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Governor Pen Portraits


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Ellie Ball  (Vice-Chair of the LGB and Safeguarding governor)

I became a governor because I am passionate about school being a place where children of all backgrounds and abilities thrive both academically and socially, enabling them to reach their potential and gain the skills and confidence necessary to go on to lead successful lives.

I have worked as an engineer and project manager in the railway industry, taught engineering subjects at Abingdon & Witney College and am currently a pastor at Abingdon Vineyard Church.

I think Thameside is a school with a great atmosphere, where governors, school leaders and staff work well together for the benefit of all the children at the school.

Paul Thompson

I have lived in South Abingdon for more than fifty years and my three children all attended Thameside. I am a previous Chair of Governors of the school and am delighted to have become a governor again in 2022.

I worked in scientific computing at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory for many years and later as Head of Information Systems Division at the Science & Engineering Research Council in Swindon.

As a volunteer I’ve worked with young people, people with mental health problems and homeless young people and adults. I was for many years, Chair of the Management Committee at Abingdon Youth Centre. All of that experience has impressed upon me how important it is for children to get a good start in life. I’m really pleased to be able to support the team at Thameside in achieving that.

Sandra North (Co-Chair of the LGB)

I have been a Governor at Thameside Primary since October 2022. 

I have lived in South Abingdon for over seven years, moving here from Wantage. I retired from my second headteacher post in 2019, after a career in Oxfordshire primary schools. I was a teacher for many years, firstly in Childrey and then in Didcot, before becoming headteacher at Longworth and then Chilton.

I am still passionate about all aspects of education and I think that learning, in the widest sense, is a key to every child’s future. As our children are growing up in such a fast-changing world, I am also passionate about those aspects of education that cannot easily be measured, for example tolerance, creativity, global awareness and self-esteem.

Thameside Primary School is such a focal part of my local community and I am proud to be able to give my support as a Governor. The school is vibrant and inclusive, and every time I visit I am so impressed by the warmth and vibrancy, and the positive attitudes to learning. 



Liz Cooper - Parent Governor (Co-Chair of the LGB)

I have two children who are pupils at Thameside Primary School and I have been a parent governor since April 2023. I grew up in Abingdon and after going away to university, I worked as a Primary School Teacher in London for 10 years. I moved back to my home town to be near my family and that’s when my eldest started in the nursery class here.

Thameside is a wonderful, welcoming school and my family felt at home here from the start. Both my children really enjoy being here and I know they are well looked after and safe. All the staff work really hard to get to know the children and their families so that they can provide the best opportunities to learn, grow and be happy. The school leaders are always looking for ways to improve and to do things better.

I wanted to become a parent governor to support the school to in its aim to provide an excellent education for all its pupils. My time as a teacher has led me to be particularly passionate about supporting children and their families in the early years to make sure they get the best start in life. I believe Team Thameside are doing a brilliant job and are always striving to do even better.

Stacey Hampson - staff governor 

When it was suggested to me, ‘had I ever thought about being a staff governor?’, my response was immediately a ‘yes’, because I had.

I have had extensive administration experience in many industries and by far, I find education to be the most challenging, and that’s because it’s children who are our drivers. I strive for excellence in my service here and want to be a positive entity to the school.

I have a very holistic approach to my life, mind, body and soul. I can see the benefits when instilled in people; children having a sense of self-worth and knowing who they are and what they can achieve is enormously rewarding to me, and I am privileged to be part of this young community on a daily basis.

I share the mission, vision and values of this school. 



Thameside Primary School
Cotman Close
OX14 5NL


01235 527600