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The Governors

Varndean School Governing Body 2013/14



Ex Officio Governor


William Deighan

Headteacher of Varndean School


Governors Elected by Parents


Jessica Morris
Having a daughter in year 7, I am fairly new to Varndean. I chose the school for my daughter because I loved it’s vibrant , creative community and the varied opportunities it offers students in the whole school experience. I believe that education and the school experience are such fundamental cornerstones of young people’s lives.
Through my working life I have worked closely with families, schools, children and adult services; I am keen to share the skills and knowledge I have picked up along the way, and feel I can make a positive, useful contribution to the Varndean community.
Maggie Barradell


Governors Elected by staff


Robbie Mitchell

I have been a teacher for the best part of the last 28 years. Having studied Psychology and worked in psychiatric and social work, I was a founding teacher of the Brighton Rudolf Steiner School, and then moved into the state secondary sector via Seaford Head Community College and subsequently to Varndean. I’ve taught as Head of Music here since Jan 1999 (since 2004/5 as Head of Performing Arts). I can think of no other job more exciting than helping develop young people’s skills and enthusiasm for Music, Drama and Dance – activities that light the touch paper of self-esteem, and make the world a better place.


Governor Appointed by the Local Authority


Robin Marlin

Headteacher of Balfour Primary School.


Co-opted Governors


Julian Benkel

I am a co-opted governor. By profession I am a qualified chartered accountant with specific responsibilities for compliance and corporate governance for a national provider and operator of university student accommodation. I have seen three of my children pass through Varndean and have been connected to the school since 1995. I am currently serving on my third term as a Varndean Governor. As well as being a keen follower of Brighton and Hove Albion, I have a young family and find enough time to also be the Treasurer of St Andrews’ (Old Church), Hove.

Oliver Cattermole


Frances Franklin


Richard Lumley, Vice Chair of Governors

I am a parent governor with daughters in years 7 and 11. My background is as a Chartered Accountant and I currently work in risk management for the London office of a US bank.


Jon Dee, Chair of Governors

I have been a governor at the school for over 8 years now.  Having previously been the vice chair for several years and chair of the resources committee for 6 years, I am now thrilled to have been elected as the Chair of Governors.  I am a Director within BDO’s Risk & Advisory Services team and a qualified Chartered Accountant with almost 25 years’ experience in providing assurance and consultancy services across both the public and private sectors. I also have considerable experience in the voluntary sector. I am also a trustee and the Treasurer of a national charity, chairing its Finance and Investment Committees.


Associate Members


Jon Edgell

I am a specialist charity accountant currently working at Concordia in Portslade, a company that places students on working holidays and volunteer projects. Previously I have worked as a Finance Bursar at several independent schools in Brighton including Roedean and Lancing College. I also served as Treasurer for St. Lukes Junior School PTA for 4 years. I am 46, married with two children (one of whom is in year 10 at Varndean), with outside interests that include guitar, music, writing, and cricket.


Clerk to Governors


Teresa Carter