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Our Governors


Schools are run by a board of School Governors working together with school staff to help ensure the very best education for all of the pupils. School Governors are volunteers from all walks of life, with a wide variety of knowledge and skills who offer challenge and support to help the school move continually forward.

The remit for the Governing Body is to:

  1. Ensure clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
  2. Hold the Headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and it’s pupils, and the performance management of staff; and
  3. Oversee the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.


Mrs J.Westhead (Headteacher)  B.Ed (Hons), NPQH (National Professional Qualification  for Headship)


Mrs J. Westhead is the headteacher and has been the headteacher governor at the school for the past 15 years. She has considerable senior leadership experience across a range of primary settings and has extensive experience of teaching across the primary phase, including as a primary strategy leading teacher in English and mathematics.



Dr Gena Merrett, MEd, MA                                                   

Gena is a former secondary headteacher who was also a schools’ advisor for the Department for Education for 12 years and a school inspector. She has also worked as a school improvement partner in St Helens, Wigan and Stoke-on-Trent.

She lives locally in Golborne, where she is  a local councillor and is also a magistrate in the family courts of Greater Manchester. She has two grown up sons and grandchildren who attend primary school in Tyldesley.

She has been a co-opted governor of the school since 2017 and has been the Chair of the board since 2022.

Miss Rachel Jenkinson BA (Hons) Primary Education with QTS & Art and Design.   


Rachel attended Lowton West as a child. She is an experienced primary school teacher and fully qualified Forest School practitioner at a school in St Helens.  She also moderates writing across St Helens for the STA.  

She has been a Parent Governor at Lowton West since 2020, and Vice Chair of Governors since 2022. Her two children currently attend the school. She is an active member of Lowton and Golborne community and dedicates some of her time coaching rugby at Golborne Parkside ARLFC.  

Away from teaching, coaching and Governance she enjoys spending her time in the outdoors with her two sons, family and friends. 





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Mrs Sharon Black, B.Sc (Hons), B.Sc (Hons), QTS, NPQH

Sharon is a Director of a Multi-Academy Trust in the North West comprised of 8 schools across primary and secondary phases. Prior to this, she held senior leadership positions in secondary schools leading all aspects of provision relating to the quality of education.  Sharon also delivers training for teachers on a number of National Professional Qualifications in association with Best Practice Network.

 Sharon lives locally in Lowton and has a son who attends Golborne High School and a daughter at Lowton West. She has been a governor of the school since 2015.


Mrs M Blewitt


Marie Blewitt.BA.  MeD 

My background is in education. Professionally I taught Modern foreign languages and ended my career as an Ofsted inspector. I am also an ASA qualified swimming teacher and coach. I have served as a governor at Lowton West since 1999 during which time I have taken on numerous roles including those of Vice Chair and Chair. Within the community I am a member of the Parish Council at St.Lukes. I help run the Team of churches, Forget me not cafe and the church knitting  group. My main interests are swimming ,art and crafts, reading and gardening. My passion for teaching and education are as strong as ever. The school was not built when we moved to the area. It has seen many changes and it is a joy to visit. It is a privilege to work as a strong team of governors, alongside the staff and pupils. 


Alan Boardman

I have been an LA Governor at Lowton West Primary Since 2012, having been a parent at my children’s school - Twelve Apostles Leigh - from 1992 – 2000.

I am an experienced Risk Assessor, a DSE Examiner, Qualified Classroom Assistant and Qualified Chef.

I live in Leigh with my wife and have two adult children and one grandson, plus one dog and a lodger cat.

I am retired from paid employment.

My Interests are:

Amateur Dramatics - for 20 years plus on stage and directing work, with WWL Hospital Radio as Presenter for 10 years and volunteer at Bolton Hospital as Meet & Greet and Simulation Training. Lastly, getting involved in school as a helper on school trips.


 Neil Cooper

Neil has worked in the facilities management Industry, holding senior operational positions for over 20 years across the UK.

Neil lives in Lowton and has two children who attend Lowton West and along with being a governor of Lowton West since 2018, is a coach for Leigh East RFL u9’s.

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Zac Hackett

Zac is the Artistic Director of registered charity TramShed Theatre Company, specialising in inclusive performing arts. He has worked in a variety of educational settings delivering ‘theatre in education’ and has substantial experience of EYFS, KS1 and KS2, specialising in SEN. He is also qualified in British Sign Language.


Zac is a parent governor, and his son attends Lowton West. His interests include seeing musicals, playing the piano and badminton. He feels very strongly about the future of our young people and believes that teamwork, positivity and instilled resilience are key to ensuring children have the opportunity to be the best they can be.



Mavis Nixon

My name is Mavis Nixon.  I live locally on Slag Lane. My children attended Lowton West and currently my grandchildren attend.

Although I am a retired teacher, I still take an active interest in education and feel very strongly that a good education is the key all children need to enhance and improve their lives.

I hope I will be able to support and contribute to the life of the school.


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Dave Paton BA (Hons), PGCE, NPQH

Dave is a current Primary School Headteacher in Cheshire and has also taught in secondary schools across a 27-year career in Education.

He lives locally in Golborne, and his youngest son still attends Lowton West. He has been a governor since 2016, having first joined the board when his youngest daughter was in Reception.

He is also a governor at schools in Cheshire and brings a wealth of experiences to the role.



Lynda Pouncey 


Nicola Rawlinson

Nicola has been a parent governor since December 2021 and has a daughter at Lowton West. 
She is a Principal Business Analyst for the MoJ and has worked across both public and private sector IT roles for the last 20 years. 
Outside of mum, work and governor duties, she enjoys travelling, reading and going to gigs. 


Jarrod White 

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