Welcome to the Governors section of Robert Shaw Primary & Nursery School. We do hope that you enjoy browsing through and learning more about the work of the Governors.
Since the school joined Transform Trust in June 2017, we have gone through a transformation in terms of how we govern at Robert Shaw. We have restructured our meetings allowing us to focus on continuous school improvement so that we can help secure the best possible outcomes for our children in terms of their achievements and attainment. We want to ensure that we provide quality first teaching and that our staff team are supported and invested in to ensure that our children experience quality teaching and learning that stretches, engages and nurtures learning. We want children to have the best time and to have fun so that learning becomes a natural part of their lives.
Our 5-year ambition, starting in 2018, is to become a ‘world-class’ school. To do this, we need to have a strategic plan with clear annual milestones plotting our every step. The first of which is to ensure that we embed high expectations and aspirations and that our children at least reach national expectations in terms of their attainment. We can only do this with quality first teaching in every lesson along with support from children and our parent/carer community to continue the learning at home.
Our part in achieving our ambition is to ensure that the School’s leadership is fit for purpose and that we have the right school priorities. We want our school community to share our ambition and have a say in the development of these priorities. As a Governing Board, we will monitor regularly the progress of the school on its performance and we will hold the leadership team to account for this performance. We will ensure that school resources are allocated appropriately that support school priorities and, by working together, we hope that you will share in our ambition.
From September 2019, Rukia Shaffi becomes our Independent Chair with Jill Wilkinson NLG continuing to support. Please click on this link to hear about Rukia’s leadership journey.
Chair of the Robert Shaw Governance Board
Robert Shaw’s Governance Board Members
To become a member of the Governance Board, each individual must meet certain criteria and each year we complete a range of compliance documentation, including declaring any interests we may have, any close relationships with others across the Trust, any other roles whereby there may be a direct or indirect connection, and any third party transactions.
All of which are declared on a register of interests which can be viewed in the document list below.
Chair of Governors
Headteacher of Robert Shaw Primary & Nursery
Headteacher of Burford Primary School
Councillor Audrey Dinnall
Please click on the link below to read about our Governors:
If you would like to contact one of our Governors, please contact Mary Farmer in the first instance: firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Term of Office is for 3 years and this starts from the date of appointment. For most, it was from 1 June 2017. Our agendas are sectioned into 4 key areas:
Part 1: Strategic Governance
Part 2: Financial Governance
Part 3: Stakeholders (Staff, Parents & Community and Pupil Council)
Part 4: Statutory Duties
Please find more information about the work of our Governance Board, by clicking through the tabs below.
What is effective Governance?
“It was so nice to have a visit from the Chair of Governors, as we have never had a visit from a Governor before. It was good for her to see the work we do in Breakfast Club and also have a chat with the children. We hope that the Governors will visit again soon!” Breakfast Club staff member, Spring 2019.
To ensure that we are effective in our roles and meeting the expectations and requirements outlined in the DfE’s Governance Handbook, we undertake a range of training and development along with a lot of reading to keep ourselves up-to-date on the latest legislation and policy development. For more information about the role of school governance, the following are helpful links:
Governance Handbook, Competency Framework and Clerking Competency Framework:
Academies Financial Handbook
As a Governance Board, we have undertaken the following training:
- Governors Leadership Development (INOJI – commissioned through the Trust)
- Chairing at Greater Depth (INOJI) 2018/2019
- Chairs Leadership Development Programme (NCTL)
- Safeguarding (Child Protection, Safer Recruitment, Prevent, FGM, CSE, E-Safety) Data Protection (GDPR)
- Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND)
- Health & Safety
- Conducting a Monitoring Visit
- Performance Management
We have all completed a skills audit which enables us to identify what further training is needed – both for the individual and as a group.
We are also responsible for a number of statutory duties including:
- Ensuring that the school provides a broad and balanced curriculum
- Ensuring that the school complies with the Equality Act, Health & Safety At Work Act and the Employment Act.
- Ensuring that the school complies with the Special Educational Needs and Disability legislation
- Ensuring that we seek and listen to the views of our stakeholders: staff, parents and children. All these groups are represented in our Governance structure.
Jill Wilkinson is our named Safeguarding Governor and she is also the Chair of the Trust’s Guardians Group and undertakes safeguarding reviews for the Trust along with other Trust colleagues.
Snapshot of Governance 2019 – 2021
No-one expected to be dealing with a world pandemic resulting in local and national lockdowns and school closures! We were saddened by the loss of family members that this pandemic brought but along came the vaccine and we are now all hopeful of living with Covid.
2019/2020 and 2020/2021 were both years of unexpected and high challenge, but at Robert Shaw we prevailed. All children were accounted for and even those that were not in school due to isolation, having Covid or stuck abroad – we maintained contact to ensure that our children and their families were safe.
Our staff rose to the challenge of providing a mixture of blended learning – offering virtual and recorded lessons and paper copies. As Governors we also rose to the technology challenge of meeting virtually by Teams or Zoom.
