Cavendish School Governors

The Local Governing Board

The Governing Board meets termly. Its purpose is to monitor key aspects of the school in accordance with the Trust’s strategic plan; safeguarding of pupils & staff, local stakeholder engagement; admissions; exclusions; panels; community relations; standards. Cavendish Education Trust Webpage 

Our Governors

Neil Small

Chair of Governors

Term of Office 6 October 2022-5 October 2026.

Neil is a former headteacher and currently works in a large Multi Academy Trust.He has more than 25 years of experience of education form teaching locally to Ofsted inspecting. He currently sits on Creative Education for West Sussex and has a passion for creativity in education.He has a child currently in the primary phase of Cavendish.

Dr Hasan Gilani


Term of Office 2 December 2023-1 December 2027.

Hasan is a Principal lecturer and course leader at Brighton Business School, University of Brighton, with a special interest in education quality, standards and student experience.  He has more than 25 years of experience as an academic as well as in the corporate sector. Hasan has worked in the broad area of marketing with national and multinational organisations like Pepsi, Motorola, M&S, Debenhams and British Gas. He has also worked as a consultant for developmental projects in the NGO sector, working jointly with German (GTZ), Dutch (PHMP) and British (DFID) organisations; he has also worked at a senior level in the corporate sector.

Hannah Perry


Term of Office 17 May 2022 – 16 May 2026.

Hannah is an experienced science teacher of children ages 8-18, as well as being mother to two teenagers. Over a 20 year career, appointments have included Head of Science, Housemistress and Designated Safeguarding Lead. Currently she is enjoying being back in the chemistry lab at Eastbourne College, as well as being an Officer in the Combined Cadet Force, taking sport and supporting the Duke of Edinburgh Award. She has an MA in Education Management and Leadership from King’s College London and PGCE from the University of Cambridge, as well as a Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Educators. Having previously been a school governor, she looks forward getting to know the Cavendish community and all this wonderful school has to offer.

Ellie Messer

Staff Governor 

Term of office 16 October 2023-15 October 2027

Ellie joined the Cavendish Primary teaching staff in September 2022 and since then has been a classroom teacher in year 4 and year 5. Ellie is currently also the ‘Primary Phase Curriculum Lead for Geography’. Ensuring quality first teaching for all pupils is Ellie’s passion and providing a wide variety of extra-curricular opportunities is very important to her.

Michelle Horne


Term of office is 18 October 2023-17 October 2027

Michelle is Operations Director at Future Foundations, an organisation working with schools and young people in the UK and around the world with the mission to equip young people to thrive.  Michelle has experience working with schools to deliver programmes focused on the development of student leadership, transition programmes to support students making the move between key years, career programmes and programmes focused on community projects and servant leadership.  Michelle has been the Principal of English Language schools and is a trained teacher of English as a foreign language.  She has over 10 years of experience as Designated Safeguarding Officer in the organisations she has worked for.

Dr Steven Hobbs


Term of office is 21 October 2023-20 October 2027

Steve Hobbs was born and educated in Eastbourne. His academic background and interests cover English Literature, language, pedagogy and politics. His doctorate in education from the University of Sussex focused on developing interdisciplinary masterclass /scholar educational theory and programmes as well as the concept and practice of the ‘research’ professional and the ‘research’ learner.

His professional work in teaching and learning has been varied. Steve has experience in English department middle leadership in secondary and post-16 institutions. He also has experience in secondary English teacher training and as an English and English literature examiner for GCSE English and Literature. At A Level, he has been an English Literature coursework moderator and regional coursework adviser. He has given lectures and seminars at Sussex and Brighton Universities on a range of topics and issues relating to profound and democratic learning.

He has previous experience as a governor in primary, secondary and post-16 institutions and is pleased and honoured to be able to help in the Trust’s aim of becoming ‘outstanding’ in the near future.

Jitka O'Brien

Parent Governor 

23 November 2023 to 22 November 2027

Jitka is a dedicated advocate for Equality & Diversity and has over 3 years of experience in leading therapeutic sessions as a volunteer at Cavendish Primary for Selective Mutism ( ).

Jitka is an experienced software consultant within Salesforce Ecosystem and holds multiple professional certifications. Jitka currently works for the In-Form team at Homeless Link.

For the past 10 years, Jitka has worked in the Homelessness and Mental Health Not for profit sector, helping organisations reach their potential. Jitka has in-depth knowledge of business practices and GDPR. She always strives for excellence, whilst maintaining that human, personable element.

Prior to her work within the Not for profit sector, Jitka worked at Marks & Spencer HQ for 10 years.

Jitka is looking forward to working with the school within her role as a Parent Governor within Personal Development.

Kirsty Reid


23 November 2023-22 November 2027.

Kirsty currently works at East Sussex College as a Head of Curriculum. She has 12 years of experience teaching students from Key Stage 3 right through to Higher Education. Kirsty is also a qualified psychotherapeutic counsellor and has a passion for holistic learning and ensuring progression routes are available for everyone regardless of their starting point.
Dave Miller

Parent Governor 

11 January 2024 – 10 January 2028

Governors who have left the Local Governing Board

in the past 12 months

Tim Whelan

Parent Governor

Term of office 11 October 2021 – 10 October 2025.

Resignation as of 18 June 2023.

Rachael Winterton

Parent Governor

Term of Office 10 November 2021 – 9 November 2025.

Resignation as of 28 June 2023.

Mark Wardle

Chair of Governors

Term of office 1 September 2021 – 31 August 2025.

 Resignation as of 21 July 2023


of pupils achieved 9-4 in English.

After School programs


of pupils achieved 9-4 in Maths.

Years Established

Celebrating Success

The staff and governors of Cavendish wish to congratulate all of our Year 11 pupils for the fantastic GCSE grades they have achieved this year.

Headteacher, Peter Marchant said, "The grades that our pupils have achieved are a reflection of their hard work throughout their time at the school and they can rightly feel proud of what they have achieved through these  challenging times."