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West Hill

Primary Academy

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West Hill

Primary Academy

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Local Governing Body

Welcome to Governance at West Hill Primary Academy

Please see below details of The Galaxy Trust's governance arrangements along with information for each of our Governors who has served at any point over the past 12 months and, where applicable, their full name, date of appointment, term of office, date they stepped down, who appointed them, and relevant business and pecuniary interests including governance roles in other educational institutions. This information complies with the requirements of the Academies Financial Handbook.


The Chair of the Board of Trustees is Mr Philip Vander Gucht.

The Accounting Officer of the Trust is Mr Garry Ratcliffe, Chief Executive Officer.

The Chair of the Local Governing Body is Ms Hannah Delany.

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The three core functions of governance are:

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
  • Holding executive leaders to account for the educational performance of the organisation and its pupils, and the performance management of staff; and
  • Overseeing the financial performance of the organisation and making sure its money is well spent.


Details of the Members, Board of Trustees, the Articles of Association, Scheme of Delegation and Financial Accounts of the Trust can be viewed via the following link to The Galaxy Trust website:

Meet Our Governors

Hannah Delany (Chair, Community Governor)

Hannah works in the Human Resource arena, specialising in Talent Management and Workforce Planning. Dartford has been home for the last 8 years and she has two children at West Hill Primary School. Hannah has a firm commitment to the role of the Governor believing that the Primary school years are the most important in a child’s education and ultimately shapes their future.

Adam Browne (Community Governor)

Adam has lived in Dartford all his life, attending West Hill Primary School and Dartford Grammar School for Boys. He is a Safeguarding Manager for a Local Authority and has spent a significant part of his career working with vulnerable young people and adults from troubled backgrounds. Adam is married with 3 children, the youngest of whom is currently at West Hill.


Lee Campbell (Parent Governor)

Marian Isola (Community Governor)

Marian works as a Management Consultant, specialising in Programme and Portfolio Management within Government and Health industries.She is passionate about education and keen to use her knowledge and skills to help improve the experiences and learning opportunities that children and young people have at school. She is particularly interested in driving up overall well-being and learning standards as well as reducing the attainment gap for pupils who come from disadvantaged backgrounds. She is married with one child and loves travel, reading, interior design and upholstery.

Niki Lawson (Parent Governor)

Niki has worked in the education sector for twelve years and has a depth of knowledge around school data and pupil progress.  Niki also has a particular interest in special educational needs (SEN) and currently works supporting a child with SEN.


Niki is married with three children who have all attended  West Hill School over a period of 18 years and has seen lots of changes during that time!


Niki enjoys her role as a Governor and is passionate about contributing to West Hill Primary Academy becoming an outstanding learning environment for local children.

Paula Springett (Staff Governor)

My name is Paula Springett and I have been involved with West Hill School since my oldest child started there some twenty years ago. I have been a midday supervisor as well as my role as a TA.

Suzy Stevens (Vice-Chair, Community Governor)

Suzy has lived in Dartford all her life, attending West Hill Primary School and Dartford Grammar School for Girls, and as a result is deeply rooted in the local community.  She is a Chartered Certified Accountant, with nearly thirty years’ experience at PwC as a business advisor within the financial services industry, specialising in the reinsurance run-off market.  Currently on a sabbatical from work to spend time with her family, Suzy is married and has two children, one of whom attends West Hill. 

Suzy is passionate about making a valuable contribution to West Hill in her role as a school governor. 

Marianna Stone (Parent Governor)

Marianna has lived in Dartford for the past 15 years and has two children who both attend West Hill.

Marianna has worked at the Department for Education as a government analyst for the past 16 years, in a range of roles. 

Marianna is passionate about ensuring that all children get the chance to explore their talents and in particular that opportunities for activities like sport or music are accessible to all.  Marianna is jointly responsible for leading on Curriculum on the local governing body.


Sara White

Head of School

My teaching career started quite late in life following 9 years in the Derivatives world within the City of London. Realising that stocks and shares were not for me, I enrolled onto a BEd course at Southbank University. I spent my first few months as a supply teacher working in a variety of schools including a school for children with profound and multiple needs - this led to my interest in everything SEN.

Following three years York Road Junior (now known as Dartford Primary) School, I felt ready for the challenge of an inner city school and ended up teaching at my own primary school on a South East London estate. I was employed as a class teacher and took on my first role here as a SENCo. During my time at this school, I learnt the value of relationships. Every child deserves someone to believe in them, listen to them and tell them that they matter. I saw children from the toughest backgrounds learn, succeed and feel proud of their achievements. In 2004, I joined the wonderful Temple Hill Team. Little did I know that 13 years later, I would have undertaken the roles of SENCo, Deputy Head Teacher and then Head of School. I have learnt so much from the children and families of Temple Hill and from the staff around me. I am now in my second school within The Trust, West Hill, and I continue to feel privileged to be leading such a wonderful school full of potential and possibility.


Education is constantly changing and evolving; the climate can at times be uncertain. Despite this, children deserve the best. Each child is unique, each child is different, each child is special. We have a huge responsibility to ensure that every child achieves to their academic best, but also comes to school happy, motivated and safe.


No Limits, Only Possibilities