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As Governors, our primary focus is to enable and support the Headteacher in our shared goal of providing the best education possible for the children at Little Thurrock. We do this through meetings of the governing body and the formal and informal visits made to the school when we have an opportunity to talk to the children, staff, and Headteacher.

The local governing body (LGB) meets each half-term to discuss current issues and future plans in all aspects of school improvement. The work of the LGB relates to matters of:

  • Pupil and Curriculum
  • Finance and Premises
  • Personnel

These meetings provide the opportunity to discuss and consider ideas, proposals, and plans to enhance and improve the school. I hope that you will find this website informative and enjoyable.

If you are interested in becoming a governor or have any queries or feedback for the either the Chair of Governors or the LGB as a whole, please either telephone or email the school office. If you prefer to send a letter, please use the school’s postal address and mark it for the attention of the Chair or governors.

Community governors

Mrs Denise Manson
Chair / Safeguarding / Child Protection & LAC (Looked After Children) / Quality of Education / Leadership & Management /
I have lived in Thurrock since my parents moved from inner London when I was 3 months old. My parent’s belief that a ‘good education’ was the key to independence and greater choice in adult life, has been a significant influence. After completing a degree in Psychology/Sociology, I trained as a teacher. My first teaching post was in Tilbury, within one of the first ‘Nursery Units’ in Essex, later returning to South Ockendon as a Head teacher, before spending 21 years as a Schools’ Adviser and Inspector for Essex Local Authority. I was very fortunate to meet the children and staff of many different schools in very varied circumstances. My daughter, attended Little Thurrock Primary School, and I became a school governor during the time she was there. I wanted to help make a positive contribution to the school’s development and help to ensure that all children at the school would receive the best possible educational experiences and opportunities. Little Thurrock Primary School provided my daughter the opportunity to learn French which subsequently led to her studying French and working with a French Company. I would like present and future pupils to have similar aspirational opportunities whilst at Little Thurrock Primary school.
Rev’d David Coaker
Emotional Well-being & Mental Health / Arts, Culture & Digital Learning / Personal Development
Our son Mark joined the school in year 1 in February 2018 when we moved into the area, and we have been as active as we can to support school activities since then. I am the part-time minister of Grays United Reformed Church on Bradleigh Avenue. Overall I have fifteen years’ experience in this role which has included seeking to represent the local community and to respond to local needs within congregations and with the wider community. When seeking to engage with the wider community I have always aimed to do so with an open agenda, making church facilities available to create space for social interaction and community engagement, whilst still highlighting church activities and responding to questions when appropriate. I was involved in establishing a neighbourhood group in Warrington and also the Voluntary Community and Faith Sector Network in South Ribble, Lancashire; and have begun to attend events of Thurrock CVS. I have gained much experience of serving on trustee bodies for both local and national organisations and have always sought to be reliable, effective and constructive.
Ms Zia Kenyon (Day)
Premises & Health and Safety / Pupil Premium
I have worked in the education sector for 13+ years, starting as an NVQ assessor for Care and working my way up to a Team Leader in the Adult Skills department, where we have close links to different community projects, including Prince’s Trust programmes and outreach projects to engage with people from diverse backgrounds and cultures. The college that I work for covers a large area of Essex. I am an active member of my local church, St John’s, Grays North. For the past three years I have been a helper for Lighthouse, which is our Sunday School for children. Once a month, prior to Covid-19 restrictions, I also helped at the children’s club run by the church. I have been on several of the church committees to support fundraising and for the Agape Supper and Christmas bazaar. I would like to take the opportunity to offer more to my local community, especially as I live in the same road as the school.
Mr Ron Lennard
Co Vice Chair / SEND (Special Educational Needs & Disabilities) / Diversity, Equality and Inclusion / Behaviour and Attitudes
Having lived and worked in Grays for 30+ years, I feel that it is a great place to live and is very friendly. I have a successful business locally and love to give to the community what I can. I have been a governor at several schools and chaired a PTA for fundraising. I am community spirited and wish to support the learning in Little Thurrock in any way I can, it’s a great area and this is a great school. People I meet during my day job regularly comment on how happy their children are at Little Thurrock Primary School. Since being involved it is easy to understand why the teachers work very hard in achieving the best outcomes for their learners so its easy to give my time, effort and enthusiasm to this cause.

