Annual Governance Statement for the Governing Body of
New Heights School September 2020
In accordance with the Government’s requirement for all governing bodies, the three core strategic functions of the New Heights School Governing Body are:
1. Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
Governors are responsible for setting the school’s strategic framework, identifying priorities for school improvement and monitoring progress towards these goals. Governors are also responsible for setting a school ethos of high expectations of behaviour, progress and attainment of all students and of conduct of staff and governors.
2. Holding the Headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils;
Governors must provide challenge to the school and hold the Headteacher and senior leaders to account for improving the quality of teaching and learning and school performance. Governors do this through questioning and through regular monitoring and analysis of data on children’s performance and progress. Governors hold the Headteacher to account for the performance management of teachers. The performance management of the Headteacher is conducted by governors together with an external advisor.
3. Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.
Governors look at financial statements and ask questions to ensure that the school makes efficient use of its budget and provides best value for money.
The Governing Body was re-constituted under the 2012 School Governance Regulations in July 2015 with a revised governing body membership of 10 governors.
The Governing Body now includes:
- 2 staff governors (including the Headteacher)
- 2 Parent Governors (vacant)
- 1 Local Authority Governor
- 5 Co-opted governors
Co-opted governors are appointed by the Governing Body and are people who, in the opinion of the governing body, have the skills required to contribute to the effective governance and success of the school:
The full Governing Body meets twice each term.
There is a Pay and Performance Committee that meets annually and other committees that meet if required to consider pupil discipline and staffing matters.
Attendance record of governors
You can see the full list of governors and their attendance at meetings on the school website.
The governing body completed a skills audit to identify any further skills or training they needed to be able to deliver their functions effectively.
As a result of the audit, further governor training on “Safeguarding” was provided and on “Financial Budgets and Financial Monitoring”.
Individual governors have also attended training including ‘Induction for new Governors’ and Health and Safety.
Each year, governors sign a Code of Conduct which can be viewed on website and the Governing Body have also published their Register of Business and Pecuniary Interests.
The work that we have done on our committees and in the governing body
The majority of the work this year has involved monitoring the consistency of expectations, and the introduction of a new assessment and tracking system which does not involve previous National Curriculum levels.
Governors monitor the “vulnerable groups” of children and have discussed how the Pupil Premium funding is being spent by the school and what impact this has on their outcomes. See our ‘Pupil Premium Statement’ for further detail regarding impact upon outcomes.
Governors are also responsible for overseeing the maintenance and development of the school premises, and make decisions about how the school should use the budget.
The Health and Safety Governors carry out termly checks of the premises with the school’s Business Manager and Site Manager.
Governors concluded that the school has solid management of the finances and has remained within budget.
Another important role for governors is ensuring the safety and well-being of the children and we have a nominated Governor for Safeguarding who reports to the governors about any safeguarding matters.
Safeguarding training for all staff is updated each academic year – or as / when new staff joining the school – which includes CSE, Prevent and FGM training. There is a safeguarding noticeboard in the school which contains all the safeguarding documents.
Governors also review and agree key school policies. A number of statutory policies and procedures have been written / updated in compliance with all relevant legislation including Safeguarding Policy and Procedure, Health and Safety Policy, Accessibility Plan, Equality and Diversity Policy.
The minutes of Governing Body meetings are public documents and you can ask at the school office if you would like to see any of the minutes of our meetings.
Future plans for the governors
The governing body will continue to support the Headteacher and senior leaders in the efficient running of the school whilst continuing to strategically develop the excellent standard of education in the current challenging and changing environment.
They will also closely monitor the financial viability of the school in the context of tightening budgets.
Governors will continue to establish systems and styles of working through which the governing body can work most effectively in fulfilling their roles.
They will also look to increase their communication with parents and the community through attendance at parent’s meetings and school events.
How you can contact the governing body
We always welcome suggestions, feedback and ideas from parents.
You can contact the Chair of Governors via the school office:
- 0151 498 4055