Kyson Primary School

01394 384481 @KysonSchool


The Governors have an overall responsibility for the running of the school and for determining its aims, objectives and policies.

If you wish to contact the Chair of Governors you should do so through the school. If you wish to become a Governor, please speak directly to Mr Tom Gunson.

A copy of Governing Body minutes can be found in the school foyer. A copy of the most recent Governing Body newsletter can be found here.

Meet the Kyson Governing Body

Dr Clare Astbury


Clare was elected as Parent Governor in November 2021. She has three children, two of whom attend Kyson.
Clare is an Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, working in the National Health Service, with a passion for championing equality in health and education. 
Her focus is on enriching the intellectual, physical, emotional and social development of the child.
Residing within Kyson’s catchment, Clare hopes to provide support for the school and the wider community. She looks forward to working with the governors to make a positive and impactful difference to the outcomes of children in Woodbridge. 
  • Parent Governor
  • Learning & Attainment Committee
  • Science Governor
  • Date appointed - 30/11/21
  • Term of Office - 30/11/25
  • Register of Interests - None

Mrs Laura Dolan 


Laura is married to Peter and they have three children, the older two, now at Farlingaye, both attended Kyson and their youngest still attends in Year 5.


Laura has worked in the school office as the school administrator for almost 13 years. Laura was also the Governor clerk up until recently when she joined the Governing body as an Associate member.

In her free time, Laura enjoys walking, reading and spending time with family and friends.


  • Associate Member
  • Personnel, Performance Management & Safeguarding Committee

  • GDPR Governor
  • Governor Induction and Training Governor
  • Date Appointed - 18/11/21
  • Term of Office - 18/11/25
  • Register of Interests - None


Mrs Frances Gilman

Frances was elected as Parent Governor in November 2021. She is married to Ben and they have two children, both of whom are at Kyson. 

Frances has spent much of her career working with children. She is a qualified primary school teacher with a specialism in Early Years and Lower Primary. Her professional experience also includes 5 years at the BBC in children’s television production. 

Frances counts herself hugely lucky to have worked in creative, diverse and inclusive environments. She is looking forward to supporting Kyson’s development moving forward.
  • Vice-Chair 
  • Parent Governor
  • Learning and Attainment Committee (Chair)
  • HT Performance Review Group 
  • Art, Design & Technology Governor
  • Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Governor
  • Pupil Premium Governor
  • Marketing and Stakeholder Collaboration
  • Strategy Group
  • Date appointed - 30/11/21
  • Term of Office - 29/11/25
  • Register of Interests - Suffolk County Council Education & Children's Services - Nice Work Digital Ltd - Founder, Mrs  Coups -  Family friend, NEU - Member.

Mr Tom Gunson


Tom became Headteacher at Kyson in September 2019. Previously Tom had been the Deputy Headteacher at Kyson from February 2014.


As a teacher, Tom is passionate about building fluency in children’s mathematics, using books and film to inspire writing and enjoys nothing more than sharing a great story with the children.


Outside of school, Tom is married with two young daughters, enjoys a variety of sports and the opportunity to learn something new.

  • Headteacher/Staff Governor

  • Learning and Attainment Committee 

  • Finance, Premises and Health & Safety Committee

  • Personnel, Performance Management & Safeguarding Committee

  • Strategy Group
  • Date appointed - 01/09/19

  • Term of office - Ongoing

  • Register of Interests - Mrs Gunson, Wife

Mrs Jen Hinton


Jen has been a parent at Kyson for eight years with three daughters across the year groups and another now at Farlingaye. 

Having grown up in Woodbridge (even spending a little time at Kyson!) Jen moved to London to train and to work as a nurse in the NHS. 

Having returned to Suffolk, Jen and her family can often be found at the beach! They all enjoy lots of outdoor activities including sailing, cycling and walking the dog.

