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The Dawnay Governance

The School Governors

The Governing Body in state schools has responsibility for raising school standards through its three key roles of setting strategic direction, ensuring accountability and monitoring and evaluating school performance.

Our Governors are a dedicated and experienced team of volunteers who work tirelessly to support and challenge the school towards excellence.

Copies of the approved minutes of Full Governing Body meetings can be seen by arrangement with the clerk of governors.

 The Chair of Governors can be contacted by email ;

Find out more about our current Governors below;

Mr Andrew Rourke 

Andrew became a parent governor in 2016 and then became a Co-opted Governor in 2020, Vice Chair of Governors in 2018 and then Chair of Governors in 2019. He has a child at The Dawnay.  Andrew moved to Bookham with his family in 2011. In early 2013 he moved to Shanghai, China before returning to Bookham in late 2015. Andrew is a lawyer, but in the dim and distant past spent a year teaching English at a school in Vienna, Austria.

Andrew  joined the Dawnay Governors because he wanted to support the school and its staff in providing the best possible education and outcomes for all  pupils, whatever their abilities and backgrounds. He enjoyed and benefited hugely from a state education and the guidance of some inspirational teachers which opened up a wealth of opportunities. However,  he also saw incredible potential go untapped. Andrew wants to help ensure that the Dawnay inspires our children and opens up opportunities they wouldn't otherwise have to ensure that no potential goes unrealised.  

Reverend Alan Jenkins

Alan has been involved with primary schools since 1995, a school governor since 2003, and a LA Governor at The Dawnay since 2008.  He takes assemblies at The Dawnay and has enjoyed attending many of the schools residentials. He is Rector of St Nicolas, Great Bookham, and his three children have all been pupils at The Dawnay.  

He initially became a Governor when he was asked by Jim Smith who, at the time, was a local councillor for Surrey. He was pleased to do so, partly because it was a great way of continuing to use his prior learning and experience in business, in the church and as a governor, but mainly as he is committed to working with local schools to help them to be the best that they can for the sake of the children.

Yvonne McLeod 

Yvonne has been a governor for many years and spends time helping other schools with governance, either as a Local Leader of Governance (LLG) or previously as a National Leader of Governance (NLG). Yvonne is an experienced Chair and has led many governing bodies and committees as well as being a governance advisor. She believes it is always a pleasure and a privilege to support schools and be part of the team which moves a school forwards. 

Christopher Watney  

Chris became an Associate Member in May 2016 and a Co-opted Governor in September 2016 and was reappointed in 2020. Chris lives in Bookham with his wife Esther and two children, the oldest of which started at the Dawnay in 2015 and the youngest joined the Dawnay in 2018. Chris has a background in Retail Management and when not working is a keen runner and active member of Bookham Tennis Club.

Helen Jupp

Helen has been a teacher at The Dawnay since 2018 and currently teaches Year 5 Eagles class.  She became the staff governor in 2020.  She lives locally and has been a teacher in Surrey for over 20 years. 

Andy Whitehouse

Andy is originally from Solihull, and has lived in Dorking since 2000. He is a qualified actuary having worked at Friends Life in Dorking and London. Andy is Chair of Governors at Dorking and Chertsey Nursery Schools and Mole Valley Family Centre, and Vice Chair of Governors at Powell Corderoy School. Andy is a Local Leader of Governance (LLG) in Surrey and joined the Dawnay Governance Team in February 2021. Andy brings general business skills to the team, having had significant experience in finance and managing budgets as well as in both general and project management.

Veronica Cannacott

Veronica became a parent Governor in September 2020, providing a link governor role for Humanities and Safeguarding.  Veronica lives in Bookham and has two children both in the Junior school at The Dawnay. She has a background in brand marketing across a range of sectors, including not for profit and commercial organisations. Veronica joins the governing body at an exciting time and is keen to support the students and teachers through the transition to Academisation.

In Attendance: 

Clerk to the Governors