The Governing Body: roles, responsibilities and organisation
School governors are ordinary people from the local community who wish to make a positive contribution to children’s education. They are the largest volunteer force in the country.
All maintained schools in England have a Governing Body. It is responsible for overseeing many of the strategic decisions of the school and has an important part to play in raising school standards through acting as a ‘critical friend’ - supporting, challenging and asking questions.
The Governing Body’s three key roles are:
- Setting and ensuring clarity of vision, ethos, and strategic direction;
- Holding the Headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its children, and the effective and efficient performance management of staff; and
- Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.
Schools need governors with a range of skills and interests so almost anyone can become a school governor. New governors receive training and support from the school, the Local Authority and other governors. If you are interested in assisting our school in this way, please contact the office for further details.
George Spicer’s Governing Body is drawn from various sections of the community.
- LA Governor: x 1
- Parent governors: x 2
- Staff governors: x 1
- Headteacher: x 1
- Co-opted governors: x 6
Organisation of the Governing Body
The Governing Body works in close partnership with the Headteacher, staff and the Local Authority. Whilst the Headteacher is responsible for the day to day running of the school, the governors are involved with strategic matters.
In order to carry out their responsibilities, governing bodies must hold at least three meetings each year. George Spicer’s Governing Body usually meets four times a year. The agenda is influenced by national changes and requirements, the Local Authority and the school.
Governors carry out much of their business through committees which make decisions on its behalf and act as a clear channel of communication to inform the wider work of the full governing body. As of November 2022, George Spicer has two committees which meet termly:
- Curriculum and Achievement Committee
- Resources Committee
There is also a strategic group which considers the needs, provision and achievement of vulnerable pupils.
Small groups of governors (panels) are involved with matters such as appointing a Headteacher, staff grievances and formal complaints procedures; while some individual governors have responsibilities for specific areas within the school, for example safeguarding, Pupil Premium or GDPR (data protection). Terms of Reference outline the specific responsibilities of the full governing body and its committees.
Governors are required to:
- Act in the best interests of the school.
- Complete a ‘Declaration of Interests’ register annually which is updated with any change in circumstance. They must also declare any conflicts of interest at the start of each meeting.
- Have an Enhanced DBS certificate (criminal record check processed by the Disclosure and Barring Service). New governors must apply for a check within 21 days of their appointment.
- Abide by the seven Nolan principles of public life.
- Attend meetings regularly.
Responsibilities of the Governing Body Committees and Strategic Groups
Curriculum and Achievement Committee
- To review, monitor and evaluate the school’s curriculum, ensuring that it is broad and balanced and meets the needs of all pupils.
- To monitor policies related to the curriculum and achievement eg Religious Education, Behaviour, Attendance and Assessment.
- To monitor pupil attendance, ensuring there are effective procedures in place to improve attendance and to fulfil statutory requirements.
- To monitor and evaluate the progress and achievement of all pupils’, including specific groups.
- To analyse any performance trends and compare school data against Local Authority and national data eg for phonics and Year 6.
- To monitor progress against the school’s improvement plan priorities.
- To understand the targets set within the school and challenge any areas of concern.
- To consider recommendations from external reviews of the school e.g. Ofsted or the Local Authority, agree actions and monitor their impact.
- To ensure that all children have equal opportunities.
- To identify and celebrate pupils’ achievements.
- To monitor arrangements for educational visits and ensure there is a named co-ordinator.
- To ensure all statutory requirements for reporting and publishing information are met and the school website content is fully compliant and presented in an accessible way.
- To monitor the school’s publicity, public presentation and relationships with the wider community.
- To review, adopt and monitor a Finance Policy and all other financial policies, eg Charging and Remissions Policy and Debt Policy.
- To establish and maintain a three year financial plan.
- To draft and propose an annual school budget to the full governing body.
- To make decisions relating to service level agreements.
- To monitor the income and expenditure throughout the year of all funding against the annual budget plan.
- To advise the full governing body of the school’s financial situation and to alert them of any potential issues.
- To review, complete and submit the School Financial Value Standard (SFVS) and carry out any identified actions.
- To receive and act upon any issues identified by a Local Authority audit.
- To ensure that the school is staffed sufficiently to meet its needs and ensure effective operation.
- To agree the school’s Appraisal Policy and oversee its implementation - including the appraisal procedures for the Headteacher.
- To establish a Pay Policy for all staff and ensure this is followed.
- To ensure that staffing procedures, including recruitment procedures, follow equalities legislation.
- To annually review procedures for dealing with staff discipline and grievances and monitor these procedures
- To monitor and evaluate the impact of continuing professional development on improving staff performance
Health and Safety
- To ensure that an annual inspection of the premises and grounds takes place and a report is received identifying any issues.
- To inform the governing body of any issues identified in the report; and set out a proposed order of priorities
- To establish and keep under review an Accessibility Plan and a Building Development Plan
- To review, adopt and monitor the Health and Safety Policy.
- To ensure the school gives appropriate consideration to how mental health and wellbeing are embedded in the curriculum and other school activities and analyse the impact.
- To ensure effective wellbeing policies, procedures and training are in place to support everyone within the school.
Vulnerable Pupils Strategic Group
- To monitor and evaluate provision for all groups of vulnerable pupils e.g. looked after children and those at risk of abuse and ensure all their needs have been identified and addressed.
- To evaluate the progress, achievement and attendance of groups of vulnerable pupils and ensure there is a culture of high expectations for these pupils.
- To monitor and annually review school policies for Safeguarding and for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and ensure these are published.
- To ensure that the requirements of children with special needs are met, as laid out in the Code of Practice, and receive termly reports from the Headteacher/Inclusion team.
- To ensure Safer Recruitment and Child Protection policies, procedures and training are effective and comply with the law, including having a designated lead teacher for safeguarding.
- To have knowledge of the Pupil Premium (PP) Grant; and to monitor the implementation of the PP action plan and the impact of the grant.
- To appoint a lead teacher for looked After Children (LAC) and ensure that procedures and training are effective.
- To ensure that required information including the PP Strategy document and SEND Report are reviewed annually and are published on the school website.
Mr D Spong
Ms D Dykins
Mrs A Del Greco
Mrs S Leslie
Mr D Smith
Mrs E Udemezue
Ms Z Ahmed
Miss H Ring
Ms C Stapleton
Governing Body Meeting dates - Academic Year 2022-2023
- 27 September 2023
- 6 December 2023
- 20 March July 2024
- 17 July 2024
Register of Interests - Relevant Business Interests
Interest/inc. Governorships of other schools
Anne Del Greco
Attigo Academy Trustee
Self-employed School Improvement & Training
Attigo Academy Trustee
Governor St Matthews CofE School