School Governing Body

Introduction from our Chair of Governors

Welcome from Matt Atkins Chair of Governors

“It is my privilege to be Chair of Governors of the school. The Governing Body is committed to working closely with the Head Teacher and all staff to ensure that your children will receive the best possible quality of education in a safe and caring environment.

We believe that your contribution is essential in helping your child to grow up to “be the best that they can be”. If you need to speak to any member of the Governing Body about any issue, please contact the school in the first instance. We will try to make sure that you are kept informed about work that the school is doing and the progress we are making.

Our vision is that Medina House School should be an outstanding school and become a centre of excellence for all the Island’s children with special educational needs. In order to achieve this we must all — parents / carers, Head Teacher, staff, members of the Governing Body and other agencies that support us – work together in a special partnership with the progress and well-being of children at the centre of everything we do.

So, welcome to a very special partnership that we hope you will enjoy for many years to come.”

Matt Atkins
Chair of Governing Body

The Governing Body is made up of the following members:




“I have been a school governor with only a short break since the mid 1960s, in London, and from 1986, on the Island. I have experience of special, primary, middle and high schools.  From the early 1990s until the school closed on re-organisation, I was Business Manager and Clerk to Governors at Bishop Lovett CE Middle School.  I was appointed to the Medina House Interim Executive Board in September 2011 and to the newly established governing body in April 2013. I am currently a governor of Haylands Primary School.  I am married with three children and five grandchildren. Having now retired, I enjoy gardening, watching cricket and spending time with my family.” 



Matt Atkins

Chair of Governing Body

Turtle class representative


Julie Head [1024x768]


Having completed a BED Degree in Special Education in Derbyshire, I embarked on my career in a variety of Special Schools 27 years ago.  During that time I have worked in 5 schools in Portsmouth and Hampshire working my way up from class teacher until achieving my dream of gaining Headship at Medina House School in September 2011.  I was a governor in a Hampshire school when I held the role of Acting Head and when I joined Medina House School I was appointed to the I.E.B. (Interim Executive Board).  I have now chosen to be a governor on our full governing body to ensure the best outcomes for our pupils, their families and staff.




Julie Stewart



Julia Cooil



“Before my retirement I was a teacher in mainstream primary and middle schools. I was a Special Educational Needs Coordinator and specialised in working with children with special educational needs and disabilities.”





Julia Cooil

Vice Chair of Governors

Achievement and Standards Committee

Starfish and Shark class representative


Rachel [1024x768]


“I am the teacher in Turtle class.  I have taught at Medina House since 1997 and seen the school through many changes from all-age to primary, several Headteachers and governing bodies.  I have been teaching in special education since I graduated in 1989, teaching in special schools for pupils with severe and complex needs as well as a short spell as SENCO at an Island middle school.  I have a particular interest in behaviour management and Autistic Spectrum Disorder.  I am pleased to be part of the new governing body of Medina House at such an exciting time and look forward to being involved in whole school development as we go from strength to strength.”



Rachel Hayden

Staff Governor

Coral class representative


Len Fox




I am a retired Church of England priest now living in Wootton. Formerly I was the Vicar of St John’s parish in Ryde where I was Chair of Governors at both Oakfield CE Primary School and Bishop Lovett CE Middle School. My son Matthew was once a pupil at Medina House School.




Len Fox

Co-opted Governor

Jellyfish Class Representative


“My daughter has been a pupil at Medina House School since September 2011.  The school is very welcoming and has been the perfect environment for our daughter to learn and receive the support she needs. I have watched the school grow and improve, and it s a privilege to be appointed as an Associate Governor and to be part of the developing future of the school.

I have a degree in Fine Art and have worked in a variety of different roles including  NHS finance, as an estate agent and more recently, a support worker for adults with Autism and learning difficulties.  I have also held a volunteer role supporting parents to come to terms with their child’s diagnosis.

In my spare time I continue with my creative projects and am always making something! I also go running regularly and love to raise money for good causes.”


Claire Holley

Associate Governor

Dolphin Class Representative


Paul New

Our son joined the school in September 2015 and we have be impressed with the progress he has made; this is due to the fantastic teaching environment he is now in; an environment promoted by the caring and hard working team at Medina House School. I feel it is a great honour to be appointed as Parent Governor and I hope to be able to contribute to the schools continuing success.

I am Island born and have lived and worked on the Island all my life; I have worked in Social Housing since 1998 and am currently employed by Southern Housing Group.



