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School Governance - who cares?

SchoolGovernance DBTSpring2017


One of the biggest groups of volunteers in Britain is school governors. Currently the number is around 30,000. They spend hours of their time each year reading and writing reports, attending training in specific areas, attending meetings and visiting school. So, how does that affect you? Lillian Berry, a former teacher who is now Chair of Governors at a Bolton primary school, outlines the importance of the role, and urges more of us to take it on.

We are all involved and buy into the work of schools, be it with our own children, grandchildren or those in our community. Public money funds most schools, necessitating openness and transparency in its use, which is one of three reasons that governors exist. The other two reasons are to monitor the curriculum and to challenge the processes and leadership that run the school on a daily operational basis.


Some of the best school governors I have known have been ordinary people who have one common trait: a passion for education. Within this passion is a desire to see education at its best delivered to all and to equip the following generation with skills and attitudes that will carry them through their lives. Children and young people can discover the ability to be persistent, to learn how to learn, to work in a team, to understand themselves and the world we all share and to care for others. This is a great curriculum that sounds very like the passion of another great teacher — Jesus.


Since early times, Christians have been interested in education for all. Sharing skills that enable personal growth is at the core of this. The first Christian schools were for the poor unable to pay for education. Now, because of benefactors like Lord Shaftesbury and many others, education is a right for all. The Christian faith tells us to be like Jesus. We are his hands and his feet in this generation; wherever we are we bring salt and light.


Long-serving governors tend to be members of a faith who realise the importance and opportunity to serve the larger community. I started by helping in art lessons, then gardening in the school grounds, then setting seed at home to bring in young plants for children to plant in school gardens. The opportunities to share your interests and skills are endless.


Read the full article in the Spring 2017 issue of Don Bosco Today (pages 24-27)

Last modified on Wednesday, 24 May 2017 14:38


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