On 1 September 2014 Northgate High School became an academy. This was a conversion that the Governors decided to make after consultation with stakeholders and with the agreement of the Secretary of State for Education. We were eligible to convert because of the school’s “good” Ofsted rating and strong record of educational achievement and attainment. We carefully considered the pros and cons of conversion and concluded that balance of advantage for our students, staff and community lay with academy status. We are an independent academy and not part of any chain, and not, therefore, subject to the policies of any external sponsor. Northgate High School is led by itsGoverning Body and its Head teacher.
As Governors our core functions are to:
- ensure clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
- hold the head teacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils;
- oversee the financial performance of the school and make sure its money is well spent.
Our Articles of Association provide for the appointment of a minimum of two parent governors, one staff governor, one governor nominated by the local authority, the headteacher and up to 10 appointed governors ie up to 15 in total. At present we have some vacancies for appointed governors.
The full governing body meets normally meets at least once each term and, in addition, we have a Strategy Committee, Finance Committee, Pay Committee and the Dereham Sixth Form College Committee, as well as groups convened for specific purposes. In addition, individual governors may have special responsibilities in relation, for example, to safeguarding, health and safety and special educational needs.
All governors are volunteers and most have busy work and family commitments. The time that each individual is able to devote to their role as a governor varies – and this is understood. We do, however, expect governors to commit to attending meetings of the full Governing Body on a regular basis and to joining a committee and/or undertaking some other specific role. There are many opportunities to take a close interest in aspects of the school’s work and to visit the school during the working day. Members of staff welcome this kind of engagement from governors and governors also attend school productions, concerts, exhibitions, sporting events, open evenings and award ceremonies.
No formal qualifications are required to be a governor. Training programmes are available to introduce new governors to the role and to guide other governors who wish to explore particular areas in greater depth. Being a governor is a rewarding experience.
If being a governor at Northgate High School is something that might interest you or if you would like to know more, please feel free to contact our Chair of Governors, Mr. Alan Jones, via the School Office on 01362 697033.
Governor Mr. Alan Jones at a Friends’ Evening.