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StamfordhamPrimary School

‘Learning, Caring and Achieving Together’
‘Learning, Caring and Achieving Together’

Find out more about our staff team...

Meet the Staff

Head Teacher - Claire McKinney  

My name is Claire McKinney and I am the Head Teacher of Stamfordham Primary. I teach in Years 5 & 6 where you will find me on a Thursday and Friday... I first started teaching in 1995 - yes that long ago! I worked in a small school in Durham for 6 years, teaching the Year 3 children before moving up the school to the OAPs in Year 6 in 1998. After 6 years learning my trade and developing my own teaching style, I moved to Newcastle as a Deputy Head Teacher. I came to Stamfordham in 2006, and very much enjoy my teaching-head teacher role. I like most things about school, especially the children because you are all so very different. This was the main reason I wanted to come here, to be able to wear two hats, school leader and class teacher - although it is indeed a challenging role! I love having fun in classroom, and really enjoy being Head at SPS. When I am not wearing my HT hat, I enjoy spending time with my family, walking my two miniature poodles Rosie and Sam (when Sam is awake - he likes to nap!) and watching the cricket which I love to do. I also enjoy reading and time permitting, pottering in the garden - this can prove to be a rather damp experience!

Senior Class Teacher (Yrs 5&6)  - Katrina Gilbert

I am Mrs Gilbert and I'm a Senior Teacher at Stamfordham Primary School and teach the children of Years 5 & 6 on a Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. I have been at Stamfordham since 2003 and this year I am teaching in all year groups. I coordinate Literacy and am mentor and guide to Newly Qualified Teachers and Students. Having gained my degree in Leeds, I've now been teaching for 24 years. Life in school is ever busy, but equally stimulating and rewarding. Early in my career, I spent 4 years teaching in Nottingham before returning to the north east, as many say, Geordie girls are on elastic bands, and always come home again! I live in a beautiful Northumberland village with my husband, daughter, twin boys and golden retriever. Needless to say, life is never dull or quiet! I love walking, reading, going to the theatre and cinema not to mention the occasional trip to the shops for a top-up of retail therapy!

Class 3 Teacher - Mandy Watson

Hello, I am Mrs Watson and on a Monday and a Tuesday, I teach in Years 3 and 4. I started teaching back in 1997 after completing a 4 year degree with qualified teacher status. I spent a lot of my early career in Germany, teaching the children of families posted with the army, before becoming an army wife myself and moving – LOTS OF TIMES!    I am finally settled in Hexham with my husband and two children. I have worked at Stamfordham Primary since 2012 and I love it here. I decided to work as a Teaching Assistant while my own children were growing up, which I continue to do for part of the week.  Recently, I have returned to teaching and this really is the best place to do it. I enjoy long country walks with my family, occasionally you may even spot me running or cycling!  I like to relax in the kitchen as I love to cook and bake.


Class 3 Teacher - Lauren Gray 

Hello, I am Mrs Gray and I teach in Years 3&4. I was very excited to have started my teaching career at Stamfordham Primary School in 2016 following the completion of my Teacher Training course here a couple of years ago. I am really enjoying my role as Class 3 Teacher as it is a very rewarding job - I love seeing the children making such fantastic progress! In any spare time, I enjoy taking my lovely spaniel Millie for long walks in the countryside. I also love to shop and go to the cinema with my partner Chris.


Class 2 Teacher - Emily Snowball

Hello I am Miss Snowball and I’m the Year 1 and Year 2 teacher in Class 2. A few of you may recognise my name (it’s certainly an unusual surname) from when I previously worked at Stamfordham back in 2014 as a Teaching Assistant before going on to complete my teacher training. Since then I have worked at another school within the partnership but jumped at the chance to come back to join the wonderful Stamfordham team! I live on a farm with my partner Joe and sheepdog Taff. My favourite sweets would probably have to be dolly mixtures and my favourite colour is yellow. In my spare time I enjoy painting but I also enjoy helping on the farm especially in lambing time when it gets very busy! It’s so great to be back at Stamfordham and seeing so many familiar faces! 

