Governing Body

Nick Glanfield

Chair and Foundation Governor

Nick Glanfield is a dedicated and experienced Chair of Governors and Foundation Governor, who has been involved with the United Schools Federation since 2005. Nick's initial involvement began as a parent governor, but his passion for education and his desire to contribute to the school's success motivated him to continue his involvement with the organisation.

Before starting his own business in sports promotion, Nick worked as a Global Business Manager for HP until 2017. His extensive experience in managing large teams and strategic planning has earned him the status of Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute.

Nick is an avid cricketer and coach, and he volunteers with Cricket without Boundaries. His dedication to the sport and his passion for helping others led him to travel to Rwanda to support the charity in delivering health messages and promoting cricket. As the Chair of the trustees for the local village hall in Marldon, Nick is also committed to supporting his community.

Nick's main goal as Chair of Governors is to support the heads to ensure that every child has the opportunity to reach their full potential and he brings a wealth of experience and dedication to this role.

Mr Ken Singleton

Foundation Governor/Vice Chair

Ken Singleton is a highly experienced Vice Chair of Governors for the United Schools Federation, who has been involved continuously since being elected a parent governor for Marldon Primary in 2004. With all four of his children having attended Marldon Primary, Ken has a strong personal connection to the school and a vested interest in ensuring its ongoing success.

Ken's expertise extends to a number of areas, including Special Needs and Disabilities and IT, and he has been instrumental in driving forward a number of key initiatives within the Federation. Currently, Ken's focus is on heading the governor part of the Ethos Group, primarily for the church schools within the Federation, as well as taking a keen part in the Finance sub-committee and working closely with those schools most likely to have an Ofsted inspection in the next 12 months. He also assists the Chair of Governors where necessary, providing valuable support and guidance to ensure that the Federation continues to operate smoothly.

Although largely retired, Ken continues to have an input into the technical consultancy he helped to found in 2002, which aims to bring better broadband and mobile coverage to rural areas, and in particular to Devon and Somerset. With a degree in Physics from the University of Sheffield and an MBA from the University of Cambridge, Ken has a wealth of experience in engineering and development projects, having worked across Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and the USA, as well as spending nearly 10 years in Mali and Niger in West Africa on development projects primarily with the semi-nomadic Tuareg people.

Ken is also an active member of the Christian community and attends Upton Vale Baptist Church in Torquay. With his broad range of skills and experience, coupled with his deep commitment to education and his local community, Ken is a highly valued member of the United Schools Federation Governing Body.

Elizabeth Thompson

Foundation Governor

I am a Foundation Governor, appointed by Exeter Diocese via St. Michael’s Parochial Church Council and St. Michael’s School’s Link Governor. My specific concern as a USF Governor is for Special Needs and Disabilities’ provision across all USF schools.

I have lived in Kingsteignton for over fifty years and my four children attended local schools up to the age of 18. Prior to its closure, I worked for 18 years at a specialist College for deaf young people, run by a national charity. I then gained a degree in Human Resources and Personnel Management, and worked for local authorities until retirement eight years ago.

During past years, I served on both secondary and primary schools’ Governing Bodies and acted as a Trustee for local organisations. I was involved in the founding of Kingsteignton School and subsequently appointed as a Member, to support the work of that School’s Trustees. Although my main interest is in the work of the USF and its endeavours to give children the best possible primary school experience, I enjoy being involved with other local organisations - including our local library, tennis club and twinning organisation - that provide facilities for all to enjoy in Kingsteignton.

I am passionate about children having the greatest opportunity to develop their potential in a safe and secure environment, and am committed to staff receiving appropriate and effective support as they serve the children and their families. As well as experience and appropriate skills to enhance my role as a Governor, I bring a commitment, enthusiasm and a positive approach to this privilege, and am honoured to be part of the United Schools’ Federation team.

Mr Charlie Siegle

Foundation Governor

I was originally elected as a Parent Governor for Marldon Primary and more recently became a Foundation Governor. Under Karen West's guidance I have responsibility for safeguarding across the Federation (on behalf of the Governors). I also sit on the Finance Committee.

I grew up in Somerset and went to University in London, where I studied Ancient History. I then converted my degree and studied law as a post graduate at Exeter University. I qualified as a solicitor in 2006 and I am now a Partner in a local law firm where I specialise in Wills and Probate.

