Suzanne Bailey

I have been a parent Governor since the first year my son Matthew started at Villa Real, age 4, he’s now in 6th Form! I was a Children’s Physiotherapist by profession, and worked in Newcastle and Durham for 20 years, however my main job is being Mum to our 3 children and my toddler grandson. In November 2012 I was elected as Chair of Governors, and am in school regularly and work closely with the Head Teacher and Senior Leadership Team. I have worked alongside staff and pupils in most classes and am constantly thrilled to see the children’s personalities shine through.

I am part of the Personnel committee and the Finance committee and as with all my Governor colleagues, I am committed to working with school and taking it forward for the benefit of our children.

Shirley Emerson

I am a Staff Governor. Prior to coming to Villa Real School as a Special Support Assistant, I worked for Behaviour Support, travelling to many schools in Weardale and Teesdale working with pupils of all ages and abilities. Before becoming a Nursery Nurse, I was a Registered Nurse working in anaesthetics and following this working in a community hospital. I have 2 grown up sons, a husband and 3 cats. Because of my experiences over the past 12 years at Villa Real School I hope to be a valued and supporting member of the Governing body and a spokesperson for the wonderful pupils, students and staff of such a very special school.

Ivan Jewell

During my past career I worked for thirty years in the Further and Higher Education Sectors. I have a genuine interest in education, and the opportunity for children and young people to reach their full potential.


I have been a Governor at Burnopfield Primary School for over 20 years and am a Board  Member of the New College Academies Trust. I would like to share my knowledge and experience  and I am committed to working with  Villa Real School, and assisting it to move forward for the benefit of the children and young people.

Marie Jones

I am an Ofsted registered residential manager with over 15 years’ experience working with children and young people in a residential setting and have now been in a management position since May 2012.

I have worked within Villa real over the years supporting children and young people to enjoy and achieve in education and promote positive outcomes.

I am passionate about helping each child and young person be the best they can be and look for solution focussed strategies to overcome any barriers. I have worked alongside the school and believe children and young people can thrive in the school with positive partnership working.

Arlene Bell

Before I retired I was Head Teacher at Beechdale Nursery School in Consett for 21 years and during that time was honoured to receive an OBE for services to Early Years Education.

Early Years has always been my passion and I am the Early Years governor at 2 other Durham schools – Cestria Primary in Chester-le-Street and Ebchester Primary.

I have 2 children of my own and 6 grandchildren and I am lucky enough to be able to spend time with them all on a regular basis.

I hope to be able to bring to Villa Real everything I have learned both as a Head Teacher and as a parent and grandparent. I look forward to both supporting all staff and children in whatever way I can to ensure Villa Real continues to go from strength to strength.

Caroline Givens

I became a Parent Governor in November 2018. I am a mum of 3 girls and my youngest, Tara, joined the school in September 2018 aged 4. I have joined the Personnel Committee and, with my background in HR and Training in the NHS, I believe I have a lot to offer in this area. I feel honoured to have become a member of the governing body and am passionate about ensuring that we continue to strive for the very best for our children in all we do.

Lindsey Robinson

I became a Parent Governor in October 2020, shortly after my daughter, aged 6 joined Villa Real. I also have a son aged 2. I work part time for a Global Energy Company and have experience in project management strategy, business improvement, audit and quality systems. I really hope that in my role of Parent Governor I can use my skills and experience to support the school to ensure our children have the best possible experience at Villa Real School. I also hope that I can learn some new skills and increase my understanding of the education sector.

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