Vale Governors

Vale School Governing Body has reconstituted and now comprises 1 Local Authority Representative Governor, 4 Parent Governors, 1 Headteacher, 1 Staff Governor, and 7 Co-opted Governors (one of which is a support staff governor due to the nature of the school provision). The Governing Body meets twice a term. Meetings are open to the public and parents/persons with parental responsibility are particularly welcome.

Vale Governors play an active and crucial role. The Governing Body supports the work of the staff and acts as ‘a critical friend’ to ensure that the provision for the pupils is of the highest quality. Vale School has representation on the Governing Bodies of our partnership schools to ensure that the needs of the Vale are taken into account in any decisions.

Vale Governing Body:

Phil DiLeo - Co-opted Governor & Chair, Link Governor for Assessment

I am a qualified secondary school teacher and from 1984 increasingly worked with and on behalf of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities and their families.This has included role of SENCO, setting up the Haringey Education Support Service and Acting Head teacher in a special school for boys with behavioural difficulties.

I then moved into the Local Authority Administration as Head of Additional Needs and Disabilities which gave me the opportunity to work with a wide range of statutory and voluntary services including special and mainstream schools, Health and Social Care in developing and implementing policies and strategy in line with national legislation and local requirements.

I retired from this post in July 2014 and I am pleased to have the opportunity to be a Governor of the Vale School and to work with colleagues to ensure pupils achieve their potential through rich and inclusive educational experiences.


Jean Brown - LA Governor & Vice Chair, Link Governor for Safeguarding

This is my second tour of duty on the Vale governing body.  I joined first in 1984 when special schools  first had governing bodies, and served for 20 years, 17 of those as chair. I led the GB towards the inclusion scheme, and the five-school partnership which now characterises The Vale’s successful offer. 

As a member of Haringey Council for 8 years 1998-2006, I also led the council’s scrutiny review on inclusion which resulted in the adoption of borough-wide inclusion arrangements for children with special needs. 

I have also been a governor in secondary and primary schools. My professional background is as a secondary teacher, school manager, lecturer in education on the PGCE course at the Institute of Education and University of Greenwich, and as a local authority advisor for children with English as an additional language.

Minakshi Dogra - Parent Governor and Chair of School Development Committee, Link Governor for Parent Partnership

I was appointed as Parent Governor at the Vale in 2012.  I am an ex-science teacher. I was engaged as a volunteer at Vale school for two years and got to know the primary department well. I am now self-employed so that I can care for my two children as one of them has special needs and she attends Vale.  

I am currently leading group sessions for parents/carers on monthly basis in partnership with school leaders.

Sukina Campos – Staff Governor

I have had the pleasure of working at Vale School for the past 8 years and am currently in my second term as governor. My role as Assistant Headteacher, although based at the secondary department, requires me to work across all four sites and my main responsibilities are for planning, assessment and data. 

Eleonora Christodoulides – Co-opted Governor, Link Governor for Transition

I qualified as a primary school teacher 1988. My specialism was language development but I quickly got into Special Educational Needs teaching and support. I held the post of SENCO in a number of mainstream primary schools. I also have experience of working with central support services and I have also run several alternative provisions for children out of school.

In 2008, due to family illness, I gave up teaching and began working with the Advisory Centre for Education, a charity advising parents and training professionals in education law and guidance. I continue this work today with ACE Education, a small business set up to carry on some of the work of the charity which sadly had to close in 2012.

I am pleased to be able to join the Vale governing body as a co-opted governor and hope to be able to support, as well as learn from, the excellent work of the staff and young people in any way I can.

Laura Forbes – Co-opted Governor, Link Governor for Literacy

I have been working as a music specialist for The Vale for a number of years and was delighted to be invited onto the governing body. Prior to freelancing I was full time Artistic Director for Haringey Shed Inclusive Theatre Company working alongside The Vale and many other schools and community groups in Haringey. My current music teaching is based at Great Ormond Street Hospital School, KAOS signing choir and I run an inclusive community choir in Walthamstow. I very much look forward to taking my experiences from these inclusive environments into the governing body to support the growth and development of Vale School.

Stephen Goodwin – Parent Governor, Link Governor for ICT

I became a parent governor for the Vale in 2014. I am a primary school teacher in North London, teaching for over 15 years.  For more than 30 years now I’ve volunteered as a Scout leader. My son has attended Vale at Belmont from the Infants into the Juniors.

Rachel Lissauer – Co-opted Governor, Link Governor for Health

Rachel works and lives in Haringey. She has a background in NHS management and policy and is the Director of Commissioning for Haringey Clinical Commissioning Group. 

Gillian Martin – Co-opted Governor, Link Governor for Health and Safety


I am a qualified Nursery Nurse and am based at the Primary Department as the Support Staff Coordinator.

I have been a Vale governor for over 30 years, appointed when Special Schools first had their own Governing Body. I have also represented the Vale on the Belmont Infant Governing body and for many years I chaired their Premises, Health and Safety Committee.

I am a member of the Vale Resources Committee and the Governor with responsibility for Health and Safety.

Anike Obanishola-Haynes – Parent Governor, Link Governor for Communication

I am a newly appointed parent governor, just over a year into my position and still very much new to the role, yet highly passionate about the care and education of Vale students. 

I have a Diploma of Higher Education in Early Childhood Studies and plan to achieve a full BA in the same area. I have previous experience working with children in both nursery and school settings and have two young children of my own, one of whom attend the Vale school.

Bonnie Smith – Co-opted Governor, Link Governor for ICT

I’ve been a Co-opted Governor here at The Vale since early 2017 and have been thoroughly enjoying getting to know this wonderful school and having the opportunity to contribute towards its success. I’m currently Head of Digital and Marketing at LIFT, London International Festival of Theatre, where I lead on the delivery of the festival marketing campaigns and digital brand, I also work very closely with the Tottenham UpLIFTers project, an arts engagement project taking place across six years that includes a number of students from The Vale, so I’ve been lucky enough to work with some of the students and teachers prior to my appointment onto the Governing Body.

Stephanie Buckingham – Parent Governor, Link Governor for Communication

Following a 15 year career as a Television News Editor, I decided to change careers and teach languages. I am a native French speaker (with fluent Spanish) and have been running French language clubs, in various Haringey primary schools, for 8 years now. My son started at the Vale, in September 2016.

I have also held a number of voluntary positions (in an NGO, school PTA and reading group, as well as in a GCSE language tutoring scheme -for children from deprived backgrounds) and currently do some volunteer editing for a magazine. I look forward to working on the Vale governing body but obviously still have a lot of learning to do (having only just been appointed in October 2017)

Sarah McLay - Headteacher 

I was appointed Headteacher of Vale School in January 2011 and work closely with the Governing Body to monitor, evaluate and review school policy and practice for continuous school improvement.


Jan Smosarski - Clerk to Governing Body




 Governor attendance 2017-2018


Name                                                      Date







Minakshi Dogra







Stephen Goodwin







Stephanie Buckingham







Anike Obanishola Haynes







Jean Brown







Sukina Campos







Eleonora Christodulides







Laura Forbes







Bonnie Smith