Governing body structure and membership

The effectiveness of a governing body depends on the quality of its governors and the ways in which they work together and with the leaders of their school.

All governing bodies have some choice about how they are structured. It is the structure (the constitution) of governing bodies that determines how many and what type of people govern the school. Each school and academy should publish its governance structure on its website.

School governing bodies in Salford

All maintained school governing bodies must be constituted under the 2012 constitution Regulations by 1 September 2015 and these regulations state that the minimum size is seven governors and the governing body must include:

  • at least two parent governors (elected by the parents and carers of pupils at the school)
  • the headteacher
  • only one staff governor (elected by the staff at the school)
  • only one local authority governor

The faith schools in Salford also have to have foundation governors who are appointed by the relevant faith bodies to make sure that the school's character is preserved and developed.

Governing bodies can also appoint co-opted governors who are people they consider to have the skills the governing body requires to contribute to the effective governance and success of the school.

The legal structure of a governing body is recorded on its Instrument of Government (IOG) and templates for the IOGs for each types of school can be downloaded at the bottom of this page along with the statutory guidance on governing body constitution.

Academies in Salford

An academy trust is a charitable company limited by guarantee. All academy trusts have two layers of governance:

  • The members of the trust, who are akin to shareholders, are the subscribers to its memorandum of association, and any other individuals permitted under its charitable articles of association. Members have a limited financial liability to the trust in the event it is wound up and have the power to appoint and remove trustees; and
  • The trustees, who are responsible for the three core strategic governance functions outlined in section 1. The trustees are also the directors of the charitable company. They are responsible for ensuring the charitable company achieves its objectives, as well as compliance with charity and company law and the academy trust's funding agreement.

In Salford, there are stand alone academies and a multi-academy trust:

  • A stand alone academy is a single legal entity responsible for one academy that has its own articles of association and funding agreement with the Secretary of State.
  • The multi-academy trust is also a single legal entity but its board of trustees is accountable for a number of academies in its chain. This means that an additional layer of governance is possible through the delegation of governance functions to local governing bodies, made up of local governors.

More information about the governance of academies can be found in the school governors' handbook or on the GOV.UK 'become an academy: information for schools' page.

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