Coalway Junior School


Coalway Junior School has 10 governors, some of whom represent the parents, some are members of the school staff whilst others represent the local community. We also have associate members who are experts in their field and offer advice to the governing body. Parent, local authority and co-opted governors hold their position for at least four years whilst school members of school staff are appointed for at least two years. The Head Teacher remains on the governing body for the duration of their appointment at the school.

Governors are deliberately drawn from a wide range of occupations & skills, so between them they can provide the school with business, IT, language, logistical, legal & educational skills & expertise.

What we do

The governing body is legally responsible for the governance of the school, which includes setting budgets, making sure the buildings are well maintained, and giving staff the support and resources to deliver the curriculum. Governors also play a part in recruiting new staff, helping implement government Schools policies (from anti-bullying to Special Educational Needs) and planning for all aspects of the school’s development – from setting targets for the children’s achievement to improving the existing buildings and facilities.

How we do it

Governors hold full meetings a minimum of 3 times a year, and each governor is also assigned to one or more specific committee (the committees deal with everything from the National Curriculum and Staffing issues, to Premises, Health & Safety, Child Protection and Publicity). In addition to this many governors are familiar faces around the school – we attend school functions, are present at Parents Evenings and have individual responsibilities related to different curriculum subjects.

Why we do it

Being a governor involves a huge amount of time and commitment. We need to familiarise ourselves with the world of education, get to know every last detail about how the school functions, plough our way through endless acronyms and educational lingo, and deal with Shire Hall. Governors are not paid, even though they are legally responsible for the School’s management. However, no-one who serves as a governor at Coalway does so for any reason other than the chance to promote the school and ensure that it runs as efficiently and successfully as possible.

Who are we?


Caroline Merritt (Chair, Co-opted Governor)

Having initially studied Law and working for the Local Authority in the Legal Department with a specialism in Child Protection, I joined Gloucestershire Constabulary in 2005 and have worked in various roles, with a specialism in Community Engagement and Governance.

I really do believe that anyone can achieve anything, given the right opportunities and this is why I am a Governor at Coalway Juniors.  We work together to ensure that all children within the school are able to reach their potential by providing not only good education, but pastoral care that enhances their experience in school.

I am married to Seb and am Mum to George, who loved his time at Coalway and benefitted greatly from all it had to offer as a school. I want all children within our community to continue to receive the same.

I am proud to be Chair of Governors and have been since 2016, whilst also being the designated Child Protection Governor.


Stuart McLester (Vice-Chair, Local Authority Appointed Governor)

"BA History/Politics, retired MD of manufacturing company and dedicated supporter of good education. Married with 2 children who previously attended CJS and now delighted to have 3 young grand-children.  A proud governor at CJS for over 30 years, a governor of a secondary school in Wales and director/company secretary of a community group based at the Main Place in Coleford."


Judith Aston (Co-opted Governor)

I was employed at Coalway Junior School for 25 years, firstly as a Teaching Assistant and then qualifying as a Higher Level Teaching Assistant. In later years I continued as a Supply Teacher on a regular basis so I have a sound knowledge of school life.


I am married with two daughters who both attended Coalway Junior School and now have a grand-daughter there.


I have been on the Governing Body for over 20 years.


I am the Special Needs Governor and am committed to SEND and ensuring all children have the support and opportunities they deserve to reach their full potential.


I am Health and Safety Governor and make regular visits to school where I work with staff to ensure necessary training and records are kept up to date.


Rob Weston (Parent Governor)

I was born and bred in our beautiful Forest of Dean and have been employed by FR Willetts Ltd Coaches for 26 years, holding the International (Operator's License) Certificate or Professional Competence. I love to travel long distances throughout the UK and Europe and thoroughly enjoy meeting people along the way.


I have 2 sons Archie and Harley, one of whom was educated at Coalway Junior School prior to his transition to Five Acres High School. The other attends Coalway Infant school and will be moving to the Junior school in September 2023. Most importantly, I enjoy spending my quality free time with them and my family.


Every child deserves a great education and start in life, hence my reason for becoming a Governor so that I may help maintain the high standards the school has on offer to the students at their beginning of life. 


I bring an honest and hard-working approach to my work. It is the same attitude I bring to this important role. I work with parents, teachers, the Head and other Governors to help drive the continued improvement needed to provide our children with best chance of success. I am a strong believer in the value and importance of a well-balanced education. I welcome the opportunity to help the school in any capacity I can.


Hayley Badman (Co-opted Governor)

I am a Mum of 2 daughters, who both have attended Coalway Junior School. I also support with the 'Friends of Coalway Junior School' which help raise funds for the school and pupils.


I felt as a Mum it was important to become a Governor to have a greater understanding into how our school runs, but more importantly to have a positive impact for the school and the pupils.


In my Governor role I regularly come into school to observe and offer support in areas I can. I am Safeguarding Governor which means I work closely with the DSL (designated safeguarding leads) to ensure the School adheres to our policies and procedures and that we commit to safeguarding the children al Coalway Junior School.


Rebecca Smith (Parent Governor)

I have two children, Alfie and Grace. Alfie attended Coalway Junior School and is now at Five Acres; Grace currently attends Coalway Junior School. Alfie loved his time at Coalway and Grace is enjoying het time there too.


I worked for 5 years within the adults team at Social Services and after that for 15 years at the Royal Forest of Dean and Gloucestershire colleges, supporting 16 - 18+ year olds as a Student Mentor. I have always been passionate about equal access to good education and believe that any school needs the support of its parents and the wider community to operate. During my time as a parent at Coalway I have volunteered to help with the running of the school library. Becoming a parent governor seemed like a good way to play an active role in helping and supporting the school so I joined the governing body in 2022.


In my role as Pupil Premium Governor, I hope to use the knowledge and experience gained from my roles within the education and social services to support the school with their Pupil Premium strategy, allowing them to continue to improve the attainment, engagement and general school experience of pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds.



Contact the Governing Body


To email the Chair of Governors –


To email the Clerk to the Governing Body –