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Parent Governor Vacancy

ONE Parent Governor Vacancy

At East Barnet School, we believe that Parent Governors play an important role in the life and ethos of our school and in bringing a parental perspective to inform the decisions of the Governing Body.

We are inviting applications from parents or careers from any social, religious or ethnic background who would be willing to play a key role in our school, sharing their knowledge, experience and enthusiasm. Our Governing Body would benefit particularly from new Governors with experience in the areas of Business/Financial Strategy, Law, Premises and Facilities Management, Special Education Needs and Higher Education.

To help you make a decision about standing for election, you may wish to contact a current Governor, including the Chair of Governors, or the Headteacher (enquiries@eastbarnetschool.com).

Applications close at 3pm on Friday, 5th April 2019. Please return your nomination form to the school in an envelope addressed to Mrs R Bryant, Clerk to the Governing Body.

 

ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE GOVERNORS/ DIRECTORS OF EAST BARNET SCHOOL

East Barnet School is an Academy Trust and a registered charitable company – governors are directors of the company and three governors are also ‘Members of the Academy Trust’.

The Governing Body plays a vital role in ensuring that the school maintains its current high standards and excellent reputation.  It also serves as a crucial link between the school and the local community.  Becoming a governor is your chance to bring the views and experience of a parent to bear directly on the education being offered at East Barnet School.  It is especially useful to have a variety of outlooks reflective of our multi-cultural society.

The Governing Body works closely with the Headteacher to achieve high standards for all students, building on the school’s reputation for academic excellence and care for the individual child.

The Governing Body works with, not for the school. Its responsibilities and powers are exercised in conjunction with the Headteacher and staff. Governors do not intervene in the day to day management of the school unless there is something seriously wrong. If there is a weakness in the school they will take action, otherwise their role is to monitor and give advice. It is not easy to maintain an appropriate and beneficial balance between monitoring and advising but it is often likened to that of a ‘critical friend’.

The day to day management of the school is the responsibility of the Headteacher and staff. However, developing the philosophy and future plans for the school are shared responsibilities – usually proposed by the Headteacher and Senior Leadership of the school and agreed by the Governors. Governors govern rather than manage, they give direction and focus, and this could be seen as a vital strategic role, but they should not be expected to be ‘hands on’.

Individual governors have no power or responsibility. It is only the full Governing Body and the Academy Trust which have legal duties and powers and all governors share in that corporate responsibility. No Governor should promote a ‘personal agenda’. This is especially so for Parent Governors. The role of the Governing Body is to achieve the best for all students, not just the children of Governors.

The Governing Body will offer support and constructive advice; be a sounding board for ideas and a second opinion on proposals; and will offer help where needed. They may also challenge; ask questions and seek information; improve proposals and so seek to arrive at the best solution.

The Role

The Governing Body’s main role is to help raise standards of achievement, so it should:

  • guide the strategic direction of the school, setting annual targets and ensuring that high quality education is provided for all students;
  • monitor all aspects of provision and performance;
  • achieve and maintain improvement of East Barnet School;
  • ensure that all the statutory and legal requirements pertaining to the school are met and that it meets the requirements of regulators such as Ofsted;
  • monitor all aspects of the financial management of the school;
  • be aware of current risks associated with running the school and monitor the mitigating actions;
  • appraise the current Headteacher’s performance each year and appoint any new Headteacher;
  • focus at all times on the students and the educational and life experiences they are offered.

The Commitment

Being a governor is a responsible and sometimes time-consuming job. The role includes:

  • attending meetings of the full Governing Body four or five times a year. These meetings start at 6.45pm and usually finish before 9pm;
  • attending meetings of at least one of the sub-committees – Resources, Learning or People. Each committee meets at least twice a term in the evening;
  • reading reports and background papers prior to meetings;
  • visiting the school, if possible, during the day to gain familiarisation and understanding of its work;
  • attending other events such as concerts, open evenings, art exhibitions or guest lectures;
  • offering support and expertise;
  • keeping up to date with local and national developments in education;
  • attending governor training sessions or undertaking online training modules;
  • taking part in staff appointment panels, student exclusion panels and more rarely staff discipline and grievance hearings.

The Skills Requirement

Governors are expected to contribute to the success and smooth running of the school. They should have knowledge, skills or experience which can be used to inform debate, give a new perspective or provide solutions to problems. The school manages a publicly funded budget of over £8m, so commercial experience or specialist skills (such as in project management, finance or legal departments, contract negotiation, systems analysis, PR, HR, planning law) is very useful.

The overall skillset of the Governing Body is closely monitored, and it is expected that all governors will be able to:

  • Work co-operatively and creatively with others;
  • Be critical and evaluative;
  • Use their personal qualities and expertise in the interest of the school, its students and staff;
  • Follow the principles of Public Life (selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership).

Governors should be at the heart of how East Barnet School operates, so it is important they get things right. How they do their job may affect the interests and life chances of students, staff morale and how the school is seen by parents and others in the community.

Governors are responsible for how the school is performing, so they have to be prepared to support and challenge the Headteacher by gathering views from interested parties, evaluating situations, asking challenging questions and guiding the staff in their decisions about what is best for the students. Governors are not there to merely rubber stamp decisions – their opinions will be considered and their expertise and experience fully utilised.

Being a governor may have no financial reward, but the benefits come from knowing that what they do is having a positive and beneficial impact on the school and its staff; and from the knowledge that they are helping provide the next generation with the opportunities and skills needed to prepare them for adulthood.

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