Monday, 27 June 2011

Who Governs the Governors: Recruitment


“In order to ensure that governing bodies have the necessary skills and the independence to perform their function effectively, the routes by which governors are recruited need to be reviewed and improved. This will increase the number of skilled volunteers and help avoid the position where the head teacher has to “twist arms” to recruit sufficient governors who then find themselves having to scrutinise the head teacher’s performance, potentially
compromising their independence.

Governing our Schools – A report by Bob Wigley and Business in the Community

If we accept the common sense and logic of this approach, what is the mechanism for attracting the best governors into schools?

• We suggest the recruitment process should be set more fully in the public domain, to allow for increased transparency and diversity. The current model for candidates wishing to become governors is through the Public Appointments vacancies database or through word of mouth. We regard this course as too reactive and unresponsive.

• We would argue the need for a national database to which both candidates and schools have access through a password protected scheme, and which can match the two appropriately. This could be provided through a commercial education business and would enable candidates to update their profiles at any time and for schools to search by skills, location and experience. This would enable chairs and nominations committees to draw up their own shortlists of candidates for vacancies quickly and efficiently through an annual subscription.

At the same time, vacancies could be emailed to candidates directly and advertised.

• A national advertising campaign could also be provided to support the above, such as earlier successful campaigns to recruit new teachers.

• Headhunting for specific skills needed may also be an option which individual schools may wish to consider when advertising fails to generate the quality of candidates needed.

Alongside this, we suggest campaigns to increase awareness of this new form of recruitment and raise the profile and opportunities of becoming a school governor as a valuable non executive opportunity alongside a full time role or within a non executive and trustee portfolio.

A full copy of the report can be found here

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