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Governing Body

Kingsley School is owned and operated by KSI Education Ltd. See below for registered addresses.

The Governing Body at the school acts to advise on strategy and direction, supports identified linked-areas of the school and advises the board of KSI Education Ltd accordingly. The members of the Governing Body are below. Mrs Claudia Bickford-Smith is the Chair of Governors in her capacity as the Nominated Proprietor of the school, and is CEO of KSI Education Ltd.

Claudia Bickford-Smith

Since 2009, Claudia has worked at Global Business Unit Director-level for Cambridge University Press & Assessment and Oxford University Press (OUP).  Mrs Bickford-Smith holds a degree in History from the University of Cape Town, a Master of Arts from the University of Cambridge, as well as Master’s Modules in Education and Technology from UCL’s Institute of Education. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA), and a member of the Harvard Graduate School of Education Professional Community.
Mrs Bickford-Smith is the Chair of the Governing Body and is also the nominated member with responsibility for safeguarding. Mrs Bickford-Smith also chairs the General Purpose Committee.

Lisa Harty

Lisa is Vice Chair of the Board. With her skills in project management, Lisa supports the school with matters concerning our site and Estate development.

Lisa has worked in the arts for over 30 years.  After moving to Devon in 1996 Lisa worked as a freelance arts consultant for a number of local authority, voluntary and private sector clients. In April 2013 she became the Art & Design Co-ordinator for Art for Life at Musgrove Park Hospital. Continuing her freelance contracts, Lisa completed a piece of work for the Francis Crick Institute in London in 2019, writing a feasibility study and options appraisal for an Arts Programme. In April 2022 Lisa became the Art & Design Manager for Somerset NHS Foundation Trust. 

Lieutenant Colonel Noel Claydon-Swales

Lt Col Claydon-Swales, an alumnus of Kingsley (Grenville 89-95) commissioned from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in 2004. He has enjoyed a diverse military career in the Light Dragoons, serving operationally across the world, including Northern Ireland, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Africa and a NATO tour of duty with the US Army in Poland being awarded a Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service for leadership and diplomacy.

In the UK, Noel has held a variety of command and staff appointments and has extensive experience in acquisition, training and personnel management. He has a BA (Hons) in Business Management as well as various strategic leadership and project management qualifications. He is President of the Royal Armoured Corps eSports team and a Ministry of Defence operational end user mentor for UK Defence and Security markets. Noel is married to Isabella, and together live in Wiltshire with their son. Noel is a member of the Governing Body and acts as the link governor for careers education.

Sally Akam

Sally moved to North Devon three years ago having had a career in secondary eduction for 35 years, largely in a 13-18 year boarding school in Buckinghamshire. She led a large and successful geography department for many years before joining the school leadership team as an Assistant Head with responsibilities for the school’s tutorial system, managing pupil monitoring, assessment, reporting and UCAS applications. 

Sally has served on the Governing Board of a Buckinghamshire grammar school and is currently Chair of a Local School Committee in a Devon primary school. She is a member of the Governing Body for Kingsley School as the link governor for SEND and Inclusion, and as a member of the Curriculum and Welfare committee.

Jamie Morris

Jamie is an Alumnus of Kingsley (Grenville College 89-96) and was born in North Devon. He was CEO of Travel Chapter, a Bideford based business for over 20 years and is now a Non Exec for the company. His experience has been primarily in the marketing and property space and is now helping support other businesses in their growth journey, both locally and further afield.

He continued to play sport locally after school - mainly cricket (Westleigh CC) and rugby, and is a former Captain of Bideford Rugby Club, where he is now on the committee post hanging his boots up, apart from the odd Vets game! Jamie is a member of the Governing Body as the link governor for development and alumni, connecting the past with both the present and the future.

Loraine Staddon

Loraine was born in North Devon and has remained here her whole life, married a local man and raised their four children in these beautiful surroundings.

Loraine has had a career in education for over 23 years working with students with SEND through supporting their daily needs both academically and socially. She has spent the last ten years of her career in education supporting and teaching students with SEMH challenges and managing a team to ensure all students were supported through being able to reflect and plan forward.

Loraine moved away from education last year to take on the challenge of managing her own business. With this now successfully up and running, she is committed to supporting Kingsley School as a member of their Governing Body as the Safeguarding Governor.


Meeting Dates 2023-24

Wednesday 27th September

Full Governing Body Meeting

Thursday 16th November

General Purposes Committee

Curriculum & Welfare Committee

Full Governing Body Meeting

Thursday 14th March

General Purposes Committee

Curriculum & Welfare Committee

Full Governing Body Meeting

Thursday 23rd May

General Purposes Committee

Curriculum & Welfare Committee

Full Governing Body Meeting

KSI Education Ltd and Kingsley Education Limited have offices at G16, Central Court, 25 Southampton Buildings, London, England, WC2A 1AL and are registered with Companies House.