Kendra Sill – Ex Officio Headteacher
Kendra has been teaching in Catholic Education since 1995, working at St Thomas More Catholic Primary School then moving onto St Edward’s Catholic Primary School as SENDCo and gaining promotion to Assistant Headteacher and then Deputy Headteacher. Kendra Joined St Benedict’s Catholic Primary School in February 2017 where she led the school from a ‘Requires Improvement’ school to a ‘Good School with Outstanding Features’ in May 2018. The school was also inspected by the Diocese in June 2019 and is now an Outstanding Catholic School.
Kendra is also an active member of the Parish of the Blessed Nicholas Postgate in Redcar where she has led the children’s liturgy group and volunteered as a children’s catechist for First Holy Communion.
Kendra is fully committed to her role as Headteacher and to ensuring each and every child in St Benedict’s can be the best they can be.
Kendra says, “Our school mission ‘Pray together, learn together,’ is at the heart of everything we do in St Benedict’s. Our high expectations of standards, behaviour and the Catholic life of the school are based on the words from St Benedict – ‘Ora and Labora.’ As a Catholic school our vision is to provide each and every child with a Catholic Education whereby they each develop a unique understanding with Jesus. Our school mission states that in order to ‘Pray together, learn together,’ we are reminded that: ‘For when 2 or 3 gather in my name there I am with them.’ Matthew 18:20
As a school, we aim to pray to God, pray with each other and for each other.’
Each day is a new day to embrace and we continue to achieve this vision supported by a well-informed, educated, skilled, supportive and visionary governing body.”
Canon Derek Turnham – Foundation Director (Parish Priest)
Link Governor for Catholic Standards
Canon Derek Turnham is a priest of the Diocese of Middlesbrough currently serving the parishes of Redcar and Marske where he offers pastoral support to primary and secondary schools. He has served as a School Governor for over forty years in the primary and secondary sectors and in both community schools and schools with a religious character.
Mary Cobbold, Cert Ed, BEd (Honorary) – Foundation Governor
Link Governor for Quality of Education
Mary has been a Governor at St Benedict’s for almost three years after retiring from Headship of another school within the Trust. As Headteacher she was an active member of her Governing Body and brings the experience of forty years of teaching within Catholic schools to the role. For a number of years, she was a catechist for the sacrament of Confirmation within the parish and has recently begun volunteering as a tutor for Workspace, a charity linked to the East Cleveland Baptist Church offering homework support for young people.
Mary says, “My professional experience gave me a good insight into the role of Governor which is crucial to the success of the school. Born on the banks of the Tyne, I have fond memories of Redcar from club trips and having relocated to the town, my children attended the Catholic secondary school. I have been a Sacred Heart parishioner for thirty years and live close to St Benedict’s. After a long and happy career in Catholic education, I became a Governor to continue being involved and to interact with children who are a joy and a constant source of inspiration.
My vision for the future of the school is that it continues to thrive as a centre of excellence for all children, that families and the wider community are always offered a warm welcome and feel valued contributors to the work of the school. I hope that as a Governor I am able to offer encouragement, appreciation, advice and support to all members of the community.”
An avid reader, Mary enjoys walking her dog and has recently taken up quilting, but emphasises she is very much a beginner.
Gavin Dickinson – Parent Governor
Link Governor for PE and Sports Premium
Gavin has been a member of the Governing Body of St Benedict’s for over two years. He brings with him over twenty years professional experience of managing large teams, budgets and operations and his knowledge and skills will be a great asset to the school and the Trust. Gavin lives in the community and has 2 children that attend the school. Academically, he has an Academic Strategic Management Level 7 Diploma in the Prince2 Project Management.
Gavin’s Link Governor Role in PE and Sports is the natural choice for him as he is passionate about all sports in general and recognises the importance of sport for children’s health, wellbeing, social and mental development.
Gavin says, “the team as St Benedict’s have achieved so much within the past three years. The school has progressed significantly and this is a great building block to continue to achieve greatness within the school and Trust. I will assist in any way possible to make the experience for the children enjoyable, challenging and rewarding”.
In his spare time, Gavin enjoys playing football, cycling and motorsports.
Sharon Poulson – Parent Governor
Link Governor for Quality of Education
Sharon has been a Parent Governor at St Benedict’s for over three years and has a professional background working in primary schools. She hopes to offer support and challenge to the school from both a parental and professional perspective.
Sharon lives and works in the local community and is Secretary to a local children’s football club. All three of her children have attended the school and her youngest child is currently in year four.
Sharon says, “St Benedict’s has always been a good school that supports the children not only attaining high standards in tests, but, in their emotional development and wellbeing. I became a Governor as I wished to support the people that make that possible and contribute to decision making that help maintain those standards. I would very much like to see a revival of fundraising activities and opportunities for our children to meet the older generation of our congregation, get to know them and listen to their stories.”
Sharon enjoys outdoor camping adventures with her family, walking and gardening. She also likes to cook although confesses she isn’t very good.