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. 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
Executive Headteacher

Term - Post holder 



Dave has been a governor at Knavesmire since 2012 and has three secondary school children who all attended Knavesmire Primary. He had been a primary school teacher for 20 years at various schools across York, holding positions such as Maths subject leader, Key Stage 2 leader and Deputy Headteacher.

Dave now teaches with the Family Learning team in York, developing parents' basic skills so they can support their children's learning at home.

Assessment and the use of data in school to raise standards are his areas of keen interest.

In addition to being Chairperson, Dave is also our Safeguarding Lead.

Dave Borlase
Chairperson (Co-opted Governor)

Term - February 2019 to February 2023



David has been a governor of Knavesmire since 2010 and has previously served as a governor of a primary school in London.  David is Chair of Knavesmire’s Finance, Staffing and Premises Committee, and also represents the governors of all local authority schools in York on the citywide Schools Forum.  David works for a government agency that provides data and technology for the health and social care sector, but he was previously a senior manager of local authority children’s services, including education and schools, in North Yorkshire.  In that role David’s duties included co-ordination of Ofsted inspection activity, management and analysis of exam results data for more than 370 schools, and leadership of the countywide governor support service. 


David O'Brien
Co-opted Governor (Vice Chair)
Term - February 2019 to February 2023 



 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, in Year 5 and in Year 2.


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


Tamasin has been a governor at Knavesmire since 2011 and has two children (7 and 10 in 2019) at a York primary school.
With a background in physics, Tamasin works for the Science Museum Group managing the STEM (science, technology engineering and maths) Hub in North Yorkshire. She is also involved in bringing citizen science projects to schools and communities, enabling everyone to play an active part in current scientific research. 
Tamasin Greenough
Co-opted Governor
Term - February 2019 to February 2023



Simon has been a Governor at Knavesmire since 2015 and has 2 children attending the school.

Most of Simon's free time is spent with his wife and 2 children, and whenever possible running, having taken part in the York Marathon a number of times.

Professionally, Simon has worked in I.T. for almost 20 years - currently in Financial Services, though previously at the British Library for a number of years - having graduated with a Masters in Information Technology. As such, computing and data are key areas of interest.

Si Downes
Co-opted Governor
Term - February 2019 to February 2023



Mr Bentley has been a member of the teaching staff at Knavesmire since September 2011, having previously taught at New Earswick Primary School. Over the course of his teaching career, he has taught across every phase throughout the school. His other responsibilities include leading P.E. and supporting the Maths and Community Cohesion teams. In his spare time, Mr Bentley plays a variety of sports and enjoys playing both the guitar and piano with varying degrees of success!

Paul Bentley

Staff Governor

Term - July 2019 to June 2023


Mrs Gould has been a member of the teaching staff at Knavesmire Primary School since 2016 and a governor since 2018. She has previously taught Year 5 and is a current Year 3 teacher. Her other responsibilities include being a member of the PE, Maths and Arts subject teams, alongside liaising between KCKC and school. In her spare time, Mrs Gould likes to keep fit and spend quality time with her family.  

Rachael Gould
Co-Opted Staff

Term - July 2019 to July 2023


Jennifer is in her eleventh year of teaching and has worked in a variety of roles in York and London, including Year 6 class teacher, phase leader, leading practitioner, designated safeguarding lead, and now as pastoral leader in a local York school. She is also set to embark on the SENCo qualification. Jennifer recently completed a Masters by Research in Education at York University, focusing on how primary schools can support the emotional regulation of children with complex needs. She is passionate about providing effective and timely support for children’s mental health and wellbeing and hopes to use her experience to promote these areas as a governor at the school. Jennifer has a two-year-old son who attends a local nursery setting.  

Jennifer Mitchell
Co-opted Governor

Term March 2019 to March 2023


Jay has been a Governor since July 2019 and has one child attending the school. Jay is a social worker and has worked with children & their families for the past twelve years both for the Local Authority and in the Family Courts. Jay is also currently studying for a Counselling qualification.

Jay has a professional interest in family law, safeguarding and mental health.

Most of Jay’s spare time is spent with her family, swimming and attempting to learn ballet.


Jay (Jennifer) Boydell
Co-opted Governor

Term - July 2019 to July 2023