The Governing Body of the school write an annual governance statement which describes how we have fulfilled our responsibilities during the year. We hope you will find it informative and interesting.
Every year the governors work to fulfil three strategic functions:
1. Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction.
2. Holding the head teacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils.
3. Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.
The governing body has a programme of full governing body meetings, committees and monitoring visits to the school which are carefully planned to ensure that we fulfil our statutory obligations as well as support and challenge the school to continued improvement. Governor attendance at all meetings is good and a meeting has never been cancelled because it was not quorate (the number of governors needed to ensure legal decisions can be made.)
The governing board has appointed two new foundation governors in 2019, both of whom bring additional knowledge and skills to the board.
There are a number of key documents that the governors look at regularly.
• The Self-Evaluation Form is the school’s own grading against the current Ofsted criteria. Each section is reviewed in turn over the year and the governors satisfy themselves that they have evidence to back up our current judgements and consider what is needed for further improvement. As part of this cycle, the school’s performance data is scrutinised to ensure that all pupils make good progress. Data is looked at by year groups, subjects and groups of pupils to check the school is doing all it can to help all achieve their potential. Last year’s Ofsted inspection provided a helpful external perspective on the how the school is doing. It confirmed the governing body evaluation of the school as good. This year, governors have been preparing for the introduction of a new OFSTED framework that will be introduced from September 2019.
• As a voluntary controlled Church of England school, we also carry out a self-evaluation of our performance against the SIAMS Self-Evaluation Toolkit for Church of England Schools. In 2018, the school was graded good and this year, we have continued with the new framework.
• The School Improvement Plan identifies the key priorities for the staff and governors to work on each year. The key issues for the plan are decided by staff and governors at the end of the school year. The governors monitor the progress through visits to the school and reports from school leaders to ensure the developments take place. Some of the improvements as a result of this year’s plan include:
• Improved attainment in Maths and English across all year groups;
• Excellent attitudes to learning have a strong and positive impact on success;
• Improved quality of teaching of PE;
• The Schools Financial Value Standard document is a tool which helps the governing body to manage the school’s budget wisely and properly. It contains 23 questions which the Resources Committee regularly review with senior staff. The school is compliant in this area.
The main responsibility for overseeing the financial performance of the school falls to the Resources Committee who work with Mrs Billingham and Mrs Tilney to monitor spending and make sure money is well spent according to the school improvement priorities. Through careful management of the budget, St Augustine’s School is in a stable financial position. This year has seen further improvements to the fabric of the school including the installation of new wall bars in the Hall, new fire doors and windows in the Hall, installation of a new telephone system and upgrades to the photocopier and printers. In addition, the budget has provided a number of exciting activities and support for pupils including Numicon training, access to Achievement for All programmes, teaching assistant training (including a lead role in PE), embedding Clicker 7 and trips to Kidzania (raising aspirations).
Staff met recently to evaluate how the school is doing and to identify the areas for development in 2019-20. The key issues that we will work on are:
• Increase attainment in Maths and English for all groups
• Further develop good mental health; developing responsible, respectful and active citizens
• Enhance the Quality of Education through the curriculum
Finally, I would like to thank those governors who, after many years’ service between them, have stepped down this year; Helen Hicks, Jonathan Bacon, Jade Bryant and Kerry Jones. We are all very grateful for your contribution and support.
We hope this report gives you an insight into the work of the governing body. We value your support and interest. Please look out for updates from the governors in the school newsletter and feel free to talk to any of us. Contact details are also on the website, or just ask in the school office.
Lynn Hainge, Chair of Governors, July 2019