The Governor Role
What is a governor?
As part of the largest volunteer force in the UK, governors across the country work as a network to support and enhance school leadership.
Being a school governor is a challenging but hugely rewarding and enjoyable role. It allows us to make a real difference to the young people at our schools and to give something back to our local communities. The role provides us with opportunities to learn new skills and to undertake training.
A governing board provides strategic leadership and accountability in schools and it has three key functions:
- Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
- Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent
- Holding the headteacher(s) to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils
Anyone over 18 can be a governor and there is no requirement to have an understanding of the education system – the most effective governing boards need a balance and diversity of knowledge, skills and experience and to have governors who are able to commit the time and energy required to make a valuable contribution.
What do the governors do?
With a joint governing body across Castleton, Glaisdale and Lealholm schools, our governors are responsible for making sure the three schools provide a safe environment and high quality education for all pupils.
Together with the Headteachers, we set appropriate and challenging targets each year for the schools, we review policies and monitor progress and standards regularly during scheduled meetings and school visits and by looking at data and evidence. We are a critical friend to the Headteachers in that we are both a source of support and challenge.
We monitor the schools’ finances and we have sub-committees and working parties which review and make decisions on items such as the school’s budget and performance management.
We play a strategic role; we do not involve ourselves with the day-to-day management of the schools which is the responsibility of the Headteachers and the Senior Leadership Team. We are responsible for appointing and reviewing the performance of the Headteachers and senior leaders.
There are times when we can be required to sit on panels which make decisions about things like pupil exclusions and staff disciplinaries.
As a Governing Board we are accountable to parents, the local community and to the Trustees of our Academy and we strive to engage with the whole school community. As governors, we must adopt the Nolan principles of public life: selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership.
Each governor also has an area (or areas) of school that they take a special interest in so, as well as attending full Governing Body meetings, each governor monitors their specific area(s) through means such as school visits and focussed working parties.
Above all, during their time at our school, we want our pupils to feel secure, cared for and happy and to have what they need to be the best they can be.
Becoming a governor
We are always keen to attract people in the community and parents of children at school to become governors; people who can bring skills and experience to our team and who can commit the time and energy required to contribute to the strategic leadership of a school.
You will need to have time to dedicate to the role, be prepared to make challenging decisions, act with the very best of intentions and to observe confidentiality at all times
Please contact either the Chair of Governors or Headteacher if you would like more information about becoming a governor – we would be delighted to hear from you.