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Full Governing Body Terms of Reference

Agreed: Autumn 2022

Review: Autumn 2023




  • To act in a strategic role, with a strong focus on the following three core strategic functions:
    • 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 staff; and
    • Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent
  • To ensure all statutory responsibilities are met
  • To act as a corporate body
  • To act with integrity, objectivity and honesty and in the best interests of the school, in accordance with the Code of Conduct
  • To be open about, and prepared to explain, its decisions and actions



  • The Headteacher (ex officio)
  • 3 Parent Governors
  • 1 Local Authority Governor
  • 3 Co-opted Governors
  • 1 Staff Governor



  • The quorum for any full governing body meeting and vote is one half (rounded up to a whole number) of the complete membership, excluding vacancies


Ensuring Clarity of Vision, Ethos and Strategic Direction:

  • To review annually the vision statement and school aims
  • To review annually the school performance against the long term strategic plan
  • To create annually the School Development Plan (SDP)
  • To undertake whole school self-evaluation, identifying strengths and areas for development, set challenging targets and evaluate progress through the SDP
  • To evaluate the views of children, staff, parents/carers and other stakeholders
  • To effectively communicate with key stakeholder groups
  • To support school activities and events
  • To visit the school regularly and develop strong links
  • To account for governing body decisions and actions to all those who have a legitimate interest, including: staff, pupils, parents, local and national government agencies eg. Ofsted
  • To ensure that duties under Safeguarding legislation are effective and comply with the law at all times

Holding the Headteacher to Account:

  • To support and advise the headteacher
  • To challenge the school to drive standards forwards
  • To monitor and evaluate termly the impact of the SDP
  • To explore and discuss academic standards at least once a term
  • To monitor and evaluate termly the overall effectiveness of the provision of education, integrated care and extended services provided by the school
  • To evaluate decisions in the interests of children and standards
  • To work in partnership with the headteacher to develop key policies
  • To ensure that Ash Grange Primary School identifies and meets the needs of every child, promotes high standards of academic and personal development and raises pupil achievement


Overseeing Financial Performance:

  • To ensure that the highest level of achievement and personal development for all pupils is maintained over a sustained period of time by having robust and effective management systems in place to maximise the deployment of staff and the use of resources
  • To evaluate termly the staffing structure to meet all children’s needs
  • To monitor and evaluate termly the financial planning and its alignment to the school improvement priorities
  • To ensure financial stability and the effective management of financial resources



  • To ensure there are clear roles and responsibilities with regard to decision taking and delegation
  • To review annually the decision taking and delegation arrangements



  • At least once a term and as often as necessary
  • The focus of the first termly meeting will be achievement and progress
  • Meetings are convened by the clerk in accordance with the dates agreed by the governing body
  • An agenda will be circulated to all governors by the clerk at least 7 days before the meeting
  • The clerk will ensure that minutes are drawn up, checked by the chair and headteacher and circulated to all governors within 2 weeks of the meeting
  • The minutes will be approved by the governing body and signed by the chair at the next meeting
  • Voting: Any question to be decided at a governing body meeting must be determined by a majority of votes of those governors present and voting. If there is an equal number of votes, the chair (or the person acting as chair provided they are a governor) has a casting vote
  • Any 3 members of the governing body can request a governing body meeting by giving written notice to the clerk that summarises the business to be conducted. The clerk must convene a meeting as soon as is practicable    



  • The Terms of Reference will be reviewed annually by the full governing body


Responsibilities of the Governing Body include:


Achievement of Pupils

  • Ensuring high standards of attainment and progress through effective evaluation of:
    • SATs results, EYFS outcomes
    • Assessment and pupil progress tracking outcomes in all year groups
    • Assessment and pupil progress of children with SEN, looked after children and other vulnerable groups as identified within the school
    • Performance data including: RAISE online, results of KS1 tests, EYFS profile and Value Added data
    • The impact of Pupil Premium funding on narrowing gaps for pupils who generate the funding
    • The impact of sport funding to improve the quality and breadth of PE and sport provision


Quality of Teaching:

