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Our Governors

Chair of Governors - Neel Dakshy

I have Chaired the Governing Body since the of Summer 2021, having first been elected a Parent Governor in November 2012, and chaired the Premises Committee, which I continue to sit on.

I am a RIBA chartered Architect and sat on the Design and Conservation panel of the London Borough of Lewisham from 2007-2013, which included the design review of several school projects within the borough. I have also worked on several ­­schemes for the Girls’ Day School Trust in the past.

All three of my children attended St Margaret’s, giving me twelve years’ experience as a parent at the school.

St Margaret's Lee Rector  


 currently vacant as the church is in interregnum period

PCC Governors 

Richard Cook

I am the longest serving governor at St Margaret's. Originally I was an elected Parent Governor, but now all my (four) children have left St Margaret’s (and Secondary Scholl and University as well), I am enjoying my time as a PCC (Foundation) Governor. I have chaired the Finance Committee for over fifteen years and am committed to making sure that the maximum amount of money that we have available is properly spent to ensure the best educational outcomes for the children at the school.  After leaving university, I trained as a lawyer and now work in the City of London as a Specialist Consultant; Expert Witness and Arbitrator for the global Insurance and Reinsurance market.

Andy Sullivan

Having enjoyed a first career in the world of finance, I am in the middle of my second: a full time carer for our three children, two of whom are at St Margaret’s. 

I have lived within a couple of minutes walk of the school for nearly twenty years, and witnessed its transformation into the fantastic community resource it is today. The challenge for the coming years is how to maintain the already high levels of overall achievement; ensure that the needs of all pupils of every background are met; and deepen engagement with the wider community and environment.

David Lawson

I have been a foundation governor since 2017.  My children all attended St Margaret’s, the last one leaving in 2022.  I think this is a wonderful community and hope I can contribute something to helping the school to serve it.

I work as a lawyer in public services, including education.  I have experience of many issues which might come up running a school and in the education functions of a local authority.  However, the school has rarely produced any legal issues requiring much analysis.

Caroline Rogerson

I was appointed as a PCC (Church) governor in 2017. Since that time have also served on the Premises Committee, utilising my background as a RIBA chartered Architect with experience working on (higher) education projects.

As a PCC governor, I am particularly keen to strengthen and support connections between the school and the church as part of a wider, diverse community.

I am also a parent of a child in the school.

Julia Smith-Rose

I was appointed as a PCC (church) governor in 2024. As a PCC governor, I am interested in improving the links and building upon the existing strong communities of both the school and the church. I am particularly enthusiastic about outreach within the community and how we can continue to work together on this moving forward.

Primarily, I would describe myself as a designer, but I have also worked in education as a lecturer and teacher in fashion and textiles for many years. I am extremely passionate about the power of the arts in education and overall mental health and wellbeing. Therefore, I am keen to bring my enthusiasm, knowledge, and experience in this approach to the board at St. Margaret’s.

As a member of the St. Margaret’s Church and school community, I am also a proud parent of two children at the school.

Josef Herman

I have been a Diocesan Foundation Governor since 2023 and love working with the wonderful staff and fellow governors at St Margaret's. My own professional background is in education: I have worked in a range of secondary schools in roles from teacher to head of department to assistant principal, as well as serving as an inspector for another school's accreditation visit. I am also a committed member of the congregation at St Margaret's Church, assisting in worship in various capacities and serving on the PCC. I hope that my experience in both of these areas give me a useful perspective on the school and the education that it offers to its pupils.

Ian Butcher

I was appointed as a PCC governor in 2021 and enjoy playing my part in school life in this role.

My wife and I are foster carers of two children at the school. Coincidentally, our three birth children (all now adults) also attended St. Margaret’s, and it’s lovely to be connected with the school again.

I am also leader of Catford Community Church and, in 2022, completed an MA in theology with a focus on vulnerable children. I have been a trustee of several small charities, and my previous jobs have ranged from Chartered Patent Attorney to Electrician.

I am often in the school playground at drop-off and pick-up times, and am happy to chat about anything that the governors should be aware of.

