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Governing Body Improvement Priorities 2015/16

Self Review

As a governing body we are highly committed to self review in order to improve our own effectiveness. We used Target Tracker GSET for several years to identify development areas which we then addressed and currently we are rigorously auditing our effectiveness using the revised Governor Mark Framework with the intention of submitting our application for assessment by the end of this academic year. We regularly review our evidence file to reflect our ongoing developments and have held several Working Parties to address any development areas we identified through our rigorous evaluation systems.

Following the recent successful grant application for a School Led School Improvement System involving six local schools, we are seeking to use some of the funding to commission a review of governance so that our practice can be rigorously evaluated from an external perspective.

We also take full account of the ‘Twenty Key Questions for a School Governing Body to Ask Itself,’ the Ofsted inspection handbook and subsidiary guidance, best practice reports and the recently published Wellcome Trust A Framework for Governance for Schools: A flexible guide to strategic planning. Questions are discussed and minuted at each full governing body meeting.

At the end of each academic year we undertake a Governor Actions and Impact survey in order to ascertain the effectiveness of our actions which together with the results from all our self reviews is used to identify improvement priorities for the coming year.

From our self evaluation we identified the improvement priorities that appear in our plan for 2015/16. The plan was discussed and finalised at our AGM on 28th September 2015.

In addition to our monitoring roles and responsibilities, we review and publish annually a set of Minimum Expectations and we have recently agreed the paperwork we will use when undertaking Governor Appraisal.

Essex Governor Services eBulletin Spring Term 2017

Really useful information sheets to help ensure we remain fully up to date.

Essex County Council Gateways 55 February 2016

Gateways focuses on Governance and contains updates and changes that that we all need to be aware of. Issues are published termly and Gateways 56 is due later this term.

National Governors Association

Recent publications and information - summer term 2016.

Education Essex - LA Weekly News Roundup

A useful weekly publication to check what's happening in Essex.

EES Chair of Governors Newsletter Spring Term 2017

A termly update summarising relevant national and local issues and updates

Excellent Governance in Essex Primary Schools

National research indicates that a school is unlikely to succeed without an effective
governing body. Strong governance is key to ensuring successful educational
outcomes for young people since governors, although volunteers, play a vital strategic
role in holding school leaders to account through support, challenge and driving
school improvement.

Governing Body RAG Rating
In order to reflect the critical role governors play within the overall leadership of their
schools Essex has developed a RAG rating system for governance as an opportunity to support improvements in governing body effectiveness.

The following document lists criteria whereby we can rate the effectiveness of our governance.

Assessment Without Levels

Deregulation Act 2015

The Deregulation Act reduces the amount regulation in many areas of public life, including schools. It received Royal Assent shortly before the dissolution of Parliament for the General Election. The Act removes several powers and requirements that impact on governing bodies in England.

Wellcome Trust: Questions for Governors to Ask about Maths and Science

Great Wakering Primary School Governance Statement

Governor Monitoring

Governors carry out many monitoring activities in order to ensure actions undertaken by the school impact in a positive way on pupils' outcomes. Each year, at least one of the monitoring activities focuses on discussions with the children. In March 2015, governors met with three children from every class in the school and asked them about their perceptions of the way the school was helping them to improve their spelling.

Our monitoring focus this year is linked to School Development Priority 2. During the summer term 2016 we will be asking children about their increased opportunities for choice and how it impacts on their learning.

Staying in Control of Your School's Destiny

Changes to Ofsted Inspections from September 2016

The latest Ofsted Inspection Handbook from September 2015 has many changes and our most recent Governors' Handbook p 20 - 24, includes the descriptors for Outstanding - our next challenge.

Educational Excellence Everywhere - White Paper - 17th March 2016