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Portway Infant School

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Governing Body

Welcome to our Governors’ section!


Mrs Cat Smith, Co-opted, Chair of Governors

I am eager to work as a school governor as I have a keen interest in the future and potential of all children.

With a desire to make a difference and experienced as an NHS IT Manager responsible for managing multiple teams, I deal with all sorts of personalities.

I regularly attend meetings with stakeholders at all levels; well respected in this capacity, actively contributing or challenging decisions that are not in the best interest of the organisation, yet always finding compromise.

Working in the public sector, I understand the challenges schools face with regards to resource and funding constraints.




Mrs Sarah Gibson, Co-opted, Vice Chair of Governors

I am on the Senior Management Team of a Recruitment Consultancy in Nottingham. I am a Project Manager and am responsible for setting and delivering the technical strategy for the business.

This role requires me to be extremely organised, proactive, adaptable, and have strong communication skills.

I hope that these skills will beneficial to Portway Infant School in my role as a Co-Opted Governor.


Mrs Tori Beat, Parent Governor


I am a parent of a boy and a girl and have loved getting to know the Portway community since 2021 when my daughter started in Reception. I am aware of the importance of challenging societal "norms" to encourage all children to be themselves and, as a family, we are enthusiastic about our role in protecting the planet. Through my previous career as lawyer, I have developed a keen attention to detail and my subsequent study of English Language has sparked an interest in the nuances of communication and language. I am a qualified tutor of English as a second language and am also a volunteer assisting young adult refugees.


Mrs Claire Devey, LA Governor (tbc)

I am Mum to two boys who both attended Portway Infants and thoroughly enjoyed their time at the school. So, I am delighted to be a parent governor and support this wonderful school community.

Alongside being an active member of the Friends of Portway committee, I have also been a school governor at Whitecross Nursery School for the past five years and Chair of Governors there since 2017. During that time, I have gained significant experience in school governance and supported the nursery through periods of change.

Before having my children, I held a senior position within logistics at a large retailer and have experience of contract management, project management and budget setting, which I hope will all be valuable skills to this role.


Mr Sunil Gupta, Parent Governor

My daughter started at Portway Infants in September 2021. This short period of time at Portway Infants has shown dramatic improvement in her communication, independence and thirst for knowledge and this, in turn, has made me want to become more involved in education, not just for my child, but for all children.

The skills I have developed as a community pharmacist will allow me to offer empathy, understanding and also the ability to engage in effective teamwork with the whole board.

I believe that being accountable for our actions, valuing staff, learning from mistakes and promoting good practice will continue to create an environment where our children can thrive and flourish.


Mrs Lisa McSherry, Headteacher

I am a highly motivated and hard-working teacher with a wealth of teaching and leadership experience. I am passionate about giving children the best possible education which has led to a successful 25-year career in teaching all of which has been spent in EYFS (Early Years Foundation Stage), KS1(Key Stage 1) and KS2 (Key Stage 2)

My desire to nurture and maximise the full learning potential of each child led me to join the Portway Infant team as the Headteacher in September 2020, a role which I am finding both rewarding and fulfilling.

I continue to promote values of compassion, kindness, honesty and respect and ensure they infuse our learning culture.


Miss Emma Patterson, Parent Governor

I am the mum of two boys with my eldest currently in year one. He loves coming to Portway Infants.


I look forward to helping support the school in ensuring all children feeling happy, safe and supported whilst there. I am also currently a member of the Friends of Portway Infants


Before taking a career break to look after my boys, I worked as a secondary teacher for over 10 years, most recently in the role of Head of Biology at a school in Burton.


Mrs Andrea Phillippe, Staff Governor


I have worked as a teacher at Portway Infant School for 20 years and I currently hold the post of Year Two Lead and Special Educational Needs and Disabilities co-ordinator.


I am a full-time class teacher, working in Year 2 although I have taught in all year groups across the school. I am passionate about taking the time to discover the needs and interests of the children and adapting teaching to accommodate these.


In my role as staff governor, I am able to bring first-hand experience of the day-to-day running of the school and share the perspectives of staff and children.


Mr Sam Pilgrim, Parent Governor


I believe every child matters and so I want to support Portway Infants to continue to be the best it can for the sake each and every pupil that attends. In my current role, as a local Church Leader, I bring strong community links and an experience of leading within a different setting. I am able to listen well to people from different perspectives and bring these opinions together to aid effective decision making . I also have historic professional experience as a secondary school Science teacher which gives me an understanding of the joys and pressures that can face schools and teachers.



We currently have 2 Co-Opted Governor vacancies.

If you would like to join our friendly team of governors, please contact, via email, either the Chair, Mrs Cat Smith, , the Clerk to Governors, Mrs Lisa Kemp, or call the school office on 01332 550702


Governing Board December 2023

Committee Membership

               Finance, Premises and Personnel                               Curriculum and Pupils                                                                                                                         

                                 C Devey                                                                      T Beat

                     S Gibson (Committee Chair)                                                 S Gupta

                       L McSherry (Headteacher)                                      L McSherry (Headteacher)

                                 S Pilgrim                                                     E Patterson (Committee Chair)

                                  C Smith                                                                     A Phillippe



Governing Board Information

Governor allocation regarding curriculum area is an agenda item for the first full governor meeting of the year on 20th September 2023 and so will be confirmed as soon as possible thereafter.

Instrument of Government

Meeting Information

Behaviour Principles Statement by the Governing Body

Contacting the Governors

Either email the Chair on or call the school office on 01332 550702.


Business Interests 

All board members complete a Declaration of Interests form annually and currently none of our governors have any business interest with regard to school.

In addition, we can confirm there no governor has any material interests arising from relationships with school staff.

Financial Benchmarking