Sue Murray - Chair of the Governing Body
Sue Murray is married and mother of a daughter and son. She enjoyed a varied working life, mainly in sales and marketing. Following a career break of ten years she retrained as a Teaching Assistant and spent the last 11 years of her working life at Kemsing Primary School.
She is an experienced governor having served a number of years on governing bodies in mainstream primary and secondary schools before becoming a governor of Grange Park School in 2011. For many years she was both a parish councillor for Borough Green and also a Ward Member of Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council. She had the privilege of serving as Mayor and one of her charities was Spadework, a training/day care establishment for adults with learning difficulties, and was invited to become a Trustee of this organisation on stepping down as Mayor.
She enjoys reading and can often be found with her nose in a book, oblivious to all that is going on around her!
Tony Williamson - Vice Chair of the Governing Body
Having retired early from my job as Managing Director of a group of engineering/manufacturing businesses in 2004, I was shortly after persuaded to join the Governing Board of Grange Park in the hope that my business experience might make some contribution to the progress of the school. It was decided that my areas should be ensuring the school had financial stability and, more importantly, focus on teaching and learning progress. The latter has been my passion since becoming a Governor and I am delighted to have witnessed the School’s high attainment achieved in both teaching and our pupils’ learning in preparing them for a happy, and productive, adult life.
I was brought up near where the original Grange Park was based, but have lived in other parts of the country before returning to the area twenty years ago.
I became a governor in 2001 and was chairman of governors from 2007 till 2015 and was very involved in the design, building and move to the new Grange Park School.
Having spent a working life as a Chartered Surveyor, in recent years I have been involved in local government as a parish, borough and now a Kent county councillor, where I am the Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport.
I am very familiar with our school from a parental perspective as my eldest son was just entering his fifth year at Grange Park when I became a Parent Governor. I have two other sons who are at local schools so I also get to see a comparative. I am a Pets As Therapy volunteer spending time regularly every week in local schools implementing a Read2Dogs scheme which means I am often working with children with Autism, within a school setting, as well as working with other school SENCOs and teaching staff.
At my son's primary school I was grant-fundraiser and then chair of the PTA for his Autism Centre, taking it through a transitional phase as they moved into a new building and required fund-raising for new playground, therapy room and sensory equipment.
I have a background teaching overseas for a few years in several schools and at an Education Centre for teachers. I have had a variety of jobs from Japanese interpreting to managing teams of people in website and games design. I’m good at listening to others having worked as a helpline counsellor and volunteering at Citizens Advice Bureau.
I am Sarah Dobney, currently the Teacher Governor and the KS5 Progress leader at Grange Park School. Since joining Grange Park school I have learnt so much about myself as a teacher, leader, listener and colleague, more so than any other role I have ever worked in. Our school community is amazing, we are listened to, supported and guided in everything we do. As a staff governor, I enjoy being the voice of all staff in Grange Park School. I am currently in my 6th year of teaching, teaching a range of pupils, subjects and abilities throughout my career. I am passionate about our schools next steps, our growth, our development in excellence and of course our journey to Outstanding. I am really proud to have successfully led our school into becoming a Silver Rights Respecting School and I am excited to continue this determination to ensure we make our way to Gold. I have always hoped I am an approachable, understanding and thoughtful person and I strive to ensure that this the best possible school for our students and staff.
I have been a Governor at Grange Park School since 2007 when my son Peter was in Year 8. I was initially a Parent Governor, and have recently become a Foundation Governor.
I serve on the Teaching and Learning sub-committee, and have a special focus on the teaching of English.
I put my professional skills as a freelance market research and strategy consultant to use to help the school and the Governing Body with the design and analysis of surveys of parents’ and students’ opinions. I have also run several workshops with senior staff and fellow governors to develop the school’s strategy.
I volunteered to become a governor because I feel it is very important for young people with autism to have the best possible opportunities to fulfil their potential through high quality education and support. I have relatives with autism, so I have developed an understanding of the condition at first hand. In my professional life, I have worked in both the public and private sectors. For several years, I was a marketing manager in the private sector and I have also set up and run a family business. In the public sector, I worked at a senior level, on economic development projects liaising with Kent businesses. I now work as a freelance management consultant and I provide social skills support to adults with autism. I am training as a counsellor, and I also volunteer as an adviser to small start-up businesses.
Anne-Marie Nelson CBE
Anne-Marie has worked as Chairman, Board Member and Governor in the fields of health, education, financial services and economic development. She is currently a Corporation (Board) Member of Canterbury College and chairs the Board of Brogdale CIC Ltd., which provides leisure, work experience and opportunities for young people and adults with learning difficulties. She is Patron of the Kent Abbeyfield Society.
Jon’s background is in Information Technology in Financial services. Having started his career in the Lloyds Insurance market as an Aviation Broker, he moved into information technology and has been engaged in sales, product marketing and systems development. He has been responsible for bringing high technology products to market and also large scale system development and deployment.
Senior roles held in the City included Head of International Sales NCR Financial Services, Managing Director of IT Alexander Howden’s Ltd (Now Aon), Head of Sales and Marketing EMEA Bank of New York,
Jon has been a Director of Hugh Lowe Farms one of the country’s largest soft fruit businesses for over 12 years and now Chairs the company, he is also deputy chairman of Weald Granary, the largest grain storage co-operative in the south east and is the Chairman of Burlington Berries of Tasmania.
Voluntary work includes Governor of Grange Park School, The Kent and Medway Economic Partnership, The Kent BAB Business Advisory Board, West Kent Partnership, West Kent Leader and is Chairman of Mereworth Parish Council
Married with two grown up children and lives on the Farm in Mereworth, Kent.
I am one of the parent Governors at Grange Park, my son is in KS5. I have a particular interest in Health & Safety; having had prior roles as H&S representative for the building I worked in & as Safety Manager for a Special School in Medway.
I work as a Capacity Manager in the Media sector and previous site management roles have given me a well rounded background, beneficial to the School’s Governing Body.