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Our Governors

Guidance, Inspiration and Support

 

Mrs Goldfinch

Chair of Governors

Sue Goldfinch the Chair of our Board of Governors and sits on the Finance, Premises & Personnel Committee and the Pay Review Committee.  She is also Lead Governor for Pupil Premium, working with Mrs Welsh, and Lead Governor for H&S, HR, Security and Property working with Mrs Charlton.


Sue is a civil servant, splitting her time between Darlington and Whitehall, where she works on the delivery of a major government infrastructure programme for the Cabinet Office.  She has an in-depth understanding of the importance of good governance and financial management in a wider sense, as well as holding qualifications in procurement, project management and leadership.  Alongside this she is a trained mediator and she brings those skills to our governing body as a co-opted governor.   Aside from her involvement with the school she is Chair of Whessoe Parish Council locally.

Meet Our Governors

Dear Parents and Carers,

Welcome to a quick overview of the roles and responsibilities of your Governing Body.

The Governing Body of Whinfield Primary School has a crucial role in helping to ensure that all of our children have the best learning and development opportunities possible in order to maximize their potential. They are encouraged to be the best that they can be.

Our three core responsibilities are:

To hold the Headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils.

To ensure clarity of the school’s vision, ethos and strategic direction

To oversee the financial performance of the school and ensure its money is well spent.


An additional key priority for us is Safeguarding and Child Protection which we oversee in line with the Department for Education’s guidance - “Keeping Children Safe in Education”.

The role of the Governing Body is, by definition, a strategic one for the ongoing development and improvement of the school. The day to day management and operational functions are delegated to the Senior Leadership Team. It should be noted therefore that the Headteacher is responsible for the day to day running of the school.

The Governing Body consists of:


The Headteacher


1 Staff Governor – elected by the staff


5 Parent Governors – elected by parents


1 Local Authority Governor – appointed by the Governing Body


6 Co-opted Governors – appointed by the Governing Body.



The Full Governing Body meets six times throughout the academic year.

Some of the work of the Governing Body is delegated to two main committees; the Curriculum Committee and the Finance and Personnel Committee who meet termly.

In order to provide a strategic overview, all of our Governors have specific roles and responsibilities for many of the core subjects and functions of the school.

All Governors have regular meetings with relevant staff members and report back to the full Governing Body.


To ensure that our vision and strategic leadership is working in practice, one or two Governors at a time carry out accompanied ‘Learning Walks’ throughout the school to gather independent evidence of progress and development.

The Governing Body of Whinfield Primary School has the following priorities for this academic year:


Continue to monitor progress towards the targets set in the school’s Strategic Improvement Plan.


Carry out further Learning Walks to gather independent evidence of progress and improvement.


Regularly meet with relevant school staff to gain knowledge of specific areas of the curriculum.


Improve the visibility of Governors to parents and carers.


Encourage the involvement of parents and carers in the work of the school and the Governing Body.


Invite key members of staff to meetings to report to Governors where appropriate.


Carry out a skills audit and self-evaluation of the Governing Body to identify further areas for development.


Attend training courses to increase and reinforce Governors’ knowledge.


Monitor pupil attendance and review the measures in place for improvement.


We always welcome suggestions, questions and feedback. I can be contacted directly at s.goldfinch@whinfield.net

All Governors can also be contacted via the school office.

I look forward to meeting as many of you as possible during the coming academic year.


Suzanne Goldfinch

Chair of Governors


Mrs Goldfinch can be contacted directly s.goldfinch@whinfield.net All other governors can be contacted through the school.


​Full governing body meetings take place twice a term to deal with the strategic leadership of the school and there are several sub committees which meet once a term. Governor Attendance The terms of reference are detailed below.

Go Team
Pocket Watch in Hand
 

Terms of Reference


Governor are responsible for the strategic vision of the school . They manage these functions through delegated committees detailed below:

 

Finance, Premises & Personnel Committee

Membership: The Committee will consist of a minimum of 4 governors.    ​

Finance functions

To provide guidance and assistance to the Head Teacher, Senior Management Team and governing body in all matters relating to budget setting and finance

To oversee the sound financial management of the school and ensure that the school’s funds are properly and prudently managed

To consider the budget plan, taking account of priorities in the School Development Plan, and recommend the first formal plan of the year to the full Governing Body for their approval 

To receive regular reports on the school’s income and expenditure, ensure that expenditure is authorised in accordance with the school’s financial procedures and monitor performance against budget

To receive regular accounts for voluntary funds held by the school and monitor the performance of these funds

To examine any contracts and either approve or refer to the full governing body as appropriate

To ensure that audit recommendations are actioned

To establish a charging and remissions policy (N.B. the Head Teacher has delegated power to approve the charging and remissions policy for curriculum activities)

To approve and annually review the Pay Policy and ensure consultation is carried out with staff

