- Core Function of the Governing Body
- Governors’ Contribution to school’s Leadership & Management
- Who can become a school governor?
- What is involved?
- Support for new governors
- How to apply?
- To ensure clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
- To hold the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils, and the performance management of staff
- To oversee the financial performance of the school and make sure its money is well spent
School governing bodies are responsible for working with the school to ensure that it delivers a good quality education. The role of the school governor demands a significant commitment, but is an extremely rewarding one. The governing body is responsible for strategic leadership through the exercise of the above three core functions and work closely with the headteacher, who is responsible for day-to-day management of the school. An effective governor will help create a culture of trust on the governing body where they can set high expectations of themselves and the school and ask challenging questions.
Working in tandem with the Senior Leadership of the school, governors are responsible for making strategic decisions about:
- Appointing the Headteacher
- Determining how the school's budget is spent
- The appointing and dismissing of senior staff
- Hearing appeals and grievances
- Forming statutory school policies
- Setting standards for pupils' behaviour and discipline
- Making sure school buildings are welcoming and safe
- Setting and monitoring the school's aims and policies
The quality of governance forms part of the Ofsted judgement upon a school - see the Ofsted September 2015 - Governor Criteria (PDF, 34KB).
- You must be over 18
- You do not need to have children at the school, governors come from all sections of the community
- You may have to submit to a Disclosure and Barring check to meet the school’s safeguarding requirements.
- Some governors will be elected by staff, some are elected by parents, one governor will be recommended by the Local Authority and others will be co-opted by the governing body to complete the range of skills needed. In faith schools there will be a number of Foundation governors appointed by the relevant faith body.
- The ability to work as part of a team – a governing body is a corporate group and makes decisions jointly.
- The capacity to devote sufficient time to attend full governing body meetings (typically six per year, together with dealing with the papers in preparation), sitting on sub-committees where required and visiting the school, usually once or twice per year.
- Time off from work for some of these activities should be made available.
- No particular qualifications are required. The school will identify the skills needed for their particular context. Governors with these skills would be particularly welcome, but enthusiasm and a willingness to learn is also valuable.
- A governor’s term of office is typically four years.
- You will receive a welcome pack which includes information about your role and responsibilities.
- You will receive information about induction training.
- You may attend the regular Governor Briefings and training
- You will also be an automatic member of the Haringey Governor’s Association, an independent voice for governors in Haringey.
Useful Information provided by the school to new governors:
- A list of governors with contact details and any specific responsibilities they may have
- Minutes of the last full governing body meeting and a copy of the Instrument of Government, which sets out composition of the governing body/board
- For an Academy governor a copy of their Articles of Association
- The most recent report to the governing body from the headteacher
- The school prospectus
- The school development plan
- The last Ofsted inspection report (or details on where to access them online) and link to data dashboard
- Dates of terms and holidays
- How to arrange a visit to the school
There are two routes:
- Through the Local Authority (we place limited numbers of LA governors). Please download the Application form for School Governorship (Word, 65KB).
- Through SGOSS (School Governors One Stop Shop) – see external links section below.
Governors Support and Training Unit
Third Floor, River Park House
225 High Road
Tel 020 8489 5029 / 5030 / 5074