  • Ensuring high standards and consistently high expectations of teaching and learning through effective evaluation of a range of evidence including:
    • Observation records (anonymised)
    • Planning (including differentiation and challenge)
    • Marking, assessment and feedback
    • The learning assistant’s role
    • Talking to children about their learning
    • Pupils’ attitudes to all aspects of learning
  • Evaluating the impact of staff appraisal and the effectiveness of strategies for improving teaching
  • Ensuring that Ash Grange Primary School delivers a curriculum that not only meets statutory requirements, but is broad, balanced and provides positive experiences and rich opportunities for high quality learning in order to:
    • Focus on the priorities to ensure that all pupils make excellent progress in reading, writing and maths
    • Promote the mental and physical development of all pupils
    • Promote the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of all pupils
    • Prepare pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life
  • Ensuring that Ash Grange Primary School delivers a coherent and effective strategy for the personal development of all children that includes:
    • Celebrating the personal achievements of all children
    • Championing all aspects of each child’s development
    • Actively encouraging the provision of extra-curricular activities and evaluating their impact
    • Seeking the views of the children via surveys, reports from the School Council, attending meetings of the School Council and talking to children in school when visiting
    • Overseeing the guidance and support given to children and their families
    • Working in partnership with parents/carers


Behaviour and Safety of Pupils:

  • Ensuring children’s attitudes to all aspects of learning are positive and of a consistently high standard across all areas through:
    • Monitoring the implementation of the Behaviour Policy and evaluating its impact
    • Monitoring the implementation of the Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy and evaluating its impact
    • Monitoring the implementation of the Attendance Policy and evaluating its impact
    • Monitoring and evaluating the implementation of the Health & Safety Policy and ensuring that the school undertakes all the legal responsibilities as defined by the policy and government guidelines; ensuring sufficient and appropriate resources are allocated to enable the Health & Safety Policy to be implemented
    • Ensuring that all food provided by the school meets nutritional standards
    • Ensuring that the school has a clear and acceptable uniform policy that is consistently applied across the school
    • Ensuring emergency procedures are in place and that everyone is aware of them
    • Staying up-to-date with government initiatives relating to child protection and safeguarding. health, behaviour and safety


Leadership and Management:

  • Ensuring that leadership at all levels drives the improvement of the school through evaluation of:
    • The impact of staff appraisal and the effectiveness of strategies for improving teaching
    • The link between appraisal and salary progression
    • The coherence and effectiveness of professional development, training and opportunities for promotion
  • Ensuring that leadership at all levels is strong and there is the capacity to bring about further improvement through:
    • Effective succession planning and the development of future leaders
    • Evaluation of the extent to which middle leadership/subject leaders are being developed
    • Developing successful partnerships with other schools, external agencies and the community
    • Developing the skills and knowledge of the governing body to ensure it supports and strengthens the school leadership
  • Developing and maintaining successful strategies for engaging with parents and the community to achieve positive benefits for all, including:
    • Developing and evaluating strategies to actively encourage parental views
    • Reviewing the activities the school undertakes to develop links with the local community through curricular and extra-curricular activities
    • Overseeing the school website, ensuring statutory requirements are met
    • Overseeing production of the school prospectus



  • Ensuring the investment in staff, activities and learning resources is linked to and makes an impact on pupil outcomes by:
    • Working with the headteacher, and the school business manager to decide on how the school’s delegated budget should be spent, setting priorities in accordance with the SDP, the 3 year financial plan and the statutory curriculum requirements laid down by the government
    • Recommending a sound, sustainable, balanced budget
    • Completing the Schools Financial Value Standard (SFVS) and acting on its findings
    • Ensuring that an effective and robust Pay Policy is in place and that the Pay Committee meets at least annually and reports to the governing body
    • Ensuring that the school operates within the terms of the Finance Policy, Delegated Levels of Authority and the Financial Regulations of the County Council



  • Ensuring that the grounds and premises form an attractive, safe and clean environment for the whole school community and that all building and maintenance work needed to maintain the health and safety of the school is prioritised and added to the SDP by:
    • Establishing and reviewing a Building Development Plan, including a rolling refurbishment plan, setting priorities in accordance with the school vision and the SDP
    • Determining the use of school premises outside school sessions, including: extended school provision; community use; lettings and income generation



  • Ensuring the consistent application of key policies by:
    • Monitoring their implementation and evaluating the impact
    • Regular review in accordance with statutory requirements
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