Governors Impact Report
The role of the Governing Board is an intrinsic part of the leadership of the school. It is the Governing Boards aim to provide the strategic support and guidance required for the school to meet its stated vision of inspiring all its children to be enthusiastic life-long learners.
The Governors’ handbook published by the Department of Education clearly sets out the core functions of the governing body.
- Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
- Holding the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils and the performance management of the staff
- Overseeing the financial management of the school and making sure its money is well spent
The role of the Governing Board is to ensure that these requirements are met.
Redlands was rated as an Outstanding school in all aspects at its last Ofsted Inspection in October 2017. The Governing Boards aim is to build on this outstanding rating through a process of continuous incremental improvement and support in all areas.
In their report Ofsted stated that:
“Leaders and governors make sure that the school is constantly improving. Their attention to detail and absolute commitment that every pupil should succeed has made Redlands the outstanding school it is today. Consequently, they are working hard to accelerate further the rates of progress of a few pupils so that they make the same progress as others.”
School Improvement Plan (SIP)
This sets the aims for the current year and is formulated and agreed by the Headteacher, staff and Governors.
Key priorities for 2020/22
To improve standards in spelling through continuing the implementation of a consistent whole-school approach to the teaching and learning of spelling.
- To raise standards in writing for identified groups of pupils in each year group.
- To embed the teaching of fluency as a reading skill.
- English maintenance tasks
- To continue to promote a culture of reading for pleasure.
- To continue to develop effective medium-term plans which clearly demonstrate progression, continuity, balance and breadth and opportunities to build children’s cultural capital though literature.
- To develop the instant recall and application of times tables so that a) children acquire and can use this important knowledge, and b) children are best prepared for upcoming times table tests (compulsory in 2020)
- To develop the instant recall and application of number facts.
CONTINUING PRIORITIES 2020-22
- Maintain excellent SAFEGUARDING PRACTICE including further promotion of e-safety and always taking account of changes during the pandemic.
- Maintain the highest QUALITY OF TEACHING, including continuing to diminish the difference arising from deprivation.
- Ensure SOCIAL MORAL, SPIRITUAL and CULTURAL EDUCATION (SMSC) (with appropriate reference to British Values and Prevent) has a high profile throughout the curriculum, links with everyday learning and is reflected in the schools' values and the richness of the day-to-day and cumulative CURRICULUM OFFER.
- Provide an effective RECOVERY CURRICULUM to address any learning deficit arising from lockdown and other Covid-19 restrictions and to ensure a robust HOME LEARNING PLAN to provide continuity in the event of individual and group cases of self-isolation.
- Continue to work to ensure smooth TRANSITION from EYFS to KS1, KS1 to 2, and KS2 to 3. In particular continue to ensure that the curriculum and pedagogy at each of these junctures form a continuous sequence
The SIP sets a clear timetable for management and staff which is closely monitored by the governors at Full Governing Board (FGB) meetings by way of reports and questions and also in more detail at the regular Standards Committee meetings where progress, or lack of, is identified and challenged. The plan is evaluated constantly and necessary changes are noted for SIP revision.
Governors visit the school as part of their monitoring of the SIP and also on specific issues where Governors have sought a monitoring role e.g. spelling and grammar, improving handwriting, Closing the Gap (looking at children with SEN, Free School Meals (FSM), Children Looked After (CLA)) and multiplication tables. These Governors report back to the FGB on a regular basis. The Chair of Governors makes regular visits to school to talk to the Headteacher and other staff about progress and summative data, current national and local issues and to monitor the Single Central Register.
Data, summative and progress, is subject to Governor scrutiny at both FGB and Committee meetings. RAISE online analysis is presented at FGB meetings and comparisons with both local and national schools are made. When looking at our own data, particular scrutiny is placed on pupil progress across all ability groups including SEN, FSM and More Able children. Effective use of pupil premium is monitored regularly.
Governors review all relevant policies throughout the year to ensure that they are up to date and relevant to the school, Department for Education and Hampshire County Council (HCC) requirements.
The Resources Committee drives the Financial Management of the school and ensures that all spending is within the budget. Value for money is a high priority at all times. The Chair of the Resources Committee is a qualified Chartered Accountant. She carries out random financial checks, examines how spending offers value for money and that it is being used to enhance the children’s education.
The Headteacher, members of the Senior Leadership Team (SLT) and one Governor is trained in Safer Recruitment, with one booked to attend a course in November 2021. They ensure that any new appointments meet the schools ethos, values and high aspirations.
Governor Meetings and Governor Training
Governor meetings are well attended, any absences are fully explained and, where approved, formally accepted. Larger committees have a Chair and a Vice-Chair and meet regularly during every term. Governor training is provided by both Hampshire Governor Services and also in-house. All new Governors attend an Induction course and are then advised by the Training and Development Governor which courses are best completed to improve their understanding and performance on the relevant committees. Due account is taken of previous experience by reference to a skills analysis which all Governors complete on joining the FGB. Special emphasis is given to Safeguarding. The governing body will take part in a Whole Governing Body Training (WGBT) session at least once every 12 months.
Health and Safety
Health and Safety has a very high profile at Redlands. Regular Health and Safety walks take place with both staff, Governors and children from the school council. The Health and Safety Committee meets regularly and reports back to the FGB with any accident trends, near misses, safeguarding and coronavirus related issues. We have regular whole of school lockdown exercises and fire drills where set time targets are met.
Friends of Redlands (FoR)
The school is supported by a Parents Group, Friends of Redlands, who raise money and have provided excellent support for many projects at Redlands, including an outdoor sun shade, books for classes and help towards the refurbishment of the school library, to name but a few. Governors fully support Friends of Redlands in any way that they can.
2020/21 was a challenging year where the school was forced to deal with the Coronavirus Pandemic alongside the continued education, health, safety and development of its pupils. The Governing Board has supported the school and its staff in any way it can to provide both face-to-face and virtual learning as well as ensuring the staff’s pastoral needs have been met.
Interim assessment has shown that not only has the school continued to offer an outstanding education for its pupils but also it has moved forward in many key areas. The Governing Board is committed to continuing this educational progress and to offering a safe and happy place to learn.
We want Redlands to continue to be a school that the students, parents, staff and local community can be proud of and the Governing Board will do all that they can to continue to make that a reality and communicate more freely with all its stakeholders.
Iain Ferguson (Chair of Governors)