Martin George

Are we seeing the slow death of the school governor?

The rise of multi-academy trusts has meant that tens of thousands of traditional school governor posts have been lost – with their power and responsibility over schools stripped away. Martin George examines the impact this is having on schools’ community links and ability to recruit volunteers with professional expertise

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They are an army of hundreds of thousands of volunteers, dedicated to improving education in England’s state-funded schools, prepared to offer their skills and free time for nothing.

School governors are, in short, David Cameron’s “Big Society” writ large. But for the past decade – thanks to changes that accelerated rapidly under Mr Cameron’s administrations and still continue today – their numbers have been slashed.

Tes calculations show that the rise of the multi-academy trusts (MATs) has effectively resulted in around 68,000 traditional school governor positions being lost, as the power ...

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