Accepted by Governing Body: Spring 2022
Review date: Spring 2025
Governors need to be able to visit from time to time to develop their understanding of the school. These visits enable them to fulfil their statutory responsibility for the conduct of the school. Governors should arrange their visits with the Headteacher, who has responsibility for the day-to-day management of the school. Governors do not have an automatic right of entry into the school.
The Governing body will plan visits to cover a wide range of school work and each visit should have a clear purpose. They do not replace professional inspection or the monitoring and evaluation carried out by the Headteacher.
Visits are undertaken to:
Governors should not pursue any personal agendas or arrive with inflexible, preconceived ideas.
Governors are not to make any judgements about pupil's work, behaviour, any teacher's classroom practice or issues relating to the day to day running of the school. Those are the responsibility of the Headteacher. Governors may observe what is happening and speak with the Headteacher about what they have seen.
Visits should be undertaken only as part of a strategic programme formally organised by the governing body or one of its committees and with approval of the Headteacher.
The Headteacher should be kept informed of, and agree, the subsequent details of the planned visit.
If the visit is to involve any member of staff, then that member of staff must be fully involved in the planning through the appropriate member of the leadership team.
The governor(s) making the visit should make themselves fully acquainted with health and safety procedures, including fire safety, on arrival.
Governors will at all times report to reception upon arrival and follow the procedure for visitors in order to provide a good example for other visitors.
If visiting a classroom, the governor must arrive at the time planned to avoid disrupting the learning process, and follow the agreed purpose of the visit.
Governors must be aware that some teachers may feel nervous or stressful about having a visitor in the classroom. Teachers are welcome to ask governors to take part in the classroom experience and to speak to children about what they are doing. At the end of the visit thank everyone concerned including the children.
Governors should be aware of their behaviour and avoid any implication that they are inspecting which is not the purpose of their visits and monitoring.
After visiting the school the governor(s) should:
Following completion of the agreed monitoring programme the governor should report back to the governing body or monitoring committee as agreed by FGB.
Agree purpose of visit.
Agree a timetable.
Agree when you will discuss the visit with the Headteacher.
Consider practicalities (dress, parking, time of arrival, who to report to, how to make notes, breaks and lunch).
Turn up unannounced.
Introduce yourself to staff and pupils.
Note and praise the positive.
Ask questions to increase understanding.
Remain focused on the purpose of the visit.
Arrive with preconceived ideas.
Interrupt the teacher.
Make professional judgements about staff expertise (governors are not inspectors).
Pursue your own personal agenda/focus on the progress of your own child.
Monopolise the children's or the staff's time.
Thank the teacher for something specific and pupils before leaving.
Compile a report (using the current monitoring form).
Raise any concerns sensitively with the Headteacher prior to publishing with staff.
Leave without talking to staff and Headteacher/Deputy.
The school has an established culture that promotes and enhances the positive mental health of the whole school community, recognising that healthy relationships underpin positive mental health and have a significant impact on learning, health and wellbeing. We champion the expectation that ‘mental health is the individual’s responsibility supported by the whole school community.’