Parent governors

Mr Anthony Osoba
SEND (Special Educational Needs & Disabilities) / Leadership & Management / GDPR and Data Protection
I am an experienced Financial Services professional, expecting to bring the skills I have gained in my industry to benefit the children and staff of Little Thurrock Primary School. With my experience of sitting on committees within multinational companies and working with various senior stakeholders globally, I hope to provide constructive challenge to the school staff. In addition to the aforementioned, I will also be utilising my understanding of implementing new technologies and overseeing projects to improve the quality of education across all year groups. I believe this school already exhibits great potential to be a positive environment in which students can develop both academically and socially, providing an education which helps students excel. I shall endeavour to be an active and reliable member of the school governing body. Furthermore, I look forward to working with teachers and parents to ensure the school continues to have a positive impact on the lives of the students, but also to foster stronger links with our local community.
Ms Samantha Giles
Co Vice Chair / SEND (Special Educational Needs & Disabilities / Quality of Education / Early Years
I have been a primary school teacher for 15 years and I have been a parent governor at Little Thurrock for the past two. I hope my experience and perspective will be valuable to the school. I enjoy my role as a parent governor and will continue representing other parents ensuring the school provides the best possible opportunities and experiences for all our children.
Mr Michael Warncken
Finance / Behaviour and Attitudes / Risk Register
I was born in Thurrock and lived literally a stones throw from Little Thurrock School, after my parents moved into the area having grown up themselves in nearby Aveley. I have amazing memories of being a pupil at the school and now have two of my own children in attendance – with the third primed and ready to join in the next few years when she is old enough! In terms of my professional career, I have worked in London for over 20 years as an accountant at a top 10 firm. I have worked with a range of different UK and multi-national businesses, assisting them with building an efficient and reliable finance function - ensuring they are getting quality management information in order to make informed business decisions. In the past few years my role has moved into a slightly more internal facing one, allowing me to help develop the National Team through support with their internal processes, risk management and overall financial performance – skills that should fit in well with my responsibilities as a governor at Little Thurrock. My firm encourages staff to assist in their communities and after years of really focusing on my own career and personal development, I decided it was time to that I gave some time back to the local area where I have spent my entire life. Giving my assistance to the school that supported me and is now looking after my children in their early years of development seemed an obvious choice. Perhaps I had initially been too keen however, as I am now also the Treasurer of the Schools PTA as well as being a governor, but I really enjoy being involved in both sides and doing whatever I can to make a difference to the lives and education of the children at Little Thurrock.
Ms Creanna Dodson
Diversity, Equality and Inclusion / Personal Development / Safeguarding / Child Protection / LAC (Looked After Children)
I am mother to two young children at Little Thurrock Primary School. I moved to the area in 2019. I run my own business and I am a qualified social worker and Children’s Guardian, having worked in safeguarding for over 15 years. I have extensive experience of working with vulnerable young people and working collaboratively with partner agencies to promote effective working relationships. My previous experience also includes working with schools as I was a member of the Islington Early years Strategy Board between 2004-2008. As a parent governor I want to ensure that the voices of the parents and children of Little Thurrock are heard to enable positive experiences

Staff governors

Mrs Samantha Ziobriene
School Website
I have worked in education for 7 years and have experienced many different settings across many different key stages (one being a primary and secondary pupil referral unit). I hope that my experiences and perspective will be valuable to the governing body. I started working at Little Thurrock Primary School in 2022 originally on a temporary contract: however, when the opportunity to make this a permanent contract arose, I was extremely pleased and just had to stay! During this time, the school has progressed so much and we are still doing so. Working at Little Thurrock is brilliant; we have a great supportive team and a wonderful community which surrounds us. I am looking forward to continue to support and ensure that all children at Little Thurrock have the best opportunities and experiences possible.
Mrs Sarah Gardiner

Trust representative

Mrs Louise Coates
Deputy Trust CEO
The Deputy CEO works with the Trust’s CEO, in the line management of schools, and the taking of responsibility for the development and implementation of strands of the school improvement agenda, policies, and practices of the Trust. They work with the Trust School Improvement Advisor and Consultant Headteacher to implement recommendations to support the move towards outstanding. They deputise for the CEO in their absence.


Mr Ian Broyd


Mrs Sarah Joynes
Deputy Headteacher