I became a National Leader of Governance in April 2012. I was attracted by the idea of working with the National College, of being able to get training and support from a network of colleagues and to be able to share my own experience and understanding of the role with others. Nearly three years on and I can see the need for the role more than ever. Since 2012 we’ve seen the landscape of education shift around us, and, in an increasingly autonomous system, the importance of the role of governors is being recognised more and more widely, including through the Ofsted framework. The need for governors to be well informed and highly skilled is greater than ever. But while headteachers will usually have professional networks and support in place, this is much rarer with governors and there is a risk we can operate in the silo of our own school and not have the opportunity to share our good practice and learn from others, particularly as the capacity of local authorities to facilitate such things is reducing.
I know there are barriers – we all have limited time and may be struggling to give our own school the time we need, let alone have time to spare to give to the wider system, but this is an enormously important and rewarding role, and I’m continually learning from others and (hopefully) improving my own practice also.
If you’re an experienced chair of governors interested in supporting others, the application window is open again at the moment and you can find out more on the Government website. The application window closes for this cohort on 30th January 2015.