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School Governors


Any correspondence to the Governors should be addressed c/o St. Bernadette’s Catholic Primary School.

Mr. McMaster

Chair of Governors

I have been a Foundation Governor since February 2015. I work as a lawyer in Birmingham and have experience in finance and facility management. I am currently chair of the Resources committee in school and the nominated Governor for RE.

Miss A Cowings

Head Teacher

I joined St Bernadette’s School in 2002 as Deputy Head and was appointed as Head Teacher in 2006. Since my appointment I have always been a member of the Governing Body and work closely with the dedicated team of volunteers to develop provision within school.


As Head teacher it is my duty to deal with the day to day management of the school. As a member of the Governing Body we provide the strategic management. We set the general direction of the school and consider ways that it can best be developed.


As a team, we monitor the school’s progress and set annual targets for the school’s performance. The team of governors act as a critical friend to the Head, whilst providing me with the necessary support required to lead the school.

Fr. P. Griffin -  Parish Priest

Foundation Governor

I became a foundation governor at St. Bernadette's in September 2013, shortly after my arrival as parish priest at Holy Family in Small Heath.


For the last 17 years I have worked in parishes in North Staffordshire and during this time I have served as a foundation governor in both primary & secondary schools.


This particular role includes;


  • Link governor for Religious Education

  • Support to staff in Year 3 and Year 6, especially for sacramental preparation.

  • Encourage and support the faith life of the school, especially prayer and liturgies.

  • Spiritual support for the school community including pupils, staff, governors and parents.

Mr C. Dela Cruz

Foundation Governor

I have been a school governor for a number of years and have seen a lot of changes throughout the years. I have really enjoyed being on the school governing board, and doing my best to contribute in ensuring the school provides the very best facilities, support for the teaching & non-teachingstaff, and to ensure all pupils to have opportunity and encouragement toreach their full potentials.

Tom McGovern

Foundation Governor

I've always volunteered in my local community and joining the Board of Governors has given me a great opportunity to combine volunteering with my skills and experience.  I'm a qualified accountant and previously worked for a Local Authority in finance and audit roles. 


Since then I've worked in various industries, including aerospace and automotive, in internal control and risk management positions.  This experience allows me to provide independent support and a different perspective to the excellent school leadership team.

Kristin Garrett

Foundation Governor

I've been a Foundation Governor at St Bernadette's since 2016. My day job is working as Head of Legal and Company Secretary at a water company, so I have experience of working in corporate governance and I hope that I bring some of my skills and experience from that role to my role on the Governing Body.


For me, the role of the Governing Body is to support and provide healthy challenge to the leadership team at St Bernadette's for the benefit of the pupils, and I really enjoy playing my part in that.

Mrs. A Boyle

Foundation Governor

I was appointed as Foundation Governor this year. I have a long association with St Bernadette’s as I joined the school as a pupil when I moved here from Ireland as a child and two of my own children are currently pupils at the school.


I have been an English teacher in a Solihull secondary school since 2001 and I am also a Head of Year. I am very aware of the huge curriculum changes that have taken place across all key stages and, as part of the Curriculum Committee, I am using the experience gained from my own work within education to help support the school in order to ensure its continued growth and development. My pastoral experience as Head of Year will enable me to support the school in terms of safeguarding.


St Bernadette’s is a wonderful school and I am committed to supporting the school’s continued improvement, committed to ensuring that all pupils achieve the best outcomes and I am also delighted to be able to give something back to the school that gave me so many happy memories and helped to shape my own career path.

Ms. S Mchugo

Foundation Governor

I am Sharon Smith-Mchugo, a single mum with two children who attend the school.  I choose to become a Foundation Governor with the knowledge of giving support and awareness of what I hope would benefit the school and the children to be more effective and efficient to parents.

G Wrench

Parent Governor

Vasiliki Panayiotou

Parent Governor

I would like to introduce myself as the new Parent Governor of St Bernadette's Catholic Primary School. My name is Vasiliki Panayiotou (please refer to me as Vas) and I joined the Board of Governor's on 20th December 2019. I am honoured and privileged to have been given this opportunity to represent the parents of the children that attend the school by Miss A Cowings. I will do my utmost for the best interests of all concerned, in connection with the school.


Before I became a full time mother to our 2 girls I worked in telesales for a wholesale food distribution company for around 8 years and prior to that, I co-owned a business in floristry for around 20 years in Solihull. My eldest daughter, who is five, is in Year 1 at St Bernadette's and our youngest is 16 months old, going onto 6!


I can't speak highly enough about St Bernadette's Catholic Primary School or all the staff in connection with the school. I remember when we visited the school during an open day and my first thoughts were about the impeccable behaviour of the children. Also, during the classroom visits we observed how the teachers interacted with the children and we saw the passion and commitment they have in everything they do. I turned to my husband and said, this is where I want our daughter to come and he agreed. We feel blessed that our children are and will be attending the best school

John Lenihan

Foundation Governor

I was appointed as a Governor in March 2019. I am currently a member of the Resources Committee.

I previously served as a Governor at Corpus Christi School in Stechford.

After spending 50 years in the Printing Industry and having grandchildren in the school I am now looking forward to supporting St. Bernadettes pupils and staff in the challenging world of education.


Report to Governors