A few words about us

Dughall McCormick introduces his session on social media and governance at the NCOGS Annual Conference 2016
The National Co-ordinators of Governor Services (NCOGS) is a committee representing Local Authority providers of services to school governors and other governor support professionals. The committee is made up of Co-ordinators of Governor Services (COGS) from across the eight regional groups and is funded through subscription.

The committee is made up of Co-ordinators of Governor Services (COGS) from across the eight regional groups and is funded through subscription.

As a group the COGS exist to support and enable the delivery of high quality services to governors and to ensure effective governance in schools. The committee also provides a mechanism for professionals working in Governor services to access a range of materials and development opportunities. It is the committee's responsibility to influence and initiate national policy by identifying common themes emerging from the regions and then to communicate the outcomes to support the continuous improvement of Local Authority Governor Services.

Membership of NCOGS is subscription based and divided into the eight regional groups. For more information about membership, please contact us.

Meet the chair and team of regional coordinators

Mandy ParsonsMandy Parsons

All Regions

Mandy started her professional life in HR, working in the manufacturing and IT sectors and then as a training and development consultant. She became a governor in 1992 and has served as a governor in primary and secondary phases for over 20 years, as well as volunteering roles in the CAB and scouting. Mandy joined Hampshire Governor Services as a tutor in 2000 and substantively as a coordinator in 2002. She has managed Hampshire Governor Services since 2010. Mandy also chairs the SE Regional COGS group. NCOGS and the regional group support good governance through access to professional debate and the opportunity to share practice and formulate a regional response to national issues. Hampshire is a DfE contract holder for the Clerks' Programme, and also provides a national Clerks' Accreditation Programme, working regionally and nationally with its partners to support governors and clerks in their increasingly challenging roles. Mandy believes all governors and trustees should have access to locally delivered support and advice services and a broad training offer to help them be effective in their role.

Debbi BothamDebbi Botham


Debbi is the Governance Development Officer for the Diocese of Brentwood, leading and coordinating support for governors in 94 Catholic schools across the Diocese. Until May 2018, she led the EES for Schools Governance Support team in Essex, and continues to work for EES on a part-time basis as a tutor developing and running workshops for governors. Debbi is co-chair of the Eastern Region (ERCOGS) a thriving and supportive group which comes together each term to engage in professional debate about school governance, share good practice, develop resources and provide professional support. Initially a secondary school teacher, she is an HR professional with over twenty years' experience, specialising in performance management, recruitment, professional learning and development and equality and diversity. Serving as a school governor for nearly twenty years, at both a large primary school (now Outstanding) and several secondary academies has given her a deep understanding of the difference effective governance makes to school improvement as well as the challenges faced by governing boards. A firm advocate that strong governance is key to ensuring successful educational outcomes for young people, she is very proud of the improvements made by Essex governing boards with over 92% of Essex primary and secondary pupils now attending an Ofsted rated Good or Outstanding school.

Kathleen WallaceKathleen Wallace

North East

Kathleen has worked for North Tyneside Council since 1988 in various locations across the Borough before becoming a part time Clerk for the Governor Services team in 2004. During that time, she was elected as a Parent Governor at her son's High School between 2010 and 2014 and was a member during their conversion to single academy status.

Kathleen was appointed the Governor Services Co-ordinator in 2015 and works with the Governor Services team offering clerking, advice, support and a comprehensive training programme for governing bodies across North Tyneside, and some neighbouring schools.

Kathleen is a keen advocate for helping children to achieve the best they possibly can and was an active executive member of the local scout group for many years.

Steve BarkerSteve Barker


Profile pending

John AshworthJohn Ashworth

North West

Profile pending

Fiona CollierFiona Collier

Vice Chair (All Regions) and South West COGS

Fiona works as a Governance Adviser within the Babcock ldp Governance Consultancy Team in Devon, which is a joint venture with Devon County Council. Fiona is the vice-chair of the South West COGS group and strongly believes in the power of collaborative working and sharing best practice across the sector. Fiona has a particular interest, knowledge and expertise in developing resources and training for clerks; she researched and wrote the Devon Clerks' Manual and has developed a bespoke training programme for clerks in Devon. Fiona is the editor of Governance Today Magazine, compiles a termly electronic 'Checklist' and writes a weekly Governance Alert to update governors and clerks on both national and local initiatives of interest and importance. Fiona has been involved in governance for longer than she cares to admit, having served as a governor, committee chair and chair of governors in a range of schools, as well as clerking herself, she understands the trials and tribulations faced by boards and clerks. Fiona has come from a business background, initially with the Northcliffe Newspaper Group, working throughout the country on a range of publications and organising regional and national exhibitions. More recently Fiona has run a successful business in the heart of Devon where she led the staff to achieve the nationally recognised 'Committed to Excellence Standard' from The British Quality Foundation.

Karl LawtonKarl Lawton

West Midlands

Profile pending

Kathryn WilkinsonKathryn Wilkinson

Co-Chair (All regions) and Yorkshire and Humber GSG

Kathryn is the vice-chair of NCOGS and governor support service manager for Leeds City Council, Children's Services. She's been a governor for over twenty years and is passionate about the impact that effective governance can have on outcomes for children. Kathryn has a background in education and has taught at both primary and secondary level. Leeds Governor support service provides fully trained clerks to the vast majority of schools in the city, it also delivers a comprehensive training programme and an extensive library of information and support documents for governors. Kathryn really values NCOGS as a means of sharing good practice and influencing matters concerning good governance.