Chair of Governors 

  • Mr John Knightley (Chair)
  • Mr Mike Kipling (Vice-Chair)


  • Mr Bartholomew Callagham
  • Mr Jonathan Copeland
  • Mr Ian Davies
  • Dr Steve Fisher
  • Mr Martin Fuller
  • Mr Peter Higgins
  • Ms Laura Hofton
  • Mr Harvey Jones
  • Mrs Tracey Kirk
  • Mrs Angie Luff
  • Mrs Michelle Wright

Welcome from the Chair of Governors

I have great pleasure in welcoming you to the website of Muntham House School and hope you find all the information you need to gain a real understanding and knowledge of our wonderful community and the pupils and staff who live and work here.

Our Governing Body has seventeen members with backgrounds in the medical profession, education, business, finance, and public service, which enable us to support the successful running of our school and to achieve the best possible outcomes for the young people in our care.

Our work is organised through formal and informal meetings, and the list below will give you some idea of how we carry out our roles and responsibilities:

  • Full Governing Board meets twice a term
  • Estates Committee
  • Education Committee
  • Care and Welfare Committee
  • Personnel Committee
  • Finance Committee

In addition to these sub-committees, which also meet twice a term, our Safeguarding Governor meets school leaders and staff every three weeks, and we carry out unannounced visits to monitor health and safety issues and residential provision twice a term. Governors work very closely with the school and are often found in school, helping in many aspects of school life and meeting pupils in lessons or informally at meals and events.

The School has recovered from the effects of Covid, and Staff have worked hard to make up any lost ground in education. Fortunately, the online work programs which were put in place proved to have been very effective.

It was another very busy year dealing with two senior important appointments and approving the further expansion of the School without losing any of its “family atmosphere in addition to the ‘everyday’ work ensuring that all aspects of Governance are carried out properly.

These are just a few of the matters we have considered alongside the 'everyday' work, which is making sure that all aspects of governance are focused on our main aims to maintain the Safe, Caring, and Happy ethos of the school and to do our utmost to prepare our pupils for adulthood.

We are all proud of our involvement with Muntham House School and its record of twenty years of good and outstanding Ofsted inspections. Our success in sending pupils out into the world having achieved some remarkable outcomes is a testament to the dedication and contribution of all who work and learn here. 

To be a Governor at Muntham House School is a privilege in getting to know so many exceptional young people and play a small part in their lives and futures.

JKnightley Sig 2

John Knightley - Chair of Governors and Chair of Personnel Committee

After School in Birmingham and University in Leeds I did National Service, being commissioned into the Royal Warwickshire Regiment and serving in Hong Kong and Germany.

I worked for 37 years for Sun Alliance Insurance, including 7 years, newly married, in Calcutta. In 1979 I moved into sales and marketing in the City and subsequently into General Management in Horsham.

After retirement, I was a consultant for the Chartered Insurance institute, and then chaired a final-salary pension scheme.

After becoming a Governor in 2015 my grandson, now aged 8, was diagnosed with Autism and ADHD. I, therefore, have a very strong personal reason to serve Muntham House School.

Mike Kipling – Vice Chair of Governors, Chair of Finance Committee

I am a semi-retired actuary with a non-executive role at Liverpool Victoria Financial Services. I am also a member of the Pension Committee of West Sussex County Council. In the past, I was a Vice-President of the Institute of Actuaries and, in the 1990s, a parent governor at Holbrook Primary School in Horsham. In my spare time, I enjoy researching and writing about Sussex History. 

Bartholomew Callaghan - Member of Care & Welfare Committee

After graduating from the University of Bristol with a first in Classics and prize for best final-year undergraduate performance in Latin, I became Head of Classics at Aldro in Godalming. Since then I have worked at Christ’s Hospital, where I teach classics and am Head of Years 10 & 11. I also have experience working in a range of healthcare settings. I joined Muntham House School as a Governor in 2019, serving on the Care and Welfare Committee.

Jonathan Copeland - Chair of Estates Committee and Member of Finance Committee

I spent my working life in two careers;  Marketing at Sun Alliance Insurance Group for 25 years followed by 20 years building and running a Mail Order company in Horsham founded by my wife and I.  I retired fully in 2017 leaving our company in the hands of my son, and it continues to expand.

