Our Governing Body consists of up to 15 elected parental and non-parental Governors. The Unicorn School is a registered charity and a limited company: Governors are, therefore, trustees of the charity and board directors. Unicorn Governors work together as a team, being supportive of the School, yet also constructively critical.

Governors uphold the ethos and direction of the School and act as guardians of its assets (such as land, building, equipment, investments and cash). They meet as a main body at least once a term to receive a detailed report from the Head and reports from the various committees. Key issues are discussed and future strategy agreed, with the board having responsibility to approve the accounts, school development plan and risk documentation, as well as meet the School’s legal obligations (via overseeing compliance with all regulations from the Department for Education).

The Governors also oversee the leadership and management of the School and are responsible for hiring the Head and Bursar, both of whom report to the Chair of Governors.

Chair: Paul Rathbone
Company Secretary: Kevin Guy

Our Governors

Paul Aubery (Chair of Buildings Committee)

Paul is a former parent who is now a non-parent governor at the School, and has a business background in a variety of executive management and board roles in investment banking. He currently runs a Private Equity firm specialising in commercial real estate. He also has military experience. He is a Freeman of the City of London.

Will Barker (member of the Finance Committee)

Will is a current parent who has been active in the school for many years. He works in the finance sector for a bank.

Andy Chandler (Chair of the IT Committee)

Andy is a current parent and has 20 years’ experience working in the tech industry from start-ups to the largest companies in the world.

Tom Ewing (Chair of the Finance Committee)

Tom is a former parent who is now a non-parent governor, and has a background in investment management and research in the City of London.

Selin Kudret

Selin is a current parent. She holds a PhD in Human Resources and Organisational Psychology and is a professor in leadership at the University of Reading. With two decades of performing various leadership roles in industry and academia, she is currently serving as the Academic Lead and Director for the British Army’s Higher Education Pathway degree programmes.

Charlotte Lee (Chair of Risk Committee)

Charlotte is a current parent with a background as a pensions and tax lawyer.  She practised at Slaughter and May, with clients predominantly in the banking and oil sectors. Prior to her daughter starting at Unicorn, Charlotte home educated her so has a keen interest in education.

Stephen Lehec (Chair of the Education & Staffing Committee)

Stephen is a non-parent governor.  He is the Head of Kingston Grammar School and has a wealth of experience in the secondary education sector.  He also supports a number of charitable endeavours and is a keen sports coach. 

Paul O’Neill (member of Education & Staffing Committee)

Paul is a current parent. A maths teacher by training, he has worked on the Senior Leadership Teams of four Inner London Secondary Schools before appointment as the founding Headteacher of a state-maintained school in Lewisham. Most recently he was headmaster of a secondary school in Berkshire.

Alpesh Patel

Alpesh is a current parent. He is also an author, fund manager, previously barrister, former Visiting Fellow in Business at Oxford University, and Dealmaker for the UK Government.

Rebecca Raffan (member of the Education & Staffing Committee)

Rebecca is a non parental governor.

Paul Rathbone (Chair of Governors)

Paul is a former parent.

Jo Webbern (Safeguarding Governor; member of Education & Staffing Committee)

Jo is a non-parental governor. Following a teaching career at a number of independent schools, she recently retired after nine years as Head of the Pre-Prep of a large independent school in Hampshire.

Governor committees

There are five Governor committees, set up to cover particular work, with all Governors involved on one or more of them. These meet on a termly basis, sometimes more frequently.

A chair is appointed for each committee. The chair sets up meetings with agendas and minutes, liaises with the Chair of Governors and the Head on key issues, reports back to other Governors at termly meetings with debate on any specific issues, and co-ordinates all the workings of that committee. Each has agreed objectives and aims for the future that must be reviewed annually. The current chairs are:

(Chair – Tom Ewing)
Building: (Chair – Paul Aubery)
Education and Staffing: (Chair – Stephen Lehec)
Risk and Compliance: (Chair – Charlotte Lee)
IT: (Chair – Andy Chandler)

Any correspondence for The Chair of Governors should be addressed, c/o The School Office, Unicorn School, 238 Kew Road, Richmond, TW9 3JX and marked ‘Private & Confidential‘.