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Governors Code of Practice


St Saviour’s & St Olave’s School

Code of Practice for Governors



         This Code of Practice was approved by the Full Governing Body on



Signed                                             Chair of Governors



Signed                                             Headteacher    






Next Review Date:                        


St Saviour’s & St Olave’s School




St Saviour’s & St Olave’s School has a commitment to supporting Christian worship as the fulcrum on which the school operates. This flows through everything the school undertakes and does.




The following is not a definitive statement of responsibilities but is concerned with the common understanding of broad principles by which governors will operate.


The Governors of St Saviour’s & St Olave’s School work to the Nolan Committee seven general principles of conduct in public life and accept the following specific principles:




1.         Governors have responsibility for determining, monitoring and keeping under review the broad policies, plans and procedures within which the school operates; they recognise that it is the Headteacher who is responsible for the implementation of policy, the day to day management of the school and operation of the curriculum.  Governors are not expected to become involved in day to day management issues.


2.         All governors have equal status and although governors are appointed by different groups (e.g. parents, co-option, staff, the Local Authority [L.A.], and Southwark Diocesan Board of Education [SDBE]). Governors may not represent any one group but must act in the interests of the school itself, at all times.


3.         Governors have a general duty to act fairly and without prejudice at all times.


4.         In so far as they have, or share, responsibility for the employment of staff, governors will fulfil all reasonable expectations of a good employer.


5.         Governors will consider carefully how their own decisions might affect other schools.


6.         Governors accept the recommendations of the Nolan Committee in respect of the principles of conduct in public life.




1.         Being a governor involves the commitment of significant amounts of time and energy; careful regard should be given to this when agreeing to serve, or to continue to serve, on the governing body of St Saviour’s & St Olave’s School.  Naturally, personal circumstances will determine how this commitment will be delivered.


2.         All governors should involve themselves actively in the work of the Governing Body and accept a fair share of responsibilities, including service on committees and working groups.


3.         Regular attendance at meetings of the full Governing Body, relevant committees and working groups is essential. In the event that a governor is repeatedly unable to meet this commitment, they should discuss their future role with the Chairman.


4.         Governors will be expected to take part in the development of the School Action Plan through the annual development process and the review of its implementation through visits and reviews.


5.         Governors must know the school well and take the opportunity to be involved in school activities. This will include undertaking both formal and informal visits to the school during and outside of school hours.


6.         Governors are expected to stay up to date with governance best practice and recognise the need to undertake formal and informal training on a regular basis to maintain their knowledge and expertise.


7.         Governors are expected to support worship as the fulcrum on which the school operates and to treat all members of the school community with dignity, to create a positive school culture based on trust.


Length of Service


Regardless of the source of their appointment (except where appointed ex officio), governors are appointed for an initial term of four years. Parent governors must have a child at the school at the time of their election (or re-election), however may continue their term to its completion if at any point they cease to have a child at the school. Appointments may be extended for a second term of four years. Two four year terms will be the normal maximum period of appointment. Staff appointments will normally be for one four year term, with a commitment to serve a minimum of one year.




1.         Governors will operate as a team in which constructive working relationships are actively promoted.


2.         Governors will develop effective working relationships with the Headteacher, staff, parent groups, L.A. and other relevant agencies and interested parties.




1.         Governors must respect complete confidentiality when either required or asked to do so by the Governing Body, recognising that the minutes represent the formal record of meetings.


2.         Although decisions reached at governors' meetings are normally available to the public through the minutes or otherwise, the discussions on which the decisions were based, other than as contained in the minutes, should be regarded as confidential.


  1. Governors must exercise the highest degree of prudence when discussion of a potentially contentious issue arises outside the Governing Body.


  1. Decisions, once taken by the Governing Body, should be respected and supported, even if an individual governor voted against a specific decision. Any fundamental disagreements must be stated during the meeting and ask to be minuted as such.




1.         Governors should express their views openly within meetings but accept collective responsibility for all decisions.


2.         Governors must only speak or act on behalf of the Governing Body when they have been specifically authorised to do so.


3.         All formal visits to the school should be undertaken by prior appointment and within the framework which has been agreed between the Governing Body and Headteacher.


4.         In responding to criticism or complaints relating to the school, governors should follow procedures established by the Governing Body.


  1. Governors have a responsibility to maintain and develop the Christian ethos and reputation of the school; their actions within the school community should reflect this.


Governors' Committees and Working Groups


The Governing Body of St Saviour’s & St Olave’s School operates a number of committees to address their responsibilities and monitor the activities of the school. The following committees have been established:




Curriculum & Pastoral


Finance & General Purposes




Pay & Personnel




Staff Appointments




Pupil Discipline


When necessary, further working parties may be set up to undertake a specified task. These working parties will report progress to the Governing Body as appropriate.


The Headteacher has the right to attend all meetings.  The Chairman of Governors is ex-officio on all committees and working groups.


Frequency of Meetings


The Governing Body will meet at least three times per academic year.  Committees will meet as required to undertake the work allocated to them and monitor performance. Other ad hoc working groups or committees meet as necessary.


Recording Meetings


The Governing Body and Committees will ensure that clear and concise minutes are produced which will be circulated to all governors. Other ad hoc working groups will record their actions and decisions and will pass a copy of these to the Clerk to ensure a complete record is maintained. Minutes will be reviewed as required at relevant full Governing Body meetings.


The minutes from the various meetings will provide part of the basis for the school records as they will highlight areas that have been considered in depth over the past year.




In order to make governor visits useful, mutually profitable, focused and directed on specific issues, they should be by appointment.  Formal link governor visits will be made against an agreed protocol and reported back to the Governing Body through a standard template format. Governors are always very welcome to visit the school on an informal basis but these visits should not form the basis of formal reports by governors.