Governance Monthly Bulletin - February 2019
For all governors, clerks and school leaders
Welcome to the February Monthly Bulletin edition produced with the aim of keeping governors, clerks and school leaders informed of the latest educational developments as they happen. The most effective way of using this briefing is to have it as a standing agenda item as part of your Governing Board and Committee meetings.
Department for Education updates
This updated guidance contains information on what governing bodies of maintained schools should do and sets out the legal duties with which they must comply. There are no changes, just greater clarity in all aspects of handling a complaint. The LA model school complaint policy will be reviewed shortly to ensure it meets the required clarity. Does your Board have trained governors for handling complaints? Do you have a joint collaborative panel arrangement with other Boards?
The statistical publications provide information on the overall achievements of 16 to 18 year olds including: A levels and other academic level 3 qualifications; technical and applied level 3 qualifications; level 2 vocational qualifications and technical certificate qualifications; progress in English and maths qualifications (for students without an A* -C/9-4 grade at key stage 4);level 3 maths qualifications (for students with an A*-C/9-4 grade in maths at key stage 4). The School and college performance tables for 16 to 18 year olds in England: 2017 to 2018 is another updated benchmark tool. How does your board use this contextual information when evaluating data and subject provision?
The statistical data on key stage 4 (KS4) and key stage 5 (KS5) students, shows the percentage of students staying in education or going into employment or an apprenticeship for at least 2 terms in the 2016 to 2017. It includes the percentage of students who do not sustain an education, employment or apprenticeship destination during this year. The data is broken down into specific student characteristics, including: Gender; ethnicity; disadvantaged status and free school meals; special educational needs and prior attainment. How does this compare to your school? Is the school adequately engaged with the world of work and preparing their pupils for adult life, including knowing where pupils go when they leave? Where is the evidence?
These technical notes provide information to help the School Teachers’ Review Body, school leaders, governors and academy trusts, understand costs for schools in England, at the national level, in the short to medium term. The information has informed the Secretary of States proposed school staff pay award for 19/20 to the STRB’s. How will your Board/ Committee/ Finance governors use this information when discussing, monitoring and later approving the school budget?
This guidance from the DfE, in the case of a no deal Brexit, concentrates on: EU, EEA EFTA and Swiss nationals and the EU Settlement Scheme; New arrivals; School places; Preparations as an employer, including the recognition of teaching qualifications for EEA and Swiss nationals; Checking for EEA regulating authority teacher sanctions or restrictions; Travel to the EU; Data protection and Food supplies. Does your board understand the potential implications on the school from a new deal? Is the Business Continuity Plan on your FGB agenda to understand any risks and action to ensure a duty of care for your pupils is met?
The Consultation proposes on how Ofsted inspects schools takes effect from September 2019. The key proposals for consultation include :a new ‘quality of education’ judgement, with the curriculum at its heart; looking at outcomes in context and whether they are the result of a coherently planned curriculum, delivered well; no longer using schools’ internal performance data as inspection evidence, to ensure inspection does not create unnecessary work for teachers; separate judgements about learners’ ‘personal development’ and ‘behaviour and attitudes’; extending on-site time for short inspections of good schools to 2 days, to ensure inspectors have sufficient opportunity to gather evidence that a school remains good. Consultation ends April 5th. Are you contributing to the consultation? What are the implications for your school? How does the board ensure a broad curriculum is delivered?
National Governance Association (NGA) Updates
The NGA governance-led week of action will give governing boards a platform to share their experiences of funding pressures in support of NGA's nine asks of the government ahead of the comprehensive spending review. Is your board planning to participate?
A new set of principles to support governors, trustees, and executive leaders, in navigating “the educational moral maze”, building on the Nolan Principles of Public Life, comprising of a set of values and virtues, against which governors, trustees, and executive leaders can evaluate their decisions and actions. NGA are leading a pathfinder project to test out the resources. Interested schools can sign up by Easter 19 by emailing email@example.com
The programme will include interactive sessions around the topic of curriculum and Ofsted framework. Free to members. Have you booked your space?
