Governors

Governors are the largest voluntary organisation in the UK, with just over 300,000 members.

Governors are essential to the work of the school.  We are legally responsible for its finances, for the teaching and learning that take place there and for the general strategic direction of the school.

In practice, we appoint the Head teacher and then delegate the day to day running of the school to them.  The Governors, however, are still involved in major decisions, for example we approve the Budget, the School Development Plan and we help appoint new staff.  By working closely with the Head teacher the Governing Body helps shape and monitor policy and practice.

In total there are 13 governors at Helsby Hillside Primary School, six of whom must be parents.  These governors are elected by the other parents to serve for four years.   We value our Parent Governors particularly for their common sense approach in dealing with practical issues.   They play a full role in the work of the Governing Body.

All Governors are expected to be 'critical friends' to the school supporting the whole school team and, when appropriate, asking searching questions.  Broadly the work involves the following:

  • Attending and participating in one full Governing Body meeting per term
  • Joining one sub-committee which meet once a term
  • Exploring and forging links with the school – for instance with subject areas or a particular aspect of school life (reading assistants etc).  Governors are invited to visit school during the school day, parents evenings and at the many events run throughout the school year.

All this involves approximately 15-20 hours per year.  Meetings usually take place between 5.15pm and 6.15pm (Full governor meetings: 5.15pm to 7.15pm).  Depending on their interests and time available we have some governors who like to be involved in other aspects such as fund raising, joining in school trips or offering specialist advice and support in an area of expertise.   Others chair the sub-committees which involves planning and liaison with senior members of staff.

Function of Governing Boards

As set out in the Governance Handbook, all boards have three core functions:

  1. Ensuring clarity of the vision, ethos and strategic direction.
  2. Holding the executive leaders to account for the educational performance of the school(s) and its pupils and the effective and efficient performance management of staff.
  3. Overseeing the financial performance of the school(s) and making sure that its money is well spent.      

Executive leaders are responsible for the internal organisation, management and control of schools. Every board must have a single executive leader at the head of the line management chain of the whole organisation. It is their job to implement the strategic framework established by the board. Boards should work to support and strengthen the leadership of their executive and hold them to account for the day-to-day running of their school(s), including the performance management of staff.  

Boards should play a strategic role and avoid routine involvement in operational matters. They should focus strongly on holding their executive leader to account for exercising their professional judgement in these matters and all of their other duties.

The role of a parent governor is not as a spokesperson for the views of parents. They are the same as any other governor on the board, providing a ‘parental viewpoint’ i.e. representative parents rather than representatives of parents.

The role of a staff governor is the same as any other governor, strategic leadership and holding the Headteacher to account, but also includes providing a ‘staff viewpoint’. It is important for prospective staff governors to fully understand the nature of the role prior to appointment. Staff governors are not a spokesperson for the views of all staff, nor should they be held to account in relation to their staff role by the governing board.

A LA governor is a representative of the local authority. The role of a LA governor is the same as any other governor, including providing a ‘LA viewpoint’, and they should participate in the same way as other governors. They are not required to be affiliated to a political party, although they should be aware of local issues.

Co-opted governors act in the best interests of the school and wider community, but should not be required by others, such as the appointing board or community, to take a particular stance on issues discussed at board meetings.

Associate members are appointed by the governing board to serve on one or more governing board committees. They may also attend full governing board meetings. They are not governors and do not have a vote in governing board decisions, but may, on approval from the board, be given a vote on decisions made by committees to which they are appointed.

Training

Of course we anticipate that Parent Governors will bring a wide range of knowledge and experience with them, however to support you further in this new role a variety of training activities are available run by Cheshire West and Chester.  These include Governor Induction training, Child Protection, Finance etc for those interested

Complaints Procedure

For a general complaint:

Step 1 If a parent is concerned about anything to do with the education or support that we are providing at our school, they should, in the first instance, discuss the matter with their child’s class teacher; most matters of concern can be resolved positively in this way. All teachers work very hard to ensure that each child is happy at school, and is making good progress; they naturally want to know if there is a problem, so that they can take action before it seriously affects the child’s progress.

Step 2 Where a parent feels that a situation has not been resolved through contact with the class teacher, or that their concern is of a sufficiently serious nature, they should make an appointment to discuss it with the head teacher. The head teacher will consider all matters of concern very seriously and investigate each case thoroughly. Most complaints would normally be resolved at this stage.

