Governors have three statutory responsibilities as part of their strategic role
In all types of schools, governing bodies should have a strong focus on three core strategic functions:
Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
Hold the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils, and the performance management of staff; and
Oversee the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent
Governors are appointed to provide
strong links between the school and the community it serves
a wide experience of the outside world
an independent view
a visible form of accountability for the headteacher and staff of the school
a team focusing on long term development and improvement
accountability to the community for the use of resources and the standards of teaching and learning in the school
support for the headteacher and staff.
School governors are expected to
attend the both relevant committee and Full Governing Body meetings
show an interest in school activities, by for example, visits to the school, reading documentation etc.
attend necessary training courses to ensure that the Governing Body are able to make informed decisions.
attend the full governing body annual training.
visit the school at least twice during school hours for governor business.
provide as much notice as possible if they are unable to attend meetings to ensure that all Governor’s time is used efficiently and that decision making is not compromised. A minimum of one week is expected.
ensure that they do not bring the school into disrepute and that they fulfil the role they have.
share the responsibilities and work as a team.
In addition, individual governors will usually be involved in some of the following activities often through groups or committees which report back to the main body
the financial management of the school
liaising with parents and other stakeholders on behalf of the governing body
Governing bodies are the strategic planners of schools
agrees policies and practice which allows the headteacher the necessary tools to carry out his/her responsibilities
agrees principles and targets for improvement
acts as the critical friend of the school and headteacher
receives and discusses reports on the resulting practice and conduct of the school
No one governor is expected to know it all. The strength of a governing body lies in its ability to attract and rely upon members from a wide variety of backgrounds, share out the duties amongst its members, and be able to take decisions as a group.