An Introduction to the Governing Body


A school’s governing body is there to provide oversight of the management and operation of the school. The governors help the school take a strategic view of its activities and bring experience and expertise from other walks of life into the school. This section will tell you who the governors are, how they are appointed and elected, what they do, what their legal duties are and how you can contact them or seek to get involved as a governor yourself.

What does the Governing Body do?

The Governing Body does not run the school, because that is the job of the headteacher and the leadership team.  The governors provide independent oversight of the school and how it is run by acting as a ‘critical friend’. The school is required to report to the governors on various aspects of management and planning.

Some aspects of the governors’ role in the school are laid down by law. For example, the governors are required to approve the school budget and ensure that the school provides value for money and this includes conducting benchmarking.

What sort of people are the governors?

The governors are all volunteers and the role is part-time. Most of them hold down full-time jobs elsewhere and so are able to bring a wide range of experience and expertise from other industries and sectors.This can help the school take a more creative and strategic approach to management, problem-solving and long-term strategic planning. According to a Government publication, more people in the UK today come forward to be school governors than for any other volunteer activity. Our current governing body includes governors with experience in education, human resources, training, information technology and medicine to name but a few.

How are the governors elected or appointed?

There are a number of different routes onto the Governing Body. The governing body is made up of: parent governors elected by parents of pupils at the school; co-opted governors and foundation governors who are volunteers from the wider community and appointed by the governing body; staff governors and the headteacher.

All governors (except the headteacher who is ex officio) serve a four-year term, at the end of which they may stand for re-election or re-appointment.  There is no limit to the number of terms a governor may serve.

The chair and vice-chair of Governors are elected by the full governing body at its first meeting of each school year.

How is the work of the governors organised?

The full Governing Body meets regularly in each academic year and is supplemented by the Finance Committee and the teaching and learning Committee.

Click here to view the dates of the governor meetings this year, here for last year’s attendance and here for governor information.

How do I contact the governors?

The governing body welcomes your views and comments. We can be contacted by email at: (please put “FAO: Chair of Governors” in the subject box), or by written letter which should, again, be addressed to ‘The Chair of Governors’ and handed in to the school admin office.

Queries or concerns to do with your child, their teaching or any other aspect of school life should, in the first instance, be directed to the appropriate member of the school staff or the Headteacher. Governors will be happy to accompany you if requested, but we must always remain completely impartial during these meetings. If you are not satisfied by the response you receive from the school, you should contact the chair of governors in writing.

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