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Curwen Primary School


Local Advisory Board

Curwen Primary School has an active governing body. We act as “a critical friend” to the school, providing strategic governance to ensure that all children receive the best possible education. The governing body meets as a whole group each term and delegates its business to a range of committees, where appropriate.

(C1) Committee terms of reference 2015-16

What do we do

The governing body has an important part to play in raising school standards through its three key roles:

  • setting strategic direction
  • ensuring accountability
  • monitoring and evaluating school performance

We have responsibility together with the leadership team for agreeing the policies for the general running of the school. Our role is crucial:

  • We fulfil statutory duties to ensure that the school is a safe, healthy and an inclusive environment
  • We provide support and challenge to the leadership team of the school on all issues that affect the learning and welfare of our pupils

The governing body is drawn from the staff of the school, the Local Education Authority, parents and the wider community that our school serves. The usual term of office is four years but many governors stand for re-election and serve more than one term.

Who are we 

Mr Syed Ali Ahmad

Chair of Governors - Nazre Ahmed is a finance professional with extensive experience in large global organisations who has lived in London with his family for many years.  When not  working,he is a keen Aston Villa fan and is learning to cook.  Nazre says that he is proud to be associated with such a great school and looks forward to continuing to provide advice, assurance and control around the school's expenditure to ensure that we are getting the best for our children.


Ms Joan Spencer

Vice Chair - Joan has been a Parent Governor at Curwen School for approximately two years and has worked with children and young people for over 25 years in a variety of settings, currently working in a  local secondary School as a Behaviour & Inclusion Support Officer providing support for students who are facing barriers to learning, such as behaviour, attendance and SEN in order to identify appropriate interventions which will assist them to reach their full potential. Previous to this, Joan worked in the Borough of Newham as an Education Welfare Officer for 7 years working in partnership with a caseload of primary and secondary schools including looked after child protection.  Joan is passionate about the role of parents in supporting their child’s education and strives to promote this to parents as the child’s primary educator.


Ms Samantha Dykes

Sam has worked at Curwen for over ten years now and has worked across the year groups although has a keen interest and specialises in working in Early Years.   For the past 8 years she has  worked in our Nursery and is currently a Classroom Practitioner although her other responsibilities include managing the extended school provision.   Sam has only just taken up a role as a Staff Governor and says that she did this because she wanted to make a positive difference to children's learning and their school experience.



Mr. Abdur Razzak

Abdur has two children at the school, Wafia in 4H and Tasnim in RSP and says that he looks forward to making a contribution to this community.



Mr Paul Harris

Paul Harris joined Curwen Primary in 2006 as the country’s then youngest Head Teacher and in a very short space of time the fortune of the school improved sufficiently for it to be recognised as outstanding.  In June 2015, Paul was awarded Head Teacher of the Year at the prestigious TES Awards.  Paul is Executive Head Teacher of both Curwen Primary and Nursery School and Kensington Primary school, also in the borough of Newham.




Mrs Kate Mansfield

Acting Head of School - Kate has worked at Curwen Primary School since doing her initial teacher training here more than ten years ago. She has enjoyed the journey at Curwen as the school has grown from a 2-form to a 4-form entry and gone from strength-to-strength.



Mrs Janet Britton

Acting Head of School - "I have lived in Newham for 32 years and worked at Curwen for 26. During my time at Curwen there has always been lots of developments to keep me refreshed, including teaching all age ranges from Nursery to Year 6, having 4 different Head Teachers, going through lots of building work and doubling in size and now being an Academy. My children are grown up now and have a grandchild. My hobbies include sewing, reading and rowing along the River Thames. I love working and living in Newham and I look forward to us being part of the Tapscott Learning Trust and having strong links with our partner schools."




Ms Swasthi Mahabeer

Swasthi  came to Curwen Primary School as an Overseas Trained Teacher from South Africa and has served as a Staff Governor for over 10 years as well as well as being the Safeguarding Link Governor.  She is also the PPA Leader, teaching across the school from Nursery to Year 6 as well as the school’s Health & Safety Manager and  has seen the school grow both in size and academically, and saying no two years or terms have been the same. Outside of school, Swasti’s interests include music concerts, visiting galleries and museums and also reading.