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Yattendon C of E Aided

Primary School

A small school with a big vision

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Welcome from the Chair of Governors


On behalf of the Governing Body, we are pleased to offer you a warm welcome to Yattendon Church of England Primary School.


Yattendon is a small village school with a BIG vision:


‘We provide the rich soil that enables our children to develop deep roots and flourish. Within our rural community, our small Christian school nurtures growth, giving courage to face challenge, and abundant opportunities for unique strengths to blossom. Everyone feels valued and has respect for themselves and others, and hope for the brightest future.’


As Governors, we are committed to upholding this vision and ensuring the best possible outcomes for all pupils.


In accordance with the Government’s requirements, as set out for all Governing Bodies, the three strategic functions of our Governing Board are to:


  • Ensure clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
  • Hold executive leaders to account for the educational performance of the organisation and its pupils, and the effective and efficient performance management of staff
  • Oversee the financial performance of the organisation and make sure its money is well spent

 (Governance Handbook; October 2020)


The members of our Governing Body can be seen below. Together, we strive for effective governance through:


  • Strategic leadership that sets and champions vision, ethos and strategy
  • Accountability that drives up educational standards and financial performance
  • Recruitment of people with the right skills, experience, qualities and capacity
  • Structures that reinforce clearly defined roles and responsibilities
  • Compliance with statutory and contractual requirements
  • Evaluation to monitor and improve the quality and impact of governance

 (Governance Handbook; October 2020)


The work that we do is reflected in both our latest Ofsted and SIAMS inspection reports and most of all in the children themselves.


Sarah Barron

Chair of Governors


Introduction to the governors:

Governance statement

(In development)

Instrument of Governance

Governor biographies


Sarah Barron

Chair of Governors

Sarah became a governor at the start of 2020. She works in medical communications, and brings scientific and editorial knowledge to the role. She is passionate about Yattendon C of E school, with one daughter currently at the school and another who she hopes will join in due course.

Rachel Jones 

Vice Chair of Governors

Rachel is an experienced governor having joined the Governing Body in 2015, she has previously held the role of Chair of Governors. Rachel has a background in PR and marketing, bringing extensive experience in communicating with a variety of stakeholders. Rachel is passionate about education and brings valuable skills that will positively contribute to making Yattendon C of E School the best it can be. She has two daughters at the school (and a further daughter who recently left!).

Paula Philips

Paula works directly with the school children as a Lunchtime Play Leader. Paula has a long-standing association with the school, and has developed valuable skills and experience during her time serving as governor (since 2003).

James Hole

James moved with his family to Yattendon from Kent towards the end of 2020 to take up the post of Managing Director of the Yattendon Estate, which surrounds the village. He joined the Governing Body in 2021 and has a keen interest in the future of the school, with three young children who he hopes will attend in the near future. 

Amanda Service

Amanda started visiting Yattendon C of E School as a volunteer reader and was very pleased to be asked to become more involved with the school as a governor. She lives locally, and is a mother and grandmother. She has always been involved in voluntary and community work, and is an active member of her local church.

Ann Wheeler

Ann has been a governor for 35 years. Her connection with the school is even more long-standing: as a pupil and a teacher. Ann is also an ex-headteacher of a small West Berkshire rural school and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience. She also provides a valuable link with the Church and local residents, which enhances the schools links and role within the wider community.  

Rev. Wayne Lautenbach

Wayne has been the Team Rector of the Hermitage Team of Churches, which includes our local church, since June 2018. He was ordained a priest in South Africa in 1988 and ministered in church there until moving with his family to the UK in 1999. They spent 18 years in Chester Diocese, mostly in Birkenhead, until they moved south to be closer to their children and grandchildren. 

Nia Trussler

Nia joined the Governing Body as parent governor in 2022.  She has one son attending the school currently and a teenage daughter who spent all her primary years at Yattendon.  Nia lives locally and works in Executive Search and Selection for a global Professional Services company and so actively sees how education is key to future career success. 

Rachel Manley, Head Teacher

Rachel became Headteacher of Yattendon Primary School in 2015, moving from a large Junior School in Newbury. Since then, she has transformed the school into a nurturing, close-knit, active community. Pupils embrace a wide range of leadership responsibilities and enrichment opportunities to ensure their 'seeds blossom' during their primary school journey. Her caring, passionate leadership has grown the school to its current thriving four classes. She has developed an enthusiastic, devoted staff team and has offered high quality mentorship and training to students. She has not only led the school through a successful Ofsted and a pandemic, but confidently secured a most notable 'excellent' judgement in the school's church school inspection in 2019. Rachel also enjoys her role as our qualified Special Needs Co-ordinator and leads a very successful school netball team!

Melanie Mason

Melanie joined the Yattendon team as a class teacher in 2017, excited to return to a small village primary after working in several large infant schools in Basingstoke. With 20 years of teaching experience and having had the role of Deputy Head, she was keen to return to the classroom and work in a school closer to home as her son began his school journey.   

Melanie quickly undertook the position of staff representative on the governing body and embraced all aspects of school life. She has led the school to achieve the Green Trees Platinum Award, has successfully mentored a long list of trainee teachers and has supported the Head in developing the school environment.  Outside of school, she has a passion for baking (and runs a food technology club in school) and all things creative.  

Rachael House Gemmell

Rachael has been a Clerk since November 2013, and currently clerks for three West Berkshire Primary Schools. Rachael studied psychology and has worked in administration for the Local Education Authority and the NHS. Growing up in nearby Bradfield, Rachael is very familiar with Yattendon and its surrounding beautiful countryside. Rachael has two school-aged daughters.

Freya Barton

Having been a parent at Yattendon Primary School for five years, Freya joined the Governing Body to become more involved in school life and to give back to the school community. Freya’s professional background is in art and design, and she brings her creative mindset to the role whilst also drawing on her experience of collaborative project work. As a mother of a child with SEN, Freya is particularly interested and experienced in supporting SEN children to thrive within the mainstream setting.

VACANCY: Foundation Governor (Appointed by Parochial Church Council, PCC). 


The work the governors are doing:

Governing body priorities 

(In development)

Governor updates / newsletters


Please click here to view the latest governor updates and newsletters. 

FGB meeting minutes 

Please click here to view the latest FGB meeting minutes.


Please click here to view the list of FGB meeting dates for this academic year.

Terms of reference 


Please click here to view the latest terms of reference.