Becoming A Governor
Becoming a Governor at Lealands High School
Lealands High School has a governing body made up of members of staff, parents, community members and others. Some posts are for particular categories and others are open to suitably interested and committed people. We seek to continuously enhance the membership of the governing body to contribute to ongoing development of our very good school
About Lealands High School
Lealands High School is an 11-16 mixed comprehensive secondary school on the northern edge of Luton in Bedfordshire. The school has capacity for 1050 students and draws from a locally defined catchment area as well as more widely. The school has a highly diverse population with a very wide range of ethnicities represented in the student and staff body as well as on the governing body. The school serves a community with higher than average levels of disadvantage and poverty. Lealands was fully refurbished in 2013 and enjoys excellent facilities and resources. Since the current headteacher joined nearly 10 years ago, the school has been consistently judged to be ‘good’ by Ofsted.
Lealands is a Foundation School which means it is maintained by the Local Authority, but has some freedoms that are not enjoyed by community schools. The Governors are the employers of all staff and the school owns its own land and buildings. In December 2019 the school began the process of conversion to academy status and subsequently applied with Leagrave Primary School to set up a Multi-Academy Trust (MAT). We continue to await the outcome of our application which was stalled by the Covid19 Pandemic.
What does being a School Governor involve?
As a governor you will be part of a corporate body known as the Governing Board. The role of the governing board is critical to the effectiveness of the school or academy.
Governors are often described as ‘critical friends’ – they provide support and encouragement along with an external critical eye to the school leadership. They also ensure that there are ‘checks and balances’ in place that are external to the school’s leaders. They should become very familiar with the operation and running of the school, but are not involved in operational day-to-day decisions or work.
Governors have some statutory responsibilities such as ensuring the school has all the correct policies and that these are up-to-date and adhered to. The statutory responsibilities of governors are laid out in the Department for Education’s Governance Handbook
Governors come from every walk of life and there is no requirement for you to have an educational background. In fact, the wide range of external skills and knowledge that governors bring to a school are a valuable asset. The exact role in any school or academy will depend on the institution's circumstances (e.g. its size, outcome of a recent Ofsted inspection) but will always contribute to the over-arching work of the governing body and link to the main focus of school improvement, thus ensuring the children and young people are able to achieve to the best of their ability, in a safe environment.
So what would I have to do?
- Commit to attend meetings (twice a term)
- Attend training (online)
- Visits to the school during the day
- Work as a team
- Support with committees such as the disciplinary committee as and when required
Is training available?
Governor induction training is provided by the Local Authority. Safeguarding Children for Governors training is also recommended in the first 6 months, as the welfare and safety of our children is paramount. Once your governor term is confirmed, you will receive regular emails with details of training courses on offer. These can also be found on the National Governance Association website to which the school subscribes.
What are my next steps if I’d like to join the Governing Body at Lealands?
Contact the Chair of Governors, Amy Sheridan (firstname.lastname@example.org) for further information or an informal chat.
Contact the Headteacher, John Burridge (email@example.com) if you would like to visit the school or would like to discuss any school specific queries.
Formally express your interest in becoming a member of the governing body, but writing to the Chair of Governors, Amy Sheridan, c/o Lealands High School