Message from the Chair of Governors
Welcome to the governor page of Moat Farm Infant School website.
My name is Suzanne Smith and I have been a member of the Governing Body since December 2014 and became the Chair in September 2017.
I hope the information below provides an overview of our roles and responsibilities to the children and to the parents, staff and to the school overall. If you would like any further information or would like to contact me, please do email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will get back to you as soon as I can.
What does the Governing Body do?
Each school has a Governing Body, which consists of representatives from parents, school staff and the local community. Governors monitor the work of the school staff and the local community. Governors monitor the work of the school by attending meetings, receiving reports, asking challenging questions and visiting school to see it in action. This enables the Governing Body to fulfil its role as ‘Critical friend’ to the school.
How do we work?
The Governing Body works in partnership with the Head Teacher as she is responsible for the day-to-day management of the school. Being a school governor means being part of a team that includes the Head teacher.
The full governing body meets 7 times across the year. There are governors that link with a particular subject or area of responsibility.
The power to make decisions or take actions belongs to the Governing Body as a whole, no individual governor has the power to make decisions or take action.
How are governors chosen?
There are several types of school governor, the make-up of each Governing Body (and the numbers of each category) depends on the size and type of school:-
- Parent governor: are elected by parents of the children at the school or they may be appointed by the Governing Body if no one stands for election.
- Community governor: are local people appointed by the Governing Body.
- Local Authority governors: are appointed by the LA. Members of the public can apply to be considered for this role by contacting the LA directly.
- Staff governors: are elected by staff at the school and include both teaching and support staff.
- The Head Teacher: is a governor at their own school by right.
What qualifications do governors need?
No particular qualifications or experience are needed. The most important qualities for any governor are to be interested in the welfare of the children and the school and to be prepared to give their time and effort when required. Governors are not expected to be experts in education, indeed many governors start by bringing skills relating to the commercial world and learn about the educational side as they go.
Realistically, how much time would be needed to do the work of a governor properly?
The time commitment is not usually excessive, though the responsibilities of a school governor can be considerable. The list below suggests a typical work load:
- Reading of agenda and other papers for meetings
- Emailing any questions to Head teacher prior to the meetings.
- 7 governing body meetings across the year
- At least 1 visit per term during the day to take part in monitoring.
- Possible involvement with staff selection, pupil exclusion reviews or staff dismissal cases.
- At least 1 training session per year.
Are governors vetted before appointment?
There are legal restrictions which prevent some people from becoming school governors. Most of these relate to criminal offences resulting in imprisonment or child protection issues. If someone is appointed as a governor, there will be a confidential record check (DBS check) by the school to ensure that they are not covered by the restrictions.
Do governors get paid?
No. They can be considered to be the largest volunteer workforce in the country and are not paid for the time spent on governors activities.
What about time off work to be a governor?
The Law says that an employer must give an employee ‘reasonable’ time off work for governor business, but pay is at the employer’s discretion. Many employers actively encourage their people to become governors because it provides new experience and skills which are useful in many jobs.
How long do governors serve?
Most governors are elected or appointed for four years. However, if they move away or have to resign mid-term, that is not a problem, so although you should think of it as a 4 year role you should not worry if you have to leave sooner.
Here you will find information about our Governing Body:
- Committee Booklet 2018-19
- Governing Board Membership 2018-19
- Governor Attendance Matrix 2017-18
- Governor Attendance Matrix 2016/17
- Governors Attendance Matrix 2015-16
More information is also available here:
Today I had the opportunity to talk to 8 year 2 students about the wider curriculum. It was a pleasure to see how excited the children were to discuss their learning. Each child was passionate about topics they have been covering in subjects such as science, history and geography. They were keen to show me displays in the classroom and proud to show me work they had done in their books. I got to see a pen license and learn what an honour it was to get one!
The children surprised me with some of the vocabulary they used and came across as very bright, happy students. One child even told me that on a Friday, 2 children are selected to have afternoon tea with the headteacher and this was considered the ultimate reward which I thought was a lovely idea!
I am very proud to be the vice chair of governors at a school where children seem so happy and keen to learn.
I am currently the link governor for literacy at Moat Farm Infant School and the week before half term I had the honour of going into school and meeting with the literacy co-ordinator, Becky McDonald. Becky took me into a Year 2 classroom so I could see the ‘Talk to Write’ method of teaching in practice. The children stood up and acted out a story together with various actions for punctuation. The children were very proud and seemed to really enjoy acting out the story; it was really wonderful to see.
Following on from this visit, I have made contact with the literacy co-ordinator at the Junior school to see if we can further develop writing together and strengthen the transition into Key Stage 2 literacy. I will do another school visit next term with Becky to gain any updates on this.