I was a Fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute by examination and have a Bachelor of Arts degree from the Open University but I see my practical experience of managing all aspects of a business as most helpful in my role as a Governor of Muntham House.  I serve on the Finance, Estates and Personnel committees.

In my spare time, I enjoy singing and have done so most of my life in a number of choirs; I am a committee member of Christ’s Hospital Choral Society.  I am a keen genealogist, and enjoy walking, cycling, swimming and holidaying in Portugal where we have a second home. 

Ian Davies - Member of Education Committee

I have previously been a parent governor at Heamoor Primary in Penzance and William Penn in Coolham, but unfortunately employment circumstances have meant these have been short lived. My professional career started as the Director of Sport at Chichester University then into secondary school teaching (Science and Chemistry), to professional rugby as firstly a forwards coach and then six years as the Director of Rugby, and then back into teaching. I have taught at Christ’s Hospital since September 2016 becoming a houseparent in September 2018. Thoroughly enjoy the houseparent role and see this as a key learning experience in supporting my ambition of progression into an SLT position. I married in 2010, and we have three young children, two sons and a daughter, all of whom will be attending William Penn from September 2020.

Always keen to challenge myself and to advance my knowledge hence why I have three separate MSc degrees and a very understanding wife!

Dr Stephen Fisher - Safeguarding Governor and Chair of Care & Welfare Committee

MBBS MRCGP DRCOG DFFP PG.Cert (adult medical education)

I have been a full-time General Practitioner in Horsham for the last 29 years at Park Surgery. I was also Senior Partner until Jan 2017 when I reduced my duties changing to becoming a part-time partner. I was born in Horsham and spent most of my life in Sussex, growing up in Brighton, then attending medical school at Guy’s Hospital London qualifying in 1985. I was a school medical officer at Christ’s Hospital School, a large local boarding school, for many years as part of my work as a GP locally. I was a local representative doctor at the local CCG (Clinical Commissioning Group) and a shadow Governor at the local hospital trust (SASH) in 2015-16. I hold a certificate in medical adult education allowing me to become a trainer for many years, training General practitioner registrars to become fully accomplished and accredited GPs and also held the post of Academic Mentor in West Sussex, teaching established GPs to pass the PgCert in medical education. In order to maintain full accreditation as a practising GP, I have been regularly appraised and revalidated, and this includes up-to-date training in CPR, safeguarding, and the whole GP curriculum. In my own time, I spent many years cycling, and more recently I have a camper van and go camping.

I think helping children to have the best experience in education and reach their own personal potential regardless of their individual personal strengths and weaknesses is challenging and fulfilling. I have been fortunate to have three children who are now at undergraduate or postgraduate level and continue to encourage life-long learning and well-being.

Martin Fuller – Member of Estates Committee

I have been a Governor for nearly 10 years. My wife and I have been Parent Governors since our son started in the Primary unit of the school. Our son now attends college full-time. I live close to the school and am a self-employed Landscape Gardener and adoptive parent.

When I took on the role of Governor, my aims were:

  • To support the Governors, Staff and Pupils to assist in the smooth running of the school
  • To promote the school in the local community
  • To assist in good home/school communication and relations

I am always happy to chat with parents or professionals about our experience of Muntham House School or to feedback on anything on your behalf in respect of the governance of the school. Please write or email us at the school’s address. (Please note if you have any specific issue relating to your child or ward, please contact FIT or the appropriate Teacher or member of Care Staff). 

Peter Higgins – Member of Education Committee

I was for 36 years a teacher of Chemistry in a secondary school. I was also the Housemaster of a Boy's Boarding House and then of a Girl's Boarding House. I also have experience in Safeguarding, DBS disclosures etc. for volunteers working with young people. I have been a Governor at Muntham House School since 2002. 

Laura Hofton – Teacher Governor & Member of Education Committee

Before starting a teaching career, I worked in the Market Research industry and then as a volunteer Youth Worker and Worship Leader.  I began as a Primary School teacher with responsibilities for IT, Music and French, and after a decade in mainstream education, I moved to Muntham in January 2015. I am currently Head of English and am delighted to be a school governor. Alongside my Psychology Degree (BSc) and PGCE, I have a Masters in Education and am currently doing a PhD in Education. My hobbies are singing and gardening.

