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Meet the Governors

Helen Norris MBE - Chair of Governors

Helen has been Chair since September 2020 and a Nexus Governor from early 2019. She has a background as a headteacher in successful special schools, Head of Specialist Educational and Disability services in a London borough and as Regional SEN lead for London.

Her passion for improving outcomes for those with special needs developed following the birth of her son with Down’s syndrome. Helen has been on a number of pioneering SEN national groups, and as a volunteer trained at the university of Zagreb improving the culture and educational opportunities for young children with complex needs across Eastern Europe.

Helen is one of the Safeguarding governors. She is excited to be part of Nexus working with a great team of governors, school leaders and staff to enable every child and their family to have the best possible educational outcomes.

Helen enjoys spending quality time with her young grandchildren and family and is Co-Chair of a Mencap local charity. She has been awarded an MBE for services to Special Educational Needs and Disabilities.

 

Scott Jarred – Headteacher

Scott became the headteacher at Nexus in June 2018. He has spent his career working in special educational needs schools and has had the opportunity to work with students in all age ranges across a variety of needs. He has a Masters degree in autism (children) and has published work in SEND journals. Prior to starting his teaching career Scott worked in a residential SEND children’s home which prompted him to follow a career working in SEND.

Scott has been part of school Governance for over 15 years having started as a staff governor. He is passionate about the role that school governance plays in the overall development of the school and is keen to attract individuals to the governing body with a wide range of skills.

Scott is driven by the progress that we have seen in school over the last 3 years despite the challenging situations we have all found ourselves facing. He is proud of the staff team that has been developed in the school, and the passion that they have for developing the best outcomes for our students. He is keen to promote opportunities for students beyond the ‘normal’ curriculum offer and promote lifelong interests as well as lifelong skills.

Outside of school Scott has a young family, and new puppy (Luna). He is very active when he isn’t injured, alongside Crossfit and running, he has recently taken up stand up paddle boarding. One of his proudest achievements is trekking to Everest Base Camp in 2019.   

 

Angela Iraggi – Parent Governor

Before becoming a mum, Angela worked in Investment Banking & Management in Hampshire and London.  

After relocating to Kent, Angela was told her 2-year-old son had severe autism and her life changed dramatically.  She was instantly exposed to the challenges faced by those with disability to get the right support in place and this prompted Angela to volunteer for the National Autistic Society, where she supported parents across an Education Rights Advisor for 3 years, covering everything from a small additional need in a mainstream setting through to the EHCP appeal process.    

An opportunity arose at Ridge View School (now Nexus) and Angela put herself forward to become a Parent Governor.  

Being part of the Governing Body has given her the opportunity to be part of a forward-thinking team, and that collaborative working has already enabled growth and huge changes within the school framework. Angela is also the Health & Safety Governor for Nexus. Knowing that she is making a positive difference is extremely rewarding. 

Governorship utilises not only the experience of her previous career roles but also those she has learnt since becoming mum to a SEND child – tenacity, patience, empathy, extreme multi-tasking and thinking outside the box to name a few!   

Angela is determined that Nexus will provide everything it stands for to make every pupil be the best they can be so that they have a progressive and relevant pathway into young adulthood in today’s society.  

Whilst Angela sees herself as an advocate for pupils and their families and is committed that the wishes and feelings of children and young people are heard, she also feels strongly that the board should evolve and grow in the same way as the school has, and other parents from our family should be not be overlooked to make that difference too.  

 

 

Stephen Challis – Parent Governor

Stephen has been a parent governor at Nexus since 2019 and is a foster carer in Kent County Council’s disabled children’s team. Stephen has a permanent foster child who has attended Nexus all their school life. Nexus Foundation Special School has been the child’s ‘constant’ throughout their life and a safe place for them, and Stephen wants to ensure this can be every child’s experience of the school.

Stephen is also an Adult Social Care Inspector with the Care Quality Commission and has a particular interest in learning disabilities and Autism. Having worked for many years in the care sector and advocating for the rights of people with a disability, Stephen is keen for the pupils of Nexus to have access to a rich life experience and the support they need.

As a parent governor Stephen will ensure that parents and carers can feel supported by the school, and also that children attending Nexus can have not only a fulfilling education but can experience a nurturing and safe school environment.

 

Pauline Campbell – Co-opted Governor

Pauline became a Co-opted Governor for Nexus School in December 2020 and has joined the Curriculum and Learning Committee. She is looking forward to working with Governor colleagues and School Leaders to ensure that every child, and their family, at Nexus will have the have the best opportunities and outcomes.

