Mrs Sarah Flear (Chair)
Sarah is a qualified chartered accountant and partner at Smith Cooper and has 25 years of experience providing audit, assurance and advisory services to a wide range of businesses. Prior to joining Smith Cooper she worked for PKF Nottingham and then Ernst and Young.
At Smith Cooper she is Head of Audit and notably leads their education team which provides assurance and advisory services to schools. Throughout her professional career she has been involved in advising many boards of directors, trustees and governors of businesses, charities and schools. She has an excellent understanding of what is required for strong governance, and the significant commitment of both time and effort it involves.
Sarah’s role as a Governor: Sarah joined the governors in 2017 and was appointed Chair of Governors in April 2019. She has two boys at Derby Grammar School.
Mr Ian Beardmore (Property)
Ian is Head of Commercial Property and Compliance at Flint Bishop LLP Solicitors in Derby where he has been a Partner since 1993. He has advised some of the region’s largest property and construction firms in relation to industrial commercial and residential property development..
Ian’s role as a Governor: Ian has been a Governor since 2011. His son Alastair attended the school, leaving in 2016. Alastair is now studying Business Management at the University of Leeds.
Mrs Debra Cadman
Debra’s role as a Governor: Debra joined the Board of Governors in June 2019. She had a son, Max, go through the school from Year 3 to Year 13 who has just graduated from Keele University. She brings a wealth of business knowledge to the Board and in particular, a range of experience and skills on people management and leadership.
Mr Andrew Gentles (Finance)
After university Andrew spent 15 years at Fine Art Developments plc, culminating in his appointment to MD of Webb Ivory (Burton) Ltd’s Charity Division, which operated mail order businesses for some 25 national charities in the UK. In 1998 he was appointed MD of Burton Inns Ltd which included a corporate hospitality business, J D Parties. He currently serves on the Executive Board of the Concerto Group Ltd as MD of J D Parties, with responsibility for the group’s regional business activities.
Andrew’s role as a Governor: Having held senior management positions in a variety of sectors, Andrew has developed business acumen and commercial competence. He has acquired considerable knowledge in the areas of strategic planning, management organisation, sales, marketing, print, procurement and contract negotiation. With a son at the School, he is ideally placed to appraise Governors of its strengths and weaknesses from a parent perspective, and to present improvement opportunities.
Mr Ian Louch (Safeguarding)
Ian is a retired Police Officer who served for 32 years with the Derbyshire Constabulary. The majority of his service was within the Criminal Investigation Department where he was involved in many high profile major enquiries. Prior to his retirement he supervised a team of detectives who investigated both serious sexual offences and serious assaults and he worked closely in partnership with other agencies throughout the City of Derby.
Ian’s role as a Governor: Ian is the Safeguarding lead on the Governing Body, where he is able to utilise his previous experience in Child Protection and Safeguarding issues. He works closely with the school’s Dedicated Safeguarding Lead. He was actively involved in the PTA throughout his son’s time at the school and held the position of chairman for four years.
Mr James Pugh-Lewis (Vice-Chair & Health and Safety)
James initially started his working life as an engineering graduate at Rolls-Royce in Derby. In 1991 he joined his family business which specialises in sportsfield construction, landscaping and fencing. Within his business James undertakes a wide role including finance, marketing and contract management.
James’s role as a Governor: James brings to the governing body his experience and knowledge of health and safety, as well as broader knowledge of sports facilities, construction and grounds management. He has two boys in the Senior School.
Mrs Margaret Viles (Education, Teaching and Learning)
Margaret is a History and Politics graduate who has lectured in Further Education and taught in both the independent and maintained sectors. Having completed a Master’s in Educational Management and Law, she became Head of History and Deputy Head of Derby High School in 1991. In 2003 she became Head of Highclare School. Having recently retired from Headship, and from her role as a reporting inspector for the Independent Schools’ Inspectorate, she maintains a lively interest in education through her professional associations and her role as Education Governor.
Margaret’s role as a Governor: Margaret’s professional expertise includes best practice in the governance and management of schools and the requirement of independent school inspection. She has a particular interest in music education, safeguarding and information technology. As a mother of a son and daughter, she understands the needs of pupils and parents and the importance of a caring, supportive environment.
Mrs Navjot Virk
Navjot is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Derby in the Post Graduate Health Studies Department. She has a long professional history in the NHS and higher education sector at both local and national levels.
Whilst pursuing her professional career, Navjot has served on various school governing boards. She has played a pivotal role in setting up a primary Sikh faith school in Derby and serves there as trustee/governor. As an active member of Derby’s Sikh faith community she has led the voluntary Punjabi school at the Gurdwara since 2001. She is a nationally certified Faith Inspector for leading faith inspections in primary and secondary schools.
Navjot’s role as a Governor: Navjot has an excellent knowledge of governance, education and safeguarding. She is passionate about improving education and bringing about change in society. Being the parent of two children, she understands the importance of school in the lives of children and is committed to play her part in providing strategic leadership to schools.