As festive tunes fill the airwaves as the end of term rapidly approaches, chances are you will hear the opening line to John Lennon’s ‘Happy Xmas’ several hundred times:
“So this is Christmas…and what have you done?”
As a school governor, many answers to this question could spring to mind, whether challenging schools around improving their student outcomes, supporting frazzled headteachers and staff, stabilising financial situations or increasing diversity on the governing board – there are many areas where governors use their skills and experience to contribute towards such achievements. This year all governors and trustees across the country will have a resoundingly positive answer to Lennon’s question!
Governors and trustees play a vital role in leading schools as they set the strategic vision and direction, approve the budget, and hold the senior leadership team to account. Our surveys show that the overwhelming driver of governor volunteers remains the desire to make a difference for the children and young people in their communities. At this time of year, and particularly this last year, that rewarding feeling that comes from volunteering in education and ‘making this difference’ should rightly sparkle like the star atop the Christmas tree.
The New Year will continue to bring a fast changing picture of what schools will face in the wake of the pandemic and challenges certainly lie ahead. Governors will already be thinking of the strategic challenges that could be on the horizon, such as maintaining normality for children during the pandemic, resumed Ofsted inspections, exams/ SATs, and overcoming COVID-related teaching challenges.
Until then, there is a chance to reset and take a breath. Christmas is the season for giving, and we would like to send a huge festive thank you to every brilliant governor who has given their time and expertise to help schools negotiate the incredible challenges of the last 12 months. You have helped to shape the lives of the next generation by ensuring schools deliver the best experience for children and young people in local communities. Thank you for making a difference. From all of us here at Inspiring Governance, we wish you as many mince pies as you can manage and a very peaceful and restful Christmas break.
To find out more about the role of school governor, read all about it here, and keep your eyes peeled for our new campaign launching in the new year.