Annual Governance Statement 2017

Hovingham Primary School Governing Body

Annual Governance Statement 

August 2017

The governors are delighted to confirm that the school has had an excellent year, starting with the very successful visit from Ofsted last September, ending with greatly improved SATs results and with a whole variety of exciting achievements and developments in between.

Background information

The governing body conducts its business to take account of the three roles of governing bodies as outlined in the Governors’ Handbook:

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
  • Holding the Headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils;
  • Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.

The governing body contributes to the school’s self evaluation and monitors planning on a regular basis through discussion at the formal meetings and more informal Joint Accountability meetings. Self-evaluation informs the detail underpinning Hovingham’s strategic aims Governors also ensure that the school complies fully with statutory safeguarding procedures and other requirements. The day to day management of the school is the responsibility of the Head teacher and senior leadership team.

The composition of the governing body

The constitution of the governing body was changed to 13 members in May 2017. This followed detailed work and consideration by a Governor Working Party during the last academic year and will bring the school more in line with other schools across Leeds.

Membership includes:

  • Head teacher
  • 1 Local Authority governor recommended by the LA and approved by the governing body
  • 2 Parent governors
  • 2 staff governor formally elected by staff employed at the school
  • 7 co-opted governors nominated and appointed by the governing body

The Governing Board welcomed 2 new members in April: Sam Monk and Naeem Manzur with the other 11 Governors continuing in post. The governors have the skills and experience needed for their important strategic role in the school and all are very committed to that responsibility.

The governing body operates with the following committees:

  • Strategic Group – a small group of governors meeting regularly to drive the strategy agreed by the Governing Board via Board Meetings and have a responsibility for mitigating key strategic risks. It will also oversee the Senior Leadership Team and Headteacher’s Performance Management.
  • Resources committee - responsible for staffing, equality and diversity, finance, property management, health and safety
  • Teaching and learning committee - responsible for teaching and learning matters including target setting, standards and achievement, SEN (including reporting annually on the success of the SEN policy),  monitoring teaching and learning and curriculum provision and ensuring that the governing body is represented at school improvement discussions.
  • Pupil Welfare - responsible for behaviour, safeguarding, attendance, children’s spiritual moral social and cultural development, children, parent and staff voice, extra-curricular activities, cluster and other partnerships.


Meetings of the governing body and attendance

The full governing body meets 4 times a year; all meetings are clerked by a trained professional clerk. The governing board committees meet regularly and have delegated authority to make decisions on behalf of the governing body. Additionally during last year two task groups were established to carry out more the more detailed work related to recruiting additional governors and considering secondary school progressions for our children.

Attendance at meetings is good with all meetings quorate in 2016/17. Apologies for non-attendance are considered on an individual basis and governors appreciate the need for all governors to play an active role. 

The effectiveness and impact of the governing body 2016/17

The governing body completed a full review of governance in July 2016 and identified ways to improve the effectiveness of the GB which have been addressed during the year. There is further work to do in relation to wider educational and community networks. Each of the major committees reviewed their effectiveness during the summer term.

The impact of governance in 2016/17 includes:

  • A clear vision for the school underpinned by effective planning including consideration of how to improve secondary opportunities for our children in the future.
  • Sound strategies established to challenge senior leaders and hold them to account.
  • A contribution to the positive report from Ofsted in September 2016 and to the positive financial position of the school through effective monitoring and support.

For 2017/18 the focus for governance will be on embedding the challenge and accountability strategies and supporting the school to hold true to its strategic aims through its current growth phase.