To set up and approve a Governors’ Expenses Scheme

Premises functions

To ensure the school’s premises are maintained to a high standard

To receive regular reports on the state of the school’s property and buildings and approve any recommendations for work 

To approve and review a maintenance plan

To contribute to and approve any capital bids for work that is outside the school’s annual revenue

To ensure that buildings insurance and personal liability insurance is in place, after seeking advice from the Local Authority

Miscellaneous

To appeal against LA directions to admit pupils

Personnel functions

To agree the staffing structure, following liaison with the Curriculum Committee

To approve and regularly review all procedures relating to the recruitment, selection and appointment of staff 

To approve and regularly review all policies and procedures relating to human resources management (including, but not limited to, Equal Opportunities, Conditions of Service, Grievance Procedures, Capability Procedures, Disciplinary Procedures, Flexible Working Procedures, Leave of Absence, Human Rights, Health & Safety) 

To approve the performance management policy and annually review the implementation of performance management arrangements

To receive reports from the Head Teacher on the dismissal or suspension of staff

To agree to end a suspension of any member of staff other than the Head Teacher

To approve dismissal / early retirement payments

To agree to staff leave of absence beyond Head Teacher’s delegated power

 

Curriculum Committee


Membership: The Committee will consist of a minimum of 4 governors.            


Terms of Reference: 

To agree or reject and regularly monitor the school’s curriculum policy 

To receive regular reports on curriculum issues within the school

To ensure that the school is fulfilling its statutory responsibilities for delivery of the national curriculum and teaching hours

To approve the School Development Plan and regularly review progress against the identified priorities

To approve and regularly review all school policy statements relating to curriculum issues

To approve and review home-school agreements

To ensure that a ‘responsible person’ is appointed to discharge duties in respect of pupils with special needs

To receive reports from the Head Teacher on the delivery of extended services activities and ensure the school is fulfilling statutory requirements in relation to extended schools

To consider all permanent exclusions and fixed term exclusions totaling more than 15 days in a term and decide whether to uphold the exclusion or reinstate the pupil

To consider other fixed term exclusions in accordance with DCSF regulations

To monitor, review and make representation to the governing body on the school’s Behaviour and Pupil Discipline policies

 

Pay Review Committee


Membership: The Committee will consist of a minimum of 3 governors, including the Head Teacher but excluding staff governors 

                                                                              

Meeting: Annually 

Terms of Reference:

To annually review all staff salaries and, following consideration of the Head Teacher’s recommendations, approve any changes to teachers’ pay

To take discretionary pay decisions, including, but not limited to: 

a. regrading

b. award of recruitment and retention points

To ensure all decisions are taken in accordance with relevant legislation, including the Race Relations, Sex Discrimination, Equal Pay, Disability Discrimination and Employment Regulations Acts, the Part-Time Workers Regulations and the Fixed Term Employees’ Regulations

To ensure that every qualified teacher is provided with a formal statement of their salary by no later than 31 October each year 

 

Head Teacher Pay Review Committee


Membership: The Committee will consist of a minimum of 2 governors (staff governors, including the Head Teacher, cannot be appointed to: 


Meeting: Annually

Terms of Reference:

In conjunction with the School Improvement Partner, to annually review the Head Teacher’s performance against targets set the previous year

To approve any increase to the Head Teacher’s pay, based on the performance review

In conjunction with the School Improvement Partner, to set targets for the Head Teacher’s performance for the forthcoming year

To meet regularly with the Head Teacher to review progress against the targets

 

Committee A & B

Committee A   (As Required)

Membership: The Committee will consist of 5 governors (the Head Teacher and staff governors cannot be appointed to this committee) 

Any three governors (Chair to be appointed) 

Meetings: As required 

Terms of Reference:

To take decisions under the disciplinary, capability, redundancy, grievance and other related procedures where the Head Teacher is unable to do so because of prior involvement. 

To act as the first stage of appeal to the Governing Body, in accordance with the school’s policies or where the Head Teacher is unable to hear appeals because of prior involvement. 

To act as the Complaints Committee and hear parental complaints that have not been resolved at an earlier stage of the Complaints Procedure 



Committee B  (As required)

Membership: The Committee will consist of all members of the Governing Body not appointed to Committee A (excluding the Head Teacher and staff governors)

To be appointed from the remainder of the governing body not involved in the original decision

Meetings: As required 

Terms of Reference:

To hear second stage appeals in accordance with the school’s policies. This includes, but is not limited to, appeals under the disciplinary, capability, redundancy, grievance and pay procedures. 

 

If you are interested in becoming a school governor our vacancies are advertised on the school newsletter.  


We recognise the valuable contributions our governors bring to school life and offer support and training to assist in this role.


Governors have access to National Governors Association support,  The Governors Handbook and a dedicated school email and online resource portal.

Governor Expenses Policy can be found on our policies page.

 

Whinfield Primary School

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01325 240499

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Whinfield Primary School
Augusta Close 
Darlington
DL1 3HT 
UK

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