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Devonport High School for Girls

Governing body

Welcome to the governors section of Devonport High School for Girls website.

The governing body is made up of parents, staff and members of the local community who contribute a wide range of skills and experience, and provide an independent viewpoint.  All governors want to make a positive contribution to students’ education and to ensure that the school is run to promote student achievement.

The governing body is a corporate team and has 3 key functions.  We work with the school’s senior leadership team to:

  • ensure that the vision, ethos and strategic direction of the school are clearly defined
  • ensure the sound, proper and effective use of the school’s financial resources

In addition the governing body will:

  • hold the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its students, and the performance management of staff

The full governing body meets six times annually. There are also 2 sub committees:

Finance & Resources

Pupil Progress, Welfare & Evaluation

The Governing Body

Mrs Sarah Adkins 

Date Started: 01/09/2013

I am a Legal Director at transatlantic law firm Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP specialising in infrastructure planning and environmental law and have been on the governing body at DHSG since September 2013.  I enjoy my roles as link governor for English, Religious Studies and International, and supporting our students wherever possible.  I have been a primary school governor (7 years as Chair) since 2004, am a director of the Diocese of Truro Askel Veur Umbrella Academy Trust and a trustee of the China Fleet Trust. I read Jurisprudence at Somerville College, Oxford, have an MA in Environmental Law from De Montfort University, am a Chartered Waste Manager (MCIWM) and Chartered Environmentalist (CEnv), and a member of several business and trade bodies.

Mr Matthew Bloomfield 

Date Started: 01/01/2016

Hello, my name is Matt Bloomfield and I am pleased and proud to be part of the DHSG Board of Governors. In 2012 I setup Imattination, a design and events company of which I am now the Managing Director of. I am passionate about young people achieving their goals, setting their targets high and never letting their aspirations go, however hard it can be sometimes. I hope my business skills will help me in my support of DHSG through the governing body. 

Mrs Jill Dolan 

Date Started: 29/03/2011

I am an ex-pupil and have been a governor for over 15 years. I have had a diverse career which has included being a Councillor for Plymouth City Council, Director of various Boards, an Office Manager, a Private Secretary, NCO Instructing in Telecommunications for the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, a Proprietor of General Store / Health Store and a Tree Warden. Now retired, I enjoy doing what I can to support the school.

Mrs Maria Harrington-Seddon

Date Started: 12/09/2014

I have worked at Devonport High School for Girls for over 20 years, firstly as a classroom assistant and now I’m part of the administrative team.  I have lots of experience having been a staff governor for over 15 years.  I am very pleased to have the opportunity to be a governor as I have always enjoyed this role and will continue to.

Mrs A Hemsi (Head Teacher)

Date Started: 08/03/2011

I have been the Head Teacher of Devonport High School for Girls since 2009 having taught in a mix of single-sex girls schools and mixed comprehensive secondary schools previously, locally at Plymstock School and before that in Surrey and London. 

Mrs Clare Hutton

Date Started: 01/01/2016

I am a mother of 3 children. My 2 daughters went to DHSG. I read Languages at Bristol University and then worked for many years in the Wine Trade. I am now retired and look forward to working with the other Governors and the School over the coming years

Mrs Ann James (Vice Chair)

Date Started: 01/01/2016

Ann James is CEO of University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust and has held this role for 6 years. Ann has held a Chief Executive roles across all health care sectors, including provider and commissioner roles for the last 18 years. Initially working in the private sector,  Ann stated her NHS career in 1989 as a National Management Trainee and has held roles various around the country.  Focusing on population based health and service improvement Ann supports city wide forums including the Growth Board, health and Well Being Board, One Plymouth and working with industry. Committed to raising life chances and addressing inequalities Ann holds various roles including Chair of the South West leadership Academy, lead CEO across the Devon STP for specific areas of transformation. Ann increasingly speaks at Regional and national conferences on leadership and women in leadership. In 2014 Ann was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of health from Plymouth University.

Ms Kath Nott 

Date Started: 12/09/2014

I joined the Teaching Staff at Devonport High School for Girls in September 2008 and since then have enjoyed working within our Geography Department, teaching at Key Stage 3, GCSE and A Level, and also teaching Business Studies at GCSE level. I also held the role of Head of House (Hartland) as part of the our Student Support Team for a number of years until January 2018.

Mrs Glynis Westcott (Chair) 

 Date Started: 29/03/2011

(Chair WEF 14/09/2015)

I joined the governing body in 2009.

My link with DHSG began when I joined as a pupil and continued as my three daughters progressed through the school. I began my career as a computer programmer with the scientific civil service before moving into adult/further education to teach mathematics. I have a keen interest in education and believe that all students deserve the best possible learning experience.

Mrs Shirley Williams 

Date Started: 11/05/2011

Having graduated from St Anne's College, Oxford, I qualified as a Chartered Accountant with one of the ‘big four’ firms in London. Post qualification, I specialised in tax, and have continued to work locally, on a part-time basis, since moving to West Devon in 1990. I have also acted as secretary for my husband, who is a consultant radiologist at Derriford, so have knowledge of the NHS. For a number of years I was trustee of a National Mental Health Charity.

Pat Wilton 

Date Started: 01/07/2018

I am an ex-pupil and my daughter now attends the school. I spent 29 years in banking across a variety of roles and have been involved in the education sector since 2010 when I became a parent governor at my daughter's primary school. I have also worked as an invigilator in a secondary school and college and an administration and compliance officer in an independent school. I look forward to sharing my experiences and knowledge to support DHSG and its pupils.

If you wish to contact the governors, please do so by sending a letter to the school addressed to either The Chair of the Governing Body or The Clerk to the Governing Body.  Alternatively please send by email to:

Governance Members

Mrs Jill Bailey
Mrs Ann James
Mrs Glynis Westcott
Mrs Shirley Williams
Mrs Elspeth Wiltshire

Additional Documents