Our Governing Body

The Governing Body is responsible for overseeing many of the strategic decisions of the school. A key role is to act as a ‘critical friend’: to support, to challenge, to ask questions, ultimately to represent the school community.

The Governing Body works in close partnership with the headteacher, staff and the local authority.

The current Governing Body was formed inline with the Horton Lodge Community Special School Instrument of Government. The Term of Office for all Governors elected during this meeting is 4 years. The positions of responsibility will be elected annually.

The mission of the Governors is outlined in our Governor Values Statement . All Governors have agreed to the Code of Conduct and the Committee Terms of Reference (the latter is currently under review).

Please see Governor Declaration of Interest Record 2022 – 2023

For information on Governor attendance at meetings, please see Governors Meeting Attendance Record 2021-2022.

Meet Our Governors…

Jon Harris – Chair of Governors

Mail – harris.j@hortonlodge.staffs.sch.uk
​Governor Type – Co-opted
​Date of appointment – 18th July 2019
​​Roles – Chair of the Full Governing Board. Responsible for Governor Training, and Data and Assessment.
​​Why I became a governor – ​ From the first visit to Horton, in the summer of 1989, with my 18 month old daughter, her life and that of her family, changed immeasurably for the better. The understanding, support and positivity was overwhelming. I became a governor to play some part in ensuring that the profound impact from which we benefitted would be experienced by all pupils and their families who attend this very special school.
What do I contribute –  I have 35 years of experience as a director and co-owner of a manufacturing business. I also have an understanding from a parents’ perspective of the challenges we face. I have a pragmatic and strategic approach to the ever changing issues that the senior leadership team contend with.

Michael Bedford – Vice Chair

Mail – bedford.m@hortonlodge.staffs.sch.uk
​Governor Type – Co-opted
Date of appointment – 18th July 2019
​Roles – Vice Chair of the Full Governing Board. Responsible for Premises, Health and Safety and Residential (Kiplings)
Why I became a governor – My daughter used to be a pupil, who left Horton Lodge 13 years ago. I was ask to put my name forward and have been involved ever since
​What do I contribute – Hopefully a business perspective on issues and having a disabled daughter an awareness from a parents point of view. I hope I contribute in the successful running of the school along with the other governors and head teacher.

Rebecca Ecclestone

Mail – REcclestone@hortonlodge.staffs.sch.uk
​Governor Type – Parent
Date of appointment – 7th May 2021
​Roles – Responsible for Mental Health and Wellbeing
Why I became a governor – I have a child currently at the school and am keen to be involved with improving outcomes for the children at Horton Lodge and supporting this unique, inclusive school where I can.
​What do I contribute – I have 20+ years experience in hospitality management and can apply numerous skills from that role, to the role of parent governor including understanding budgets, achieving targets and HR processes.  I am an advocate for other charities linked to supporting children with additional needs and disabilities and feel able to empathise and share an understanding with other families at Horton lodge.

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Geraldine Fallows

Mail – gfallows@hortonlodge.staffs.sch.uk
​Governor Type – Staff
​Date of appointment – September 2019
​Roles – Responsible for School Council and Sports Premium
​​Why I became a governor – ​ After being part of the Horton Lodge team for a year the opportunity to become a staff Governor arose, I applied for this because I feel that every child at Horton Lodge needs to be central to every decision made and to do that effectively the views of all stakeholders need to be heard and acted upon in a strategic manner.  I felt that the best place to do this was as part of the Governing body.
​What do I contribute –  I bring experience of being a staff governor, a co-opted governor and also a parent governor for over ten years as my own children went through school.  Whilst undertaking these roles the schools went through Ofsted’s, resulting in RI, Good and Outstanding outcomes as well as the schools conversions to academies – in truth that provides me with an understanding of how many things affect the staff and pupils in a school.  I have experience of working on curriculum, finance and school improvement committees and have a particular passion for ensuring that the children in the schools concerned received a broad, balanced and relevant curriculum.  In addition to my previous governor experience and training I can bring to the role my knowledge of both middle and senior leadership – how to challenge, support and be part of a driving force to ensure the best outcomes for the children in the school.


Pat Fisher

Mail – fisher.p@hortonlodge.staffs.sch.uk
​​Governor Type – Local Authority
​Date of appointment – 17th October 2019
​Roles – Responsible for Safeguarding
​Why I became a governor – ​ When I retired from my post as head teacher in a mainstream secondary school and also as an Ofsted inspector, I was asked if I would become a Governor of Horton Lodge. I accepted and have really enjoyed playing a role in a very different educational environment.
​What do I contribute – I hope that my knowledge, particularly of leadership and management in an educational context, has enabled me to make a contribution to the Governing Board and consequently to the school as a whole.

Lucy Bloor

Mail – headteacher@hortonlodge.staffs.sch.uk
​​​Governor Type – Headteacher
​Date of appointment – 1st September 2021

Alison Lee

Mail – lee.a@hortonlodge.staffs.sch.uk
​Governor Type – Co-opted
​Date of appointment – 18th October 2019

Roles – Responsible for EYFS, SEND, Pupil and Sport Premium, LAC, Behaviour and Evidence and Assessment.
​​Why I became a governor – Being a local person, and also having some knowledge of Horton Lodge from a professional perspective, I felt that it was important to offer what support I can to a school which, in my view, provides an exceptional service to its children and families, and to other schools in the area.
​​What do I contribute – I have a background in teaching, and have also worked in mental health services.  For the last fifteen years of my working life, I was employed by Staffordshire County Council as an educational psychologist.  This involved supporting schools in the districts of Newcastle and the Staffordshire Moorlands to meet the needs of children and young people with special educational needs, as well as engaging with broader educational issues and projects across the county.  I retired in 2017, but retain my interest in education generally, and in special educational needs in particular.  I also understand the pressures that affect senior leaders and other staff working in the current educational climate, and am committed to promoting the well-being of both adults and children at Horton Lodge.

Zofia Piaszyk

Mail – piaszyk.z@hortonlodge.staffs.sch.uk

​​Governor Type – Parent
​Date of appointment – 18th July 2019
​​Roles – Responsible for Curriculum (incorporating Conductive Education and AAC).
​Why I became a governor – ​ As a parent of a child attending this School I wanted to understand the way it operates and possibly support it by implementing my knowledge and experience.
​What do I contribute –  Raising a disabled child is surely a big challenge. Parents often require support from multiple services including the School. Being a Governor enables me to represent parents’ point of view during meetings – making sure that needs of the children come first. My past employment experience as a Civil Engineer helps me to understand financial aspect of School’s operation.

​Associate governors

Associate governors are agreed by the governing board, these do not have any voting rights. Associate governors are:

  • Julie Machin (22.10.22)
  • Emily Farr (from 17.05.22)


Christopher Snee