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Governors

The governing board is made up of elected members of the community, these are voted in by the governing board, parent governors are nominated and votes are taken from parents.  These governors along with the Headteacher are responsible for the management of the school. In executing its responsibility the Governing Body meets regularly in order to address such issues as employment of staff, the school building, financial management, curriculum and assessment, behaviour and discipline. Each year the Governing Board contributes to the School profile which is a report on the work and development of the school.

Any enquiries for the Governing Board should be addressed to:

Mrs Carolyn Wood Co-Chair of Governors or Mrs Jane Bowley Co-Chair of Governors, Howitt Primary Community School, Holmes Street, Heanor, Derbyshire DE75 7FSThe governing body is split into 2 committees, Children and Learning (Mrs Jane Bowley chair) and Resources (Mr Bob Harper chair)

To find out who is on our governing board please click on the link below.

Our Governors 2017-2018

Governors’ Annual Statement

Annual Governance Statement for the Board of Governors of Howitt Primary Community School

November 2017

In accordance with the Government’s requirement for all boards of governors, the three core strategic functions of Howitt Primary Community School’s board are:

  • ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
  • holding the head teacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils, and
  • overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent.The Board of Governors at Howitt Primary Community School was re-constituted in 2016. The 15-strong board includes the Headteacher, one staff governor, six elected parent governors (currently 3 vacancies) and one governor who is appointed by the local authority. The other six members have been co-opted onto the board because, in our opinion, they have the skills required to contribute to the effective governance and ongoing success of the school. On our board, the co-opted members come from a range of backgrounds including teaching and education, personnel, business and building management, finance and Ofsted inspection. In addition, our governing board also includes two associate governors who are currently the two deputy headteachers at the school. They provide a balanced overview and “hands-on” information about the whole school; they have no voting rights. We also have three committees that support the work of the school:
  • The full board meets six times a year to discuss formal business however one of these meetings is allocated to governor training. The final item on every agenda is “What have we done at this meeting to improve outcomes for children?”
  • Governance arrangements
  • Resources Committee with responsibility for finance and budget issues (including pay and performance), staffing and premises.
  • Children and Learning Committee that looks at the curriculum, the learning experiences and pupil progress.
  • Headteacher Performance Management Committee with responsibility for setting and reviewing objectives for the Headteacher. They meet at least three times a year and one of these meetings includes an external adviser.

Attendance record of governors

Howitt Primary Community School’s Board of Governors is a committed team and attendance at meetings is a priority for all governors. A number of governors devote much of their spare time to the school attending events, observing classes, meeting with teachers and pupils and speaking with external inspectors to ensure the school continues to improve. We also undergo relevant training in many aspects of school life e.g. induction, finance, safeguarding and data analysis.

The work that we have done on our committees and in the governing body

All schools introduced the Government’s National Curriculum in September 2014. Our school continues to implement the changes in a very creative way that encourages pupil progress, high standards of attainment, a love of learning and a thirst for knowledge. The new curriculum has been fully embedded throughout the school over the last three years and is continually being effectively monitored and refined to ensure that it meets the needs of our children and reflects further Government changes to the curriculum and assessment procedures.

At the start of each academic year governors have attend an after-school meeting that establishes the school’s vision in the light of previous achievements and the way forward. This meeting involves all staff, pupils, parents, governors and members of the local community. We have also attended Homework project showcase events, concerts, performances and celebration assemblies.

A revised code of practice for supporting children with special educational needs (SEND) was published during the summer of 2014 and over the last three years, the school has continued to implement the key changes and further developments. Governors regularly review the school’s policy that now places greater emphasis on the partnership between school and parents/carers and builds on our existing good practice. This policy is now fully embedded across the school and all teachers and members of SLT are familiar with further changes and developments. Governors liaise regularly with the school SEND co-ordinator (SENCO).

We acknowledge that governors have a key role to play in keeping children safe at school. We considered and approved a new policy for safeguarding children in line with the statutory framework, which we will continually monitor and review annually, following the ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ document revised in September 2017. Safeguarding is an agenda item on all governing body meetings and governors receive an annual report on the outcomes of the Safeguarding audit carried out by the Safeguarding Lead teacher. This informs the annual Safeguarding action plan. There is a named Safeguarding governor on our board who liaises regularly with the Safeguarding Lead teacher.

Governors have been monitoring how the government’s Pupil Premium funding is being spent to help narrow the achievement gap between disadvantaged children and their peers. The appointed link governor for Pupil Premium sits on the Children and Learning Committee and all governors have been updated on how a variety of interventions are helping pupils reach their potential. We have also supported the Headteacher in developing the role of an Interventions Lead teacher who works closely with the SENCO. This teacher also monitors the impact of Pupil Premium funding on the outcomes of disadvantaged children. We have responded positively to the school’s Pupil Premium review (November 2016) and, as a result, the follow up review in September 2017 was very positive. We have published a Pupil Premium Strategy on our website that clearly identifies barriers to learning and how the Pupil Premium funding is to be used to address these.

