Knavesmire Primary School

Trafalgar Street, York, North Yorkshire YO23 1HY

01904 806545


Welcome to the section of the website where you can find out more about the school’s governors and what we do.

At Knavesmire Primary there are 13 governors who together make up the ‘governing body’. The governors come from different backgrounds and include parents, teachers, members of the local community and specialists appointed by the Local Authority. As a group we are responsible for the major decisions about the school and its future, and work with the Headteacher and School Leaders as partners in the leadership of the school.

Find out more about:


Our school’s Vision and Aims 

What the role of the governing body is 

The school’s policies and procedures  


We welcome feedback from anyone involved in the life of our school. If you would like to know more about the school’s plans, the role of the governors within our school or are interested in becoming a governor yourself please contact us care of the School Office.

Governing Body Agendas and Minutes

You can find the agendas and minutes by clicking here


Governing Body Information:

Contacting the Governing Body

All correspondence should be directed to the school email or postal address, and be clearly marked 'For the Attention of the Governors'.



 Knavesmire's Governing Body



Adam Cooper's place on the Governing Body is part of his role as Headteacher of Knavesmire Primary School. Adam has been at Knavesmire since September 2007, and was appointed in the role of Headteacher in January 2012. In his previous teaching posts, he has taught in schools across York including Clifton Without, Robert Wilkinson and at Ripon Cathedral in North Yorkshire. He has also worked as Lead teacher in Maths and data across the two Local Authorities. Since joining Knavesmire Primary, the school has undergone considerable change including the expansion to a two-form entry school.  

Adam Cooper

Term - Post holder 





Vanessa has lived in York for 25 years and was co-opted as a governor in January 2022. She has twin girls at Knavesmire.  Vanessa has a wealth of educational experience from 16 years of teaching, including 9 successful years in Headship in two schools. She has worked at Local Authority level, leading School Improvement in Leeds until 2011 and now works as a freelance education adviser working independently across the UK and internationally (Scandinavia) supporting and coaching school leaders and teachers.

“Being invited to join the team of dedicated colleagues at Knavesmire Primary has been a privilege. I am very committed to this role; bringing my energy, enthusiasm and passion to the school community continuing to ensure that all our children get the best possible life chances we can offer."


Vanessa Huws-Jones

Chair of Governors

                                                                       Term  - January 2022 to January 2027




 Joe was elected at a parent governor in 2017. In his day job, Joe is a solicitor at a law firm based principally in Leeds and specialises in Commercial Property law (having previously gained a degree in Philosophy before converting to Law).  Joe is passionate about state education generally and the role that school can play in helping to ensure that all children get the best possible start to life that they can. He hopes to help promote both of those concerns through his work as a governor at the School.
 Joe Maitland
Co-opted governor
 Term - March 2021 to March 2025




Abigail has numerous years of experience in Education, including being on the leadership team of a large secondary school and sixth form centre as well as working on school improvement teams across schools. Prior to joining the leadership team, Abigail gained experience in curriculum and pastoral leadership roles and has observed jointly with Ofsted on numerous occasions. As part of leadership teams, Abigail’s main focus has been on improving Teaching and Learning alongside Data and Progress. This has included leading on staff development as well as the training of new teachers and NQTs. She has a keen interest in making sure the needs of SEND and Pupil Premium students are met and leads on these areas for the governing team . Abigail is passionate making sure education meets to needs of all learners, and that all students should hold high aspirations and be helped to meet their potential no matter their background or starting point. Abigail has two children at the school.


Abigail Gaines
Co-opted governor (Vice Chair)
Term - March 2021 to March 2025


Mrs Gould has been a member of the teaching staff at Knavesmire Primary School since 2016 and associate governor since 2018. She has previously taught Year 3 and Year 5 and is currently a Year 4 teacher. Her other responsibilities include being a member of the Our Place in the World team, leading History, and also being part of How the world works team. In her spare time, Mrs Gould likes to keep fit and spend quality time with her family and puppy labrador Nellie.  

Rachael Gould
Staff Governor

Term - July 2019 to July 2023


Olivia was elected as a parent governor in 2021 and has two children at Knavesmire.
In her professional life, Olivia works as a Librarian at the University of York, specialising in the Humanities.

Olivia is passionate about education and the vital role that schools play in their local communities. She is a strong supporter of Knavesmire Primary and feels it is already a very good school, but also recognises that there is always room for growth and improvement. She hopes to play a part in driving positive change at Knavesmire in her role as a school governor.

Olivia Else

 Parent Governor

Term April 2021 to April 2025





Jackie has lived in York for over 20 years and became a co-opted Governor in May 2022 after moving into the Southbank area. In her professional life she is a Solicitor and Director for Privacy, Transparency and Ethics in a national NHS organisation. Prior to that she was a partner in a national law firm in their Leeds based public projects team, where she specialised in the health and education sectors, advising on school building, outsourcing & IT projects. She also advised academy, maintained and independent schools on data protection issues. Jackie is passionate about helping children reach their full potential. She hopes to support the school in her Governor role to provide pupils with the best early learning and personal development opportunities. 

Jackie Gray
Co-opted Governor

Term May 2022 to May 2026




Kay was elected as a co-opted governor in May 2022.
I am retired and currently care for my 3 grandchildren whilst their parents work. They have all attended the Nursery at Knavesmire Primary School. I had a teaching career of over 35 years in the primary sector, specialising in early years education, and was a Headteacher and Children's Centre leader for the last 7 years.
I am a passionate supporter of high quality Early Years education and the benefits of developing strong home/school links — both of which provide the firm foundations necessary for each child to make the most of all the further educational opportunities provided and enabling each child to reach their full potential.

Kay Roantree
Co-opted Governor

Term May 2022 to May 2026

Jon was elected a parent governor in 2022 and currently has 3 children at Knavesmire Primary school.

Jon is a Detective Inspector who specialises in Fraud and Money Laundering investigations.

Having lived in York since graduating from the University of Newcastle Jon was struck by the role Knavesmire Primary School plays in the wider South Bank community. He is passionate about high quality Early Years education, and in particular the provision offered to SEND pupils.

When not working, Jon is a keen sportsman and enjoys playing rugby with his 3 girls.

Jon Hodgeon

Parent Governor

Term June 2022 to June 2026