Governance for Rutherford House School

Our children are our future, we as governors strive to provide the best possible opportunities for our children to achieve their potential, thrive and be happy at Rutherford House.  We work alongside the whole school community to achieve the best possible outcomes for all our children.  Using our experience we act as critical friends, advisors and supporters to the school.  We are very proud to be associated with Rutherford House School.  Working together we will create an excellent school. 

Rutherford House School is overseen by a Local Governing Body (LGB) which has a strong focus on three strategic functions:

  • Ensuring the school is governed following the Trust & school’s vision, ethos and strategic direction;
  • Holding the headteacher and senior leadership team to account for the educational performance of the school, its pupils and the performance management of staff; and
  • Overseeing the financial performance of the school, ensuring value for money is achieved.

These functions have been delegated to the LGB by the Bellevue Place Education Trust, which is the maintaining authority for the school.  Visit the BPET website for information on BPET’s governance structure and how this links with Rutherford House School.

Free Schools are schools funded by the government with the freedom to govern independently – but all are accountable to the Secretary of State for Education. To share resources and best practice, Rutherford House benefits from the Trust – a network of schools under one legal body.

BPET responsibilities are set out in the two following documents that are contracts between BPET and Secretary of State for Education:

  • Master Funding Agreement – a contract with BPET, as a multi academy sponsor
  • Supplementary Funding Agreement– a sub contract of the above for Rutherford House School

The delegation for Rutherford House School is set out in the BPET Scheme of Delegation.  To support BPET Governors, all are provided with a Governance Handbook that set out the terms of reference, structure along with a code of conduct for BPET governors.

This means that Rutherford House School governors are able to concentrate on the things that really matter – educational strategy, school outcomes and aspiration.


Rutherford House’s LGB is made up with the following appointments:

  • Five community governors appointed by BPET, which usually includes the Chair – these are governors with a local connection or interest who are committed to supporting educational opportunity in the area.
  • Two staff governors – an elected staff member and the Headteacher (as an ex-officio appointment)
  • Two parent governors (elected)

A governor’s term of office is 4 years and no governor will be expected to serve more than two terms.

The LGB meets at least four times a year. To support the role of the LGB, Rutherford House School has established a Finance sub-committee.  The committee is made up of two governors and the Headteacher – they meet three times a year to support the overall work of the LGB.

If you have anything you would like to raise with the governors, please use e-mail  Alternatively the parent governors are in school most days dropping off or picking up children and are happy to talk to you.  

Current Governors

Jonathan Dunkerley (Chair of Governors)

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Jonathan is a Senior Manager at Ernst & Young with 7 years’ experience and his day to day responsibilities include managing multi-million pound retail and consumer products engagements (as well as much smaller ones); managing large teams of people with varying goals and resolving problems and challenges as they arise and acting as the point person to clients. Jonathan was appointed to the LGB in 2015 and his term expires in 2019.  He has very strong accounting and technical finance skills which are a necessary requirement of the job and the role as a chartered accountant. Jonathan has a commitment to finding practical solutions and to getting things done whilst striving to meet everyone’s goals.


Sarita Godber (Community Governor)

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Sarita Godber joined RHS as a Community Governor in 2013 and is also a member of the Finance and Resources Subcommittee. Sarita currently works as Director of HR and Organisational Development at St George’s, University of London.  Prior to this, Sarita worked in similar roles at the social integration charity, The Challenge, and spent over a decade at one of Europe's leading Arts & Culture organisations, Southbank Centre, where she was instrumental in seeing the organisation through its major transformation programme. Sarita is a local resident and RHS parent.


 Dina Choudhury (Parent Governor)


Dina is a Parent Governor at the school and is the Chair of the Finance and Resource Sub Committee. She was appointed by the LGB for a four year term. She has no personal relationship with any member of staff at the school nor any conflicts of business interests and is on the governing body at RHS only. She is a Business Director at British Telecom providing rigour and governance around the change management process relating to contracts. After graduating with an Economics degree from The University of Liverpool she qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 2001 and has gained broad financial experience across both the public and private sector. Dina and her husband have lived in the local area for the last 15 years and have three sons. The eldest attends Rutherford House and very much loves his school, teachers and friends. She is committed to helping Rutherford House achieve its full potential as an outstanding school for our local children.


Caroline Finch (Community Governor)

Caroline is currently a team leader at the Department for Education, working on school improvement in University Technical Colleges. At the department she has also worked on reforms to school performance measures and on teacher workload. Prior to that, she spent nine years training and coaching exam officers in secondary schools. She has worked in FE, managing achievement and assessment, and as company secretary on the senior leadership team of a charity in East London. Caroline lives locally in Furzedown and joined as a community governor in 2015.


Pete Lindgren (Parent Governor) 

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Peter is the co-founder of a technology company, drawing upon his experience in start-ups, large private companies, and FTSE-250 organisations. He brings a broad range of executive and leadership skills which he employs every day engaging with clients and partners that include local authorities and other government bodies. He has lived in the area for almost twenty years and loves living here with his wife, daughter and son. 


Millie Wright (Community Governor) 

Coming soon 


Mehreen Faryad (Trust representive) 

Coming soon 


Maxine Mallett (Staff Governor)

Maxine joined Rutherford House as the Headteacher is September 2015.  Maxine was the Head teacher of a high performing primary school in Southwark for six years and before this has held a number of senior leadership roles. Maxine has a clear vision and understanding of what is required to run an Outstanding school, along with high expectations of the children, colleagues, parents and the Trust. The Trust is confident that she has the ability and passion to build on the firm foundations created over the last two years by Gina.  She brings with her a wealth of experience and knowledge as a school leader and crucially she shares the Trust’s vision that all children can succeed if they enjoy their learning.  Learn, Enjoy, Succeed.


Laura Edge (Staff Governor)

Laura Edge brings enthusiasm and energy into the school as Year 1 Allegro class teacher.  She believes that reading is a key to not only improving speaking, listening and writing skills but also enhancing a child’s imagination and problem solving skills.  Her teaching placements enriched her appreciation of diversity and methods of inclusion. 


The clerk to the LGB is Olivia Abel (From Wandsworth Council) 


Governor Appointment and Attendance Record

All schools are required to publish each governors appointment date, type of governor, term of office and attendance record. 


Below is a table of the Rutherford House governors and their attendance record this academic year (2017/18).

Governors Type Date appointed/resigned Meetings attended Out of a total of
Jonathan Dunkerley Community 25 June 15 –   present  1  1
Maxine Mallett Staff (ex-officio) 1 Sept 15 –   present 1
Sarita Godber Community 1 Sept 13 –   present 1 1
Dina Choudhury


20 Sept 13 –   present 1 1
Caroline Finch Community 1 Sept 15 –   present 1 1
Millie Wright  Community  TBC 1 1
Laura Edge Staff 1 Sept 14 - present 1 1
Pete Lindgren  Parent  TBC 1 1
Mehreen Faryad Trust  TBC 1 1