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Reconstitution of Governing Bodies Damian Cunningham Director of Schools Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education.

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Presentation on theme: "Reconstitution of Governing Bodies Damian Cunningham Director of Schools Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education."— Presentation transcript:

1 Reconstitution of Governing Bodies Damian Cunningham Director of Schools Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

2 Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education Agenda 9.00 a.m.Registration & Coffee 9.30 a.m.Reconstitution of Governing Bodies a.m.Feedback from Recent Ofsted Inspections a.m.Reviews of Governance a.m.Review of session and format, dates and topics for future sessions

3 Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education The Regulations The School Governance (Constitution) (England) Regulations 2012 came into force on 1 September If a local authority (LA) maintained school wishes to reconstitute its governing body it will need to do so under these regulations. For schools that do not reconstitute, the 2007 Constitution Regulations will still apply. All new LA maintained school governing bodies will be constituted under the 2012 Regulations.

4 The Regulations 1.What are the main changes in the 2012 regulations? Minimum of seven members of the governing body; Community governor category abolished, and co-opted governor category created to be recruited on basis of skills; Minimum of two elected parent governors but there is no maximum; Maximum of one local authority (LA) governor, and governing bodies allowed to set criteria for LA governors and reject nominees not meeting the specification; Maximum of one elected staff governor (not including headteacher), but other staff may be appointed as co-opted governors provided staff (including the headteacher) comprise no more than one third of total governing body; Partnership governors must have skills to contribute to effective governance and success of the school; and Sponsor governor category abolished. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

5 The Regulations changes for a reconstituted voluntary aided school governing body Foundation governors will still be appointed to voluntary aided schools in the same proportions as under the 2007 regulations. This means that the foundation body retains the power to appoint the majority of the governing body in voluntary aided schools. The most significant change is that there is no longer any requirement in reconstituted governing bodies for the foundation body to appoint such number of parents, that taken together with elected parents, comprise one third of the governing body. This is because the requirement for one third of the governing body to be elected parents has been removed in other types of school. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

6 The Regulations Therefore, minimum size: 2 elected parents; 1 LA governor (now appointed by GB after LA nomination); 1 elected staff governor; Headteacher; and 7 foundation governors (no requirement to appoint parents as fgs). Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

7 Amplification of Regulations 1. New skills-based eligibility criteria for appointed governors The first proposal is that all appointed governors (co-opted/community, partnership, appointed parents, Local Authority and, most notably perhaps, Foundation Governors) must have ‘in the opinion of the appointing body’ “the skills required to contribute to the effective governance and success of the school”. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

8 Amplification of Regulations Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education 2. Surplus governors The current arrangements for GBs reconstituting under the 2012 regs is that where there are surplus governors (eg the GB reduces from 3 LA governors to 1) they are removed on the basis of ‘last in, first out’; this means, fairly obviously, that the governor that keeps their place is the one with the longest continuous service on the GB (and where there is a draw the 2 or more governors draw lots). However the longest serving governor isn’t always the one that is contributing the most, or the one that the GB as a whole wishes to keep.

9 Amplification of Regulations The proposal is that the regs will be amended so that the governors who keep their positions will be “those governors with the most relevant skills to contribute to the effective governance and success of the school”. In the case of Foundation Governors this will be determined by the appropriate appointing body,(The Diocese) but in all other cases it will be determined by the GB. Scenario: Imagine you currently have four staff governors (including the head), and you have to go down to 2 (including the head) under the new regulations. The governing body will need to vote on which of the three existing staff governors gets the one position in the new structure on the basis of which of them will contribute the most. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

10 Amplification of Regulations 3. Transition from the 2007 Regulations The proposal is that the 2007 regs will be revoked with effect from 31/8/15. In effect that gives all the GBs that haven’t done so yet four terms (including what’s left of this one) to reconstitute under the new regs The next set of proposals all relate not to changes in regulation, but to new statutory guidance to be published alongside the regs. If you’re not clear on the difference between the status of regulations and statutory guidance, if something is statutory guidance: “This means that governing bodies and local authorities must have regard to it when carrying out duties relating to the constitution of governing bodies in maintained schools”. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

11 Amplification of Statutory Guidance 4.1 Size and Membership GBs should be “no bigger than they need to be to have all the skills necessary to carry out their functions”. This will be highly subjective of course! Also “every member should actively contribute relevant skills and experience. Governing bodies should conduct regular skills audits and use the process of filling governor vacancies as an opportunity to address any skills gaps” Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

12 Amplification of Statutory Guidance 4.2 Skills The government has tried to define the skills we need. “The specific skills that governing bodies need to meet their particular challenges will vary. It is therefore for governing bodies and other appointing persons (Diocese) to determine in their own opinion what these skills are and be satisfied that the governors they appoint have them. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

13 Amplification of Statutory Guidance Experience has shown, however, that all governors need: a strong commitment to the role, the inquisitiveness to question and analyse, and the willingness to learn. They need good inter-personal skills, a basic level of literacy in English (unless a governing body is prepared to make special arrangements), and sufficient numeracy skills to understand basic data.