Early Years Lead and RWI Manager - Claire Tait 

Hello, I am Mrs Tait and I teach the children in our Reception class. I am also the Early Years Lead and oversee our Read, Write, Inc programme. I thoroughly enjoyed completing my Teacher Training course at Stamfordham in 2015 and have loved being at Stamfordham ever since. I live with my husband Mark and have two lovely grown up boys, Daniel and Joe. When I'm not teaching, I like to go for a long walk in the countryside with them all, particularly if it ends with a meal out! My absolutely favourite thing to do is eat, especially scones and chocolate, and I am always first in the queue if any home-baked goodies find their way into the staffroom! 


Teaching Assistant & Lunchtime Supervisor - Julie Jeffrey

Hello! My name is Mrs Jeffrey and I work with the children in reception and Class 3.

Teaching Assistant & Lunchtime Supervisor - Sarah Walters 

I'm Mrs Walters and I work in Class 2 as well as outside at playtime and dinner time. I live in Newcastle with my husband and two children. I like dancing, music, reading and eating out (but not all at the same time!)


Teaching Assistant & Lunchtime Supervisor - Diane Parry

Hello! My name is Mrs Parry and I work with the children of Class 4.


Office Manager -  Melanie Mortimer 

My name is Melanie Mortimer and I am the office manager at Stamfordham Primary. You will find me in school each day and I do lots to help the school run smoothly.


Preschool Leader  - Kirsty Mclea

My name is Miss Mclean and I am the preschool leader. I first started working here in 2014 when my daughter started attending the preschool, and since then I have never looked back. I have previously worked in private day care nurseries where I gained most of my experience in working with young children. I have two daughters, Gracie and Ivy who both attend school here, and we have a dog called Heidi. I love walks along the beach and eating out with family and friends.


Preschool team - Devon Black

My name is Mrs Black and I work in the preschool. I first started working at Stamfordham Primary in 2014 when I volunteered in Reception class. I live with my husband James and have a black cockapoo called Alfie. In 2018 I graduated from university with a BA Honours Degree in Children and Young People. In my spare time I enjoy long walks in the countryside, keeping fit and spending time with friends.


Preschool Team and Catch Up Tutor – Nora McSherry 

My name is Nora McSherry and I work with the children in all classes across the school from Early Years to Year 6. I teach on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday using my skills to engage and support the children of this amazing school. Prior to teaching, I accrued an amazing amount of employment experience firstly working in a specialist unit for children with emotional and behavioural problems before moving into the role of Senior Nursery Nurse in a day nursery. Following this I was employed as a Speech Therapy Assistant, delivering an intervention programme  to schools across North Tyneside, alongside spending focussed time in an ICAN early years nursery. I first started teaching in January 2006 in a small school west of Newcastle, initially in Year 2 and then Year 1 before becoming engaged in setting up an Early Years Unit for 54 children. After 4 exciting years, I moved on to teach in the Year 3 class room, a different but very rewarding experience. I joined the Stamfordham Team in April 2019 and with passion, commitment and a lot of hard work I will continue to teach your children to be life long learners.

At home, I enjoy spending time with my husband, daughter and my 2 year old grandson. I love reading, walking and swimming and can often be found in my kitchen baking lots of ‘yummy’ scones or cakes.


Preschool Team  – Sally Browell

Hello I'm Mrs Browell and I work in preschool on a Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. After working in paediatric dentistry for over twenty years, I have recently retrained in early years education. I am excited to begin my new career at Stamfordham Primary School.  I live in Northumberland with my husband Dave, daughter Rose and Mabel the cavapoo!


School Caretaker - Sean McWilliams  

I am Mr McWilliams and I am the school caretaker.


Catering Unit Manager - Pam McWilliams 

I am Pam McWilliams and I am the school cook.

Kitchen Assistant - Susan Bushby 

I am Susan and I work with Pam in the school kitchen.


Breakfast and Out of School Club  - Janice Scott 

My name is Janice and I am a Senior Play Worker.

Breakfast and Out of School Club -  Melanie Mortimer

My name is Mel and I am a Play Worker.