Welcome to the Governors page of the Bearwood Primary School Website. Thank you for taking the time to learn a bit more about us.


School Governors

Chair of Governors and Parent Governor

Nicola Bruce

I am very proud to have been elected as a parent governor in 2016 and pleased to have the opportunity to be involved in creating the future at Bearwood Primary School. I've enjoyed getting to know so many of the parents in the playground, since my children joined Bearwood in 2013 and I look forward to meeting more over the next five years. As well as being a Mum, I also enjoy a challenging career at National Grid and my work life balance is very important to me. I have a degree in electrical engineering and enjoy being able to share my passion for this with the children at school events, such as Science Day. I am the Chair of Governors, a member of the Resource Committee, Pay and Performance Management Committee, Teaching and Learning Committee and the link Governor for EYFS. I am enjoying supporting the school on a continuous journey of improvement.

Vice Chair of Governors and Co-Opted Governor 

Rachel Bishop-Firth

I became part of the team of governors in 2017 and have taken on the role of supporting safeguarding for the children at Bearwood Primary.  I have over 25 years’ experience in HR and am the mother of two children who were educated in the Wokingham Borough.  I look forward to using this experience to support the school as it continues to develop to provide the best possible education to our local children.

Local Authority Governor

Christine Smart

I’m very keen to be part of the Bearwood team and take an active and supporting role as a Governor.  I live close to the school, in Finchampstead, with my husband, having moved to the area in 1995.  I’m an Accountant with 25 years’ experience, largely working in the hi tech sector.  I currently work in a specialized global accounting role for a major hi tech company,  writing and reviewing policy, running training courses and generally advising the business on accounting related issues.  Prior to this I was a Financial Controller, managing the accounting function, budgeting, forecasting and preparing management and statutory accounts.  I largely work from home and my company are very supportive of my spending time working within the community.  I have experience of being a Governor in another school in the area, where I was the Chair of Finance and Deputy Chair.  I was also part of the strategy committee, the administration project group and I worked with a small team to help market the school.


Co-Opted Governors 

Rachelle Shepherd DuBey 

I am a Borough and Parish Councillor and I was keen to be a governor at a school in my ward. I wanted to use my MAEd degree in Science Education to help my community. Before becoming a governor at Bearwood I was involved in a parent consultation on school places in Winnersh. This resulted in the new Wheatfield school and the decision not to go forward with the Hatch Farm Dairies School. I have been a governor since March 2014. My professional background is Counselling and Psychotherapy. As a Councillor I mainly cover planning, transport and health. My  interests are computers, politics and my dog, my cats and healthy exercise.

Michael Thompson 

I joined the governors in May 2018 and I'm currently on the resource committee and the maths link governor. My day job is a Financial Adviser specialising in pensions and investments. Within my life I've gained a strong appreciation for education and a firm believer in life long learning and helping others reach their full potential in whatever form that takes.


Susan Jones

I grew up in Winnersh and am an ex pupil of Bearwood Primary School. My 2 daughters were educated in the Wokingham borough before we moved to South Gloucestershire with my husband’s job. I am a retired primary school teacher with experience of teaching all ages from 4-11, mostly in the London Borough of Sutton and in South Gloucestershire. Now back in Wokingham I hope to play an active part in school life and be able to use my experience to support the school in its continued development. I am a member of the Teaching and Learning Committee and  the Link Governor for KS1.

Sobia Kashif

I’m a mum of two and I live in Winnersh. I’m a doctor by profession and work closely with children and parents, looking after their health and well-being. As part of my job, I’m often involved in the community, social services and children's safeguarding. I joined the governing body in 2020 during the COVID -19 epidemic as I wanted to support the children during these unusual circumstances. I understand the physical and psychological needs of children and how personal well-being can contribute to their learning. I’m very passionate about education and training. I look forward to support the children and create a safe learning environment where they can be nurtured.


Sriram Rajan

As a first-time governor, I am glad to have the opportunity to be involved with Bearwood Primary School. As my son starts his reception year in another school, I  am driven to understand the school system, get more involved with it and make some meaningful contributions. I work in information technology as a Product Architect and have been in that sector for 20 years. Originally from India, I have also spent close to 10 years in the United States before immigrating to the UK. I look forward to using my experience to support the school and help achieve the right outcomes for the school, the teachers, and the children.


Parent Governors 

 Rajan Sharma

I joined the governing body in Dec 17 as an elected parent governor. I am the Development link Governor and also a member of the Teaching and Learning Committee. I am a qualified Chartered Accountant and work as EMEA Financial Controller in a leading multinational company. I believe in leaving a positive legacy for the future generation and giving back to the community. As parent to a year 1 pupil, I joined the governing body to provide appropriate support, guidance, innovative ideas and constructive feedback to ensure the school thrives as a leading primary school in the area.


Staff Governor

Katrina Stephenson

I am excited to be a staff governor at Bearwood, and look forward to taking an active role in supporting the school from a different perspective. I joined the staff in September 2018, teaching a Year 5/6 class.  I am now the EYFS Lead. My husband and I moved to the area 7 years ago from South Africa, where I managed and taught at an independent Infant School. My three grown-up children are away studying for most of the year, so I look forward to the holidays, when I can spend quality time with them. I sit on the Teaching and Learning Committee, where I hope to make a difference to our pupils’ experiences, both in school and in the future.


Head Teacher 

Funmi Alder

I am absolutely thrilled to have been appointed as headteacher of Bearwood Primary School.  As headteacher, I am automatically a member of the governing body and sit on all the committees.  Most of my career has been in London schools - progressing from class teacher to headteacher.  I have completed the NPQH (National Professional Qualification for Headteachers) and MBA in Educational Leadership (International) at the UCL Institute of Education.  I bring much school leadership experience to Bearwood, further enhancing the strong strategic oversight of the governing body.

Retired Governors 2019/2020


Claire Sanderson   17/10/2016 - 17/09/2020

Jonathan Olaofe 27/11/2018 – 18/12/2019

Ashok Rajagopalan 27/11/2018 – 17/07/2019

Cristina Marinoni 01/09/2015 – 31/08/2019


Copy of Governor details chart for website.xlsx

Governors Pages - Click here for Access to the Governors Page (This will require staff or Governor Login credentials)