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PARENT GOVERNOR elections june 2021

There are 9 candidates standing for the two parent governor vacancies.  Supporting statements from all the candidates are below – please read these carefully before voting.  An online ballot is being held using Survey Monkey. All parents are eligible to vote and will be sent an electronic link via email.  The link to vote will be sent to parents on Monday 28th June 2021. 

Any parents who would prefer to vote by paper ballot should contact Sam Murray (Clerk to governors) smurray@fortismere.org.uk  as soon as possible so that paper forms can be sent.

All votes must be submitted no later than 5pm on Monday 12th July 2021.  Any votes after this will not count.  The result of the election will be shared via ParentMail on Wednesday 14th July 2021.

If you have any queries about the election process please contact Sam Murray (Clerk to governors) smurray@fortismere.org.uk 

Candidate Statements
Reem Al Rasheed
I want to help Fortismere reach for and attain ever higher goals. These include ensuring that all pupils are properly supported/challenged, regardless of ability, and working on increasing the community spirit of the school by fostering constructive dialogue between parents and the school. I would focus on competitive purchase tenders to maximise the benefit from the limited school budget, and look at additional sources of funds through grants, sponsorships, and events. I would also work on reopening our dormant swimming pool, which could be a fabulous asset for all – pupils, teachers and parents. 

I have strong experience in the private and NGO sectors, particularly in the areas of change management, business development, process optimisation and fundraising. I have worked across cultures and countries, and would help provide an alternate point of view to the board. Most of all, I would bring my passion for the school and its potential! 

Oliver Bulleid
I would like to put myself forward as a parent governor at Fortismere so I can help the school to continue to improve and to serve the local wider community. I believe I have the relevant experience and skills to serve as a parent governor and to contribute positively and constructively to this great school.  As a parent of two children from the school (one current and one just left) I have a good understanding of current strengths and areas of improvement and see the role of governor as that of ‘a critical friend’, one who is both supportive and challenging, and to push for the very best that can be achieved for all students.

I am a local architect and have wide ranging experience of management, team training, budgeting, development planning, and other skills that will transfer to the role of parent governor.  I have previously served as a parent governor at my children’s primary school for 4 years, a role that I enjoyed and found personally rewarding. As well as wider governor duties and serving on the premises and finance committees, I helped the governing body with the appointment of a new Head Teacher at a challenging time of transition for the school.

I also understand there may be development at the school over the next few years and my knowledge and experience as an architect may be helpful to the governing body during what is often a complex process. Finally, during these very demanding Covid times that have brought great change to the operation of the school, I understand that clear communication is key and I have many years’ experience in both listening to and presenting information that can be understood clearly by all.

Gianni Georgiades
I am currently the CEO of a multimillion pound business and with this comes strategic thinking, planning, driving a high performing team, managing a very tight P&L and holding both the team and myself accountable for the smooth running of the business.  The role of a governor is to help drive strategic direction as well as overseeing the financial performance. Ensuring that the headteachers are held to account for the performance  of the school and ensuring the finances are spent wisely.

I believe that I can be an asset to the school and that it can benefit positively from me being a governor from both my experience in business but more importantly being a father to three daughters two of which are currently at Fortismere and the third due to follow in a few years. I have an invested interest to ensure the school doesn't only maintain a standard but exceeds its own expectations. This will be my way of giving something back to the community.

Rachel Howarth
I’d like to be a Governor as I’m passionate about creating a diverse and inclusive environment where everyone has the opportunity to develop their knowledge, skills, and confidence; to believe in themselves and fulfil their individual potential.

I'm an HR Director, with over 10 years executive committee and board experience of large, multinational retail, travel and hospitality businesses. Through my work, I see every day the transformative effect good education can have on the lives of young people as they enter the workplace. I’ve been a business representative on government consultation forums and worked closely with a variety of charities on how best to help young people succeed as they move from education to starting their careers. I’ve also acted as an advisor to the governors and headteacher at my children’s primary school.

I moved to Muswell Hill specifically so my two children, now in year 8 and year 10, could be educated at Fortismere as I really related to the values and ethos of the school. I wanted an environment where my children, who have very different needs, could both flourish. I’m a keen hill walker, a real foodie and lover of the arts; although since March I have been mostly just walking the family dog!

If elected I’d be committed as a Governor to using my skills and experience to make a difference; listening and acting as an advocate for parents, carers and children, whilst supporting and challenging the school leadership team to improve communication and be adaptable in these uncertain times.  It’s important to me personally that the needs of all students are catered for so that they feel inspired and confident to succeed in whatever path they choose to pursue.

Ilaria Lavalle Miller
I have two daughters at Fortismere, they are happy when they leave the house in the morning and when they come back. One of them experienced some difficult times, but the school was able to deal with those issues effectively. They are learning, developing friendships, joining in various activities and growing into young adults with the ability to think for themselves. As a family we are proud to be part of the school community and I am deeply passionate about the positive role the school has across the wider neighbourhood. I would be delighted to contribute to further its success, not just in terms of league tables’ position, but in fostering wellbeing and widening the horizon of opportunities for all children. 