The Resources Committee has agreed a new three year budget plan and reports that the school’s finances are currently healthy. We are aware that, looking forward, there may well be some tough decisions to be made to achieve a balanced budget. This year this committee supported the Headteacher in appointing new staff, one of whom is a newly qualified teacher and the other has joined the office staff. This committee ensures the school site is well maintained and secure. A successful health and safety audit has been carried out. This year the school has undergone a complete internal refurbishment and decoration as well as improving the outdoor learning spaces and Key Stage 1 playground. Parents, staff and governors have given of their time to support some of the improvements to the outdoor learning environment. The indoor learning environment has also been a focus for improvement and staff have been supported with relevant training and coaching from the school’s Learning Environment Lead teacher.

The Children and Learning Committee has considered and agreed a number of strategic policies relating to how subjects are taught and how pupil progress is evaluated under the new curriculum. This committee also receives regular verbal and written reports (position statements) from subject leaders to outline progress with their action plans and their next steps. Subject leaders values this level of support and challenge.

This year governors are proud of the fact that the school now offers effective provision for two-year olds linked to our successful nursery provision. We currently support eight two-year olds and have a waiting list. Our nursery is a lively and welcoming environment that uses every opportunity to extend learning and prepare children to be “school ready”.

Minutes of full Board of Governors and committee meetings are public documents. If you would like to see any of the minutes, please ask at the school office.

Dates of future board and committee meetings are available.

Future plans for governors

During the autumn term of the 2017/18 school year, we are working with the headteacher and the school’s senior leadership team to set the school’s improvement plan. This sets out our priorities for the year ahead, linked to our vision meeting earlier in September.

We will continue to monitor the curriculum and ensure it is further developed throughout the school with a continuing emphasis on the learning environment and raising standards in writing.

Securing high standards for all our children remains our ultimate goal and we will continue to work closely with teaching staff to ensure Pupil Premium funding is spent effectively and that interventions for disadvantaged children have a positive impact on their achievements and continue to narrow gaps.

We are keen to build on the success of our two-year old provision and work alongside the headteacher to investigate wrap-around care.

Howitt Primary Community School is a thriving school and this year we welcome our cohort of 45 children in the Reception year bringing our current roll to 411.

Governors will monitor the impact of job-share posts on standards and provision and ensure measures are in place to support teachers to continue to deliver excellent lessons that promote a love of learning.

Safeguarding children will remain a priority and our focus will be on emotional and mental wellbeing, online safety and the Prevent strategy.

We will continue to strengthen our links with the community by showcasing our pupils’ talents for sports and music outside school. We have a vibrant school choir and an established community choir.

We will continue to prepare our children for a life in Modern Britain by promoting the British values of democracy, the law, liberty, respect and tolerance as set down by the government. These sit alongside our own school principles of creativity, curiosity, independence, respect, co-operation and resilience.

How you can contact the governing body

We always welcome suggestions, feedback and ideas from parents and carers. Please contact the Co-Chairs of Governors, Mrs Jane Bowley and Mrs Carolyn Wood, via the school office.

 

November 2017

Dear Parents/Carers

We are delighted to introduce ourselves as the recently appointed Co-Chairs of the Governor Board of Howitt Primary Community School. We both have an extensive background in education, leadership and management and have been involved with this school for a number of years in various ways.

We are proud of the school and of how hard the staff work to provide your children with meaningful and varied experiences to move them along their learning journey and prepare them for life in the community.

This year the school has undergone a complete internal refurbishment and decoration as well as improving the outdoor learning spaces and Key Stage 1 playground. Parents, staff and governors have given of their time to support some of the improvements to the outdoor learning environment. The indoor learning environment has also been a focus for improvement and staff have been supported with relevant training and coaching from the school’s Learning Environment Lead teacher.

This year governors are proud of the fact that the school now offers effective provision for two-year olds linked to our successful nursery provision. We currently support eight two-year olds and have a waiting list. Our nursery is a lively and welcoming environment that uses every opportunity to extend learning and prepare children to be “school ready”.

Early in September we held a meeting to discuss the ‘School Vision’ for the coming year along with our five-year dream. This was organised by Mrs Rhodes (deputy Headteacher) and the school council, staff, governors and other members of the community gave their views. There is a large poster on display that shows our aims for the future and our past achievements; this is also on the school website.

Many good ideas were put forward so please take a look and feel free to contact school if you have any further ideas to be included.

We continue to be very impressed with the involvement of parents in our school, particularly with the development of the creative curriculum. Our homework project showcase events are always well attended, as are our concerts and performances that give our children a chance to shine.

If anyone wishes to contact us, we can be contacted via the school office.

Regards

Jane Bowley & Carolyn Wood

Co-Chairs of Governors