Away from work I love spending as much time as I can with my wife and two daughters, our dog Leo and cat Luna. When time allows I love watching rugby and organising/taking part in walks in the mountains. I am also a Trustee of a locally based medical research charity.

Rev Mark Smith

Foundation Governor and Vicar of Kingsteignton with Teigngrace.

I worked for 17 years in Further and Higher Education as a lecturer and curriculum manager before being ordained as a parish priest in the Church of England.
Over the years I have collected a number of Bachelors and Masters degrees, finishing with a doctorate in 2012.
Like many clergy, it seems, I have a great interest in all things to do with railways, both current day and heritage, full size and models, especially N-gauge. For exercise I enjoy long cycle rides and walking.

Mr Jonathan Couch

Foundation Governor and St. Michael's School Link Governor

I have been involved in the field of education for a long time, firstly teaching as a primary school teacher and subsequently for the last 18 years in the field of educational psychology. I work locally as a Senior Educational Psychologist jointly managing and working as part of a multi-agency support team which supports children, young people, families and schools.

I am passionate about inclusion and the positive difference education and schools can make in developing and supporting children and their families.

I enjoy spending time with my family as well as playing tennis, exploring the local moors and beaches.

Alex Alder

Governor

Alex is a charity worker, strategic advisor, and musician. He was born in rural Devon and attended schools in the county before leaving to study history, politics, and law at Oxford and the Inner Temple. After time as an assistant to an antiquarian, then to an MP, and finally to a master thatcher, he went on to run a homelessness project and served for a short time in the Territorial Army. He is a justice of the peace and vice-chair of Citizens Advice Devon. He has been a school governor for many years.

Colin Randall

Staff Governor

After completing my FdSc in Software Development at the University of Plymouth in 2013, I began my career as an IT Technician at United Schools Federation in 2016. I have since progressed to become the Network Manager, overseeing all aspects of IT provision and implementation across the federation. My responsibilities also include providing support to staff, pupils, parents, and governors across all seven schools.

I am passionate about technology and take pride in implementing innovative solutions to enhance the learning experience for pupils and teaching practices for staff. As a result, I find my work incredibly rewarding, and enjoy being part of an organisation that is dedicated to providing high-quality education to students.

In 2019, I was appointed as a Staff Governor, which was a proud moment for me. This coincided with my relocation from Plymouth to Newton Abbot, and then to Torquay in 2021.

In my free time I love to spend time with my family, as well as playing football, squash and running when time allows. I really enjoy fundraising, and through taking part in activities with other staff at the USF including the 'Three Peaks Challenge', we have so far raised over £12,000 for various organisations.

Overall, I am proud to be part of United Schools Federation and am committed to contributing to its continued success through my work as Network Manager and Staff Governor.

Anna Reid

Foundation Governor

Having been a link Parent Governor for Brixton St Mary's C of E Primary School for two years, I'm pleased to develop my role as a Foundation Governor continuing to support my children's local school. I'm passionate about supporting a strong and inclusive education and have a passionate interest in SEND provisions within the Federation as well as Religious Education.

My skills lie in communications, PR and marketing, having worked in the television industry for the past 15 years. I love to spend time with my husband and two daughters outdoors in beautiful Devon.

Chris Nicholls

Co-opted Governor

My name is Chris Nicholls and I am a Co-opted Governor at Stokeinteignhead which has been part of the United Schools Federation since 2019. I have been a governor at Stokeinteignhead Primary School since 2018 and helped the school transition into the federation where it has flourished under its current Head of School and I was very proud to be a part of the schools recent Ofsted inspection where the school was awarded Good. I have a daughter at Stokeinteignhead Primary School and I have watched her mature and grow both personally and academically at the school.

I am a teacher myself and have been involved in education for nearly twenty years and have had a number of roles including teacher, Head of Faculty and Senior Leader in private, international and state schools. I currently work in a special needs school in Dawlish where I am a year 9 teacher and team leader. I have a Degree in History from the University of Liverpool and a PGCE from the University of the West of England.

Stokeinteignhead is a wonderful rural community and I enjoy walking the dog around the local hills and as a family we enjoy time on the beach out at sea on our boards.