SDBE Governor

Jenny Standage

I became a Diocesan Foundation Governor in 2005, so I have been a governor for 17 years. I am a member of the Pay and Personnel Committee, dealing with staffing and pay. I became a governor when I retired as Music Director/Organist and choir trainer at St Margaret’s Church, so I have a particular interest in music in school. I used to come into school to audition children for St Margaret’s choir and have always been concerned that the link between the school and St Margaret’s church should be very strong. As I am also a Reader/Lay Minister at St Margaret’s, my concern is that church and school are securely linked, with Christian teaching through assemblies and the school visiting the church for services, working closely with the head and staff concerned with RE within school.

Parent Governors

Yi Baylis

I was born and grew up in China and I came to the UK to study Social Psychology at the University of Cambridge in 2004. I then retrained as a charted management accountant and started my career in Finance. I love numbers and maths so outside of work, I serve as the Treasurer of the Good Shepherd Church in Lee. I also enjoy outdoor jogging and at the moment, learning to play the piano. 

I am an advocate of diversity: in education, workplace, community etc. I believe that different races, languages, backgrounds, experiences… all that would broaden our horizons and help us form comprehensive views of the world and provide us with open minds in life. I have a passion in education and life-long learning (this is so deeply embedded in Chinese culture!). I hope with my background, I’ll be able to support and bring a different perspective to the school’s vision and values.

Fiona Coghiel

I have over 20 years of experience as a Learning and Development professional in the skills development sector. I enjoy designing and delivering engaging learning solutions that enhance skills and knowledge of employees within my organisation. I have experience of designing and implementing apprenticeship mentoring programmes to nurture early talent and foster a sense of belonging. My passion lies in coaching. I am an experienced Coach practitioner and firmly believe in the transformative power of coaching to help motivate and empower individuals to excel. Additionally, I am a mental health first aider and have previously trained as a therapeutic counsellor, providing voluntary support to service users at Mind, addressing various mental health concerns.  My commitment has extended to voluntary roles at The Prince’s Trust and Oxfam, where I have previously provided mentorship and coaching support to assist individuals in accessing education, training, and employment.

My genuine interest lies in contributing to our school’s ongoing success. Specifically, I am interested in the personal development and mental well-being of children, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds and other groups, such as looked-after children. I firmly believe that children thrive best in a supportive, nurturing, and safe environments.  I would like the opportunity to see where my skills and experience in coaching, mentoring, and learning and development might benefit pupils and support the Leaders and staff of the school. My approach will be empathetic, action-oriented, and focused on creating positive outcomes.

Staff Governor 

Helen Prentis

I have been teaching at St Margaret's since 2004. I am currently the Deputy Headteacher, Designated Safeguarding Lead and Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO).

Local Authority Governor  

Grace Harding


Working in the NHS England National policy team for Children and Young people's Mental Health team has opened my eyes to the pressures that children, young people, their parents and carers and the schools they attend are under. In many cases schools are becoming not just places of education (which I believe is crucial to social mobility and reducing inequalities) but also places of safety, comfort and even meals. Having benefited from an excellent education I want to ensure this is on offer for others, so they have access to some of the same opportunities.  For this reason I was keen to act as the Governor Link Lead for Safeguarding. 

I believe that my experience working in one of the biggest organisations in the country (the NHS) for over a decade has helped build experience useful to being a governor (developing national policy, strategy, governance and assurance processes, data analysis, procurement) and that the experience and learning I take from my governor’s role will provide invaluable knowledge to feed into my work.   

On a personal level, having myself now settled, I am keen to give something back to my local community to help, and I believe children and their time at school and education is a vital place to start.  

Co-opted Governor

Yvette Miller

I was appointed as a Co-opted (Community) governor in February 2024. I am looking forward to taking up this post and working with the school and the community that it serves, as I grew up only a short distance from the school.

I moved away to study Electronic Systems Engineering at University in Royal Borough of Kingston Upon Thames, and then secured my first job working in Edinburgh, before returning to London to continue my career and raise two daughters (now adults).

As a Chartered Engineer, I have a wide range of skills and experience developed throughout my career that I hope can be drawn upon to build on the success of the school; I also participate in STEM programmes at the London Transport Museum, organised through my employer and when time permits.