Prior to retiring Pauline was a Qualified Teacher, initially working in the mainstream primary sector, but soon moved to special education. Pauline has worked with children and young people with complex disabilities across all age phases. For many years she worked for a London borough, as a member of a team working with colleagues in Health and Social Care, supporting young people, their families and schools to develop practical skills and strategies to improve outcomes. She had a particular interest in developing understanding and supporting students with Autism. Pauline is committed to promoting creative attitudes and ideas that result in positive, and meaningful, opportunities for all young people.

Pauline enjoys spending time with her three young grandchildren. She enjoys reading, Pilates, Yoga and spending time on her beloved narrowboat. Pauline also volunteers for a charity supporting vulnerable families in Surrey.

 

Colin Terry – Co-opted Governor

Colin has been a Nexus Governor since September 2019. He is now retired after a successful career in the Retail Industry where he held Senior Executive positions in many of the major UK Retailers.

Colin brings to the Nexus Governing Board significant business experience which encompasses Financial Planning and Performance Accountability, Human Resources Management and Strategic Thinking.

He is able to provide a non-Educational background thought perspective to the challenges and opportunities that the Nexus School encounters. Colin possesses an enquiring mind and an analytical approach, providing appropriate challenge to the status quo and of leaders.

Colin is driven, along with the other Nexus Governors, in guiding and assisting the School to offer the best possible educational teaching and support to all of the Nexus students and their families, so that the students potentialise their learning journey throughout their School years, and in readiness for their time beyond the Nexus environment.

Outside of Nexus, Colin is involved in other Community Voluntary channels and enjoys socialising with his family and friends and is desperately trying to improve his golfing prowess!

 

Lewis Jones – Co-opted Governor

Lewis joined the Nexus School Governing Body in March 2021 and he is looking forward to supporting the school to deliver better opportunities for young people. He works in the UK Civil Service where he has undertaken a range of commercial, strategy and policy roles.

This variety brings with it an ability to swiftly apply himself to new challenges, solve problems, and draw conclusions to inform decision making. Working in public service, he is accustomed to high levels of transparency, the value of adopting a consultative approach and managing change to improve delivery.

Lewis was keen to complement his work in the Civil Service with the opportunity to apply his skills and experiences at a local level. Improving public services, the outcomes for young people at Nexus and having a meaningful impact in the community were key motivators in his decision to apply to join the Board and provide a non-educational perspective.

In his spare time, Lewis is an active runner and can often be found at Tonbridge Parkrun in Haysden Park trying to beat his previous weeks’ 5k!

 

Lorna Stapley Staff Governor

Lorna has been a governor at the school for many years.  Starting work when the school was based in Hildenborough, before it moved to Tonbridge and became Ridge View and now Nexus. She has worked her way up from teaching assistant to teacher and across all the Key Stages, currently teaching in a Key Stage 2 class. Lorna is also the Family Liaison Officer, using her years of experience to support the families offers guidance and support, and to signpost them to other services.

During the school holidays Lorna has previously run a variety of different clubs and activity groups for children and young people with learning difficulties, and has always been heavily involved in the school’s PTA group.

Lorna feels very strongly about supporting the school and improving the outcome for all pupils.

Alongside her work at school, for the last 18 years Lorna has also been a Shared Lives host, sharing her home with a lady with Down’s Syndrome, autism and severe anxiety.  This role has given Lorna a great insight into the needs of parents and carers and is a role that she finds very fulfilling.

 

Lorraine Stapleton – Staff Governor

Lorraine has been staff governor for two years. Having worked at Ridge View across most cohorts within the school, Lorraine is currently a class teacher in a key stage 2 class of mainly pupils with autism. Lorraine is also Behaviour Lead for the school, and has been the PROACT SCIPuk Instructor for seven years.

Prior to joining the educational sector, Lorraine has held senior roles in sales and marketing, having been Pensions Marketing Director for a FTSE 100 company. Having held such senior roles in business enables Lorraine to contribute to the SIP from a business perspective as well as an educational. representation.

Lorraine has continued to support the community as a volunteer in many sports guises – historically an athletics coach at the local Athletics Club as well as at a mainstream primary school, and a football coach for a very successful girls football team.   

Lorraine has a step-sister with downs syndrome, which has had a positive impact on her passion for improving the outcomes for pupils with special educational needs.  Having witnessed the pathway her step-sister has taken thus far through life, Lorraine believes strongly in the ethos that all pupils can achieve their goals and progress in whatever shape or form they believe.