LEAs have a good record of appointing effective school governors but have difficulty filling the places. So do governing bodies when it comes to co-options. It would be interesting to discover how many parent governors are actually elected and not appointed.
The LGA is conducting a survey on vacancies and how LEAs recruit and appoint governors.
Being a member of political party is not a disadvantage to being a school governor and LEA-appointed governors have a clear duty to the school.
However, they also represent the local authority in the same way parents and staff represent their electorate. The only people answerable to themselves are those which the governing body itself appoints - a practice which is the antithesis of democracy.
Increasingly LEAs advertise and interview appointees and can remove such people for good reason. There is not the same sanction for any other governor.
Graham Lane Chair of education committee Newham Council 110 Humberstone Road, London E13