Taunton Teaching Alliance
Taunton Teaching Alliance
Taunton Teaching Alliance
Taunton Teaching Alliance


National Leaders of Governance Advocates

As of 1st September 2017, the management of National Leaders of Governance was devolved to the Teaching Schools Council, South West. We now operate through four sub-regional NLG Advocates who work alongside Regional Teaching School Links (RTSLs) as brokers of support for governance, with the added brief of raising the profile of the work of NLGs across the region. Their work is co-ordinated by Julia Steward, the Project Manager, based in Taunton.

Advocates share a belief in the crucial role effective governance plays in securing the best for every pupil and a determination to build on good practice and raise the standard of governance in South West schools. They work with subregional teams of NLGs, each of whom has been through a national designation programme, and has undertaken to offer at least five days of free support to governors in the region. Advocates want to provide the very best support, and have a role in ensuring the quality of the work of those they recommend. If you have a challenge as a governor, or simply want to ensure you are working as effectively as you could be, do make contact with your regional advocate to find out how we might be able to help. NLGs can provide ongoing coaching and mentoring which may be especially helpful if you are new to a chair’s role; equally they will happily respond to an email or telephone call to discuss a single concern. Many NLGs are trained to undertake external reviews of governance (which – unlike the coaching – may incur a cost).

If you require the support of a National Leader of Governance, or indeed, if you are interest in offering your services to support other governors, do please get in touch with your local advocate in the first instance.


TSC SW Sub-Region A: Bath, Bristol, NE Somerset, N Somerset, Somerset, South Gloucestershire

Geoff Mountjoy    Email: geoff.mountjoy@btinternet.com

Geoff Mountjoy

I am excited to have been appointed as National Leader of Governance for Sub-Region A. There are 16 NLGs to cover this large part of the region with a range of school experience and we intend to work as a team to provide the best level of support possible.

My work as Regional Director of Legal Aid and Board Member for a Housing Association has placed a personal emphasis on promoting social inclusion. I believe strongly in the power of NLGs to support governing bodies and their schools to provide pupils with the opportunity to fulfil their potential in society. Having made a career change, I have spent the past four years as a Business Manager in two Bristol schools.


TSC SW Sub-Region B: Gloucestershire, Swindon and Wiltshire

Keith Clover    Email: keithclover@hotmail.com

Keith Clover

I have been a governor for over 20 years and have been a Chair of Governors for most of that time. My first involvement with school governance was with a school that was in Special Measures. During my time as Chair, working with a developing Governing Body and staff team, the school improved to Good in 2007 and Outstanding in 2010. The work of the Governing Body was recognised as being instrumental in the development of the school.

I have Chaired a number of boards on behalf of the LA and Diocese and also chaired an IEB in Bath. I am proud to be a National Leader of Governance to support Chairs and Governing Bodies to fulfil the ever-increasing role of governance in Local Governing Bodies and Academy Trust Boards and, as a sub regional Advocate, to broker support in Gloucestershire, Swindon and Wiltshire.


TSC SW Sub-Region C: Dorset, Poole and Bournemouth

Ann Harris OBE    Email: anncharris@aol.com

Ann Harris OBE NLG Advocate








I welcome the opportunity to be a National Leader of Governance Advocate for the sub region covering Dorset, Poole and Bournemouth. Increasing capacity is my priority, since at the moment four NLGs cover the sub region.

My working life in education was as a teacher, Headteacher, adviser and inspector. My passion for providing children with the best education possible remains. Effective governance makes a difference. NLG Advocates have the opportunity to contribute to the system by increasing capacity and brokering support to improve further the educational experience of children. I am greatly looking forward to meeting this challenge.


TSC SW Sub-Region D: Cornwall, Devon, Plymouth and Torbay

Jackie Eason    Email: jeason@governorconsultant.co.uk

Jackie Eason NLG Advocate 1









I have been involved in school governance since 2000. I work for the NGA as a governor consultant, developing and delivering training for them. I particularly enjoy delivering and training at their national conferences as this allows me to get a feel for the issues developing around the country.

As an NLG, I have been kept busy in schools supporting individual chairs to deal with tricky HR issues, joining governing bodies of maintained schools as they face the challenges of improvement and governance development and I am currently chairing two IEBs of schools in both key stages as they negotiate their way towards academy sponsorship.

The work is ever varied and always rewarding and I am embracing my role as an NLG Advocate, working to ensure that more NLGs are deployed to bring further improvement to the leadership in our schools.


Project Manager

Julia Steward    Email: chrysalis@jhsteward.com

Julia Steward - Taunton Teaching Alliance







My role is to ensure consistency across the region, to identify common issues and to develop strategy to ensure that we operate as effectively as possible within the parameters of a limited budget.

As a former governor and as a leadership coach working with headteachers, I have a dual perspective on some of the issues associated with raising the quality of governance. I led the implementation of the NPQH programme across the South West until 2007, a role which demanded an understanding of the challenges of communication in a region of geographical, economic and cultural diversity. My commitment to this project stems from my belief in the power of effective school governance to change communities, and the power of education to change lives.



NLG SW Regional Newsletter June 2018

NFER – A Tale of Eight Regions – Report on Academisation and RSCs April 2017

MAT School Improvement – Sir David Carter Sept 17

Damian Hinds speech at National Governance Association conference: Education Secretary sets out plans to boost training for governors and strengthen accountability of academies – June 2018

Where Next for the Self-Improving School System – TSC / FASNA May 2018


FREE Training for Chairs and Clerks

Please spread the word! If you are supporting a board at any stage of development, there are likely to be some on the board who would benefit from refreshing their training. It’s easy to find the information by googling ‘Free governor training for chairs and clerks’. The details are here. The programme is open to chairs, vice-chairs and chairs of committees. There are two national providers licenced in the South West, Entrust Support Services and National Governance Association (NGA). The clerking development programme is available from these and from Freedom & Autonomy for Schools – National Association (FASNA)