Delivered by members of the Governor Services team working with the NGA. The DfE funded Leading Governance development programme is for Chairs, Vice Chairs or future Chairs. Cohort 2 is starting with pre reading in February, with the facilitated training session in Ashford in March. A few places are still available. Governor services can be a referee. Is your Board looking at succession planning? Can you afford to refuse this offer? Has your Chair or Vice Chair signed up?
The Education People, Governor Services updates
Our Clerks' Conference is focused on Courageous Clerking. Rani Kaur, from the NGA will be focussing on how the role of the clerk positively influences the effectiveness and impact of the governing board. There will also be the opportunity to attend 3 workshops including: Governorhub, Schools Financial Compliance; GDPR and Packtypes. There will be plenty of opportunity for networking, raising questions, sharing best practice and self- development. Has your clerk booked on? How does your board enable your clerk’s professional development?
Our Chairs’ Conference is focused on ‘Chairing for the future’. Clare Collins MBE, Head of Consultancy at the NGA is the keynote speaker on “Strategic Vision”. Other speakers include Munya Badze on preparing young people for the world of work, with Matt Dickson focussing on the wider curriculum and how to hold the leadership to account and monitor effective curriculum provision. First place free with the SLA, with additional spaces £125. Non-SLA participant costs are £150 per person. For Chairs, Vice Chairs and future Chairs. Who is attending from your board? How will the messages received be relayed back to the board?
The Clerking Service is recruiting for new clerks to add to our pool. There are many clerks who are also governors with the knowledge and understanding within each role benefiting the other. For successful applicants paid training and support is given prior to and after allocation. For more information on the role and to apply by 26th February please contact the clerking service at firstname.lastname@example.org Increase your skill set!
Governor Services at The Education People are pleased to announce that we will be using GovernorHub to fulfil our statutory duty to hold Governor details of Local Authority Maintained schools and this element will be free of charge to this group of schools. There is an extended package that GovernorHub provide and this will be available to purchase by all schools or academies at a highly reduced annual rate of £150 plus VAT (typically from GovernorHub it costs £400 plus VAT). We have seen first-hand the benefits that GovernorHub bring to a board’s efficiency and hope that you will take advantage of this new opportunity. As a Kent school you can sign up for a free trial. This is normally one month but we have negotiated an extension to this with GovernorHub and your trial will run up until the end of March so if you do decide to add the full package to the SLA your use of GovernorHub will continue uninterrupted from April. You can sign up for this free trial. Clerks, please ensure CPDonline details are correct for when we merge systems.
It is a statutory requirement for the board to have completed and approved at an FGB meeting the SFVS by 31st March 2019. The FGB minutes need to state the approval and monitoring of any required remedial actions. The standard consists of 25 questions which boards should formally discuss annually with the headteacher and senior staff. The board may delegate the consideration of the questions to a finance or committee, but the detailed report must be provided to the board and the chair must sign the completed form. 2018/19 SFVS and support tool. Is the SFVS on your next Board agenda? Is your finance governor/ pair drafting the document?
How do you plan to follow up on any actions? Were last years actions completed?
The closing dates for the LA nomination process are 15/03/19 and 17/05/19. Please ensure any LA governor applications are submitted in time. The board needs to first approve the nomination and send in the evidence within their minutes. Following LA approval of the nomination, the board must appoint the LA governor at their next board meeting. Will you be considering any LA governor vacancies in time for the closing dates?
Please ensure the above state the same governance information. It is a legal requirement for all to be current and updated when any changes take place within the board.
Suzanne Mayes, Governor Services Manager:
North Kent (Dartford, Gravesham, Sevenoaks):
South Kent (Ashford, Dover, Folkestone and Hythe): Tina Gimber:
East Kent (Canterbury, Swale, Thanet): Lorraine Monkhouse:
West Kent (Maidstone, Tonbridge and Malling, T Wells): Julia Durcan: