Become a Governor

There are 6 primary and one secondary school within the Brigshaw Learning Partnership (BLP) and they all need committed volunteers to be school governors or to assist the school in its work.

We need volunteers across our schools in a wide variety of roles, everything from hearing children read in primary schools to experienced fell walkers for our Duke of Edinburgh expeditions. The BLP is committed to encouraging talented and skilled individuals to join governing boards or to make a difference to their local community by volunteering. We encourage people to step forward and offer their time and skills to govern or support schools in the interest of pupils.

By becoming a governor or trustee you can have a strategic influence on the management of schools. As a volunteer, you can help inspire young people to think about what is possible in their futures.

In essence there are three levels we are looking for volunteers in:

  1. Trustees ensure the trust delivers on its aims and provide support and challenge to the central trust team as well as holding individual schools to account when required. They have a key oversight role as well as being involved in the management and delivery of the Trust’s services. Please click this link for more information on our director/trustee roles.
  2. The Local Governing Bodies, who are focused on the interests of one or more schools and include parent and staff representatives. Please click this link for more information on becoming a local governor.
  3. In addition; volunteers who can open children’s eyes to the all the possibilities for their futures. Whether you’re a CEO or an Apprentice, you’d be amazed how inspiring your story can be as a visitor to a school for a special event or on a regular basis. Please click this link to find out more about volunteering opportunities.

To apply or to request more information on any volunteering roles, please click here.

What governors do

Governors are strategic leaders within schools and have a vital role to play in making sure every child gets the best possible education.

The role of the school governor is demanding but very rewarding and is a great way to give back to your local community. Good schools need good governors.

The role of the school governor

Governing bodies are accountable to the Trust board for ensuring that the Head Teachers fulfil their responsibilities for educational outcomes for children and young people; safeguarding, SEND; and health & safety of their school.

Each individual governor is a member of a governing body and all decisions are the joint responsibility of the governing body. As a governor, you will attend meetings, and be prepared to ask questions after having read the associated paperwork, as well as visiting the school. You will  probably have a special responsibility assigned to you, for example, development and training, safeguarding or SEND.

No one governor is expected to know it all. The strength of a governing body lies in its ability to attract and rely upon members from a wide variety of backgrounds; share out the duties amongst its members and be able to take decisions as a group.

Time commitment

There are roughly 5-6 meetings per year, often in the evenings. Chairs may need to commit to a greater amount of time per term.

You may be involved in:

  • prior reading of paperwork and the preparation of questions before meetings
  • attendance at whole governing body and committee meetings
  • visits in to school
  • special projects
  • staff and Headteacher recruitment

Skills required

The skills you need to become a governor include:

  • commitment and interest in our children’s future and improving educational outcomes
  • inquisitiveness to read paperwork, analyse and question
  • the ability to assimilate information, make judgments and take decisions
  • good inter-personal skills and the ability to work as a team
  • time
  • although not essential, governing bodies may be looking for experience of areas such as education,  personnel, business, etc

Support and training

Your governing body will have an induction process for new governors. There is also plenty of training available locally covering all aspects of governance. The BLP host several governor hubs providing an opportunity for governors in similar roles, from different schools, to collaborate.

Benefits of being a governor

Being a school governor can be a very rewarding role. Here are some benefits that others have found:

  • the knowledge that you are helping schools and pupils
  • the satisfaction of giving something back to the community
  • a sense of purpose and achievement
  • new skills which may be transferable elsewhere
  • broader horizons
  • new friends and colleagues
  • training and support in order to help you fulfil your duties and responsibilities

Reasons to volunteer

Being a school governor means being interested in getting the best education for the pupils at a school. They can also provide a strong link between the school and the local community, and an independent view to support the school on long term development and improvement.

Governing bodies meet five times a year and governors are also expected to get to know their schools through visits. There are a range of training opportunities available to help governors undertake their duties and develop their understanding of the key areas of school management.

Local Governors' roles and responsibilities

Governing boards of the BLP schools are made up from various types of governors. Some are elected posts and for others the appointment is made by the BLP board.

Trust Appointed Governors

Trust Appointed governors are appointed by the Brigshaw Learning Partnership (BLP) board. They are people who in the opinion of the board have the skills required to contribute to the effective governance and success of a school.

Parent Governors

Parent governors are elected by other parents at the school. Any parent, or carer, of a registered pupil at the school at the time of election is eligible to stand for election as a parent governor. Parent governors may continue to hold office until the end of their term of office even if their child leaves the school.

Schools must make every reasonable effort to fill parent governor vacancies through elections. However, the Regulations make provision for the governing body to appoint parent governors where not enough parents stand for election. Governing bodies may only appoint as a parent governor a parent who has, in their opinion, the skills to contribute to effective governance and the success of the school.

Associate Members

Associate members are appointed by the local governing body (LGB) to serve on the LGB or one of its committees. They may also attend full local governing body meetings. They are not governors and therefore do not have a vote in governing body decisions, but may be given a vote on decisions made by committees to which they are appointed.

Associate members should be appointed because of the specific expertise and experience they can contribute to the effective governance and success of the school. The definition of associate member is wide. Subject to the disqualifications set out in the regulations, the governing body may appoint a pupil, school staff member, or any other person as an associate member so that they can contribute their specific expertise. This can help to address specific gaps identified in the skills of governing body members, and/or help the governing body respond to particular challenges that they may be facing.

Many of our experienced governors have become board trustees using their wider experience and deep knowledge of our communities to serve all of our community. We are also looking to recruit suitably qualified individuals to become trustees of the BLP.