Governors Code of Conduct

The governing body of Newfield School accepts the following principles and procedures:

General

We have responsibility for determining, monitoring and keeping under review the broad policies, plans and procedures within which the school operates

  1. We recognise that the head teacher is responsible for the day to day management in school and that governors have a more strategic role to set the school’s vision and values, to agree plans and policies and to monitor and evaluate performance.
  2. We accept that all governors have equal status, and that our overriding focus will be the welfare of the school as a whole.
  3. We recognise that we have no legal authority to act individually, except when the governing body has given us delegated authority to do so.
  4. We have a duty to act fairly and without prejudice, and in so far as we have responsibility for staff, we will fulfil all the legal expectations as, or on behalf of, the employer.
  5. We will encourage open government and shall be seen to be doing so.
  6. We will consider carefully, how our decisions may affect other schools.
  7. We will work in partnership with the LA to satisfy our obligations to the school. This includes making a representative (usually the chair or vice chair) available for termly briefing sessions from the Director.
  8. We accept that in the interests of open government, our names, terms of office, roles and responsibilities, category of Governor and the body responsible for appointing us will be published on the school’s website.

Commitment

  1. We acknowledge that accepting office as a governor involves commitment of significant amounts of time and energy.
  2. We will each involve ourselves actively in the work of the governing body, attend regularly and accept our fair share of responsibilities, including service on committees or working groups.
  3. We will get to know the school well and respond to opportunities to involve ourselves in school activities.
  4. We will consider seriously our individual and collective needs for training and development.

Relationships

  1. We recognise that good governance involves effective teamwork and we will make every effort to work as a team.
  2. We will seek to develop effective working relationships with our head teacher, staff, parents, the LA, other relevant agencies and the community.
  3. We will express views openly, courteously and respectfully in all our communications with other Governors.
  4. We will support the Chair in their role in ensuring appropriate conduct at meetings and at all times.

Confidentiality

  1. We will observe confidentiality regarding proceedings of the governing body in meetings and from our visits to school as governors.
  2. We will observe complete confidentiality when required or asked to do so by the governing body, especially regarding matters concerning individual staff or students.
  3. We will exercise the greatest prudence if a discussion of a potentially contentious issue affecting the school arises outside the governing body.

Conduct

  1. We will encourage the open expression of views at meetings, but accept collective responsibility for all decisions made by the governing body or its delegated agents. This means we will not speak out against decisions, in public or private, outside the governing body.
  2. We will only speak or act on behalf of the governing body when we have been specifically authorised to do so. In making or responding to criticism or complaints affecting the school we will follow the procedures established by the governing body.
  3. Our visits to school will be undertaken within the framework established by the governing body, in agreement with the head teacher and staff.
  4. In discharging our duties we will always be mindful of our responsibility to maintain and develop the ethos and reputation of our school.
  5. We will never say or do anything either in public or during governor business that is likely to embarrass, offend or bring into disrepute the school or any other staff or governor member.

Conflict of Interest

  1. We will record any pecuniary interest that we have in connection with the governing body’s business in the Register of Business Interests.
  2. We will declare any personal or pecuniary interest in a matter under discussion at a meeting and offer to leave the meeting for the appropriate length of time.
  3. We will act in the best interests of the school as a whole and not as a representative of any group, even if elected to the Governing Body.

Breach of Code of Conduct

  1. If we believe this code has been breached, we will raise this issue with the Chair and the Chair will investigate; the Governing Body will only use suspension/removal as a last resort after seeking to resolve any difficulties or disputes in more constructive ways.
  2. Should it be the Chair that we believe has breached this code, another Governor, such as the Vice Chair, will investigate.

Removal

  1. We recognise that removing a governor from office is a last resort, and that it is the appointing bodies which have the power to remove those they appoint.
  2. If the need arises to use the sanction of removing a governor, we will do so by following the Constitution Regulations so as to ensure a fair and objective process.

Adopted: 29 September 2015