Welcome to our Governors’ section
What is the Purpose of the Governing Body?
The purpose of our governing body is to:
- help the school to set high standards by planning for the school’s future and setting targets for school improvement
- keep up the pressure for school improvement
- be a critical friend to the school, offering support and advice
- help the school respond to the needs of parents and the community
- make the school accountable to the public for what it does
- work with the school on planning, developing policies and keeping the school under review
- oversee the financial performance of the school and make sure its money is well spent
- exercise its responsibilities and powers in partnership with the Headteacher and staff
- not intervene in the day-to-day management of the school unless there are weaknesses in the school, when it then has a duty to take action.
Some of these purposes are set in law.
A school’s governing body is a corporate body. This means it has a legal existence separate from that of its individual members. As long as governors have acted honestly, without ulterior motive, and reasonably, within the law and regulations, the governing body cannot be held to account as individuals for any liabilities incurred by the governing body.
How do Governors fulfill these purposes?
We exercise our duties in a number of ways:
- We usually have six full governing body meetings each year, roughly two per term, and in between these meetings we have committee meetings that deal with detail that underpins the reports the full governing body receives.
- In addition governors are encouraged to attend school activities and events when we then have an opportunity, like parents, to take encouragement from the achievements of the pupils and the staff that teach and inspire them.
- Our function at meetings is to review, question and challenge the Head teacher and staff so that we can, as far as possible, keep up the pressure to improve, ensuring that the children are being taught in a safe as well as a stimulating environment with the best resources, both human and material, that are available and affordable. We must also review the school’s policies to ensure that they focus on delivering the highest standards.
- Many of us take a particular interest in a specific area of the curriculum, e.g. Maths, English or the provision for children with Special Educational Needs or Disability. Others focus on wider issues such as Health and Safety or Finance. Governors also have responsibility for monitoring the school’s progress against the School Improvement Plan and use of the Pupil Premium and Sports Premium funding.
- We seek and welcome the help and support of the Local Authority and receive reports and advice from them often resulting from officers’ visits or through their distribution of essential information from the Department for Education or Ofsted.
- We do not deal with individual worries about the day to day running of the school as that is the job of the school’s leadership team. If they cannot successfully resolve concerns then these may later come before the governors through the application of appropriate policies, for example the complaints procedure.
- If you would like to contact the Chair of Governors, please email Chair@stmarys565.herts.sch.uk or speak to the office.