About our Governors
Mark Foster - Chairman of Governors and Member
I have been privileged to be the Chair of Peaslake School since 1994, overseeing its time as Charity School and the move to become a Free School in 2013. I have had a career as a Management Consultant and have held senior global leadership roles at Accenture and IBM. I am passionate about early learning and believe deeply in children being able to start their education close to the communities that they are a part of. I am also Chair of Chichester Festival Theatre and aside from theatre my interests include photography, running, 7-a-side football and travel.
David Newman - Vice Chairman of Governors and Responsible Officer
I’ve been involved with Peaslake School, initially as a Parent Trustee, since 1999 and as a Governor of the Free School since its inception in 2013. I oversee the school’s finances and the reporting of them to the ESFA. My career was a 21 year stint as a derivatives trader at JP Morgan, so I like to think I know something about money! My passion, though, is fly fishing which has taken me to beautiful places all over the world.
Andrew Clayton - Legal Adviser & Member
I became involved in Peaslake School when my own children were here some years ago. I headed the fundraising and Parents’ forum and I was part of the team that led the move to become a Free School. I am proud of our ethos of delivering an incredible learning journey for local children in an amazing setting and of our role in the wider community. I work as a solicitor with a litigation practice in Guildford and London, away from which I enjoy walking the dog on Holmbury Hill, being in the garden, seeing new places, and the occasional opera (when my children let me).
James Cobb - Health & Safety Governor & Member
I have been a Governor since 2007 when the eldest of my three children started in reception, and I still live just a few minutes' walk from the school. My responsibilities have included Health and Safety (a field in which I worked professionally until recently), facilities management, and roles on the Finance and Operating Committees. I currently manage a small software business based in Guildford, and outside work find what time I can for composing and running.
Moira Jones - Finance & Audit
I have been a governor of Peaslake School for 17 years as I live in Peaslake and my 3 children were able to attend this unique school. I support the financial management of the school as I am a qualified accountant. I have worked as a financial controller in a large corporation for most of my career, supporting business leaders and project managers. Out of work I enjoy walking, going to the theatre and travelling.
Sam Pride - Parent Liaison (Parent Governor)
I have been part of Peaslake School community since 2017, as a parent both my daughters have attended from Nursery and then onto the school. I am currently Parent Forum liaison and in July 2022 I became a Parent Governor. I have been part of many school parent fundraising teams, most recently co-lead for the Christmas Concert by Candlelight. I am hugely proud of the school and believe strongly in the benefits a small village school can bring. Prior to having children I worked in the Securities Trading department at Goldman Sachs, UBS & Jeffries International in the City. I have a BSc in Business Studies and currently work part time as a book keeper.
Emily Riley - Fundraising & Parent Liaison (Parent Governor)
I have been a parent governor since 2022. I have a background in Primary and Early Years Education. My interests include music and enjoying the outdoors, both of which drew my husband and I to Peaslake Free School & Nursery for our children.
Sarah Small - Curriculum
I have been a governor at Peaslake Free School since 2019 and have been an enthusiastic parent helper for the 7 wonderful years my children were at the school. I thoroughly enjoyed being part of the unique school community and led on various fundraising events most notably Peaslake Open Gardens which, as a keen (but novice!) gardener myself, was very educational.
As a governor I have developed an interest in the curriculum and have enjoyed learning in the classroom with the keen, inquisitive pupils.
Outside of school, I have a background in science, research and medicine and am a practising local GP. I enjoy travel, playing tennis and dog walks with the family in The Hurtwood and The Lake District.
Tom Southee - Safeguarding & Curriculum Governor
I joined the governing team at Peaslake Free School as the Safeguarding Governor.I also sit on the Curriculum Committee. I have been a teacher for 14 years, starting as an English teacher, then subsequently taking on the roles of Head of Boarding, Head of English, Head of Safeguarding and I am now Deputy Head at the Duke of Kent School. I strongly believe that the pastoral care of the children should be at the forefront of their education and that learning happens best when the children are happy and understood. My interests include playing and following football, listening to and collecting records, reading historical fiction and travelling with my wonderful family.
Janette Weller - Staff Governor
I have been involved with the school since 1994, first as a parent and then in the office. I feel very lucky to be part of such a friendly and dedicated team who have the best interests of the children at heart at all times.
Outside school, I enjoy gardening, reading and travelling.