14 Amplification of Statutory Guidance Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education Experience also shows that effective governing bodies seek to secure or develop within their membership as a whole: expertise and experience in analysing performance data, in budgeting and driving financial efficiency, and in performance management and employment issues, including grievances. They seek to recruit and/or develop governors with the skills to work constructively in committees, chair meetings and to lead the governing body. They set aside a budget to fund appropriate and necessary continuing professional development for their members.”

15 Amplification of Statutory Guidance Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education 4.3 Governor Elections The draft statutory guidance proposes: Governing bodies and local authorities should make every effort to conduct informed elections in which the expectations and credentials of prospective candidates are made clear. The best governing bodies set out clearly in published recruitment literature: the nature of the role of a governor and the induction and other training that will be available to the new governor to help them fulfil it; the expectations they have of governors for example in relation to the term of office, the frequency of meetings, membership of sub- committees and the willingness to undertake training; and any specific skills or experience that would be desirable in a new governor, such as the willingness to learn or skills that would help the governing body improve its effectiveness and address any specific challenges it may be facing.

16 Amplification of Statutory Guidance Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education Well run elections offer candidates for election the opportunity to publish a statement of sufficient length to set out: Evidence of the extent to which they possess the skills and experience the governing body desires; Their commitment to undertake training to acquire or develop the skills to be an effective governor; If seeking re-election, details of their contribution to the work of the governing body during their previous term of office; and How they plan to contribute to the future work of the governing body.” There will also be a requirement on some LAs to re-write their election procedures (which they then delegate to schools) which have unrealistic word limits.

17 Amplification of Statutory Guidance Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education Consultation finished on 14 th March Still await outcomes Draft New Regulations Draft New Statutory Guidance

18 Instrument of Government Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education If A Governing body reconstitutes it must rewrite the Instrument of Government: The Diocese can provide a model Instrument of Government but it must be submitted to the LA for approval.

19 Possible Size of Governing Body Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

20 Ofsted & Governance Ofsted inspections from September 2012 A new Ofsted “Inspection Handbook” The importance of good governance and the role of governors in the strategic drive for school improvement has been given even more emphasis than previously Copies of the handbook are available at: There is a section on the quality of leadership and management, including governance (pp 42-47) Subsidiary guidance can be found at: supportinginspection-http://www.ofsted.gov.uk/resources/subsidiary-guidance- supportinginspection- of-maintained-schools-and-academies Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

21 Ofsted & Governance Inspectors will increasingly encounter different models of governance, such as those associated with federated arrangements, free schools and academy chains. Inspectors should ensure that they clearly understand the governance arrangements for a school and that they identify and engage with the right people. Inspectors must evaluate the extent to which governors both challenge and support the school and hold senior staff, including the headteacher, to account for the achievement of the pupils. Governors are not expected to be routinely involved in the day-to- day activity of the school. Governors are not expected to undertake lesson observations, unless the school has clear protocols for visits so their purposes are understood by school staff and governors alike. However, they hold important strategic responsibilities for the development and improvement of the school. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

22 Ofsted & Governance Inspectors should meet with as many governors during an inspection as is possible, and should determine how well governing bodies evaluate the performance of the school, particularly in terms of: pupil progress; the leadership of teaching; the management of staff; and the difference made by initiatives such as the pupil premium, the Year 7 catch-up premium, or the new primary school sport funding. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

23 Ofsted & Governance Inspectors should consider whether governors: – carry out their statutory duties – understand the strengths and weaknesses of the school, including the quality of teaching – ensure clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction – understand and take sufficient account of pupil data, particularly their understanding and use of the school data dashboard – are aware of the impact of teaching on learning and progress in different subjects and year groups – are challenging and supporting leadership in equal measure – are providing support for an effective headteacher, or whether they are hindering school improvement by failing to tackle key concerns – are transparent and accountable, including in terms of governance structures, attendance at meetings, and contact with parents and carers – understand how the school makes decisions about teachers’ salary progression – performance manage the headteacher rigorously – are failing to perform well and contributing to weaknesses in leadership and management. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

