The Role of the Governing Body
Every school in the country has to have a Governing Body. This is a group of people representing the interests of parents (P), staff (S), the Local Authority (L) and the wider Community (C) who volunteer their time to work with the school, particularly the Headteacher, to:
The Governing Body’s role is to provide support and act as a ‘critical friend’ to the school and to the Headteacher in moving the school forward and ensuring its success. The Governing Body of a school is accountable for its performance, its finances and the safety and well-being of pupils and staff. All of the above is done by governors on a voluntary basis, some of whom may not have a background in or work in the education sector. Governors bring a wide range of experience to the school, including business and finance, parenting experience, further and higher education and administrative expertise. Above all, they bring energy, commitment, enthusiasm and ideas to share with senior staff in shaping the future of the school. The roles and responsibilities of governing bodies are clear in law and there is a clear distinction between the responsibilities and powers of the Headteacher and those of the governors. The Governing Body should take an overview of school development, and support and challenge the Headteacher and other senior staff. The Headteacher is responsible too for forward planning but has paid responsibility for this and the overall running of the school.
The role of a governor involves:
Governing Body Meetings
The main way in which governors contribute their time to the school is by attending Governing Body meetings throughout the school year. The full Governing Body meets at regular intervals throughout the year (usually twice per term to discuss the school’s performance, issues, policies, budget and the school’s plans for forward development. The Headteacher provides governors with reports about the school’s activities, successes and challenges.
Governing Body Committees
Smaller groups of governors meet in two committees (‘Resources’ and ‘School Improvement’) three times each year (usually prior and reporting to a full governing body meeting) to discuss, in more detail, curriculum development, assessment, standards, attendance, extra-curricular activities, finance, staffing, safeguarding, and other aspects of the school’s work.
The SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT COMMITTEE has oversight for and may review or consider at its meetings:
The RESOURCES COMMITTEE has oversight for and may review or consider at its meetings:
Governing Body Instrument of Government / Membership
The number and types of governors appointed to our governing body is determined by our Instrument of Government and is set in law. As of Summer 2015 and the Instrument of Government agreed by the City Solicitor at that time, the membership of the Governing Body shall be:
Governors are usually appointed for a period of four years. Governors will join the governing body at different times and each governor has a ‘term of office’ which determines when they must stop being a governor, unless, of course, they are re-elected (by parents or staff) or re-appointed by the Governing Body (Co-opted Governors) or Local Authority.
Attendance at Governing Body Meetings
Governors are asked to attend all full governing body meetings (usually between 4 and 6 per year) and the meetings of the committee to which they belong. The attendance record of governors at Governing Body meetings during the last academic year can be found here: