School Advisory Board


Board of Governors

Would you like to be a part of our Advisory Board Team? We are currently looking for a parent member for our Board. If you are intrested in the role, please contact the school office .



Welcome to Merrydale Junior School's Advisory Board



At Discovery Trust the Board of Trustees (sometimes known as the board of directors or governing body) is ultimately responsible for governance of the schools in the trust and is accountable for their performance. To support effective governance, the Board delegates governance functions to be carried out through committees, locally through each school Advisory Board and through the central executive team.

The School Advisory Board has a key role in influencing the direction of the school by offering their experience and expertise to strengthen the decision-making process to support the strategic development of the school and ensure it is meeting the needs of the children. The functions of the Advisory Board are set out in the Trust Scheme of Delegation which sets out the requirements of the Trust and details where the Trustees delegate governance functions locally.

The Advisory Board consists of parents, staff and community representatives; the Headteacher is a member of the Advisory Board by virtue of their office. Community Members are appointed by the Advisory Board and are people, who in the opinion of the Advisory Board, have the skills required to contribute to the work of the board; Parent and staff members are elected to the board by the parent and staff body respectively.


School Advisory Board Members: 2021-22


Mrs Catriona Mugglestone - Headteacher (ex-officio)

Mrs Catriona Mugglestone - Headteacher (ex-officio)

Mrs Lesley Butcher - Chair of the Advisory Board

Mrs Lesley Butcher - Chair of the Advisory Board

I have been connected with Merrydale Junior School since 2010, firstly supporting music in the curriculum and then joining the Governing Body (as it was then) in 2011. In 2016 I became the chair and have continued as such with the Advisory Board.

My working life was spent in primary schools, firstly as a class teacher but then for 25 years as headteacher of a city nursery/infant school, followed by a county primary school. The education of young children has always been my passion and in retirement, something I am still committed to. Merrydale Juniors is a wonderful school, happy and vibrant with dedicated staff who care deeply about the children’s education and welfare and where every decision made is with the children’s best interests at heart.

As an advisory board, we work with the head teacher and senior leadership team and also within the academy trust’s requirements, to ensure standards are maintained and improved upon in all areas of school life. We want the children to receive the broadest learning opportunities possible so that they acquire the skills and knowledge to pursue their dreams and ambitions in future life. Nothing is unachievable if they follow the school’s motto, ‘Be the best you can be!’

The importance of the role of parents in supporting their child and the work of the school cannot be overstated. If we all work together, Merrydale Juniors and its provision for the pupils will continue to go from strength to strength.

Chair of Advisory Board and Community member

Term of Office: 01.11.20- 31.10.23

Attendance at AB meetings 2021-22: 2/2

Attendance at AB meetings 2020-21: 4/4

Business interests declared 11.9.21: Trustee at Leicestershire Multiple Sclerosis Therapy Centre since 2018.

Mrs Mariam Essof - Advisory Board Member

Mrs Mariam Essof - Advisory Board Member

I joined the Board in the first quarter of 2020 as I strongly believe in the importance of giving back to the community and joined the Board with that intention.

Currently I am a Senior Lecturer at De Montfort University where I teach Financial Accounting and Audit and Assurance within the Department of Accounting and Finance. I am a Chartered Accountant by profession and have completed my PGC in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. I am also a Fellow with Advanced HE.

I have lived in several different countries, receiving my education in Zimbabwe, South Africa and Australia. This exposure has given me a broader world view, an enriched perspective and stronger appreciation of life.

I am married with 2 children, love travelling, being with nature and running to keep fit. My mantra is to always maintain a grateful heart and positive mind set.

Community member

Term of Office: 26.2.20-25.2.23

Attendance at AB meetings 2021-22: 2/2

Attendance at AB meetings 2020-21: 4/4

Business interests declared 14.9.21: Employed at DMU since December 2013.

Mr Toby Brown - Elected Staff member

Mr Toby Brown - Elected Staff member

Elected Staff member

Term of Office: 25.11.21-24.11.24

Attendance at AB meetings 2021-22: 1/1

Attendance at AB meetings 2020-21: n/a

Class teacher at Merrydale Junior School since 2014 declared 20.3.22

Karen Ludden - Community member

Karen Ludden - Community member

Appointed Community member

Term of Office: 7.4.22-6.4.25

Attendance at AB meetings 2021-22: 1/1

Attendance at AB meetings 2020-21: n/a

No business interests declared 22.3.22

Tarikul Islam - Community member

Tarikul Islam - Community member

Appointed Community member

Term of Office: 7.4.22-6.4.25

Attendance at AB meetings 2021-22: 1/1

Attendance at AB meetings 2020-21: n/a

No business interests declared 22.2.22

Rawinder Kaur - Community member

Rawinder Kaur - Community member

Appointed Community member

Term of Office: 7.4.22-6.4.25

Attendance at AB meetings 2021-22: 1/1

Attendance at AB meetings 2020-21: n/a

Lecturer at De Montfort University since February 2020 declared 25.2.22

Name Role
Vacancy Parent member
Vacancy Parent member

Scheme of Delegation


The latest version of our Scheme of Delegation can be downloaded here


Governance Strategy


The latest version of our Governance Strategy can be downloaded here


Get in Touch


If you have a passion for improving outcomes for children and would like to use your skills and expertise to contribute to the governance of our schools please get in touch by contacting the Head of Governance, Helen Stockill: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

You can contact our Chair of the Advisory Board, Lesley Butcher, directly at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or via the Trust Clerk

Board meeting minutes are available on request. Requests should be directed to the Trust Clerk This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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