Governance - FAQ's
Frequently Asked Questions
What are “governors”?
Governors have collective responsibility for the governance of a school – as you might say, the buck stops with us. We are also Directors, as Bolder Academy is registered at Companies House and Trustees as Bolder is a registered charity.
What are “members”?
There are three Members of Bolder Academy Trust which is a charitable company responsible for the running of the academy and has control over the land and other assets. Although they have an official role in running the academy such as appointing some governors, submitting an Annual Report and Accounts to Companies House and holding an Annual General Meeting, the Members delegate most matters of governance to the directors/governors. For more information, see Bolder Academy’s Articles of Association.
What do the governors do?
Together with the headteacher, we are responsible for ensuring Bolder Academy provides a good quality education for all pupils, the safety and well-being of students and staff, the continuous professional development of staff and ensuring public money is well spent. We are also accountable for ensuring that the requirements of Bolder’s Funding Agreement with the Department for Education are met.
- appoint the headteacher
- make decisions on matters such as performance, targets, school policies and development plans
- monitor the impact of policies and oversee school budgets and staffing
- draw on their knowledge and experience to provide support and challenge for the headteacher
- consider complaints under Stage 2 of the policy
- ask probing questions whilst respecting the position of the headteacher as the professional leader of our school
- celebrate the Academy’s successes and ensure it is continuously improving
What do governors NOT do?
Governors do not get involved in the day to day running of the school. They avoid discussing individuals whether students, staff or parents and do not act as individuals unless authorised to do so. They do not get involved in parental complaints apart from the final/appeal stage of a formal complaint
Do they need special qualifications?
No, although the governing board makes sure it has a balance of the necessary skills required. We are committed to reflecting the profile of the school and local community as far as possible and are currently seeking ways to address this.
How do I become a governor?
be able to nominate yourself or ask someone else to nominate you.
Do governors attend training?
They most certainly do. All governors receive regular safeguarding training and new governors must attend induction training. A range of governor training programmes, including courses for new governors, is available at the London Borough of Hounslow. In addition, we schedule an annual Board training and self-evaluation event and other bespoke training sessions as required.
How long do governors serve?
Apart from the headteacher who is appointed “ex officio” (by right of office), all governors serve a 4-year term. Governors can serve more than one term if they are re-elected or re-appointed.
How much commitment does being a governor involve?
At least six 2- hour Board meetings a year; an annual training event; 3 termly committee or working group meetings; preparing for meetings by reading papers; undertaking training from time to time; visiting the school from time to time; volunteering to take on an individual role e.g. health and safety governor; keeping up to date with education policy and new initiatives.
What committees are there?
We have a Finance, Audit and Risk Committee and a Pay Committee which meet termly. Most other business is conducted at the half-termly Governing Board meetings.
When do meetings take place?
Governing Board meetings take place half- termly on a Tuesday at 8:00 am, either at the school or online. Governors keep in touch with the school in between meetings through arranged visits, attending events and receiving updates from the chair who meets regularly with the headteacher.
What are the meetings like?
As governors are expected to have read papers in advance, meetings last no longer than 1½ - 2 hours and always include a discussion on an interesting, wider issue in education. Everyone is encouraged to contribute so we can benefit from a wide perspective of experience and views including that of parents, staff, and other team members with a range of differing backgrounds and experience.
Can I read the minutes of governing board meetings?
Yes. Once they have been approved as accurate, they are available on the website, except any confidential items.
Are there any safeguarding requirements for governors?
Yes. All governors are subject to an enhanced DBS check within 21 days of appointment, and all undertake regular safeguarding training.
How do I contact the governing body?
We welcome your feedback. You can e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a note or letter at Bolder reception. However, if you have a concern or a complaint, please raise it with the school. Any questions regarding your child's education are, in the first instance, best answered by an appropriate member of staff - usually his or her Form Tutor.