GOVERNANCE DEVELOPMENT

Supporting governors to provide confident, strategic leadership and oversight for educational and financial performance

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Governance Development

CPD opportunities for those who hold Governance roles within MATs at Board or individual School/Academy Level.

DFE Frameworks

DfE guidance for governing boards to provide confident, strategic leadership for schools and Trusts.

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GOVERNANCE DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME

For 2022/23 Learners First has continued its partnership with the National Governance
Association (NGA) to offer a range of professional development opportunities for
governors, members, trustees and clerks to develop their knowledge and skills and to
discuss and share practice, aligned to the three core functions as set out by the DFE in the Governance Handbook.

See course details below.

Online Learning

The COVID-19 pandemic caused employees of most organisations to unexpectedly have
to work from home and conduct their business remotely. School and Trust governing
boards adapted accordingly and many continue to work in this way, preferring the
convenience that remote working presents. Learners First supports this approach by
enabling its professional development offer to Governors and Trustees to be accessed
remotely in 2022/23 through workshops delivered via Zoom by the National Governors
Association and through the provision of online learning modules. 

Governors and Trustees will be provided with access to over 50 governance online
learning modules and resources of between 45 mins and 2 hours duration each. The
modules, organized into 10 themes, have been developed by the National Governance
Association (NGA) and are offered through a partnership with Learners First.

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GOVERNANCE COURSES 2022/23

All governance courses and access to the NGA online learning modules are free to
Trustees and Governors of Trusts/schools subscribing to Learners First in 2022/23.

All webinars as listed below will be delivered by the NGA and run from 5.00pm to 7.00pm.

Staying strategic: 10 key issues for governance in 2023

Boards need make sure that they are aware as early as possible of events, government policy changes and other matters which may have strategic implications for their trust or school(s). This horizon scanning should prompt all sorts of questions. Do we need to review our strategy? Is our risk register right? Do we need to review our financial projections? Is our staffing structure right? This session will highlight 10 areas that all governing boards should be aware of as they move into the unchartered waters of 2023, exploring possible implications for those governing and their schools and allowing for some initial discussion of possible responses. Here is a list of nine of the issues to be covered with one space being left to ensure there is space for any burning issue coming to the fore over the next few weeks!

02 February 2023
Cost: £50 per person

An introduction to data and school performance measures

There is now a wealth of data sources that governors and trustees need to be aware of. They also need to be cognisant of the extent to which the data can be analysed, as well as other means by which governors and trustees can get to know their school(s). This workshop will clarify the range of resources available to those governing, the key measures that they need to be familiar with and how they can use this knowledge effectively to feed into their core function of holding the organisation to account.
16 January 2023
Cost: £50 per person

Preparing for Ofsted – what governors and trustees need to know (primary schools)

The prospect of an Ofsted inspection is daunting for everyone, not least for the governing board members and others involved in governance who will meet with inspectors and be expected to answer questions about the effectiveness of governance and school or trust leadership. At the end of this session, participants should be confident about what Ofsted expects in a primary setting, what they as governors or trustees need to know, and how the inspection process works.
24 January 2023
Cost: £50 per person

Preparing for Ofsted – what governors and trustees need to know (secondary schools)

The prospect of an Ofsted inspection is daunting for everyone, not least for the governing board members and others involved in governance who will meet with inspectors and be expected to answer questions about the effectiveness of governance and school or trust leadership. At the end of this session, participants should be confident about what Ofsted expects in a secondary setting, what they as governors or trustees need to know, and how the inspection process works.
Summer Term (date to be confirmed)
Cost: £50 per person

Safeguarding: an introduction to the governance role

It is critically important that governors and trustees understand how pupils are kept safe when at school. This aspect of their role matters not least because parents and carers entrust their children to the trust or school, but also because the governing board must be able to assure that the trust or school is complying with statutory requirements and best practice. At the end of this session, participants will understand the theory and practice of safeguarding, and the governing board’s role in keeping pupils safe.
09 February 2023
Cost: £50 per person

An introduction to governance for new governors

It is critically important that governors and trustees understand how pupils are kept safe when at school.  This aspect of their role matters not least because parents and carers entrust their children to the school, but also because the governing board must be able to assure that the school is complying with statutory requirements and best practice. At the end of this session participants will have an understanding of the theory and practice of safeguarding, and what the governing board’s role is in keeping pupils safe. 

