Tring Governing Body has 12 members, one of whom is the Headteacher. The others represent various parties with an interest in the school’s success:
- 3 are parents elected by fellow parents;
- Tring is a Church of England School, so 3 must be appointed by the Church: one of these is always the current Rector of Tring;
- 2 are elected by the staff: one a teacher and one a member of the support staff;
- the last 3 are appointed by the Governing Body itself to represent the wider community served by the school.
The full Governing Body normally meets twice a term. It also has two committees, to which most of its more detailed work is delegated. The committees also meet 5 or 6 times a year. Every governor is expected to be a member of one committee and all serve in a voluntary capacity.
We invite you to consider whether you would like to serve as a governor of Tring School. Please read on for a description of the part the governors play.
A very helpful term used to describe the governors’ task is that they should play the part of ‘critical friend’ to the Headteacher and her team. This means striking the right balance between challenge and support: governors are encouraged to question and suggest refinements to the school’s proposals, but once decisions are taken they need to join in defending them. And it is most important to emphasise that governors are not involved in the day-to-day management of the school: this is the professional responsibility of the Headteacher with the support of the Leadership Team.
But governors do need to get to know how the school actually works: the best way to do this is to visit during the school day if at all possible. Subject departments welcome governors with an interest in developing an individual link with them; governors are also encouraged to join in on special activity days for students and in staff training sessions, and to sit in on some of the meetings of staff when new developments are being discussed. But even if a governor finds that daytime visits are very difficult to fit in, there are many evening events at which the presence of governors shows support for the work of the school.
Knowing the school helps the governors in carrying out what is called their strategic role. Each year the school prepares a list of priority tasks to further its development and some of the governors are involved in this. Then, through the year, the committees monitor the progress being made towards achieving these tasks. There will normally be a governor involved in interviewing for senior staff appointments
The Governing Body is also closely concerned in the management of the school’s budget, which now amounts to over £7M. The annual budget is proposed by the school management but finally approved by the governors, and the Resources Committee monitors the progress of expenditure through the year, reporting on any major issues which may arise. While around 80% of the budget goes on staffing, governors also need to ask whether teaching materials and equipment are adequate and the fabric of the school is being properly maintained.
Fundamentally, the concern of the governors is to see that everything the school does is directed towards helping all students, whatever their abilities and needs, to do the very best that they can while at school. The welfare of both students and staff is central to all that they do in serving the school on the Governing Body.
Virtually any adult has practical knowledge or experience of some sort that they could bring to bear on the work of the Governing Body – all that is required is that you should enjoy being involved with young people and seeing them grow in maturity and skill and understanding and should genuinely want to help the school to develop and flourish.
If you think that this might be for you, please do write in confidence to the Clerk to the Governing Body, c/o the school, and an experienced governor will arrange a meeting with you to answer your questions and tell you what vacancies exist or are likely to occur.
Governors’ email: firstname.lastname@example.org