Steven Henson

Governor

I am a Parent Governor linked to Ipplepen Primary School. My daughter, Poppy, is in Year 2 currently!

Born in London, I moved to the South West with my Parents in my primary years.

After completing A Levels, I trained as an Insolvency Practitioner in the South West, working for a local practice for 15 years before moving on to a senior position in one of the country’s leading accountancy and insolvency practices working throughout the country, based mainly in London and the South West. Seeing the benefit of a niche practice dedicated to insolvency I started my own practice in 2018.

As a qualified Insolvency Practitioner, I have worked on a broad range of cases from Corporate Recovery and Turnaround to Bankruptcy. Whilst I have substantial experience in Terminal Insolvency such as Bankruptcy or Liquidation, my main passion lies in Recovery and Turnaround, which involves rescuing a business from closure, saving jobs and putting that business back on the right track.

Outside of work I am a keen sportsman, although mainly limited to golf these days! I am also a Tottenham season ticket holder!

Rebecca Burton

Governor

My name is Rebecca Burton and I am the Foundation Governor for the USF and St. Catherine’s School, Heathfield. I was appointed as a practicing member of St. John the Evangelist Parish Church, Bovey Tracey. With my husband, I run Bovey Larder, a zero waste shop, although my previous career was as a Technical Author in the computer industry.

I am passionate about environmental issues and how we can work to save the planet. As well as the church, a thriving school is essential to any community and, with my children now no longer of school age, it is great to be involved with the parish school. As I have never been a governor before it has been a sharp learning curve, but I am really enjoying the challenge.

Martin Harding

Ex Officio Governor/Executive Headteacher

I am the Executive Headteacher of the United Schools Federation and am a member of the Governing Body. I’ve worked in education for most of my adult life, having gained my degree in Physics at Exeter University and then a PGCE, also at Exeter. In addition, I have a master’s degree in education leadership and am a nationally accredited education advisor. I have taught all the primary age groups and led several curriculum areas. I took up my first Headship in 2000 followed by the Headship of St Michael’s in 2005. I founded the Federation in 2010 and it has now grown to include seven schools and several partner schools, all of which, I am proud to say, provide an excellent standard of care and education for our children. In 2014, against stiff competition, our federation team successfully applied to open a free school in Kingsteignton. As well as my role as a Headteacher, I have also been a School Improvement Partner, Advisor and National Leader of Education. I also received a Teaching award for being Primary Headteacher of the year! Alongside my current role, I also greatly enjoy the opportunity to provide school improvement support to other schools. I’m married to a teacher and have two boys, one at university and one about to go next year and a dog called Lotta!

In my spare time I like being outdoors and I especially love hill walking, climbing and skiing. I’ve recently taken up kite surfing which has reminded me how challenging learning new things can be sometimes…

Marcus West

Associate Governor/Head of School/Deputy Executive Headteacher

I am Deputy Executive Head of the Federation and Head of School at Ipplepen Primary School. I have worked in Primary Education for all my working life having qualified from the University of Plymouth with a Bachelor in Education degree. I have since gained a Masters of Arts in Education (leadership and Management) as well as completing my National Professional Qualification for Headship and also for Executive Leadership.

I took up my first headship in 2010 having been Deputy Head Teacher at St. Michael’s and joined the federation in 2013 as Head of Marldon Primary School and then went on to be Head of School at St Catherine’s where I spent 6 years before moving on to Ipplepen. I became Deputy Executive Head of the Federation in 2020 and enjoy working with the other schools and school leaders within this role.

I am a qualified Associate Educational Advisor as well as the Southwest regional representation for Co-operative Schools.

I am married and we have two sons both at university. I enjoy running and have run both half marathons and a full marathon. I am also a keen cricketer having played for Ashburton CC since the age of 11. I also coach cricket and run the youth section at the cricket club and in the past I have coached the Devon County Ladies Squad as well as U15s District teams.

Karen West

Associate Governor/Federation Support Officer

I have been involved in education for 35 years, 20 years of which were spent at St Michael’s school. I was a Primary school teacher for many years, with the majority of these being spent in Early Years.