27 February 2023 (Session 1 of 2)
14th March 2023 (Session 2 of 2)
Cost: £50 per person

Effective performance management in schools and trusts

Performance management and appraisal of the senior executive leader is a key task which must be done well to ensure that strategy is implemented, and outcomes are met. The board must also be assured that the performance management system in the school or trust is effective. This workshop will develop a clear understanding of expectations for effective appraisal and performance management and the knowledge, skills and confidence to carry this out effectively.
08 March 2023
Cost: £50 per person

Understanding pupil premium and the governance role

School leaders are best placed to assess their pupils’ needs and decide how to use pupil premium funding to improve attainment. The governing board is responsible for ensuring that the spending is targeted at the right pupils and has an impact on their attainment and progress. Pupils who are targeted will include those who receive the funding, and pupils who don’t but will benefit from the support/intervention that the funding is spent on.
23 March 2023
Cost: £50 per person

Environmental sustainability: the governance role

Schools have a crucial role in helping to create a sustainable future for our planet and governing boards need to ensure that this happens.  This session has been developed to provide boards with the information and inspiration to begin to think about climate action planning in their school or trust. Many boards want to adopt environmental sustainability as a strategic priority for their school or trust but don't know where to start.  This session has been developed to help those governing start meaningful conversations that ultimately result in a tangible climate action plan. At the end of this session participants should have considered the governance role with regards to environmental sustainability and examined their board’s approach, begun to think about climate action planning in their organisation, and determined the next steps for their governing board.
24 April 2023
Cost: £50 per person

The effective governance of SEND

All governing boards have legal duties in relation to pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). These responsibilities can seem daunting, leaving boards not knowing where to start. At the end of this workshop, participants should have a thorough understanding of SEND and how they can ensure that those with SEND have their needs met and make the very best progress in their school(s).
10 May 2023
Cost: £50 per person

Managing complaints: the governance role

COVID-19 prompted an increase in the number of complaints. The purpose of the session is for those governing to better understand their roles in relation to various aspects of complaints management from the establishment of a complaints policy and procedure, through the informal stage to the complaints panel stage. The workshop will explore how the governing board can help ensure that informal complaints are minimised, managed, and resolved in such a way as to prevent formal complaints but if, a formal complaint is brought, how to fulfil the panel role effectively.
18 May 2023
Cost: £50 per person

Managing risk: the governance role

COVID-19 and the cost-of-living crisis serve as a continuing reminders to all boards of the need for effective risk management. It is a requirement for academy trusts, but all school organisations should understand risk and have systems for managing risk. At the end of this session, participants will be in a position to start the process of ensuring that the governing board’s role in managing risk becomes a routine and secure aspect of their governance role.
13 June 2023
Cost: £50 per person

Financial oversight: for academy trusts

Trustees and those working at local governance level need to understand trust funding, to be aware of their responsibilities for financial oversight, and to ensure that their trust or school(s) gets value for money whilst making an impact. This has never been more important than now and is no small ask for the board and committees. At the end of this session participants should have a basic understanding of how to ensure that their trust or school finances are being well spent.
28 June 2023
Cost: £50 per person
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DFE GOVERNANCE FRAMEWORKS AND HANDBOOKS

The purpose of governance is to provide confident, strategic leadership and to create robust accountability, oversight and assurance for educational and financial performance.

All boards, no matter what type of schools or how many schools they govern, have three core functions:

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

Please download the DfE documents below for further information.