The Full Governing Body
Our governors usually meet as a Full Governing Body once a term. This is the meeting where all major decisions are made. However, this is our minimum and sometimes it is necessary to meet more often, for example, when setting the budget. Our meetings start at 6:00-6:30 pm and are usually on a Wednesday evening at the school. They generally last between 2 and 3 hours, but this depends on the agenda and the matters which need to be discussed.
The Governing Body is supported by the clerk. Although clerks are not entitled to vote, they are considered to be an integral part of the Governing Body. They provide advice and updates on the administrative structure and regulations and help the Governors to interpret the latter. The clerk also prepares and distributes the minutes and agendas and deals with any correspondence.
Governing Bodies use a committee structure to ensure that their role and responsibilities are carried out efficiently. All Governors belong to at least one committee and sometimes more than one.
Particular committees can be given delegated powers to make decisions which do not then need the approval of the Full Governing Body. Committee meetings are formal meetings and they are required to have defined duties, with minutes taken and decisions recorded. Duties allocated to each committee are set out in each committee’s Terms of Reference. Committee meetings usually last between one and two hours.
At AddMore Federation we have the following key committees:
- Finance and General Personnel Committee (FGP)
- Standards and Curriculum Committee (SC)
- Premises, Security, Health and Safety, and Safeguarding Committee (PSHS)
- Salaries, Performance Management and Employment Issues Committee (SPMEI)
Finance and General Personnel Committee (FGP)
The main functions of this committee are to consider and monitor: the school’s budget; the staffing establishment and staff appointment procedures.
The FGP is guided by the School Financial Value Standards (SFVS). These standards ensure that schools adhere to regulations set out by the DfE. The schools SFVS audit is submitted to the DfE annually. Within their financial remit the FGP Committee are responsible for preparing and submitting to the governing body recommendations for the annual budget plan. They are responsible for monitoring expenditure against the budget plan, taking action to avoid an unplanned deficit and recommending to the governing body proposals for the use of any budget surplus. Reviewing and monitoring all policies related to financial procedures come under the remit of this committee.
It is also the role of this committee to keep under review the staffing establishment and the appointment of staff, all policies and procedures relating to personnel (but not pay which is the remit of the Salaries, Performance Management and Employment Issues PMEI Committee).
Standards and Curriculum Committee (SC)
The main function of this committee is to ensure all requirements of the National Curriculum are met and so provide a good standard of education for pupils within the Federation. In order to achieve this, their role includes considering and monitoring: school standards and performance, the schools’ self-evaluation process, the School Development Plan, all curricular policies. They are also responsible for overseeing the delivery of sex education and RE and Collective Worship (which are not part of the national curriculum, but which form part of the schools’ overall curriculum.
Governors fulfil this duty in a number of ways including: by making classroom visits; by meeting with curriculum subject co-ordinators; by reviewing assessment data; by keeping up to date with classroom practice through training and further reading.
Premises, Security, Health and Safety, and Safeguarding Committee (PSHS)
The main functions of this committee are to consider and monitor: the condition of the school buildings; health and safety and security (including IT related security) policies; safeguarding policies and procedures; visitors to the site.
This committee is responsible for monitoring the state and condition of the buildings and grounds. In conjunction with the Finance Committee it looks at what improvement need to be made and plans for these improvements over time taking account of finances available. It supports the Finance Committee in identifying possible sources of funding for building improvements including grants and other external funding.
It reviews and monitors all health and safety matters, policies and procedures (including safeguarding), and annual audits required by the Local Authority.
Salaries, Performance Management and Employment Issues Committee (SPMEI)
The main functions of this committee are to: consider and review the (appraisal) performance management and pay policies for the school; select/appoint an external adviser to support with the headteacher’s appraisal (performance management) process and undertake that appraisal of the headteacher’s performance with the adviser; review staff salaries including determination of teachers’ performance related pay progression.