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Roach Vale Primary School
In accordance with the Government’s outlined functions for all governing bodies, the three core strategic functions of Roach Vale Primary School Governing Body are:
- Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
- Holding the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils;
- Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.
The Governing Body of Roach Vale Primary School is made up of two staff governors (including the Headteacher), two elected Parent Governors, one Local Authority Governor and five co-opted governors. Co-opted governors are appointed by the Governing Body and are people who, in the opinion of the governing body, have the skills required to contribute to the effective governance and success of the school: currently on our Governing Body two of the Co-opted governors are parents and one is a staff member.
The full Governing Body meets four times a year and, in addition to these meetings, we have four sub-committees. These are as follows: The Pay committee which meets annually in the autumn term. The Finance and Premises committee, the Curriculum committee and the Personnel committee, all of which meet termly. We took the decision to suspend the Curriculum committee and temporarily replace it with the School Improvement Board. In addition, a strategic planning meeting is held at the end of each academic year to review current school performance which informs further improvement for the children’s outcomes. This supports the school in achieving our target of making Roach Vale an outstanding place of learning for the children who come here.
Attendance Record and Recruitment of Governors
Governors have excellent attendance at meetings, and we have not cancelled a meeting in 2018/19 because it was not “quorate” (the number of governors needed to ensure that legal decisions can be made).
A full list of Governors and their attendance record at meetings this year is available to view on the “Governors” page on our website.
During this year, we were very sorry to lose the services of Serena Williams and Mandy Hudson. On the reverse we were delighted to welcome Sarah Elliot Hearn on board.
The work that we do as a Governing Body
The school was subject to a Local Authority review in November 2018 to assess the school’s academic performance. The review highlighted some areas for the school to improve and develop. These areas were:
- data outcomes at KS2
- quality of teaching across the school
- maths provision across the school
Considering this review, Mrs Sampson and her senior leadership team put in place several changes and interventions to improve the school’s progress and attainment. These changes were supported by the Governing Body and the Local Authority. In addition to this, the Governing Body took the decision to set up School Improvement Board. The board was made up of four governors along with Mr Antony Kern (the school’s excellence partner), Mr Nick Hutchings (Headteacher of Hamilton Primary School) from the North Essex Schools Partnership and Mrs Linda Robinson, a National Leader of Governance who was appointed to assist the Governors during this year.
Its remit was to monitor closely the progress and attainment across the school to ensure the school improves the quality of learning and teaching in the above areas.
The Finance and Premises Committee looks at the maintenance and development of the school premises and makes decisions about how the school should use the budget, including the implementation and impact of the Pupil Premium and the Sports Premium funding provided for primary schools.
The past year the school has seen further pressures on the school budget which, regrettably, led the governors to take the very difficult decision to restructure the school’s staffing structure.
The other major project the school has undertaken was the erection of dividing walls in the year 5 and 6 classes. This was first suggested by the children during a governor assembly in March 2018. The children felt that there was too much background noise due to the open plan nature of the school. This made hearing their teachers when they were sat at the back of the class extremely difficult. It was decided that the most efficient way to deal with this problem was to erect walls to separate the classes and thus end the open plan layout of the school.
The Personnel Committee review staffing matters and staff morale and wellbeing and workload.
The curriculum committee currently held as a School Improvement Board format are held once a term to review all aspects of Pupil Related Matters including what is the intent of the curriculum, how is it implemented and what impact has it had on all the children’s learning and engagement outcomes. To support the school’s strategic plan governors, carry out regular monitoring days which are rigorous in their questioning and include specific key areas from the school improvement plan and their impact on day to day learning. A report is made on the findings and included in the minutes of Termly full governing body meetings. Governors monitoring days are a very effective way of challenging and holding to account many aspects of the school’s strategic plan and targets and measuring the impact that these have on all school improvement.
Each governor is a member of at least one of the above committees and school improvement board. Governors have additional areas or responsibility such as safeguarding, health & safety, attendance and quality of teaching to name but a few. Governors also periodically review and/or amend and agree all the schools many policies.
Minutes of Governing Body and Committee meetings are public documents –you can ask at the school office if you would like to see any of the minutes of our meetings.
The Head Teacher and Chair of Governors meet regularly for updates and to review any matters that arise outside the regular meetings. This supports communication between the school and the governors and is recorded and reported to the board for their consideration.
Future Plans Include;
The governing body is looking forward to supporting the plans in place for the next academic year. Some of which are listed below;
- It is the governor’s plan to wall more classes as funds become available.
- The continuing growth of Community links with local schools and businesses and to support the school to enhance the children’s engagement and learning experiences.
How you can contact the governing body
We always welcome suggestions, feedback and ideas from parents – please contact the Chair of Governors, Mr Johnson, via the school office. You can see the full list of governors, their attendance at meetings and more information about what we do, on the Governors’ page of the school website.
If any parent or local community person is interested in joining us or would like more information about the governing body, please do not hesitate to contact either Mrs Sampson or Mr Johnson via the school office.