My Federation Support Officer role focuses on Safeguarding and I regularly visit all the USF schools to offer advice and support in this vital area. I also provide training for both staff and the Governing Body.

Alongside this role, I am a Nursery Plus teacher based at St Catherine’s. This role involves working across South Dartmoor, the Teign Valley and Totnes to promote Nursery-aged children’s wellbeing, learning and development.

My roles allow me to focus on my two professional passions; safeguarding and Early Years, and I consider myself very lucky to be able to do so.

Out of work, I am a Mum to 2 grown-up children, both of whom attended St Michael’s school. One of them has followed me into teaching and is also part of the USF family, whilst the other has just completed his studies and is now looking for work – not teaching! I love to spend time with my family and friends, read and work in my garden, as well as exploring our wonderful Devon countryside whenever I can.

Kate Arnold

Associate Governor/Head of School

Kate Arnold is Head of School at St Michael’s School in Kingsteignton, with a passion for providing a nurturing and challenging learning environment for her students. With her extensive experience in education and her natural leadership abilities, Kate has established herself as a highly respected figure in the education community.

Prior to joining St Michael’s School, Kate served as Head of Stokeinteignhead Primary, where she oversaw a period of significant growth and development for the school.

As Head of St Michael’s School, Kate is responsible for setting the school’s strategic direction, overseeing its day-to-day operations, and ensuring that the school continues to deliver high-quality education to its students. She is a skilled communicator and collaborator, working closely with her team of teachers and staff to create a positive and inclusive culture that encourages innovation, creativity, and excellence.

Outside of her work at St Michael’s School, Kate is an avid horse rider and spends much of her spare time training and competing in local competitions. Her love for horses and the outdoors is reflected in her approach to education, where she places a strong emphasis on outdoor learning and encourages her students to explore the natural world around them.

As a key member of the United Schools Federation, Kate is committed to working collaboratively with other schools in the network to share best practices, drive innovation, and provide the best possible education for all students.

Victoria Pearce

Associate Governor/Head of School

Following over 25 years experience as a teacher, I joined the USF in 2021. As well as working in primary schools in Plymouth and Torbay, I have been fortunate enough to have visited schools in Australia, USA, Canada and Nigeria to share best practice and teaching methods, as well as discover more about other cultures. I am passionate about teaching; supporting young people to learn and grow, as well as shaping and developing an exciting, challenging and engaging curriculum for all pupils. In my spare time I love adventure: travelling and exploring beautiful Devon, with its miles of coast paths, with Winne the beloved St Catherine's dog in tow.

Jon Arnold

Associate Governor/Head of School

Jon Arnold is an accomplished educational leader with a wealth of experience in the field. As the current Head of School at Marldon Primary School, he brings a strong track record of success to his role. Before joining Marldon, Jon served as the Head of School at Doddiscombsleigh and Brixton St Mary’s, both of which are part of the United Schools Federation.

With a passion for the great outdoors, Jon enjoys spending his spare time exploring nature and pursuing outdoor activities. He is an avid rugby fan and loves to coach and play the sport whenever he can. He also shares his son’s passion for BMX and often attends events where his son competes.

As an educational leader, Jon is committed to creating a positive learning environment for students, and he is known for his collaborative and supportive leadership style. He works closely with his team to ensure that every child at Marldon Primary School has the opportunity to achieve their full potential. With his experience, passion, and dedication to excellence, Jon Arnold is an exceptional leader and an asset to the United Schools Federation

Adrian Clements

Associate Governor/Head of School

My name is Adrian Clements and I have been in the teaching profession for nearly 30 years with almost 13 of those years being in the role of Head of School within the United Schools Federation. I am currently the Head at St. Mary’s CofE Primary School in the village of Brixton near Plymouth, which is my third Head of School role within the USF, having previously worked at St. Catherine’s and Marldon.

I qualified with a BA(Hons) in Geography from Staffordshire University in 1992 before going on to complete my PGCE from the University of Derby. My professional teaching life began in Derbyshire before I took an opportunity to live and teach in Auckland in New Zealand, for 6 months. On our return to the UK, my wife and I settled on a new life in Devon, which is where we have been based ever since. Within my career in education, I have had the good fortune to have been able to teach in all year groups from Reception to Y6.

