Governor Commitments

Governor Commitments

Through their representation of the wider school community (this includes the parents, school staff and other members of that community), governors help their school improve and provide the best possible education for the pupils.

Thinking about becoming a governor?

A good governor has many skills and qualities including:

  • An ability to respect confidentiality.

  • An interest in education.

  • Communication skills.

  • An ability to absorb information.

  • Tact and diplomacy.

  • An ability to work as part of a team.

  • A willingness to give your time.

  • A commitment to equal opportunities.

  • An open mind.

  • A willingness to undertake training. 

What Governors Do

Governing bodies are expected to play three key roles - they provide a strategic overview, they act as a critical friend to the school and they ensure accountability. By working strategically, the governing board helps to provide the best possible education for the pupils of the school. Through working as a corporate board with a clearly defined division of responsibilities between the headteacher and the governors, the governing board:

  • Helps to set standards and targets for performance for the school.

  • Has an overview of the curriculum.

  • Helps to set policies for itself and the school.

  • Delivers effective planning including planning the delivery of financial, personnel and post-inspection duties.

By being a critical friend, the governing board establishes an effective working relationship with the headteacher through having clear division of duties delivered through effective meetings. This will help the governing board to:

  • Know the school.

  • Have an effective scheme of delegation between the governing board and the headteacher and the governing board and its committees.

  • Monitor and evaluate attainment, achievement and the delivery of policies and plans.

To ensure accountability, the governing board will receive regular reports from the headteacher and will provide information to the Children Service Authority (CSA) and the parents on a regular basis by:

  • Publishing a school profile (annual parents' report for maintained nursery schools only).

  • Publishing a school prospectus.

  • Producing a post-inspection action plan.

A Governor's Commitments

As a governor you will be expected to:

  • Support the aims and objectives of your school and promote the interests of the school and its pupils within the local community.

  • Attend meetings of the governing board and its committees. The full governing board may meet twice every term and its committees may meet once or twice every term.

  • Attend the school on a regular basis through a planned programme of visits.

  • Recognise that you and the governing board are accountable for your actions.

  • Act as a member of the governing board and not as an individual with personal interests.

  • Keep informed about developments within the school.

  • Attend training to increase your knowledge, skills and ability to deliver your duties and responsibilities.

What help is available to Governors?

The headteacher and colleagues on the governing board are best placed to support fellow governors and provide them with essential information about the school and the governing board's role within the school. This should include:

  • The Department for Education and Skills (DfES) Guide to the Law.

  • Details of the school, its staff and its recent performance and assessment information.

  • Details of the governing board including minutes, dates of meetings, committee structure and terms of reference.

  • The most recent school profile (annual parents' report for maintained nursery schools only), school development plan, Ofsted inspection report and school prospectus.

  • Details of training opportunities.

The CSA will provide governors with a variety of forms of help and support in proportion to their need. A programme of training and other forms of support is provided and reviewed each year to meet the needs of governors. Some training, support and information is provided free of charge whilst other opportunities are available through a purchased service. Full details are available in all schools and will be sent to all new governors. Alternatively, full details of courses provided by the CSA can be seen at the Cornwall Learning web site  The Governor Services Team, within the Directorate of Children, Schools and Families, is available to offer information advice and guidance and can be contacted at:

Children, Schools and Families, County Hall, Truro TR1 3AY         

Telephone: 0300 1234 101