I have been a Local Authority Governor for a number of years serving on many local schools for various terms. I joined Hadfield Infants in 1983 and have been Chair since 1987.
I have always been passionate about education and it was no surprise that I should follow a profession in teaching and taught at St Philip Howard Secondary School from 1964-2004 where during those 40 years I moved through different management roles and was deputy head for the last 14 years of my career. I served as a Foundation Governor there from 2005-2013 again chairing various committees.
My long experience as a Local Authority Governor was linked initially to involvement in local politics as a Borough Councillor for Hadfield s from 1983-1999 and was Mayor Of High Peak in 1987-88.I have always taken the governor role very seriously. It has changed considerably over the years and today governors are an essential part of leadership and management in a school but are still volunteers. It is important to keep abreast of significant changes and to regularly update your training. It is rewarding to be part of school development in liaison with senior leaders, staff, parents and most importantly chatting to the children. Being able to visit the school during the day from time to time allows governors to see the school in action. As Chair of the Governing Board I choose to sit on both the Teaching and Learning and Resource Management Committees, which helps continuity. We all work as an effective team in close contact with the Headteacher, other senior leaders and staff in teaching and other roles.
Since 1990 schools have been subject to Ofsted Inspections on a regular basis and I have experienced them as a teacher, school manager but more often as a governor. The goalposts and the criteria on which judgements about schools are based change frequently so regular updates for governors are essential. Ofsted Inspections should contain no surprises if governors know their school well and in my opinion are to be welcomed and not feared.
It is important that the skills of the community are made use of by school governing boards, as they require those for example linked to business, management, education, health, finance, IT and data but most importantly common sense .I would encourage interested people with skills to offer to become involved as governors. Although my profession and work as a councillor have provided me with sound knowledge and many skills I feel my roles as a mother and grandmother have helped me empathise with pupils and their parents.It is so important that we all work together to be the best we can be in providing a high quality education for all our children
Date of Appointment - 25.01.2013
Term of office - 4 years
Appointed by - Local Authority
Relevant business and pecuniary interests - None
Attendance record (last 12 months) - Full Governors 5/5
Resource and Management 4/4
Teaching and Learning 2/3