Fair's fair: some ideas for a more just future

12th November 2010 at 00:00

National Governors Association chief executive Emma Knight is quite correct to say that greater autonomy for schools and a dismantling of at least some elements of the accountability agenda established by both of the last two governments will place more emphasis on governors ("Governors' limitations could see autonomy push 'lead to failure'", October 22).

But I am not sure we need to set off on a fruitless hunt for a new army of differently skilled governors. Potential governors are simply not out there and those whose skills we seek are currently under enough pressure in their own professional lives.

As we move into the new Gove-driven world, we need not more of what we have got but a new mindset - for governors, heads, local authorities, etc. The key question is how can we do better governance in an era of fewer resources and the only answer I can see is - as with local authorities in general - to do less better. Governors should focus on strategy and make the key indicators of performance clear and easily accessible.

In other words, get governors off any sense of managerialism and on to more of a business organisation model - the role will be limited but highly effective.

Dr Barry Wratten, Headteacher, Churchill Community Foundation School amp; Sixth Form Centre, North Somerset.

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