I am married with two daughters, one of whom is still at school, and the other is at University. I am a keen photographer and gardener in my spare time, but I also enjoy many sports, especially running, and regularly take part in my local Park Run where I have completed around 150 events.

I am very proud of the work the USF has done over the years and am pleased to have been part of that growth and development for over 15 years.

Sophie Wiseman

Associate Governor/Head of School

Having graduated from the University of Exeter with first class degree in Education Studies in 2011, I went onto complete my Primary PGCE with a specialism in Modern Foreign Languages. My first teaching placement took me to St Michael’s Primary School in Kingsteignton, part of the United Schools Federation and once qualified, I began my teaching career there in September 2012 as a year two teacher. I remained at St Michael’s for five and a half years.

In February 2018, I was appointed as Head of School at Doddiscombsleigh Primary School, another school within the Federation. Doddi is a wonderful, small, village school and was a fantastic place to begin my headship.

In September 2022, I took on a new venture when I became Head of School at Ipplepen Primary School. I am thoroughly enjoying this role which is enabling me to broaden my experience within this role at another fantastic school within our Federation.

Alongside my Head of School role, I line manage our fantastic SEN team across the 7 schools in our Federation and I am also the Chair of the United Schools Learning Partnership Co-operative Trust.

In my spare time, you will often find me walking along the Grand Western Canal, being creative, baking brownies or spending time with husband, family and friends

Joanna Crathorne

Associate Governor/Head of School

After completing my Post Graduate Certificate in Education with a specialism in Early Years Education at the University of Exeter in 2002, I started my teaching career at Stokeinteignhead Primary School. Throughout my time at Stokeinteignhead, I have taught all year groups, but spent most of my career teaching in years 3 and 4.

I have loved my career in teaching. I am passionate about creativity and the arts, helping the school to achieve a Gold level Artsmark Award in 2006. From 2004-2008, I was also part of the Royal Shakespeare Company’s manifesto to improve the way that Shakespeare was taught in schools, including introducing Shakespeare to children in primary school. As part of this, I gained a Post Graduate Certificate in Education for The Teaching of Shakespeare which involved drama and performance projects with children at our school, and with schools across the UK. We may be small, but we still love to put on a show at Stokeinteignhead, including our famous summer productions involving the whole school!

In February 2017, I gained my Post Graduate Certificate in Education with a focus on Special Educational Needs and Inclusion. I have been a Special Education Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo) since 2014 and believe that every child, given the right support and opportunities, can thrive, achieve and be successful in life.

In 2018, when Stokeinteignhead Primary School joined the United Schools Federation, I became Acting Head of School, until becoming Head of School full time in May 2019. My role as Head of School followed a period of significant change at our school, and then the global Covid-19 pandemic hit. However, with the support of the Federation, we overcame the many challenges, and I feel really proud that our school was Ofsted rated as a ‘Good’ provider in all areas in September 2022.

I also feel passionately about the role our school plays within our local community and am proud of the positive relationships that we have built within our village and surrounding areas. The children at our school are taught about their social responsibility, particularly to our more vulnerable community members, as well as the role that they play as global citizens.

In my free time I love to spend time with my family and friends, including my naughty little dog Ronnie! I love to travel, near and far, and love languages. I have learnt to speak Greek (poorly) and I am also an avid reader and love to curl up with a good book – if only I could keep my eyes open!

Overall, I am proud to be part of United Schools Federation and of the little school that feels like my second home!

Amanda Russell

Associate Governor/Head of School

Amanda Russell, the Head of Doddiscombsleigh Primary School, has a diverse teaching background. Initially starting as a secondary Biology/Science teacher, she eventually transitioned into primary education in 2003. Amanda's career with the United Schools Federation began in 2016, where she took on the roles of Key Stage 2 leader and English lead at St Catherines. From there, she went on to become the assistant head at Marldon, where she earned her NPQH qualification before being appointed as the Head of School at Doddiscombsleigh. Amanda thrives on new challenges and enjoys working collaboratively with other schools and leaders.

Beyond her professional life, Amanda is a proud mother and grandmother to a growing family. She cherishes family dinners and takes pleasure in walking for miles in the countryside, watching F1, and experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen on weekends. Additionally, she enjoys spending time in her garden and reading a good book.