Governors Cymru Services believes that a review of how your governing body works and conducts itself, is critical to governing body improvement and its effectiveness. Taking some time to reflect on the work you are doing as a governing body can help to provide a focus on where the governing body is going. Is that where the governing body wants to be, how does the governing body get there? Ultimately, it helps the governing body to assess its strengths and weaknesses and enables governors to discuss and agree the best way forward to improve the work it undertakes. Each governing body will be on a different rung on the school improvement ladder but sharing thoughts and ideas on what is working well and what can be improved, determining areas for development can be a welcome and innovative way of developing teamwork, ownership and a shared vision.
Governors Cymru Services assisted one school recently to assess the work of the governing body. It was a privilege to be asked to undertake a full governing body review at a secondary school in North Wales. The review involved several aspects:
It was a pleasure to learn more about the journey the governing body was going on, to hear about several innovative areas of work that demonstrated good and effective practice, not least, to speak to several dedicated governors who demonstrated a passion to ensure their school was on the right track and was going to go from strength to strength. It had been a very hard, difficult journey for the governing body over the last few years or so and whilst several areas for development were identified, there was a willingness to embrace change and to assess what could be implemented quickly and easily, and the areas that required a plan in place to achieve the longer term goals. Below are some comments from the Chair:
If as a Governing Body you are serious about self-assessment and continuous improvement then I fully endorse this Governance Review. It may confirm areas of improvement that you are already aware of but it will also bring new wisdom in areas that you never thought of. As a Chair I know I need to embrace the benefits of having an external focus and to learn from those Governing Bodies where self-assessment is part of their DNA.
If your governing body would like to undertake a self-review, please have a chat with us – we can tailor it to the needs of the governing body – this could be a light touch, or a deeper analysis of how the governing body is working. Whichever one you choose; it is very positive experience and will help to steer the governing body in the right direction for the future.