High school is in good hands, says retiring governor

Hilary Myers, who has stepped down as chairwoman of governors at Todmorden High School
Hilary Myers, who has stepped down as chairwoman of governors at Todmorden High School

THE chairwoman of governors at Todmorden High School has stepped down after eight years on the board.

Hilary Myers, who became a governor in 2002 and was appointed chairwoman three years ago, has decided against signing up for another term in order to concentrate on her career and family.

She said: “Having given a lot of time as a parliamentary candidate between 2007 and last year’s election, I have neglected my career.

“I felt I had done my stint really and was not ready to sign up for another four years.”

During her time as a governor, Hilary has overseen the appointment of two headteachers and faced some tough challenges.

“When I took over as chair in 2008, we had to embark on a very difficult staff reduction process as the school faced financial difficulties,” she said.

“I have been involved in a second headteacher appointment. I’m very pleased that we appointed Helen Plaice from a very strong field of candidates.

“It was rather sad to say bye to Patrick Ottley-O’Connor who had done so much to improve the school’s results, morale and its standing within the community.

“I’m very confident that Helen will continue that project.

“One thing that I really wanted to see and worked hard to achieve is a new building.

“Everybody knows that the fabric of the building is in a very poor condition. Everything that could possibly have been done to improve the school has been done.

“I’m disappointed to have left with no certainty as to when we might get the new building.”

She believes the school is in good hands with the appointment of Robin Asby as the new chairman of governors.

“Robin is a very experienced and capable governor,” she said.

“The governors have done everything they can to improve standards and I think we have a school which we can be proud of.”

In recognition of her years of service to the school, her name has been put to a new prize to be awarded to a student each year.

She presented the Hilary Myers care for the environment award to Aisha Coggan at the school’s annual presentation evening earlier this month.

“I was very pleased and honoured to be recognised in that way for my contribution to the school,” she said.

She will now focus her attention on running a mental health charity in Rochdale but hopes to keep her connection with Todmorden High School.

“It’s a new role for me and I’m very excited about it,” she said.

“I intend to stay in touch with the school and to support it in any way I can. It’s been a very happy association that I have had with the high school and I hope it will continue.”