As at 1st January 2021 Muswell Hill Primary School has no staff earning more than £100k a year.

In 2019, the Department of Education ran consultation on their “Financial transparency of local authority maintained schools and academy trusts” document.

The published results can be viewed at the following link:

Muswell Hill Governing Body

Introducing our governors


Sarah Lima My name is Sarah Lima and I am a commercial lawyer specialising in IT contracts. I have been a governor at Muswell Hill since 2018 and am part of the Resources and Pay Committees. I have a particular interest in the school’s compliance with data protection laws and help with the external contracts the school enters into.

Josephine Jackson My name is Josephine Jackson, and I live in Hornsey. I’m married and have three children, a cat and a dog. I work full time at the Financial Reporting Council and started my career at PricewaterhouseCoopers. I have been a Governor for nearly three years now and I chair the Resources Committee that has oversight of the finances, budget, premises and other such related matters.

Hilary Plant My name is Hilary Plant. I have been a Governor at Muswell Hill Primary for two years. I am currently Vice Chair, Link Governor responsible for Special Educational Needs and Disability and Link for years 5 and 6. I am also the Governor responsible for staff wellbeing. Having two daughters, who hugely benefitted from their start in life at Muswell Hill Primary, motivated me to become a Governor at our school. I have recently retired from a 42-year career in the NHS as a nurse, researcher, psychotherapist, and senior manager. I provide understanding of the complexities of public sector work with an open approach to supporting experience of children, parents, and staff.

Dan Salem My name is Dan Salem. I have been a governor for over 7 years and have had a variety of roles from Chair for the past 2 years to the Resources Committee where we have managed to make substantial improvements to the school from upgrading the playgrounds to the internal decor and fabric of the building, whilst managing the limited budget we are given. Very much looking forward to the next chapter on our journey from outstanding to extraordinary.

Martin Gibbins My name is Martin Gibbins and I’m a parent governor. I have been on the governing board since January 2019. I have two children at Muswell Hill School and take a keen interest in helping the school operate and run. I am an Architect specialising in school design and my aim as governor is to assist and advise on such aspects as school development projects. As part of the Resources Committee I help with the running and upkeep of the school. I am also the designated governor for Health and Safety (which involves termly visits to report on both building and user issues) and part of the Curriculum and Standards team.

Jeremy Kanter My name is Alexa Charnley. I have been a parent governor for three years. I have two children at the school. I work at Save the Children and my background is in fundraising, marketing and partnerships. I am currently Chair of Governors, and I also am the link governor for Safeguarding. This involves ensuring that all the necessary safeguarding checks are undertaken for people who interact with the children, and ensuring the school follow safeguarding policies, procedures and training. I also sit on the Resources Committee.  

Muriel Thompson My name is Muriel Thompson. I currently have the pleasure of working at MHPS as the class teacher of Violet class and phase leader of years 5 and 6. I am passionate and dedicated to the inclusive, creative ethos of our school and wider community. I have experience in a number of diverse educational settings and roles in which I have undertaken a number of educational research projects. As well as this, I have worked in the international development field prior to teaching. I love travelling, the arts, keeping fit and spending time with family and friends. As a staff governor I offer a unique insight and voice to contribute to the strategic development of the school.

My name is Davina Deniszczyc and I’m mum to two boys at Muswell Hill Primary School. I am a GP by background and currently hold a national senior position in a healthcare trading charity. I have worked in health promotion across all age ranges including children and teachers, medical and regulatory governance and I have senior safeguarding experience. I will be supporting the school on safeguarding, health promotion and infection prevention.

My name is Ishah Ijaz and I am a regulatory lawyer. My role involves ensuring that financial institutions abide by standards and regulations in the UK, as well as passionately supporting firms with dynamic propositions to innovate in the market place. I use my experience to not only support MHPS to operate effectively, but also to champion the school to be aspirational, ambitious and crucially, compassionate. I ardently advocate MHPS’s vision to help every single pupil to achieve his or her potential. I value continued focus on strengthening all pupils’ academic achievement, as well as greater differentiation being available to pupils, which will foster curiosity, ambition and continue to challenge.