Step 3 Only when an informal complaint fails to be resolved by the head teacher should a formal complaint be made to the governing body. This complaint must be made in writing, stating the nature of the complaint, who has been spoken to already and the preferred outcome. The parent should send this written complaint to the chair of governors chair@hillside.cheshire.sch.uk

 For a complaint about the head teacher:

Step 1 If a parent is concerned about anything to do with the behaviour, leadership or management of the head teacher, they should, in the first instance, discuss the matter with the head teacher; most matters of concern can be resolved positively in this way.

Step 2 Where a parent feels that a situation has not been resolved through contact with the head teacher, or that their concern is of a sufficiently serious nature, they should make an appointment to discuss it with the chair of the governing body. The chair will consider all matters of concern very seriously and investigate each case thoroughly. Most complaints would normally be resolved at this stage.

Step 3 Only when an informal complaint fails to be resolved by the chair should a formal complaint be made to the governing body. This complaint must be made in writing, stating the nature of the complaint, who has been spoken to already and the preferred outcome. The parent should send this written complaint to the governing body via the Chair to the governors chair@hillside.cheshire.sch.uk

Our full complaints policy is attached.

Governor Details

Below details the current members of the Full Governing Body which includes category of Governor, committee membership, terms of office and a register of business interests.

The Instrument of Government, Governing Body Code of Conduct, Report of the Effectivess of the Governing Body, Images and a Register of Meeting Attendance are also attached below.

We are currently trailing a new governance structure during Summer 2022 term, this has replaced the committee structure with a six times per year Full Governing Body structure.  The outcome of the trial will dertermin the 2022-23 governing structure.

 

Name

Category of Governor

Committee membership

Term of office/

expiry date

Business Interest & Relationship

Governor of other Education Establishment

 Louise Midwinter

Co-opted governor  appointed by the governing body

Chair of Governors

 Learning and Teaching 

 Finance and Staffing

  HTPM panel

 4 years - 29/11/22

 

 

 Terence O’Neill

Co-opted governor  appointed by the governing body

 Designated Safeguarding Governor

 Vice-Chair of Governors

 

 Buildings and Maintenance

 Health and Safety

 Learning and Teaching

 Finance and Staffing (Chair)

HTRM panel

 4 years - 21/03/23

 

Helsby High School

 Stephen Garrity (new)

Local Authority governor       appointed by CWAC(Cheshire West and Chester)

  4 years - 2/5/2026

 

 

 

 Keith Bradley

Co-opted governor appointed by the governing body

 Finance and Staffing

 4 years -21/03/23

 

 

 Adam Khan

Headteacher

 All

 N/A

 

 
 Alison Lee (new) Parent governor elected by parents of children in the school (also staff member) Finance and Staffing 4 years - Jan 2026    

 Dan Riley

 

Associate governor        

 Jean Ellams

Co-opted governor  appointed by the governing body  Learning and Teaching  4 years - 04/07/23     
 Paul Hedges Parent governor elected by parents of children in the school  Building and Maintenance  4 years - 05/12/23    

 Jo Taylor (new)

Parent govenor elected by parents of children in the school Learning and Teaching 4 years - Jan 2026    

 Kath Evans

Staff governor elected by staff in the school  Learning and Teaching  4 years  - 05/12/23    
Holly Butchers Parent governor elected by parents of children in the school  Building and Maintenance  4 years  - January 2025    
Briony Hunter Parent governor elected by parents of children in the school Learning and Teaching  4 years - January 2025    
James Malam (new) Parent governor elected by parents of children in the school   4 years - Mar 2026    
Governors who have resigned  

 June 2016: Michelle Spruce & Wendy Porter

 Dec 2016: Oliver Mitchell

 April 2017: Kate Higgins

 October 2017: Helen Murray

 November 2017: Andy Morley

 January 2018: James Benn

 June 2018 - Jo Clarke

 July 2019 - Daveen Cleworth

 September 2019 - Sarah Balogh

December 2020 - Steve Jones, Ali Jones

August 2021 - Craig Richardson (former Headteacher)

July 2021 - Naomi Gradwell

July 2021 - Karen O'Hanlon

February 2022 - Janet Ford

 

Files to Download

Helsby Hillside Primary School Helsby Hillside Primary School Logo

Bates Lane, Helsby, Frodsham WA6 9LN

Headteacher: Adam Khan

School Contacts: Mrs Julie Ellis, Mrs S Tregilgas & Mrs C Williams

01928 722991

admin@hillside.cheshire.sch.uk

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