I am a corporate governance and public affairs expert, having worked for over 20 years across EU institutions, UK Government departments and, more recently, in one of the largest global accountancy firms. I represented the UK Government as a member of international committees and have a strong track record of achieving successful outcomes in European negotiations. I have been instrumental in developing policies and regulatory requirements to improve diversity of companies’ boards, increase transparency in the way directors discharge their duties and strengthen the way they engage and are accountable to their stakeholders. 

I believe my experience and skills would allow me to support and further perfect the school’s ethos, contribute to its long-term value strategy, challenge where appropriate and hold management to account for delivering on its commitments.

Steven Porter
I really have enjoyed being a school governor at my children’s primary school and feel I can offer good experience in this area as I am keen to improve all children’s outcomes through support and challenge in regard to Fortismere’ s strategic vison. Having good insight into how schools work with knowledge of secondary and primary curriculums. During the last Ofsted inspection, I was a leading governor in the necessary meetings and helped the school secure a good rating. Over the past 4 years I have built excellent relationships with the school leadership, staff and parents, this has often given me an honest insight to how parents and the community are feeling. Often helping me to challenge the school where needed whilst acknowledging that my role was never operational. Having taught in Harringay for over 9 years I understand many of the borough’s challenges, its diversity and breadth and have I have broadened my knowledge by attending BAME awareness courses for governors. 

My son started Fortismere this September and he loves it, and hopefully my daughter will start next September, I have 2 nieces and one nephew who also attended in the last 10 years so feel I have some knowledge of the school over time.  I have enjoyed working on the school development plan as a link governor, developing a school ethos and improved the strategic direction to improve the school’s performance and vision. Making time for the school has been important, I know visits and knowing the staff help the critical effectiveness of any governor.  I like being a school governor because it offers unique experiences and builds good links within the community where I live. Becoming a governor at Fortismere would develop my skills further, enable me to help Fortismere to be better than it already is, letting me support the changes in curriculums and learning. For example, being head of Computer Science I have a great insight to home learning and its best practices in these current times.

Andrew Rayner
I've lived in Muswell Hill for over 11 years and my son has now reached year 10 at Fortismere, where he is thriving in a hugely supportive environment. I began my career in Higher Education followed by over 20 years' experience in the service industry, with 12 of those at board level. I've spent a great deal of time helping to set & support strategic direction, managing large budgets, leading recruitment & development of teams and individuals, and overseeing governance systems to make sure that those organisations were successful. I have also been involved with several large charitable initiatives over this period, including food banks, music opportunities for teenagers and fighting malaria.  I'd love to get involved in the great fundraising campaigns already in place at the school. 

Fortismere continues to provide outstanding support both academically and pastorally for its pupils with strong links in the local community.  However, Covid-19 has changed everything and massively impacted the young. I would like to support Fortismere in providing the best possible opportunities for pupils as they develop into young adults and venture into a deeply changed world.  It is going to take a huge amount of effort and support from us all to achieve this, and it would be a real privilege to be part of this fight, working as a member of the Fortismere Governors.

Anoop Shetty
I have one child in year 8 and another will start year 7 in September 2021. I am thus very much invested in the long term success of Fortismere School. I am a Cardiology Consultant at St Thomas’ Hospital and Honorary Senior Lecturer at King’s College London. I am closely involved in the formal teaching, training and supervision of medical students, doctors and allied professionals. I am passionate about educating our future workforce and believe that my experience teaching, training and managing in the healthcare sector has relevance to governing the education of younger (school-age!) students. 

Part of my job involves constantly auditing systems and quality of care. I have extensive experience in looking at how to respond to adverse incidents and implementing change to improve future outcomes. I am used to acknowledging what is working well but questioning how things are done and looking for ways to make things better.

We are living in unusual (pandemic) times and although Fortismere School has excellent pupils, staff and leadership, I would be keen to improve communication and in particular the parent-teacher interface. I think that better feedback on how children are doing at school would be beneficial. If appointed as a governor, I would be looking to see how the school can maximise the academic, physical and extra-curricular potential of all students.

Nicola Williams
My interest and drive in the parent governor role is to collaborate with members, partners and shareholders in continuing to pave the way for my son and other students at Fortismere in having an environment that promotes the best of their abilities and give them the support needed to continue to set and strive towards their goals.

My current role as a governor of Haringey Adult Learning Services, has equipped me with further development of the necessary skills and knowledge to be flexible, adaptable and progressive, with transferable skills to enable a qualitative role, working as a member of your board of governors. Furthermore, I have the intimate knowledge and willingness to the commitment required of this post.

I recently completed a short course in understanding the "Fundamentals of Business Administration" that gave me the understanding of the requisite knowledge needed to excel in this role. In addition, my recent completion of ECDL L2 and English (Higher) L2 provide me with the tools to facilitate and support administrative functions within this role. I am competent with digital technology adaptable in working over varying platforms.  Also, I am an effective listener, skilled in sign posting, having completed a L2 Counselling Skills course. 

My personal strengths are my ability to maintain professionalism, empathic understanding, trustworthiness, eagerness to learn and develop new skills, compassion and great collaborative skills. Additionally, my accounting experience assists me with a better understanding when overseeing the school’s financial performance, making sure it is money well spent. 

If given the opportunity to work as parent governor with your organisation, I will endeavour to work cohesively with fellow governors, partners and stakeholders in our commitment to uphold and set the school’s ethos, vision, when making strategic decisions to ensure the educational performance of the school and pupils are held to high standard. I am thankful for your consideration.