School Governing Body To Slim Down

The Five Islands School

The Five Islands School

The Five Islands School governing body is to be reduced in size.

Chairman Ben Julian says they will meet to discuss streamlining later this month.

Currently there are 17 elected and appointed positions but, as we reported in March, the Department for Education interim report, issued after inspectors went into the school earlier this year, recommended changes.

The report criticised the governing body for the poor understanding of legal roles and responsibilities and alleged they lacked the skills and experience to operate autonomously from the Council.

Officials suggested a “significant” number of skilled governors should be recruited from the mainland and there should be fewer stakeholders, meaning parents and staff.

Ben Julian says he can’t comment on the DfE letter but he’s been keen to push ahead with the reorganisation.

The governors have undertaken a skills audit of strengths, which he says is required to move forward.

He adds there’s a national view that some governors may be elected through a popularity contest and they may not have the skills and commitment needed for a “relentless drive to improve education.”

Ben has told the DfE that he wants to rearrange the governing body and he has “every reason to suspect that they are happy with the route the governors are moving down.”

The minimum number of governors would be seven, but it’s his personal view this is too few for all the committees, which need filling.

There are currently two elected staff governors.

Ben says governors may choose to appoint just one worker position and trim the Diocese appointed posts from four to two. He’ll also suggest cutting elected parent posts from six to two.

The head teacher will remain on the governing body.

Ben says they will be able to address whether or not to pursue Academy status when the new arrangement is in place.

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