Our Governors

I am Antonia Nicholls and my two boys, James and Benji, attend Shire Oak. I have been a Governor since 2017 and am now Chair of the Board of Governors at Shire Oak. My background is in Human Resources and I currently run my own Consultancy, which is perfect to flex my time between working and family life.


I enjoy supporting Shire Oak and getting to see what's going on "behind the scenes" at School. Governors know that the school staff all a very dedicated bunch who work incredibly hard which represents itself in the work and ethos of School.

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Hi, my name is Dick Killington. I was co-opted as a Governor in 2015 and am Chair of the Teaching and Learning Committee. Since retiring four years ago I have worked in two primary schools as a volunteer (two of them in Shire Oak) helping with group and one-to-one activities in the areas of reading, phonics, maths and some science. Before retiring I was Professor of Virology, Pro-Dean for Learning and Teaching, and Head of School at the University of Leeds. For 31 years I was the Warden of a very large block of undergraduate student flats, with responsibility for discipline and pastoral care. I am married with three children and four granddaughters, all of whom are at primary school.

I have come to love Shire Oak and will do my best to help the School and to enhance the experience of both its staff and its pupils.

Hi, I am Sally Dyster. I have been a school Governor since my youngest was in Year 1 at St Michael’s and he is now doing his GCSEs. It has been so interesting and rewarding seeing Shire Oak grow from the initial idea of it happening  to the current wonderful school that it is – it certainly has come a very long way. As well as being on the full Governing Body, I also sit on the Resources committee and previously chaired it.


By training I am an industrial chemist and worked in various industries, primarily printing but also de-inking and paper manufacturing. Latterly I have worked as a consultant in the IT industry on a large Government Program. I am currently enjoying semi/early retirement!



Hello, my name is Ann Dudzinski. I am a Governor who represents our local church, St Michael’s. I joined the governing body here a long time ago – my son was in year 3 at that time, and he is now 23 years old!


Being a governor is very interesting indeed. It is wonderful to watch Shire Oak School grow and develop, and it is very satisfying to play a part in that development, as a governor.


Because Shire Oak School is a church school, it is very important that we have good links with our local church. Part of my role as a governor is to help those links to develop and grow.  It’s lovely to see the pupils and staff and parents from Shire Oak when they come over to St Michael’s church for the Christmas carol service each year, and also for the service in July which marks the end of the school year. I try to come to along to at least one assembly at school each term, and always enjoy seeing and hearing about the achievements of all the pupils.


One of the most important jobs that governors do is to be part of the appointment process for new members of staff. This is very challenging - we want to find the best possible teachers and staff for our school. It is very rewarding to work with such an excellent team of staff as we have here, and it is a privilege to be part of that team, as a governor



Hello, my name is Julia Kelly.


I am a Parent Governor with two children who are both at High School having both left Shire Oak recently. 


I have worked in universities and museums as a lecturer and researcher in art history for over 15 years, and bring my experience of a changing and evolving educational climate to the Governing Body.


I also have voluntary experience running music and movement playgroups for pre-school children. I originally studied languages at college, and I believe strongly in their importance as a means to understand other cultures and ways of thinking. I love art and music, and am also a big fan of maths: for me arts, humanities and sciences come together in an overall learning experience, which is something this school does really well. Shire Oak Primary is a unique school with a special atmosphere, and I am very proud to help the children of this school continue to thrive today and in the future.

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My name is Anna Swinburn and I have been a Parent Governor since 2015. I have two children at Shire Oak: Lia who is in Year 6, and Sam who is in Year 4. They are particularly fond of the opportunities for outdoor learning and the caring atmosphere created by the school.


I am a secondary school teacher at a school in Bradford and I have many years of experience teaching children from a broad range of backgrounds, albeit a little older. My subject is Design and Technology, which is essentially about problem solving and creativity; I hope to be able to bring these two skills to the role in helping the school to develop and move forward. 


I look forward to being more involved in a school which seems to have found the balance between nurturing a love of learning and caring for the whole child with academic achievement, the former of which can all too easily get sacrificed at the expense of the latter.


Bianca Woodruff represents the Teaching Staff on the Governing Body.