Sarah Gray My name is Sarah Gray and I’m an Associate Governor. My two children (now young men) went to Muswell Hill Primary; I also now work in the office. I have been a governor for a considerable time and before that I was on what is now the PSA and was a class rep too. My former career was in the international section of an examination awarding body and I still work proof reading for them.  

Mandi , our Headteacher, is also a member of the Governing Body.  

The composition of the Governing Body is outlined in our Instrument of Government which is reviewed annually. It was approved in 2017 and remains unchanged.

Who does what:

Alexa Charnley Chair of Governors, Phase Link Governor for Years 1/2
Hilary Plant Vice Chair of Governors, Phase Link Governor for Years 3/4, Co-Inclusion Governor including Pupil Premium and SEND, Wellbeing Governor, Pay Committee and Head Teacher Performance Management Committee, Link Governor for Everybody Belongs Here
Dan Salem Chair of Curriculum and Standards, Pay Committee, Head Teacher Performance Management Committee, Link Governor for Sound Structures
Josephine Jackson Chair of Resources
Martin Gibbins Health and Safety Link Governor
Sarah Lima GDPR Link Governor, Pay Committee, Remote Learning Link Governor
Sarah Gray Associate Governor, Link Governor for Training and Communications
Muriel Thompson Staff Governor, Co-Inclusion Governor including Diversity and Equality
Davina Deniszczyc Safeguarding Link Governor, EYFS Link Governor
Ishah Ijaz Link Governor for Year 5/6 and Taking Learning Outdoors Link Governor

What do we do?

The Governing Body provides strategic leadership and accountability in schools. It has three key functions:

  • Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent

  • Holding the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction.
Governors set the aims and objectives for the school and set the policies and targets for achieving those aims and objectives. They monitor and evaluate the progress the school is making and act as a source of challenge and support to the headteacher, they are sometimes referred to as ‘critical friends’.
This means that the Governing Body is involved in:

  • Appointing and performance reviewing the head teacher and senior leaders, including making decisions about pay

  • Managing budgets and deciding how money is spent

  • Engaging with pupils, staff, parents and the school community

  • Sitting on panels and making decisions about things such as pupil exclusions and staff disciplinary matters

  • Addressing a range of education issues within the school including disadvantaged pupils, pupils with special needs, staff workload and teacher recruitment

  • Looking at data and evidence to ask questions and have challenging conversations about the school
Governors must be prepared to adopt the Nolan principles of public life: selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership.

All governors sign to confirm that they agree to abide by the Code of Conduct.  

How do we do this?

For the last few years, we have had 4 or 5 full Governing Body meetings a year and meetings of the Resources Committee and the Curriculum and Standards Committee. It is proposed that, from September 2021, we move to a full Governing Body meeting each month and that the business of the Resources and Curriculum & Standards Committees will be take place in these meetings. There will additionally be working parties as required and the Pay Committee will meet regularly but the bulk of the Governing Body business will take place at these monthly meetings.  

Contacting the Governing Body

If you have any queries or comments do please feel free to contact any member of the Governing Body via the School Office and they will be happy to forward your email or letter; alternatively you can send us an email at:  

Governing Body Attendance & Meeting

2021 -2022

Governing Body Attendance 2021-2022

Governing Body Minutes 16th Nov 2021

Governing Body Minutes 12th Oct 2021

Governing Body Minutes 2nd Sep 2021

2020 -2021

Governing Body Attendance 2020 - 2021

Governing Body Minutes 28th Apr 2021

Governing Body Minutes 24th Feb 2021

Governing Body Minutes 25th Nov 2020

Governing Body Minutes 23rd Sep 2020

2019 -2020

Governing Body Attendance 2019 - 2020

Governing Body Minutes 7th May 2020

Governing Body Minutes 13th Feb 2020

Governing Body Minutes 21st Nov 2019

Governing Body Minutes 19th Sep 2019

2018 -2019

Governing Body Attendance 2018 - 2019

Governing Body Minutes 21st May 2019

Governing Body Minutes 11th July 2019

Governing Body Minutes 4th April 2019

Governing Body Minutes 31st January 2019

Governing Body Minutes 22nd November 2018

Governing Body Minutes September 27th September 2018

Register of interest

It is our statutory duty to produce a register of interest, this includes a declaration, business interest and also a declaration of pecuniary interests. Please click here to see the details.