24 Ofsted & Governance Inspectors should also satisfy themselves that the governing body is ensuring that the school’s finances are properly managed, and investigate governors’ role in deciding how the school is using the pupil premium, the Year 7 catch-up premium, or the new primary school sport funding. If inspection evidence reveals particular weaknesses, these should be followed up assiduously. For example, if safeguarding arrangements do not meet required standards, inspectors must establish the cause of the failing, and what steps have been taken to rectify the shortcoming so that pupils’ wellbeing is no longer affected. Inspectors must take this into account when evaluating governance and judging leadership and management. Similarly, if pupils’ performance is in decline and the governing body has not pursued this issue effectively with the headteacher, this should be reflected in inspectors’ evaluation of the effectiveness of the governing body and may have an impact on the leadership and management judgement. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

25 Ofsted & Governance Schools judged as ‘requires improvement’ Where governance is ineffective in a school judged as ‘requires improvement’ and is graded three for leadership and management, inspectors should include an external review of governance in their recommendations for improvement. The form of words to be used in the report under ‘What the school should do to improve further’ is, ‘An external review of governance should be undertaken in order to assess how this aspect of leadership and management may be improved’. It is for the school to decide how this review will take place, and to commission and pay for it. Such reviews aim to be developmental, and do not represent a further inspection. Full details on what might be the form and nature of such reviews can be found on the following link: governance. governance Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

26 Ofsted & Governance Where the report identifies specific issues regarding the provision for pupils eligible for the pupil premium, inspectors should also recommend an external review on the school’s use of the pupil premium. The form of words to be used is ‘An external review of the school’s use of the pupil premium should be undertaken in order to assess how this aspect of leadership and management may be improved’. In such instances, in addition to any support that the governing body may benefit from, inspectors should advise that the school seeks support from an external system leader with a track record of accelerating disadvantaged pupils’ achievement and closing gaps. Full details on what might be the form and nature of such reviews can be found on the following link: schools/pupilpremiumreviews.htm schools/pupilpremiumreviews.htm Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

27 Ofsted & Governance It is expected that there will be many cases where inspectors will recommend both an external review of governance and an external review of the school’s use of the pupil premium. However, there may be instances where this will not be necessary, for example, where the proportions of pupils eligible for the pupil premium that make and exceed expected progress are above national figures and are similar to those for other pupils in the school, or where the number of eligible pupils is five or fewer. Even where leadership and management is judged to be good, inspectors should use their professional judgement to determine whether a recommendation for an external review of the school’s use of the pupil premium would benefit the school. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

28 Useful Websites School governance: Learning from the best practice-resource-%E2%80%93-school- governance-learning-best practice-resource-%E2%80%93-school- governance-learning-best Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

29 Diocesan Website Governors’ Page Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

30 Diocesan Website Drop Down Menu Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

31 Diocesan Website Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

32 Diocesan Website Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

33 Diocesan Website Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

34 Diocesan Website Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

35 Diocesan Website Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

36 Reviews of Governance A review of governance looks at how well your school’s governing body is working. An external system leader works with your chair of governors to improve the performance of the governing body. Ofsted will sometimes recommend that a school have a review. The purpose of the review is to enable schools to move from a rating of ‘requires improvement’ to at least ‘good’. The review is offered as support to improve and develop governance, and not as an additional inspection. It will help the governing body identify priorities for improvement, and provide support on what steps to take. It aims to help the governing body to be: more skilled, focused and effective more aware of the freedoms that it has to work in different ways clear in its vision for the school or academy and how, together with the school leadership team, it can achieve this confident that it has a clear delineation of roles and responsibilities staffed with the right number of skilled and committed governors to meet the needs of the school or academy Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

37 Reviews of Governance – When? Schools do not need to wait for an Ofsted inspection recommendation to seek a review. Any school can arrange a review of governance at any time to improve the effectiveness of the work of the governing body. You will receive a recommendation for a review of governance if an Ofsted section 5 inspection finds: governance is weak in a school judged to require improvement leadership and management is graded 3 In some cases, where a school has been judged as ‘requires improvement’, later monitoring visits may also result in a recommendation for a review of governance. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

38 Common Issues The issues that Ofsted has identified in governing bodies include: governors not ambitious about expectations lack of a ‘critical friend’ approach over reliance on information from the headteacher lack of systematic visits to school lack of engagement with school development planning limited role in monitoring, and none of it ‘independent’ limited understanding of data and school quality If an Ofsted inspection report recommends the review, the monitoring inspector will expect it to be undertaken in a timely way. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

39 Finding A Reviewer You can choose whoever you want to conduct a review of governance. You should ensure that the reviewer has: a good understanding of governance successful experience of leading governors and school improvement Trained national leaders of governance (NLGs) and national leaders of education (NLEs) ran the early reviews of governance. NLEs had to be able to demonstrate their experience and impact as a governor in a school other than their own.national leaders of governance (NLGs) and national leaders of education (NLEs) You do not have to use NLGs and NLEs. But, we recommend you choose someone with recent successful experience of leading governance and school improvement. Use the system leader directory to find an NLG or NLE in your area. Use the system leader directory to find an NLG or NLE in your area The NLGs and NLEs on this list have been trained in undertaking reviews and have a clear understanding of Ofsted expectations. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

