Governing Bodylor as I feel that my own experiences
as a parent and expertise as a teacher could benefit the Academy. I also
wanted to give something back to the Academy, as it has provided such a
fantastic educational experience for my own child.
Andy ClarkI am delighted to join the School Governing Body at Stobhillgate. I am currently Deputy Headteacher at The King Edward VI School and lived in the Stobhill area for 15 very happy years. I have been a teacher since 1996, when I started my career as a PE and Geography teacher. I feel very privileged to do a job I enjoy so much and take great pleasure from seeing young people succeed. I believe firmly in equality of opportunity and inclusive education and will work hard to support the staff and students at Stobhillgate to provide a climate for learning in which all students can reach their potential.

I used to love nothing better than playing a game of Football or Rugby, but sadly those days are behind me now! I do still play Cricket and enjoy watching my children play their sports. I enjoy listening to Music, but also enjoy the peace and quiet of long dog walks with my wife in the countryside
Kelly JohnsonMy background is vocational education and I have 15 years of experience of working in the Further Education sector in various roles including a teacher, a curriculum leader, and a curriculum operations manager.

I specialise mainly in the subjects of Sport, Health and Fitness and I have educated young people from level 1 to Foundation Degree level, including A-levels. I am also very enthusiastic about promoting positive well-being and I am a qualified Mental Health First Aider. I currently work for NCFE, the technical and vocational awarding organisation where I support centres through the planning, on-boarding and further CPD opportunities for NCFE qualifications, in particular the V Cert qualifications, with a focus on promoting and advancing learning.

I am passionate about contributing to help create a fairer and more inclusive society through education where every young person has the opportunity, means and motivation to access high quality learning experiences to be successful and achieve their full potential.
Katherine PimblottI am pleased to have been appointed as an School Governing Bodylor at Stobhillgate, I am firstly a parent of a child currently at the school and hope to bring to the academy council contributions from a parents point of view. As well as my parents voice I hope that I can bring new and alternative thoughts being from a non educational professional background. I fully qualified as an Architect in 2008 following over 7 years at Newcastle University, I have worked in practice since then becoming a company director in 2021. I specialise in design within the care sector; for nursing, the elderly and specialist care, throughout the county for the private sector. I have also completed numerous developments in the leisure, education and cultural sectors in the North East. I consider that there are many transferable skills from my profession that I can bring to my role as an School Governing Bodylor as well as bringing the voice of a current parent.
Jenny Lehane
Ragnhild KnowlsonI am happy to have been appointed as Parent Governor for Stobhillgate First School. I grew up in Norway and attended school there up until I started my university course in Marketing Management, which was completed at Northumbria University in 2003. I have continued living and working in the UK ever since and love living here in the North East with my husband and two children, one former and one current pupil at Stobhillgate. I currently work for a well-known brand of paint manufacturer in Gateshead and have a busy customer facing role, mainly focusing on the Nordic markets due to my language skills. Being a parent in the school system here has been an eye opener and a learning journey, compared to the primary educational setting in Scandinavia, where there has always been a greater organic focus on learning through play, outdoor settings all year round and a more holistic approach. First and foremost, I bring with me my experiences as a parent but also my cultural background and hope my small contribution can help make Stobhillgate First School thrive and be the best it can be for all our children.