Governors' Impact Statement
As school governors, we are responsible for the strategic direction and the financial performance of Mathilda Marks-Kennedy. We challenge and monitor the School’s Headteacher and Senior Leadership Team. Within this remit, we meet as a full governing body once a term, contribute to the school improvement plan and regularly oversee various aspects of the school through, for example, learning walks, and meetings of three specific committees:
(i) Curriculum Impact, with a Jewish Studies working party
(ii) Finance and Resources, including personnel, premises and security working parties
The Governing Body comprises relevant skills and expertise; our governors work in fields such as law, accountancy, education and communication. Keen to improve and keep our skills updated, we also regularly attend professional governor training. We volunteer our time and energy to promote the School’s vision to the best of our ability while adhering to our inclusive ethos. Indeed, we aim to drive best practices throughout the school in order to match our aspiration that each child receives the best education to enable him or her to fulfil his or her potential.
The Governing Body
The Governing Body is chaired by David Stone and the vice-chair is Zoe Sinclair. The Governing Body comprises eight Foundation Governors including the Chair, plus six others including Mrs Kaye as Headteacher, ex-officio.
All 8 foundation governors are appointed by Scopus Jewish Educational Trust which is the school's Foundation Trust and part of the United Synagogue, each for a 3 year term. Other governor terms of office are 4 years: two parent governors are appointed by parent election, one staff governor appointed by a staff election, one LA governor appointed by the Local Authority and one co-opted governor appointed by the governing body itself.
Mr Smerin, as Deputy Headteacher, is invited to attend Governing Body meetings in a non-voting capacity.
- Please click here to view the Governing Body Committee Membership
- Please click here to view the Governing Body Register of Business Interests
- Please click here to view the Governing Body Committee Meeting Attendance
- Please click here to access the MMK Governing Body Code of Conduct
Foundation Governor, appointed November 2021
David was a Cardiologist and Medical Director at Papworth Hospital, Cambridge. He has always been involved in education, and was Director of Education at Papworth, Associate Dean of the Faculty of Clinical Medicine at Cambridge University and chaired the local Cardiology Training committee. Since retirement he has studied for and been awarded an MA in ‘Literature and Medicine’, and a PhD in English which examined James Joyce’s engagement with Jewish life and the Jewish religion.
David has held several community roles: he was Chairman of the Cambridge Traditional Jewish Congregation for approximately 10 years, and chaired the first Jewish Chaplaincy Board at Cambridge University. He is now a member of the Central Square Minyan management committee where he advises on medical issues arising out of the pandemic.
He feels that the education of children in Judaism and the Jewish religion in a way that allows them to engage with the modern world is of vital importance, and hopes and anticipates that the transferrable skills acquired from working at Board level in the National Health Service will be of value in the governance and future strategic development of MMK.
Vice Chair of Governors, Foundation Governor, appointed January 2018
Zoe is the Founder of Employees Matter, the largest provider of employee engagement seminars and webinars in the UK. Zoe works with a wide range of clients across all sectors. In 2017 she joined forces with Jonny Benjamin MBE and Neil Laybourn to start This Can Happen, a corporate mental health conference.
Having owned a nursery in Harpenden for a short time, Zoe developed a further interest in the wellbeing of staff and pupils alike. Zoe sits on the Personnel committee.
She has two children who are both at senior school. They both had a wonderful primary education at a very similar school to MMK and Zoe looks forward to being part of the governing body to give back so that many more children can benefit from the warm and loving ethos of MMK.
Head Teacher/Governor, appointed September 2019
Miriam has been the headteacher of MMK since September 2019. She has worked in education since 2000. In her previous school she was Deputy Head and SENCo for 7 years. In 2015, she attained her SENCO accreditation having passed the National Award for SENCO accreditation.
Miriam has a clear vision to lead our school and this is noted in our most recent Ofsted inspection in November 2021.
‘Leaders and governors have a good understanding of the school’s current strengths and areas for development. They have appropriate plans in place that are being implemented at pace and are closely monitored
Miriam is an annual lecturer for the LSJS BA Jewish Education Program where she lectures on Assessment.
Foundation Governor, appointed January 2020
Richard is a consultant, advising brands on a range of marketing, technology and media projects.
Richard has been involved in MMK security and premises matters for several years and was part of the team behind the MMK60 fundraising and upgrade works. He sits on the Finance and Resources Committee, with a broad remit including facilities, security, technology, value for money and fundraising.
Richard is driven to help enable the school to provide opportunities for every pupil to achieve their personal best so that they may thrive in their future lives.
Foundation Governor, Chair of Curriculum Impact Committee, appointed October 2013
Sara has been a secondary school English teacher for the past 18 years and currently teaches at North London Collegiate School in Edgware.
Sara chairs the Curriculum Committee. As a mother of four children, she is committed to supporting the school in providing every child with the best possible educational opportunities. She and her family have been residents of Mill Hill for over a decade and are members of Mill Hill United Synagogue.
Staff Governor, appointed September 2023
Natasha is a Year 4 teacher at Mathilda Marks-Kennedy and is the PSHE champion across the school.
Natasha went to the University of Birmingham to study Sociology. She qualified for QTS in 2017. Having taught in Rosh Pinah for a few years, Natasha understands the importance of community.
She is committed to teaching through the objectives of the national curriculum to ensure progress and success.
Natasha believes that school should be a welcoming, safe place for every child to learn, grow and achieve their goals. She is thrilled to be elected as Staff Governor and bring a new perspective to the governing body.
Parent Governor, appointed November 2020
Matt is a barrister, specialising in white collar defence work. He has been involved in Jewish Charity committees for many years and was heavily involved in Jewish youth leadership.
Matt is a member of the Personnel Committee and previously chaired the Admissions Committee. The school's strategic development is very important to him, allied to maintaining the level of excellence that in his view MMK provides.
Matt has three children at MMK. He is passionate about sport, exercise and well-being and believes this is an area that can be further developed at MMK.
Foundation Governor, Chair of Finance and Resources Committee, appointed December 2020
Daniel is the Chief Financial Officer of an AIM listed aviation company, having previously gained significant experience working in FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 companies and in a large professional services company. Daniel is a qualified chartered accountant.
Daniel chairs the Finance Committee and is focused on ensuring MMK operates on a sound financial footing, enabling it to build on firm foundations for a successful future.
Daniel is married and has four children. The family are active members of Finchley United Synagogue, where Daniel has previously been on the Board of Management.
Parent Governor, appointed August 2023
Ilana is an MMK parent and has been for 10 years. She is a mother of 3 children and two are still at MMK. She feels MMK is a special ‘family’ community.
Following a 15 year career as a primary school teacher, she moved to the charity world and now leads the Schools Programme at Jewish Women’s Aid, educating about healthy relationships and consent.
She is a youth mental health first aider and cares passionately about the wellbeing of young people.
Since Covid, there has been a rise in mental health issues in young people and she would be keen to support in this area.
As parent governor she aim to bring my knowledge of education to support our school in providing our children with the space to learn, grow and foster positive Jewish values that will shape them in their formative years and beyond.
Local Authority Governor, appointed February 2020
Ben Weiner is a clinical psychologist, working in both the NHS and private practice. Since qualifying he has focused his career on working with children and young people, an area he is extremely passionate about. Ben has experience working in Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, Learning Disability Services, Local Authorities, Charities and legal proceedings.
Ben is appointed by Barnet as our Local Authority governor. As governor with responsibility for special educational needs (SEN) he liaises regularly with the school SENCO.
Foundation Governor, appointed October 2022
Lee is Head of HR at Kisharon, a charity with a Jewish ethos which supports children and adults with learning disabilities through its Nursery, School, adult services and social enterprises. She has delivered training including Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Leadership and Management, Safer Recruitment and Safeguarding Reporting. She is an Associate member of the CIPD.
Lee has a strong background and commitment to Jewish education and community life. She has been an active member of Kenton Synagogue where she grew up, Ichud Shivat Tzion Shul in Tel Aviv where she lived for 13 years, and Finchley United Synagogue which she and her family currently attend. Her two children attended Jewish schools. She taught at New North London and Kenton Cheders and was an active member of the Youth Movement Bnei Akiva. Lee studied for a year at a Jewish Seminary in Israel and has a Master’s degree in Management.
Lee has taken on responsibility for Safeguarding at MMK and is very much looking forward to learning from and contributing to the continued success of MMK.
Co-opted Governor, appointed December 2022
Dalia is a trained primary school teacher and former SENCO. Having done a postgraduate diploma in Specific Learning Difficulties, she is also a trained dyslexia specialist.
Dalia has worked with adults who were on probation, teaching them basic literacy and numeracy skills. However, after more than 20 years working mainly in Primary schools, Dalia now tutors full time, specialising at helping both children and adults with specific learning needs. She is passionate about education and enabling all learners to achieve success, whatever that may look like.
Aside from teaching, Dalia’s other passion is cooking and food photography. She runs a website and Instagram account which she loves as it helps her relax after the stresses of teaching!
Dalia has three children, all of whom went to MMK. She has seen what a warm and nurturing environment the school is and she is looking forward to being able to help in any way she can.
Co-opted Governor, appointed May 2023
Mark is a CFO and Chartered Accountant, having primarily focused on helping start-ups and scale-ups grow, over the last decade.
Mark has sat on the MMK Finance Committee since 2017, helping advise on various areas over this critical and transformational period.
Mark has been a resident of Mill Hill for nearly 15 years, is a member of Mill Hill Schul and has 2 children in MMK.