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How to get involved in our governance

We actively seek individuals who are passionate about education and want to contribute to the governance of our schools. As a school governor or trustee, you will have a unique opportunity to make a tangible difference in the lives of children and young people within your community.

I think that it’s important for people outside of education to become governors because you have so many skills that could be useful… it’s bringing those skills inside and you give back to the community.

Tim McSweeney, Community Governor

Volunteering as a school governor or trustee can be both challenging and rewarding. Each of the schools in our Trust requires dedicated governing body members who can help unlock their full potential by setting strategic vision and direction, approving budgets, and holding senior leadership teams accountable.

Who can become a governor or trustee?

There are no specific qualifications for the role, if you are passionate about your community and making a difference you will be qualified to become a Governor or Trustee. Every governing board needs a balance of knowledge, skills, and experiences. You don’t need a background in education or previous experience being a governor, whatever your background, your skills could help transform a school.

However, you must be over 18 to be a school governor, but you don’t have to be a parent with a child at the school. The important qualities for being a school governor are enthusiasm, commitment, the ability to work in a team, and a desire to ensure children receive the best possible education.

A typical Board of Governors should be representative of people from the local community and will have a range of different skills, knowledge, and experience. Governors do not need to be educational experts but should be supportive of the ethos of the school and align with the Trust’s values. The business of the school is progressed by the whole Local Governing Body (LGB) working together as a team in the best interests of the children and young people attending the school.

We welcome applications for school governor positions from all sections of the community regardless of background, religious belief, gender, disability, ethnic origin, political opinion, age, marital status, sexual orientation, or whether or not you have dependents.

Being a school governor is an opportunity to help others and develop skills.

Being a governor has had a massive impact on me and my career, it’s given me lots of skills that I didn’t have before…

Diana Sewell, Parent Governor

What does a school governor do?

Governors work through their school as a collective board as volunteers to provide strategic leadership to our school. A strong governing body ensures robust debate, which in turn leads to better educational outcomes for children.

Governors have three key responsibilities, all with the aim of driving school improvement:

  1. Provide strategic direction, working with parents, pupils, and staff, to provide a vision, ethos, and strategic direction for our school;
  2. Hold the headteacher to account for the performance of the school, its pupils, and staff;
  3. Ensure the finances of the school are well managed.

Trustees do a similar role; however, they fulfil these duties on a Trust-wide level. They are responsible for ensuring the Trust allocates resources to the right places, while implementing a strategy for the running of all schools within the network and supporting the schools where required.

To explain more about school governance the National Governance Association (NGA) has created a short video:

Watch on YouTube

Who cannot be a school governor?

You will not be eligible to be a school governor if you…

  • already hold 3 school governor posts (unless there are exceptional circumstances approved by the Department of Education);
  • are adjudged bankrupt or under a composition arrangement with your creditors or you are subject to a Bankruptcy Restrictions Order (BRO);
  • are applying for a post in a school where you are employed;
  • are applying for a post in a school and you have a financial interest in the supply of goods or services to that school;
  • are applying for a post in a school that is registered by law as a company limited by guarantee, and you are disqualified by law from being a company director. (NB All grant-maintained integrated schools and some voluntary grammar schools are registered as companies limited by guarantee);
  • have been convicted within the previous 5 years or any time thereafter of any offence with a sentence of imprisonment (whether suspended or not) for a period of not less than 3 months without the option of a fine; or
  • are applying for a post in a school that is registered as a charity and you are disqualified under Article 86 of the Charities Act (NI) 2008 from being a trustee of that charity.

Interested in becoming a governor?

Yes, I am interested

That's fantastic, we invite you to explore our current governor vacancies by following the link at the bottom of this page, from these vacancy posts you will be able to apply. Together, we can work towards providing the highest quality education to our pupils.

I’m interested but there aren't any vacancies available

Sorry that there aren't any vacancies available. However, we are always seeking skilled and enthusiastic individuals who are committed to making a positive impact so if you can please contact us and leave your details we will get in touch when a suitable vacancy becomes available.

I’m interested but I haven't had any previous experience

Don't worry if you haven't any previous experience, we provided training and support through the NGA and our internal central trust team.

I’m interested but need more information

Not to worry, if you have unanswered questions you can contact us and we'll do our best to help. In the meantime, if you haven't already, it may help to visit the page about our governance structure.

Governance vacancies in our trust

Watch on YouTube