School Governance service

Liz Smith Service Delivery Manager – School Performance and Development
Rebecca Carey Teaching and Learning Specialist - Assessment and ICT
Gillian Richards Senior School Governance Officer
Shirley Thompson School Governance Officer

Advice, Information and Support

The governor help line is free to all governors and provides advice in all areas, but particularly in the constitutional and statutory aspects of school governance. It is also available to headteachers. The line is manned Monday – Friday and we aim to respond to enquires within two working days during term time.

The governors’ newsletter ‘Leading’ is published termly; it is circulated to all governors as a hard copy and is also available in electronic format. Leading includes updates on statutory and non statutory aspects of school governance, and also focuses on areas of school improvement, current issues for discussion and provides reliable sources of guidance and information. It is designed to help keep governors informed of the latest developments, local best practice and provides links to other organisations that represent and support governors.

Support for Headteacher Recruitment and Appointment

The School Governance Service will help governing bodies with certain aspects of the appointment of the headteacher. This can include advice on advertising and the recruitment process as well as the interview format. The School Governance Service will liaise with other services within the Local Authority to ensure governing bodies are provided with accurate information on finance, pay scales and job descriptions.

Governor Training

A comprehensive programme of training for governors is provided annually (September – July). This is a blend of both centrally provided courses and bespoke training to meet the more specific development needs of individual governing bodies or school clusters. It is delivered by experienced Officers and Advisers who, when appropriate, are familiar with the context and improvement needs of your school.
Every governing body is responsible for ensuring its members have the right skills, are kept up to date and receive training and development in order to fulfil their role effectively. The School Governance Service is committed to providing high quality, relevant training for all governing bodies within a planned framework. The emphasis is on meeting the needs of governors and helping them to manage and improve their schools effectively.

High Quality Clerking Service

The School Governance Service is committed to providing a high quality clerking service to schools. In order to ensure this the Service provides:

  • Termly training for clerks to develop their skills in response to an audit of need
  • Termly briefing for clerks to inform them about the current termly agenda, and any national and local initiatives as appropriate
  • In depth briefing papers to guide and inform discussion at meetings
  • Quality assurance of processes and procedures
  • A coherent and aligned support package as a response to queries raised at meetings

Clerking Service 2021 to 2022

There are three levels of service which schools can opt into:

The Bronze Level – which includes:

  • Agenda preparation and sent electronically for the statutory three governing body meetings per year
  • Leading magazine
  • Termly Clerks’ briefing
  • Termly Chairs’ briefing
  • Governor appointments 
  • Maintenance of an up to date constitution.

The Silver Level – which includes:

The ‘Bronze’ Level of service above, plus

  • Attendance of a professional Clerk at up to three governing body meetings per year (including a pre-meeting with the Headteacher and Chair of Governors)
  • Preparation and circulation of minutes
  • Advice at meetings.

The Gold Level – which includes

The ‘Silver’ Level of service above, plus

  • Agenda preparation, attendance of the Clerk and follow up enquiries for three further governing body meetings per year, making a total of six meetings
  • Preparation and circulation of minutes for three further governing body meetings per year
  • Advice at three further governing body meetings per year
  • Attendance of a Clerk, if required, at Staff Dismissal Committee Meetings, Staff Dismissal Appeals’ Committee Meetings, Pupil Discipline Committee meetings, and (in voluntary aided and foundation schools only) Admissions’ Committee Meetings, (including minuting services, follow up enquiries etc)



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