Robin Hood Primary School

"Success is in the journey, not the destination; we are all learners"

Meet the Governing Body

I have enjoyed the privilege and responsibility of being a school governor at Robin Hood Primary since 2005 and I have been Chair of Governors for over a decade.  I am a local Councillor, a parent of two secondary school age children and the Chief Executive of The Market Place Leeds, a children and young people’s mental health charity.

I became a governor at Robin Hood in 2008 after my daughter transferred to Robin Hood in Year 5; the transformation in her short time at the school was inspirational which set her up for the next level of her education. I have continued to work with the Robin Hood team and have been Vice Chair of Governors since 2018. I believe that all children deserve the best educational journey.

My role is to ensure we spend money wisely, ensuring that our children all have the same opportunity to learn, regardless of their starting point.

I enjoy being a governor at Robin Hood as the staff go above and beyond where developing our children is the main priority. We have a fantastic team which evolves each year when we recruit new members of the team who we take along on our educational journey.

I have worked at Robin Hood since 2009 and prior to that, I volunteered as a parent helper and enjoyed working mainly in early years with the brilliant bonus of baking with Nursery children! After several years as EYFS leader, I am now SENCO and part of the senior leadership team, which gives me the opportunity to contribute to the schools development in a variety of ways. I also get the opportunity to work with our amazing children, which is definitely the best part of the job!

Before I trained as a teacher, I worked in a bank and then for a large supermarket chain in their marketing and buying departments. I have been a local resident for 28 years and both of my own children attended this school. As part of the wellbeing team in school, I am passionate about promoting well-being and positive mental health and encouraging children to develop their confidence and resilience.

I enjoy reading, baking and the odd bit of retail therapy!

My name is Gaynor Cookson- my role in school is SEN HLTA

I have been married to George, my husband for 37 years and I am the very proud mum of two wonderful children Michael and Amy.

Prior to having children, I worked for the Yorkshire Bank in branches across the Yorkshire region, in their head office and at the Bank’s training centre. I have also spent time working as a youth leader in a youth club which supported children with additional needs and their families.

Both my children attended Robin Hood Primary and I have always felt that the school gave them a fantastic start in their education. I started my career in education whilst they were attending the school and I am still here 25 years later!

I feel proud to be part of the staff at Robin Hood and get great satisfaction from the job I do in supporting the children in not only their educational needs but also their emotional needs.

After training with Boots the Chemist as a Dispenser and later, re-training as a Painter & Decorator (Specialist Painting Techniques), God threw me a curve ball at the start of the millennium and decided I needed to do some more studying, this time at theological college. I was licensed as Parish Priest of Lofthouse in July 2011 after serving a three-year curacy at Kippax with Allerton Bywater. 

Born in East Leeds, I have been married to Chris, a locum pharmacist for 36 years and we have an adult son (a teacher) and daughter (a nurse). In my spare time I enjoy visiting family and friends, going to the cinema and theatre, gardening and spending time walking with my 2-year old Labrador, Bryher. My favourite places are the Isles of Scilly, Scotland and the North Pennines

I was a governor at my children's primary school and appreciated then how important the relationship between staff, parents and governors is. I see church and school as the two hubs of any community and serving both helps to better serve those who are often overlooked in society. My role as governor is to play my part in ensuring better outcomes for the school, staff and, primarily, the pupils.

During my professional life, Sara Harris and I had worked together. She was my school adviser when I was Head teacher at St Philip's Catholic Primary School in Middleton.  

Following my retirement in 2018, Sara asked if I would consider becoming a governor at Robin Hood. How could I refuse? I had come to know the school too as I'd acted as tutor for Leeds Trinity University, helping to support would be teachers as they undertook their training at Robin Hood. I was very impressed with the staff, the school and the children!  

I will do my best to use my knowledge and experience to support in whatever way I can. On a personal level, much of my time is now taken up in caring for my three very young grandsons which I absolutely love and I have a range of other interests including being trustee of a charitable trust. Reading (contemporary fiction, poetry and art) is also another passion which is why I volunteered to be reading governor at Robin Hood!

I have two children at school, one in Year 3 and one in Reception as of 2021, and I am currently a Parent Governor at Robin Hood Primary School. 

I grew up in Leeds and have lived here all my life. I am a qualified IT Test Manager and have worked in the Financial Services industry for over 22 years; I am responsible for managing the testing of software that is being developed. 

In addition to this, I am also a Mental Health advocate at work and join regular meetings about how we can improve colleague well-being. This is something I am interested in bringing into the school community due to the positive impact it has had at work. 

My interests are Japanese culture, of which I studied the Japanese language for two years, family camping adventures, live shows and visiting new places around the world. I am also Type 1 diabetic (a non-visible disability) and was diagnosed in 1985. 

I believe that it is important as a community to work together, embrace difference and promote an inclusive environment for our children to thrive.

I have lived in the local area for 30 years; both of my children, (now grown-up) attended and thoroughly enjoyed their time at Robin Hood Primary School. My wife, Sarah assisted as a volunteer whilst the children were in school, subsequently joining the governing body, latterly acting as Joint Chair prior to re-training as a teacher and now occupying the pivotal SEND Coordinator position within school.

My career background is in Business Financial Services where I have performed a number of risk and operational management roles for both Bank and Independent financiers.  

I passionately believe that every child matters and that diversity within school and wider society is to be celebrated; accordingly, I am interested in hearing the views of pupils, parents and other stakeholders as to how we can drive the inclusivity agenda within school. My background qualifies me to sit on the Finance and Resources Committee and I also have Governor responsibility for Sports Provision.

My interests include cricket, rugby league, golf, music, local history, reading and walking and I am delighted to be a part of the Robin Hood community.

I first became involved with Robin Hood Primary School when my son started attending the nursery in 2013, then my daughter in 2017. I have always had a great interest in education, having worked as a primary school teacher for several years, then for a local authority, overseeing the education of Looked After Children. Over the past few years I have specialised in dyslexia and now run a dyslexia assessment and consultancy business. 

I am passionate about removing barriers to education and feel privileged to be on the board of governors for Robin Hood Primary. I sit on the Pupil Support and the Teaching and Learning committees. Both are areas of education I feel able to offer the school my support and expertise.

I am an art worker in a corporate communications agency and currently work part time, so I am able to share my time with my two daughters who attend Robin Hood Primary School – in particular, to support my eldest daughter who has additional needs.

Having had a continuous input in my daughter’s learning and development, this has strengthened my interest in teaching and education. The time we have given her to enable her to reach her full potential, has allowed me to gain a much deeper understanding of children needing additional support academically, socially and emotionally. Naturally, I have become more passionate about helping children reach their full potential and feel I have the right tools, creativity and a positive mind set to help achieve this.

I join the board with passion and enthusiasm with skills to contribute to an already excelling team.

I became a governor at Robin Hood when a vacancy for a parent governor became available, whilst my eldest was at nursery, 10 years ago. Three children later and I am still enjoying a very rewarding role.  

Professionally, I am a financial adviser and worked full time up until taking a break to have my family. I returned to financial advising a few years ago on a part-time basis and am also excited to be starting a new role running alongside, holding music classes for pre-schoolers, in the near future. 

As well as being involved in the governance side of school, I have also been a part of the PTA for the last 10 years, taking on specific committee roles in the past, helping to raise important funds for our children. I became interested in being a governor as I feel it is important for all students, regardless of their ability and background, to be the best that they can possibly be.  

Robin Hood Primary School Declaration of Interest

 Governor Declaration of Interests.pdfDownload
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Governor Attendance Record