We continued on with our statutory duties and monitoring the school’s performance but our focus was on making sure that the school site, staff and children were safe and that our risk assessments were regularly monitored and updated as legislation and advice changed.
Our focus was also on the well-being our of Headteacher and other senior leaders who were dealing with the unexpected, but who also rose to the challenge. We were also grateful of the support provided by our Trust colleagues during this time. Regular communication and advice was helpful for us as Governors and supported our decision-making processes.
We invested in more technology for our children which added to the laptops provided by the Department for Education.
We also recruited two new Parent Governors!
Additional Covid funding helped with enabling our leaders to gain additional support for those children who were finding it hard learning from home. Balancing the budget was maintained throughout both years.
We are hopeful for a year of non-school closures in 2021/2022.
Snapshot of Governance 2018 – 2019
- · Co-Chairs during 2018/2019, one of which is a National Leader of Governance.
- · Rukia Shaffi was interviewed for our FED programme on her leadership development.
- · New model of strategic governance piloted throughout the year with focused agendas.
- · New long-term vision created for Governors and the School – ‘to become World Class’ over a 5 year plan.
- · School priorities agreed with the involvement of stakeholders.
- · Agreed new curriculum model for whole school.
- · Agreed investment into new technologies – iPads and digital screens.
- · School Council representatives attend ‘Stakeholder’ slot on agendas to report to the Governors and their work throughout the course of the year, including feedback on new curriculum.
- · School performance regularly monitored and challenge where appropriate.
- · Chair interviewed as part of Trust external review for school improvement.
- · Co-Chair attended parents meeting.
- · Chair attended Standards meetings with Trust CEO.
- · Governor present throughout KS2 SATs.
- · Agreed investment into capital projects – phased upgrading of windows.
- · Balanced Budget agreed for 2019-2020.
- · Staffing structure agreed for 2019-2020.
- · Trust support gained for ongoing issue with boiler
- · Agreed investment into capital projects – phased upgrading of windows.
- · Trust and School policies in place.
- · Pupil Premium Allocation, Strategy and Impact Statements reviewed and published.
- · Sports Premium Allocation, Strategy and Impact Statements reviewed and published.
- · Admission Arrangements reviewed, agreed and published.
- · A range of monitoring visits conducted on progress, behaviour and attendance, SEND, Leadership, subject areas, EYFS and safeguarding.
- · Middle and Senior Leaders presented to Trust CEO, Co-Chairs at Standards Meeting.
- · Rukia Shaffi was nominated for the Trust’s ‘Governor of the Year’ Award 2019.
Snapshot of Governance for 2017 – 2018
- New Chair appointed in October 2017 by the Trust.
- Throughout the year, we said farewell to a number of long-serving Governors.
- Long-term vision and school priorities agreed with the involvement of stakeholders.
- School Council representatives attended all Full Governing Body Meetings.
- School performance regularly monitored and challenge where appropriate.
- Chair interviewed as part of Trust external review for school improvement.
- Governor attended parent meeting with Headteacher.
- Chair attended Standards meetings with Trust CEO.
- Governor present throughout KS2 SATs.
- Balanced Budget agreed for 2018-2019.
- Staffing structure agreed for 2018-2019.
- Trust and School policies in place.
- Pupil Premium Allocation, Strategy and Impact Statements reviewed and published.
- Sports Premium Allocation, Strategy and Impact Statements reviewed and published.
- Admission Arrangements reviewed, agreed and published.
- A range of monitoring visits conducted on progress, behaviour and attendance, SEND, Leadership, subject areas, EYFS and safeguarding.
- Middle and Senior Leaders presented to Governing Body.
- Governors more visible in school and attended staff meetings (GDPR) and planning meetings.
- Rukia Shaffi was nominated for the Trust’s ‘Governor of the Year’ Award 2018.
- Full review of Governance with new structure agreed for 2018-2019.
Governance Board Meetings 2020 – 2021
We meet on Tuesdays at 3.30pm for our Governance Board:
- 29th September 2020
- 17th November 2020
- 26th January 2021
- 8th February 2021
- 30th March 2021
- 4th May 2021
- 13th July 2021
In addition, the following meetings will take place:
- Standards Meeting with the Trust CEO – termly
We also undertake termly monitoring visits. Last year, they included a range of visits looking at leadership, safeguarding, SEND, EYFS, behaviour and attendance, progress and attendance, breakfast club and specific subject areas.
All our meetings are clerked by Mary Farmer. Mary is the Trust’s Governance Professional. If you wish to get into contact with any member of the Governance Board, please contact Mary at email@example.com
Attendance Monitoring of Governance Board Meetings
It is also a requirement that we show our attendance at our formal Governance Board meetings. This can be viewed in the key documents section.
Quality Assurance Reviews
Our School does not just rely on its own performance information. They engage with both the Trust and external organisations who come in at different times during the year and undertake a range of different reviews to assess and look at what is happening right across the school. This gives the Governance Board confidence in what we are being told in terms of overall performance of the school and that our children are receiving the best possible learning.