Paul New

Parent Governor


“Technically, I should be classed as a grandparent governor – my grandson has attended Medina House School since 2014 (Preschool) and we have seen such positive changes in his development. We are very proud of him and owe so much to the brilliant team at Medina House. So much so that I wanted to contribute something to the school’s journey and this seemed to be a great way to offer my support and I am honoured and excited to be given this opportunity. I currently work as a senior lecturer in Social Work at Southampton Solent University and prior to this worked as a social worker and advocate on the Island. Originally from the west county, my first love was to work with people with learning disabilities and I originally achieved a joint qualification as a Social Worker and a Registered Nurse for People with Learning Disabilities at Portsmouth University and moved to the Island in ’98. I truly hope to be able to support the excellent work of the school and look forward to playing a small part in their ongoing success.”


Colin Bright

Associate Governor



“I was previously employed as an IT engineer based in Cambridgeshire. Working all around the country on both Hardware & software, until late 2008 when I stopped work due to my sons increased health complications & to become his primary career.
We moved to island late 2011 & started MHS September 2012. We could tell right from the start what an amazing school it was. Unable to work due to my sons unpredictable health I volunteer for Challenge & Adventure, an Island base charity working with disadvantaged & challenging young people using adventurous and challenging outdoor activities.
I enjoy being outdoors & like to go mountain biking & hiking.”



Ian Hutchcraft

Parent governor


Sheila Frost


I first encountered special education when I was 14. My mum worked at Watergate School ( now St Georges) and I would  love to go and visit during days off school . I qualified as a teacher in 1975 and I was offered a temporary teaching job at Watergate which was then an all age school designated  for children with “Moderate learning difficulties.”  Twenty five years later and  I was still there! In 2001 I joined Medina House School and have continued to love my work there teaching the youngest children in the school.




Sheila Frost

Co-Opted Governor

Seahorse class representative


Keith Lane








Keith Lane

Clerk to Governors


Governors SEN Report 2016

Governor’s Information Aug 2017

Parent Governor Election Procedure with Letters

Governing Body

GovernorType of GovernorTerms of OfficeCommittee MembershipResponsibility AreasGovernor at Another SchoolFamily Connections Working in SchoolEmployment and Business InterestsAttendance at Full Governing Body Meetings
Matt AtkinsLocal Authority Governor12/04/17 to 11/04/21Executive CommitteeChair of Governors

Lead Governor for Effectiveness of Leadership and Management

Safeguarding and Child Protection


Performance Management

Class Link for Turtles
Haylands Primary SchoolNilRetired
Daughter and Son-in-Law own a Company that provides advice on ICT systems and websites etc. to schools
*Member of Local Authority Admission Appeals Panel

9 out of 9
Colin BrightAssociate17/03/17 to 16/03/21N/ASupporting Lead Governor for Standards and Achievement including Data
Starfish Class Link
NilNilSenior Lecturer Southampton Solent University


2 out of 4
Julia CooilCo-opted29/03/13 to 28/03/17Executive CommitteeVice Chair of Governors

Lead Governor for Quality of Teaching, Learning and Assessment

LAC Pupils

Pupil Premium – Impact

Oversee Headteacher’s Performance Management Process

Equality and Diversity

Class Link for Starfish and Shark


8 out of 9
Len FoxCo-opted 01/05/14 to 30/04/18N/ASite and Buildings

Health and Safety

SMSC Support

Headteacher’s Performance Management

Jellyfish Class Link

7 out of 9
Sheila FrostCo-opted26/03/15 to 25/03/19N/ALead Governor for Outcomes for Pupils and Effectiveness of Early Years provision


Stingray Class Link

Supply Teacher at Medina House School

7 out of 9
Rachel HaydenStaff 29/03/73 to 28/03/21N/ABehaviour and Safety
Staff Voice
Seahorse Class Link

9 out 9
Claire HolleyAssociate17/03/17 to 16/03/21N/A
Supporting Lead Governor for Site and Buildings and Health and Safety
Dolphin Class Link

4 out of 4
Ian Hutchcraft Parent17/03/17 to 16/03/21

N/ASupporting Lead Governor for Curriculum
Penguin Class Link
NilNilFull-time Carer2016/17

4 out of 4
Paul NewParent04/02/16 to 03/02/20Executive CommitteeFinance
Seashell Class Link
NilNilSouthern Housing Group2016/17

8 out of 9
Julie StewartHeadteacher29/03/13
Executive CommitteeNilNilHeadteacher

9 out of 9