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Members of Richmond SEND Partnership Board



Tonia Michaelides, Executive Locality Director, Richmond and Kingston Clinical Commissioning Groups


As Executive Locality Director of Kingston and Richmond CCG’s I am responsible for the delivery of the CCG’s quality, finance and performance targets as well as working with leaders across the two boroughs to transform health and care services.

I also lead on delivering transformation on a wider footprint as SWL Senior Responsible Officer (SRO) for Mental Health. I also operate at a London level, co-sponsoring the development of the London Mental Health Dashboard.



Ian Dodds, Director of Children’s Services

I became the shared Director of Children's Services for Kingston and Richmond Councils in January 2020. I am responsible for leading the two Councils' early help, children's social care, education support and youth justice services to ensure they are relevant, responsive, high quality and deliver good value for money. I work with colleagues across the Council and with our partners in schools, health services, the police and the voluntary sector to join up services in order to meet the needs of children and young people locally. 


Charis Penfold, Director of Education Services

I was appointed as Director for Education Services in 2015, having worked in the local authority since 2007. I oversee the quality of provision, standards and outcomes across all phases of education, including early years and 14-25, admissions, governance, school place planning and SEN.  I also oversee the educational psychology and emotional health teams, and aspects of education inclusion with a real focus on supporting children and young people who are finding mainstream provision difficult.


Ashley Whittaker, Programme Director for SEND Futures

Hi, my name is Ashley Whittaker.  I am AfC’s Programme Director for SEND Futures.  This means that I work with the large number of people and organisations in Richmond who provide education, health and social care support for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities and their families.  Together we aim to make this provision as high quality as possible.    


Ivan Pryce, Headteacher, Strathmore Special School


I have been Headteacher at Strathmore School for 10 years and am currently C.E.O. of the Auriga Academy Trust which includes Clarendon and Capella House Schools.

Throughout my career, I have worked exclusively in special schools and contexts in Ealing, Hounslow,    Wandsworth, Merton, Kingston as well as Richmond. I am also a Governor at Sybil Elgar School.


Heather Mathew, Children and Young People's Voluntary Sector Strategic Lead Manager, Richmond CVS

I have worked for Richmond Council for Voluntary Service (RCVS) for 16 years supporting charities,      community groups, and social enterprises in all aspects of their business including funding advice, governance, start-ups and child protection. We have a thriving sector that makes a unique and valuable contribution to the quality of life of families in Richmond.

In my opinion working in partnership with statutory partners and with parents and children and    young people, recognising each other strengths and skills, and harnessing our collective resources is key to improving and expanding services for children and families. The SEND Partnership provides      the environment for us to work positively together, hear each other’s perspectives, understand the challenges and shape new ways of working for the benefit of local families, and the enhancement of our professional roles.

 Penny Frost, Cabinet member for Children’s Services and Schools, Richmond Council


I am the elected Chair of the Council’s Education and Children’s Services Committee, and my  committee is responsible for our children’s services functions including education, children’s social care and children’s health. An important part of my role is to ensure effective co-ordination with partnership bodies in this area. My particular professional experience is in the      area of young people’s SEND.

Grace Over, Participation Officer for Children and Young People with SEND, AfC


I am the Participation Officer for Children and Young People with Special Educational Needs and/or Disability. My job is to support children and young people with SEND to have a voice in matters that affect them and to be involved in decision-making and planning. I do this through direct work with children and young people as well as influencing and embedding participation practice within the services.

My role as a board member is to share the views of children and young people and (where possible) to support young people to attend the board themselves.