Who can become a school governor?
You don't need to have a child at a school to become a governor. All types of people can become school governors. No special qualifications are required, but you must be 18 or over on the date when you are elected or appointed. Enthusiasm, commitment and an interest in education are the most important qualities. You don't need to have a child at the school. Many schools would particularly welcome new governors who have transferable skills developed at work, or who have a particularly good understanding of the community served by the school.
What do school governors do?
The governing body of a school is responsible for ensuring that it is run to promote pupil achievement. Its duties include:
setting strategic direction, policies and objectives
approving the school budget
reviewing progress against the school's budget and objectives
appointing, challenging and supporting the headteacher
The governing body is made up of:
parent governors (elected by parents)
staff representatives (elected by school staff)
local authority governors (appointed by the local authority)
community governors (members of the local community appointed by the governing body)
for some schools, people appointed by the relevant religious body or foundation
up to two sponsor governors, or four if the school is a secondary school (appointed by the governing body)
What would be involved?
Governing bodies make their decisions based on the advice of committees that deal with specific issues, such as the school's curriculum, premises or finances. If you become a governor, you will probably be asked to serve on a committee where you have an interest or can make a contribution.
The amount of time involved for each governor varies between schools. However, in a typical month in a typical school you can expect to spend at least six to eight hours on your duties.
Being a governor is a serious commitment, but it can be rewarding. Find out more about the benefits of becoming a school governor on the School Governors' One Stop Shop website.