With an interest in the influence of education on health and wellbeing, Jen is committed to supporting Kyson and its wider community as it continues to grow. 
  • Co-Opted Governor
  • Personnel, Performance Management & Safeguarding Committee

  • Learning & Attainment Committee
  • PHSE (inc RSE) Governor
  • Attendence Governor
  • SCR Governor
  • PE Governor
  • Eco Council Governor
  • Date appointed 24/01/2022
  • Term of office - 23/01/2026
  • Register of Interests - None

Mrs Hannah Johnson


Hannah has lived in Woodbridge and  surrounding area for over 20 years. She has two children, one currently at Kyson. One moved upt to Secondary school having gone through Kyson from 4 years of age. 


Hannah's background and professional career has included working for large and small local businesses and also a time in London. Specialising in event management with a strong background of finances, people development and supporting profitable growth. 


She is dedicated to supporting the continued development of all children's journeys through Kyson. Hannah now works part time and supports her children's active sports lives. In her own time she enjoyes reading.

  • Co-Opted Governor

  • Finance, Premises and Health & Safety Committee (Chair)

  • Pupil Discipline Committee
  • HT Performance Review Group
  • Learning and Attainment Committee
  • Maths Governor
  • Recruitment Governor
  • Nursery Admissions Governor
  • School Council Governor
  • Website Governor
  • Wrap around Care Governor
  • Nursery Admissions Governor
  • Strategy Group
  • Date appointed - 04/12/22

  • Term of office - 03/12/26

  • Register of Interests - Tim Johnson Director/Chair Woodbridge Rugby Club, Bromeswell

Mrs Verity Mawdsley


Verity has taught at and been part of the senior leadership team at Kyson for the past 10 years. She started her role as Curriculum Leader in 2019 and has loved the challenge of helping build and shape the Kyson Curriculum. Verity is passionate about the teaching of computing and modern foreign languages and feels lucky to be able to teach both these subjects across KS2. Recently appointed as an EdTech Demonstrator, Verity will also be advising schools around Suffolk on how to make the best use of technology across the curriculum to support learning. 

Outside of school, Verity is married with two young children so life is always very busy! When she's not ferrying her children to and from clubs, she enjoys playing netball every week and generally keeping fit. Verity loves traveling and exploring new places and cultures - she is hoping to be able to do more of this in the coming years. She loves dancing and can often be found having a 'kitchen disco' with her family. 

  • Associate Member
  • Learning and Attainment Committee

  • Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Governor
  • Date appointed 12/10/20
  • Term of office 11/10/27
  • Register of Interests - None

Mrs Kara Murphy


Kara has three children all of which have attended Kyson for their education having been doing the Kyson school run for the past eleven years. 

Kara served as a parent governor and co-opted governor for eight years and after a short break has decided to return serving as the LA governor. 


Kara lives with her partner Stacey, the children and a growing family of pets which currently is a dog and two cats “but there is always room for more”. 

Being raised in single parent environment by her father and being from the LGTBQ+ community social mobility and equity is a keen focus.


Being a mental health first aider wellbeing is important therefore Kara spends her spare time whilst not working full time as a civil servant enjoying playing rugby for the local women’s team along with family adventures.

  • Local Authority Governor
  • Personnel, Performance Management & Safeguarding Committee
  • Safeguarding, Filtering & Monitoring Governor
  • History & Geography Governor
  • RE Governor
  • Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Governor
  • Date appointed 12/06/2023
  • Term of office - 12/06/2027
  • Register of Interests - None 

Mr John Southgate


John has held various finance/banking positions within the City for over 22 years. The pandemic-induced shift to more flexible working has enabled him and his family to make the dream move to Woodbridge, and they have never looked back!

His current work sees him heading an outsourcing business within a large US bank, overseeing areas such as product strategy, capital planning and regulatory compliance. His motivation for becoming a governor was to help keep Kyson special and support the teachers and governing body. He is relishing the opportunity to apply some of his commercial knowledge for the benefit of the school.

John and his wife, Emma, have two young boys. The eldest started Kyson in 2021 and the other will be joining in 2023. John has many interests, which he sometimes manages to participate in, including fishing, sailing, cooking and playing the drums. He is also a passionate football and cricket fan, despite being an awful player of both.

  • Co-Opted Governor
  • Finance, Premises and Health & Safety Committee 
  • Personnel, Performance Management & Safeguarding Committee
  • Premises, Health and Safety Governor
  • Music Governor
  • Computing Governor
  • Pupil Leadership Governor
  • Date appointed 02/12/2021
  • Term of office - 01/12/2025
  • Register of Interests - None

Mrs Sarah Wainer


Sarah was elected as a Governor in 2014, having previously served 12 years as a Staff Governor at Birchwood Primary School in Martlesham where she works as a Teacher. 


Sarah was elected as Chair in October 2018.


Sarah lives in Woodbridge and has two children both of whom are away studying at University.  Both her children attended Kyson starting their learning journey in the Nursery and through this Sarah was introduced to the school. Sarah has been a Kyson parent, parent helper and teacher as well as now serving on the Governing body so she knows the school from most angles!


Sarah is on the Learning and Attainment Committee and is keen that the Kyson staff and pupils continue to be passionate about their learning, enjoying a rigorous and enriched curriculum.

  • Chair

  • Co-Opted Governor

  • Learning and Attainment Committee

  •  HT Performance Review Group (Chair)

  • EYFS Governor
  • Nursery Admissions Governor
  • Governor Induction and Training Governor
  • Strategy Group
  • Date appointed - 23/11/17

  • Term of office - 22/11/25

  • Register of Interests - Teacher Birchwood Primary School

Mr Ben Ward


Ben became Deputy Head Teacher at Kyson in September 2019. Previously, Ben has worked in a variety of schools, including an inner city London school and a British International school in Panama.


Ben is passionate about giving opportunities to children in taking ownership of their learning; equipping them with the tools to support them both now and in the future,


Outside of school, Ben is married and has two young children; he enjoys spending time being active and outside with his family. He also enjoys watching and participating in wide variety of sports.

  • Associate Member

  • Personnel, Performance Management & Safeguarding Committee

  • Finance, Premises and Health & Safety Committee 

  • Learning and Attainment Committee 

  • Strategy Group
  • Date appointed - 14/10/19

  • Term of office - 13/10/27

  • Register of Interests - None

Mr Ian Wickson


Ian has had a long career in education, teaching Humanities subjects in two very creative and inclusive community secondary schools in Cambridgeshire, before moving to Suffolk in the mid-1990s to take on leadership roles in middle schools. After leading a school through a closure process, he moved into roles in the Local Authority supporting the inclusion of children and young people with a variety of needs.  


Ian is now retired and he volunteers with Suffolk Coast and Heaths monitoring parts of the Suffolk Coastal Path. He and his wife are keen walkers and injuries permitting he still plays hockey for a team in Norwich! 


Ian has four grown-up children. His first involvement with Kyson was, some 18 years ago, as a parent of a seven-year-old, and now he can often be seen on the school-run with his grandson. He hopes to be able to give something back to the school and support its continuing development.

  • Co-Opted Governor
  • Finance, Premises and Health & Safety Committee (temporary)
  • Personnel, Performance Management & Safeguarding Committee (Chair)
  • HT Performance Review Group
  • SEND Governor
  • MFL Governor
  • Recruitment Governor
  • Staff Wellbeing Governor
  • Strategy Group
  • Date Appointed - 02/12/21
  • Term of Office - 01/12/2025
  • Register of Interests - None

Kyson Governing Board Instrument of Governance

2 Parent Governors

  • Clare Astbury

  • Frances Gilman

1 Local Authority Governor

  • Kara Murphy

2 Staff Governors (1 of which MUST be the Head Teacher)

  • Tom Gunson (Head Teacher)
  • Vacancy

5 Co-opted Governors

  • Jen Hinton
  • Hannah Johnson
  • John Southgate

  • Sarah Wainer

  • Ian Wickson

  • Vacancy

Associate Members

  • Laura Dolan
  • Verity Mawdsley
  • Ben Ward

= 9 Governors (+ Associate Members)

= 9 Governors (+ 3 Associate Members)

Clerk to the Governing Board

Philippa Oxborrow


One half of the number of Governors in post.

Kyson Governor Statement of Actions

Please find below the  Governor Statement of Actions documents for the current academic year 2022/2023.

Summer Term 2023

 Spring Term 2023

 Autumn Term 2022

 Previous Academic Years

Please find below the Governor Statement of Actions documents from the previous two academic years.