40 Other Options Other organisations may also be able to offer reviews, including: local providers of school improvement and governor services local authority governor services the National Governors’ AssociationNational Governors’ Association organisations licensed to provide the Chairs of Governors’ Leadership Development ProgrammeChairs of Governors’ Leadership Development Programme We have provided the above suggestions, but you may know of other options. We have not reviewed or endorsed the quality of services that may be provided. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

41 What Does The Review Look Like ? The review process The expected steps of the review process are as follows. 1. Initial discussion The appointed reviewer and the chair or headteacher have a preliminary conversation to: discuss the context and needs of the school explain the principles and process of the review discuss the self-review process agree dates for receiving information from the school and for the initial face-to-face meeting Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

42 What Does The Review Look Like ? 2. First meeting The reviewer will meet with the chair and headteacher (and another governor and/or member of the leadership team as appropriate) to: discuss the self-review process identify the key focus areas for the review agree how to run the self-review meeting with the governing body Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

43 What Does The Review Look Like ? 3. Gather documentation During the initial and subsequent meetings, the reviewer and chair may identify additional elements to help address the issues and priorities for the governing body. The reviewer will have access to relevant documentation provided by the school to prepare for the self-review session. This is likely to include: governing body and committee minutes headteacher’s reports the school improvement plan RAISEonline Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

44 What Does The Review Look Like ? 4. Meet other governors The reviewer is likely to want to have conversations or meet with as many other governors as possible. This will help the reviewer assess the capacity of the governing body, its strengths and areas for development. 5. Self-review session The reviewer will conduct a self-review session with the governing body. The logistics for these meetings and the extent to which the reviewer supports, facilitates or leads will be agreed with the chair. The chair may decide that further sessions are needed and can discuss with the reviewer how these will be handled. During the self-review process the reviewer will confirm with the governing body the key areas for development and the action required. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

45 What Does The Review Look Like ? 6. Agree areas for improvement Once the self-review process is complete, the reviewer will have a discussion with the chair and/or headteacher to confirm the key areas for improvement and action plan. At the end of the review, the reviewer will produce a concise report. It will outline the governing body’s strengths and areas for development, and the actions required to address these. A template for the action plan is available in the review materials section below. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

46 What Does The Review Look Like ? 7. Implementation Once the review is concluded, it will be up to the governing body to implement the agreed action plan, drawing on external support as appropriate. By mutual agreement the review could contain some further support from the reviewer to support the governing body in its development. Charges for additional support would be as negotiated between the school and the reviewer. Your reviewer may ask you to put them in contact with your external adviser/relevant local authority officer and/or the Ofsted inspector. This can be helpful where the reviewer has concerns about the capacity within the governing body to make improvements Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

47 What Does The Review Look Like ? For schools judged to be ‘requiring improvement’, Ofsted monitoring visits will include: discussions about the action plans from your review evidence of progress in improving governance evidence of progress in improving the leadership and management of the school Reports of monitoring visits will comment on the effectiveness of the review and the evidence of impact on the quality of governance. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

48 What Does The Review Look Like ? Review materials We have some tools that might be useful during the review. They are: A framework for external reviews of governance (PDF, 241KB, 9 pages) A framework for external reviews of governance Review of governance action plan template (MS Word Document, 67.2KB) Review of governance action plan template Effective governance for good schools: 20 questions for a school governing body to ask itself (PDF, 545KB, 2 pages) Effective governance for good schools: 20 questions for a school governing body to ask itself GovernorMark: GLM Quality Mark for School Governance Other self-audit tools are available. Schools will need to discuss with reviewers which tools will be most appropriate for their contexts Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

49 Costs The charge for a review will be agreed between the reviewer and the school. The following is an indication of the likely costs of different types of reviews. Model A – core review (default model) Guide cost: £900 This model follows the steps listed above. It does not include any significant work between the reviewer and the other members of the governing body, besides the chair. Model B – core review plus any 2 additional elements Guide cost: £1,200 This model includes the core review plus any 2 of the following: meeting with other governors – for example, chairs of committees to discuss how the governing body functions and what might help it to be more effective review of a wide range of material – for example, minutes of governing body/committee meetings; the structure of the governing body and its committees; terms of reference for the committees observation of a full governing body meeting or a committee meeting to support the chair in exploring ways in which the governing body can work more effectively support for the chair in analysing and using performance data Model C – enhanced review Guide cost: £1,500 This model includes the core review plus all the additional elements listed in Model B. Diocese of Shrewsbury Department of Education

50 Contacts Contact Please if you have any further questions, or contact our help Help desk Telephone International calls


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