People governing in schools and academy trusts in England are being urged to promote their contribution to the education system and shine a light on the difference that good governance makes to the organisation’s success, in a new campaign from the National Governance Association (NGA).

The Visible Governance in Schools campaign, which will run throughout 2020, will celebrate the power of governance, the people that volunteer for the role and the value that good governance brings to the school system. The campaign also aims to improve the education system’s and public’s knowledge and understanding of the role.

It is hoped that collective action by some of the quarter of a million people governing schools and trusts will achieve a higher profile and better understanding of governance, and lead to more volunteering and more effective governing boards working better with school leaders. To inspire and equip governors, trustees and those supporting governance to take part, NGA has produced a list of simple actions that can be taken as an individual or as a board to highlight what they do and why they do it.

Several organisations in the education sector have pledged to recognise the importance of good school and trust governance and make it more visible within their work by collaborating with NGA on initiatives throughout the year and promoting the campaign. Supporting the campaign from day one are the Department for Education, Association of School and College Leaders, NAHT, the Institute of School Business Leadership, Chartered College of Teaching, the Teaching Schools Council, Forum Strategy, the Fair Education Alliance, the Independent Schools Council, the Association of Governing Bodies of Independent Schools (AGBIS), Education and Employers, and Academy Ambassadors.

Planned activities for the year include an awareness week (6 to 12 June), resources for governing boards to be more visible at school and trust level, and a volunteer recruitment campaign with Inspiring Governance. 

Emma Knights, chief executive of the National Governance Association said: “School and trust governance is almost always invisible when it is working well, and very much in the spotlight when things go wrong. Our message to governors, trustees, clerks and everyone who values the importance of governance is to be bold, be positive and be noticed. School governance needs to be recognised and celebrated for its positive role in ensuring things go right for pupils, staff and schools, ensuring the best possible education experience. Good governance is not an insurance policy which picks up the pieces when things have gone awry; it is a central component of a successful organisation. I know that governors and trustees volunteer to make a difference to children and young people - they don’t volunteer for the recognition. However, if collectively you can take one small action to advocate all the good you do, it will in fact further improve the lives of children and their communities."

Visit the Visible Governance in Schools campaign page for more information and resources: https://www.nga.org.uk/News/Campaigns/Visible-Governance.aspx

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