GOVAS works closely with the Stockport Children and Young People Directorate, but we are a fully independent association of governors affiliated to the equally independent National Governors Association. Every governor in Stockport is automatically a GOVAS member and our Management Committee is made up exclusively of serving volunteer governors in Stockport’s schools – nursery, primary secondary and special. Our biggest strength is our links with all the school governors in Stockport through our newsletter, special communications, and this website.
The School Governance (Roles, Procedures and Allowances) (England) Regulations 2013 will come
into force on September 2013. The new regulations replace three sets of existing regulations. Changes aren`t huge, but may be significant for your school. NGA will be producing guidance and a Q&A on the new regulations, which will be available to members before they take effect. If you want to read the legal stuff go to http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2013/1624/contents/made
The new National Curriculum has finally been unveiled. All local authority maintained schools will be required to teach it from September 2014, with two exceptions. The new national curriculum for year 2 and year 6 English, mathematics and science will become compulsory from September 2015, to reflect the fact that key stage 2 tests in summer 2015 will be based on the existing National Curriculum. Key stage 4 English, mathematics and science will be taught to year 10 from September 2015 and year 11 from September 2016. Don`t be shy about asking questions. The new curriculum will have resource and organizational implications in many schools, and it`s your job to make sure that these are managed well. NGA members can find some interesting questions to ask about the curriculum in the guidance section of the Members` Area of the website at www.nga.org.uk
The National Governors' Association has carried out an annual survey for some years. The results have been used to assess how Governing Bodies are working and to provide evidence for NGA's lobbying work on behalf of governors. NGA now does this is cooperation with TES. You can take part. Go to www.nga.org then click on News, where you'll find a link to the survey.
Stockport's Local Safeguarding ChildrenBoard does a good deal of very important work – some of you will remember Lynn Perry's presentation at Stockport Governors' Conference this year, describing one area of their work. On their website at www.safeguardingchildreninstockport.org.uk you can find their latest Annual Report, and a good deal of other interesting and useful information.
The government has issued two documents this week about school governance. One is a report from the influential House of Commons Education Select Committee. The main recommendations from the report are
• Governors should not in general be paid
• The DfE should require schools to offer new governors induction training
• The DfE should work with the NGA to develop a version of the 'Governors' Handbook'
• Governing bodies should be encouraged to participate in peer-to-peer governance reviews and to undertake self-assessment and skills audits
• The DfE should act upon the findings of the NGA and the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives (SOLACE) regarding governing body clerks
• The DfE and Ofsted should do more to tackle underperforming governing bodies
You can read the whole report at -here-
The second is a Darft Deregulation Bill, which includes some provisions about governing bodies. You can find it at -here-
Local authority maintained schools are required by law to teach the National Curriculum programmes of study, but the government has decided that as it moves towards the introduction of the new curriculum, schools should be able to opt out of certain aspects of the current curriculum. This is intended to make easier the transition from the current curriculum to the new curriculum, which will be introduced from September 2014 (2015 for key stage 4 English, mathematics and science).
The necessary regulations come into effect in September,when the new curriculum will be published. As schools may not have the time to incorporate it fully into their curriculum during this coming school year, teachers may decide to use aspects of it. Alternatively, as schools are not required to change their curriculum during this time they could choose to continue with the current curriculum until the new curriculum is formally introduced.
At a Governor Live event in Birmingham organised by Modern Governor on Tuesday 25 June Chris Caroe, Head of the School Governance Unit at the DfE,explained its five policy ambitionswhich underpin ministers’ vision of more professionalised school governance: