Welcome to the very first Governor’s Blog! My name is Mamie Barden, and I am currently serving as a parent Governor for the school. In an effort for governors to stay connected with parents, I will be writing a blog post once a term that highlights some of the policies and issues that the Governing Body are discussing and monitoring.
What does a Governor do anyway?
Generally, governors take part in strategic discussions about the priorities and targets for the school, as well as ensuring that all children have access to a broad and balanced curriculum. They also hold senior leaders to account by monitoring the school’s performance, and ensure that school staff have the resources and support they require to do their jobs well. In other words, a governor examines the ‘bigger picture’ of the school strategies, structures and vision. Now, on to the highlights from last term…
Before we broke for summer, the governors were very focused on the recent OFSTED report. A Post-Ofsted Action Plan has been compiled using the key development points from the Ofsted report. The Senior Leadership Team (SLT) have involved contributions from teaching staff and have listened to the concerns of parents in post-Ofsted parent meetings. For example, a review of the curriculum and how the teaching at the school is organised has been incorporated into the plan. In addition, the school is continuing to use guidance from the Merton Education Partner to tighten up on statistical targets. The teaching staff, Senior Leadership Team and governors are all enthusiastic about putting the plan into action to improve quality of education for our pupils and be recognised for this by OFSTED.
End of Year Results
The end-of-year results show a significant improvement from the results in 2015-16. The school is now much closer to the national average in all areas of assessment and has exceeded the national figure in working at greater depth in maths. This shows the school is moving in the right direction, and governors will continue to monitor the data to ensure this upward trend continues.
Governors are encouraged to make formal visits each year to check that the policies and improvement plans are being implemented, and allow us to see for ourselves how our vision and plans for the school are working in practice. In the summer term, Governor Frances Cresswell visited the school with a focus on literacy. Governor Sanjay Hatwal had a visit to look at teaching assistants and how they have been focusing on strategies to help children be more independent. The Chair of Governors, Sandy Cowling, also formally visited to support the Headteacher after the OFSTED report. It is also worth noting that Governors are in touch with its local housing community, the High Path Community Association. There is proposed regeneration that will have an impact on the school, especially considering the increase in the estate’s density. The governors intend to keep updated as things progress.
Governors Impact Statement
The governors are working on a ‘Governors Impact Statement’ that is for parents and staff to explain how Merton Abbey’s governing body met its responsibilities in 2016/17. This should be released by the end of the term. It is a great resource that summarises the bulk of the governors’ work throughout the academic year.
Other policies and papers reviewed:
LA Merton Education Partner Report
School Development Plan
As mentioned above, these are only a few of the highlights from last term. If you would like more in depth access to what the governors are doing, you are always welcome to request the minutes from the school office.
Mamie Barden, Governor