Board of Governors
Mrs Wendy Dorothy Jane Collins Tout
Chair of Board of Governorswendytout@mpsplymouth.net
I had 2 career ambitions whilst at school, one was to work in a Bank and the other was to be a Maths Teacher. I achieved the first spending 24 years within Alliance & Leicester/Santander starting on the counter and working my way up to Bank Manager at 22. I then took my financial exams and became a fully qualified Financial Adviser which is the role I was made redundant from in 2013. I now work as a Para-Planner for 3 FAs. The second ambition sadly I feel was lost when my dad died when I was 16, 5 months before I took my GCSEs. My dad was my driving force, he used to help and encourage me with my schoolwork and although I obtained 8 GCSEs and the 'A' I wanted in maths I lost my way and dropped out of A levels and joined the Bank at 17.
Why did I become a Governor? My dad fully supported me and I strongly believe that it's not just the schools job to educate children. I want my children to enjoy their school life and gain as much as they can before they go out into the big bad world of work.
Too many children are not supported at home and it's at Primary level where that all important exciting learning journey starts. I would like to think that the job I do as a Governor in overseeing things at Montpelier will help make their experience the best it can be.
Mr Richard Alan Clarke
I have had a life-long interest in education having worked in the Higher Education Sector in London and Plymouth since qualifying as a Chartered Accountant in 1980.
I had originally intended to go into teaching when I reached the age of around 30 after having gained some experience of the world of work for which the overwhelming majority of pupils and students are being prepared. However, marriage and a young family soon put paid to that idea!So, becoming a Governor at Montpelier over 20 years ago certainly gave me a role in the school sector, and being a Governor at the Plymouth College of Art gave me an opportunity to contribute in the Further Education sector too.
Mr Neil John Demuth
I was always attracted to teaching during my school years, but never really had the desire or motivation to go to university, so opted for an apprenticeship after my A Levels. I have always worked in some shape or form and many say I have a really good work ethic (my wife thinks too much at times!). I completed a 3 year apprenticeship in Accounting and Finance with a national training provider (whilst working in their finance team!). After completing my qualification and gaining professional membership to the AAT, I secured a role with the training provider to deliver workshops and mentor other AAT students. Very rewarding seeing students progress and improve their careers.
I decided to move on from the training sector as I wanted to become a qualified management accountant (CIMA). So, I joined Foot Anstey Solicitors as a billing co-ordinator back in 1999 and have not looked back since. I qualified in 2003. I have been really lucky to progress in a fast growing environment. I have taken on a number of roles as it has merged with other firms and grown across the south-west. I am now Financial Controller, which basically means I head up the finance team of 15. The role spreads a number of stakeholders within the business, most importantly, the partners. I work with some fantastic, well educated, sometimes challenging (!) individuals, but proud to be part of a successful professional services firm.
Why did I become a governor? Being a parent to 2 children in the school, I was keen to secure a parent governor role to gain a better understanding of the education sector and also allow Montpelier to benefit from my business and finance experience to aid decision making. Primary education is so important in shaping the future of our children, so having input to decision making and seeing the challenges faced is a fantastic opportunity for me. I am so impressed with the team culture at school and love the passion the management team and teachers display.
I am an avid runner, completing my first full marathon this year. I have also recently set up a local running group with some friends, and have enjoyed seeing others develop. I am also a big Arsenal fan, Spurs fans approach with caution!
Mrs Janet Ellard
Eventually two Governing Bodies were formed. Although I served for one term on the Junior School Governing Body I was mainly involved in the Infants. When the schools amalgamated I served on the Interim Governing Body and eventually that of Montpelier Primary School Governing Body.
During that time I gave up work to have my three girls, all of which had a very happy and successful time at Montpelier. When my youngest started school I decided to retrain and my experiences in school helped me to decide to become a Teaching Assistant. I completed my NVQ and started work at The Cathedral School of St. Mary, first in years three and four. I gained my HLTA status nine years ago and from then have worked in years five and six.
At Montpelier I have seen so many changes. The building has changed and the schools have amalgamated. I have worked with two acting Head Teachers and eight Heads! The responsibilities of the Governing Body have changed beyond recognition. However the one constant, in both my job and my work as a governor, is the children and my commitment to doing all I can to support them and the school.
Mrs Alison Jane Green
Vice Chair and Co-opted Governor
I always knew I would stay on at school and that I wanted to do something science based. (Had a dreadful biology teacher and wonder how I ever passed my exam!)
All those years ago, the Government ran a scheme whereby people wanting to take early retirement had to be replaced by a school leaver. I’d been going to the pathology lab weekly doing work experience so it was a case of right time and place. So, I have been ‘cutting up body parts’ since 1982. I still enjoy my job as you never know quite what will come into the department. My proper job title is a biomedical scientist – histology.
One of my 18th birthday presents, from my best friend, was my tonsils mounted in a surgical jar! I still have them, along with my brother’s spleen in my cupboard at home.
Mrs Sam Hunter
Mr John Mahoney
Local Authority Governor
I attended Montpelier School, then Devonport High School for Boys before attending Bristol University. I had been a GP for 30 years, but have been retired since 2012.
I became a City Councillor in 2000 and have the honour or holding the position of Lord Mayor 2015/16. I have been a Governor for over 25 years.