At the forefront of education for over 100 years Education at Upton Court is about inspirational teachers and aspirational pupils At the forefront of education for over 100 years Education at Upton Court is about inspirational teachers and aspirational pupils At the forefront of education for over 100 years Education at Upton Court is about inspirational teachers and aspirational pupils
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  • Meet the Governing Body

    The governing body supports the principal and staff of Upton Court Grammar School in delivering a world class education to the students. The governors come from a variety of backgrounds, and add to the diversity of the school by supporting it in a number of ways. The governing body consists of external, parent and staff governors; more information about each member can be found below.

    Governors have a term of office of 4 years, but may be re-appointed; the dates indicated below show commencement of the latest term of office.

    If you wish to get in touch with any member of the governing body, please contact the Clerk to the Governors, Mrs Vera Graham.

    Mr Nigel Miller

    Chair of Governors

    Email address: chair@uptoncourtgrammar.org.uk

    Date of Appointment : 1 October 2015

    Appointed by the Governing Body. Meetings Attendance 2016/17 100%

    Nigel Miller is an entrepreneur working in the extra-curricular activity market. He is the former Managing Director of World Challenge and is a Chartered Accountant and a Chartered Director. Nigel is committed to giving young people the academic base on which to build their future but also believes in the importance of learning outside the classroom to widen their perspective on life. He was elected Chair of Governors in May 2013.

    Mr David Maitland

    Vice Chair of Governors

    Date of Appointment : 14 September 2016

    Appointed by the Governing Body. Meetings Attendance 2016/17 50%

    David Maitland is a partner at Run the Change, specialising in transforming IT organisations to capitalise on the new IT trends of cloud, mobility, and social media.  Prior to setting up his own business, he was Director Corporate Services at the Atomic Weapons Establishment responsible for HR, IT, Communications, Security, and Transformation.  David’s early career was with United Biscuits, and Ford Motor Company in a range of international HR and IT positions. He has degrees in Psychology and Business Management and has been involved with the School, as a parent and governor for the last 8 years.

    Dr Alex Blanchard

    Date of Appointment : 15 October 2013

    Appointed by the Governing Body. Meetings Attendance 2016/17 50%

    Alex Blanchard joined the governing body 8 years ago. Alex is a Section Head of R&D Microbiology at Procter and Gamble. Alex was awarded a Research Fellowship in Pharmaceutical Microbiology at the University of Brighton, a PhD in Chemical Engineering at the University of Bath and a BSc in Biological Sciences at the University of Exeter.

    Dr Ammara Ashraf

    Date of Appointment: 15 November 2017

    Appointed by the Governing Body

    Ammara has been teaching since 2013 after having completed her PhD in Romantic literature and philosophy at Queen Mary, University of London. She joined the UCGS English Department in 2014 and currently leads on the A Level English Literature curriculum. She is passionate about challenge for all and promoting a love for scholarship.

    Mr David Pearson

    Date of Appointment : 13 November 2014

    Appointed by the Governing Body. Meetings Attendance 2016/17 50%

    David Pearson joined the governing body initially as a parent governor over 9 years ago.  He has lived and worked in the Slough area for most of his life. He fully supports developing new opportunities to enable each student to reach their maximum potential.

    Mr James Conlon

    Date of Appointment: 5 December 2017

    Appointed by the Governing Body

    Mr Kav Benepal

    Date of Appointment: 15 November 2017

    Appointed by the Governing Body

    Ms Laura Bellerby

    Date of Appointment : 23 November 2016

    Appointed by the Governing Body. Meetings Attendance 2016/17 60%

    Laura Bellerby has worked in secondary education for fifteen years. She is a member of the Senior Management Team of a girls' independent School, where she is Head of Sixth Form and Head of Economics. She believes that an excellent education should be available to all, and that Students from every background should be able to reach their potential. 

    Dr Nas Basra

    Date of Appointment: 15 November 2017

    Appointed by the Governing Body

    Narinder Basra is a Staff Governor and teaches Maths at UCGS.  He retrained as a teacher in 2014.  Prior to this he earned a PhD in Applied Maths from the University of Cambridge, carrying out a research project for the Ministry of Defence, and also worked in Financial Services for eleven years.  Narinder grew up in Slough and is an alumnus of the school.  He believes in the value of a broad curriculum which develops the whole pupil.

    Mr Neal J Grayston

    Date of Appointment : 9 December 2013

    Appointed by the Governing Body. Meetings Attendance 2016/17 33%

    Business Interest : Director of Class Technology Solutions Ltd, provider of ICT to Upton Court Grammar School

    Neal Grayston is the Managing Director of a leading technology company based in West Sussex. He has been a Governor since November 2002 and is dedicated to public service and to the teaching and learning objectives of the school.

     Mr Rajesh Sharma

    Governor responsible for: Safeguarding

    Date of Appointment: 4 December 2017

    Appointed by the Governing Body

    Mr Steve Hermes

    Date of Appointment: 8 June 2017

    Appointed by the Governing BodyMeetings Attendance 2016/17 100%

    Stephen Hermes attended his local comprehensive school in Sunbury-on-Thames before going up to Magdalen College, Oxford where he gained a masters’ degree in chemistry. Afterwards, he completed a Post Graduate Certificate in Education and has worked in secondary education for the last thirteen years. He is currently a House Master at Eton College. Stephen is passionate about education inside and outside the classroom. He is particularly interested in the development of evidence-based practice in education and is a Teacher Fellow working on cutting-edge research on ‘Growth Mindset’ and prosocial attitudes in partnership with colleagues at Harvard University’s Education School.

    Mr Vinay Dhir

    Date of Appointment: 4 December 2017

    Appointed by the Governing Body

    Vinay Dhir has been working in higher education for seventeen years and currently heads a team of senior network and communication engineers. Vinay has delivered large scale secure IT infrastructures and has extensive experience with Data, Voice and IT Security. Vinay is a key technology innovator and believes that as schools become more autonomous IT is essential to underpin teaching and learning. Vinay is committed to providing more opportunities for the next generation of young adults by sharing his experience from Academia.

    Historic Governors (Last 12 Months)

    Mr Russell Ford

    Governor Responsible for: Safeguarding

    Date of Appointment : 25 March 2014

    Date stepped down: 24 March 2018

    Appointed by Parents. Meetings Attendance 2016/17 83%

    Usman Choudhury

    Date of Appointment : 29 September 2014

    Date stepped down:21 July 2017

    Appointed by the School Staff. Meetings Attendance 2015/16 67%