Harvey Jones - Member of Estates & Finance Committee

The majority of my working life was spent at Sun Alliance Insurance Group, mainly in systems development, but in the latter stages as Manager, UK Operations for direct business. Taking advantage of the merger with the Royal Group I left work for a year backpacking around Australia and New Zealand. Diving the Barrier reef and some rock climbing sorties. Returning to the UK, Harvey Jones Consulting Ltd. was established with a business plan to “meet new people, do new things, and have fun.” Various contracts were tackled, all different, including the restructuring of a “committee”, run by a charity to a modern business run by a management board. Alongside the consulting, I was able to indulge a passion For the outdoors, climbing and trekking, perhaps the highlight of which was the 3 first ascents, at over 6000 meters in the Pamir Mountains of Tadjikistan.

Tracey Kirk - Chair of Education Committee 

I started working at Muntham House School in 1996 as a classroom assistant and was especially interested in helping the pupils become enthusiastic about reading as, at that time, knowledge was generally only available via books!

For the next twenty-three years, I took on various roles, including Pupil Administrator, Annual Reviews Officer, Partnership Manager—data and Pupil Outcomes, and finally, Data Analyst.

During my employment, I completed A Postgraduate Diploma in Teaching pupils with Specific Learning Difficulties, the Dyslexia Institute Mathematics Programme, a Foundation Degree in eSystems Design and Technology, and an Open University Degree covering Mathematics, Statistics, Relational Databases, and Biological Psychology.

All the above reinforced and extended my interest in learning difficulties, especially how underlying issues with the brain’s ability to process information can be a barrier to learning and how these barriers could be overcome.

I took early retirement in March 2020 and joined the Governing Board as a member of the Education Committee. I wanted to continue to be a part of encouraging children to pursue knowledge in order to enjoy and thrive in society and to be the best that they can.  

Roger Kemp - Member of Education Committee 

I started working at Muntham in January 1980 and retired from teaching at Muntham in September 2011. I spent all my teaching career working with a variety of children with extreme special needs, mostly helping them manage their behavioural difficulties. I started teaching years 7/8 and was the first occupant of the log cabin, teaching primary children 7/11 years. I was supported by the school to achieve an Advanced Diploma in Education and a MEd in 2001. 

I was involved in the school's extraneous duties programme, which meant I had the privilege of working with the pupils in a social context outside the classroom evenings and weekend programmes, not to mention the many trips to Lincolnshire, Wales and Devon. This was both fun and developed ongoing working relationships with my wonderful classes. 

During my last ten years in school, I was involved in outreach to local primary schools, supporting both staff and pupils. I have also developed and supported INSET and staff training programmes. 

Three years after retiring, the school management supported me in continuing staff training and support, which enabled me to relax and leave behind a wonderful experience of living and working at Muntham. 

Angie Luff – Staff Governor, Member of Care & Welfare and Member of Estates Committee

Besides raising a family, I have had a varied career working in the hospitality industry before joining the Brain Injury Rehabilitation Trust, supporting adults to cope with the daily demands such injuries inflict.  I joined Muntham House School 5 years ago, working within the Care Team; I was promoted to Team Leader on the Bodiam floor, where I enjoyed the variety this role offers. I am a recent addition to the Governing Board. I joined the team in September 2015 as Staff Governor, and I serve on the Care and Welfare and Estate Committees. 

Michelle Wright – Parent / Carer Governor and Member of Care & Welfare Committee

I have worked at Muntham House School for the last 26 years, starting in the Primary Unit as an LSA, then moving on to Play and Development, and I am now working with the Family Induction Team, supporting parents and carers and being responsible for new admissions. I am also now one of the designated Safeguarding Leads working alongside the Principal. I am responsible for the safety and well-being of both pupils and staff at Muntham House School. Previously, I was a Staff Governor at Muntham House School; I am now a Parent Governor representing Parents and Carers.  

Governors can be contacted c/o the School Office on 01403 730302 or by email: [email protected]

DfE No. 938/7003  Charity No. 1105085 Registered Office: Barns Green, Horsham, West Sussex, RH13 0NJ

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