Being a School Trustee
School Trustees want to make a positive contribution to children’s education.
Trustees are one of the largest volunteer forces in the country and have an important part to play in raising school standards.
The role of the governing body is central to the effectiveness of a school.
What do Trustees do?
School Trustees provide strategic leadership and accountability in schools.
Trustees appoint the head teacher and deputy headteacher.
It is Trustees who hold the main responsibility for finance in schools, and it is Trustees who work with the head teacher to make the decisions about balancing resources.
Decisions are the joint responsibility of the governing body - members work as a team.
The role of the governing - to:
· agree the aims and objectives for the school.
· agree the policies for achieving those aims and objectives
· agree the targets for achieving those aims and objectives
· monitor and evaluate the progress the school is making towards achievement of its aims and objectives
· be a source of challenge and support to the headteacher and senior managers.
We are members of one of the largest group of volunteers in the country who give freely of their time for a very worthwhile and rewarding job . . . being a school Trustee!
There are various categories of Trustee that can form a governing body:
Elected parent Trustees
These Trustees must have a child at the school at the time they are elected. When vacancies arise all parents are invited to express an interest in standing and if there are more parents interested than there are vacancies, an election is held in which all parents of pupils in the school have a vote.
Local Authority Trustees
These are appointed by the local Authority and tend to be persons who have expressed a desire to join a governing body and have a skills set that would help in its functioning.
Co-opted Trustees are appointed by the governing body. They are people who in the opinion of the governing body have the skills required to contribute to the effective governance and success of the school.
Associate members are appointed by the governing body to serve on one or more governing body committee. They may also attend full governing body meetings. They are not Trustees and therefore do not have a vote in governing body decisions, but may be given a vote on decision made by committees to which they are appointed.
One staff Trustee post is taken by the head teacher. The other staff Trustee is elected by the staff
With the exception of the head teacher, every Trustee’s term of office is for 4 years – although staff Trustees cannot continue if they leave the school.
How do we work?
We carry out our duties and monitor the work of the school in many ways;
· There are two main committees where most of our work is done;
The Learning and Development Committee and the Finance Committee.
· These meet at least once a term and within these committees important decisions are made concerning children’s education, care and enjoyment.
· The full governing body meets four times a year. An overview regarding the work of the school for each term is discussed, along with the work of the committees.
· All Trustees attend training provided by Kent, other LEAs, or use online training, to ensure we have the right skills and knowledge to carry out our role.
· We attend school events such as assemblies, school productions and other celebratory occasions.
· Trustees support parents' fund-raising efforts and attend events where possible.
· We will keep parents up to date with our work through the school newsletters or our own occasional newsletters.
· Visiting the school gives a valuable insight into the day-to-day life and activities of the pupils and staff, we see the effects of the decisions that we make which enables a more informed decision to be taken at the various committee meetings regarding the children and their education.
Chair of Trustees
c/o The Galaxy Trust
West Hill Primary School