BACKGROUND INFORMATION FOR GOVERNOR APPLICANTS
Schools need enthusiastic and committed people to become governors. Governors have the opportunity to express their own views, to listen to the views of others representing the School and its community and to influence pupils’ education for the better. It is an important role and is interesting and satisfying.
You would be part of a team (the Governing Board) with a range of important responsibilities, working in partnership with School staff to shape the School’s future, to decide the key issues that will help raise standards, and determine how the School will best spend its money to achieve these aims.
Governors do not need specific qualifications, just the desire to make a positive contribution, show interest, and have time. Time commitment is one of the key considerations as in any volunteering role and the following information will give you an indication of the commitment needed. The Full Governing Board (i.e. all governors) currently meets three times a year (once per term). The meetings take place at the School and last approximately 2 hours (from 7.15pm). There are four subcommittees of the Governing Board (Personnel, Finance & Premises, Curriculum & Pupil Welfare, and Strategic Planning) which meet 3 or 4 times a year. These meetings currently take place at the school, during the school day (8.15am start) to enable staff and student representation as appropriate and last approximately 2 hours. All governors are expected to join at least one of three subcommittees (Personnel, Curriculum & Pupil Welfare, Finance & Premises). The membership of the Strategic Planning subcommittee is the Chair and Vice-Chair of Governors and the Chairs of the other three subcommittees. There would be some background reading for each meeting and relevant papers are emailed and posted to you 7 days before each meeting. The meeting dates are agreed by governors for the whole academic in the preceding summer term (a copy of the schedule and the Terms of Reference for each subcommittee can be found on the school website)
In addition to attending scheduled meetings, a governor would also be expected to visit the School perhaps once or twice a year to attend and support events.Governors may at times set up working parties to focus on particular areas and governors do lead and or take on some other areas of responsibilities depending on the requirements of the Governing Board and school.The term of office for governors is
The role of the Governing Board is absolutely key to the effectiveness of a school, and Ofsted (the national inspection Board for schools) has noted that the most effective schools demonstrate effective leadership and management, including by the Governing Board.
School governors provide strategic leadership and accountability in schools. Governors appoint the Headteacher and are involved in the appointment of other staff. It is governors who hold the main responsibility for finance in schools, and it is governors who work with the Headteacher to make the decisions about balancing resources.
Each individual governor is a member of a Governing Board, which is established in law as a corporate Board. Individual governors may not act independently of the rest of the Governing Board. Decisions are the joint responsibility of the Governing Board.
The Governing Board has a strategic role, with its key functions being to:
- set the aims and objectives for the School
- set the policies for achieving those aims and objectives
- agree the targets for achieving those aims and objectives
- monitor and evaluate the progress the School is making towards achievement of its aims and objectives
- be a source of challenge and support to the Headteacher (a critical friend)
The Headteacher is responsible for the internal organisation, management and control of the School and the implementation of the strategic framework established by the Governing Board.
Governors may be required to serve on panels of governors to:
- appoint the Headteacher and other teachers
- appraise the Headteacher
- recommend the Headteacher’s pay and review the pay recommendations for other staff
- hear the second stage of staff grievances and disciplinary matters
- hear the second stage of formal complaints appeals from parents/carers
- hear appeals about pupil exclusions
Governors will be expected to act as a Link Governor on a specific issue (i.e. SEN, Safeguarding), meeting with the relevant staff and reporting back to the Governing Board.