Church school governing bodies vary in size, but the general composition does not vary much from school to school. Regulations govern the size and constitution of governing bodies and each school has an Instrument of Government which details the constitution.
A typical voluntary aided primary school governing body in the Diocese comprises the following:
|Foundation Governors||Non-Foundation Governors|
|Parochial Church Council x 4||Parent Governors x 2|
|Diocesan Foundation Governors x 2||Staff Governor x 1|
|Incumbent x 1||Headteacher x 1|
|Local Authority Governor x 1|
|Total – 7||Total – 5|
Governing bodies may choose to vary their instrument of government, but consult the Diocesan Board, trustees and foundation governors before sending their proposal to the local authority.
In 2012, new regulations provided for a slightly different model which includes co-opted governors. Any school wishing to vary their instrument of government must follow the new regulations.
The SDBE provides guidance for its schools on effective working practices for governing bodies.
Governors decide what type of committee structure works best for them and are required to review the committees each year. Currently Nutfield Church has a Teaching, Learning and Assessment committee and a Leadership and Management committee.
Foundation governors have a special responsibility for securing that the character of the school. A Church of England voluntary school is preserved and developed so that the school is managed in accordance with the provisions of the school’s Trust Deed and its ethos statement. The Trust Deed is a document which relates to the original foundation of the school, the ethos statement has statutory force and it is within this context that governors of Church of England schools carry out their responsibilities.
A copy of the ethos statement adopted by the majority of Church of England schools is reproduced below.
Recognising its historic foundation, the school will preserve and develop its religious character in accordance with the principles of the Church of England and in partnership with the Church at parish and Diocesan level.
The school aims to serve its community by providing an education of the highest quality within the context of Christian belief and practice. It encourages an understanding of the meaning and significance of faith and promotes Christian values through the experience it offers to all its pupils.