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Putting a price on effective clerking

This research provides recommendations on a proportionate and reasonable rate of remuneration for governing board clerks


The role of clerks/governance professionals is key to the improvement of governance. There is no question that the workload of governors and trustees is made more manageable where a clerk/governance professional covers the full job description and is able to avail themselves of relevant CPD.

Research overview

This report accepts that the varying nature of the governance professional role and governing structures does not lend itself to a uniform pay structure. However, it also highlights the fact that too many governance professionals are not being paid at an appropriate level, or even for the number of hours that they work. The research provides credible recommendations that point to a proportionate and reasonable rate of remuneration for those clerks completing the role as defined in the NGA model job description. 

This research has also been used to create a career pathway for governance professionals which gives further information about governance professional roles at three distinct levels and suggests appropriate remuneration for each level.

Report recommendations

  1. There is a degree of complexity and responsibility to the role of clerk which is often overlooked and means that they should be paid more than school administrators; the role content is very different.
  2. Individuals who have the skills and knowledge to complete the role of clerk as defined in the NGA job descriptions, but who lack direct experience and/or qualifications, should be paid no less than £12.85 per hour or £24,799 per annum full time equivalent.
  3. When requiring an experienced clerk to fulfil the role as outlined in the NGA job descriptions (i.e. with national accreditation, clerical experience and/or governance knowledge) schools should pay no less than £13.80 per hour or £26,910 per annum full time equivalent.
  4. Employers should ensure that the contractual arrangements for their clerk are fair. Unless employed to complete clerking on a full-time basis (i.e. across multiple schools), clerks should be paid by the hour. An hourly rate of pay would also be appropriate for those clerks whose services are engaged directly, with boards being invoiced periodically. This is to take account of the fact that a clerk’s hours are not fixed. Finally, all clerks should have an annual appraisal and pay review meeting in line with other employees.
  5. While employers should take the lead in setting appropriate remuneration for clerking posts, it important that clerks feel confident enough to have discussions with their employers about what an appropriate salary looks like.

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