HE School governor - It's not just business that's risky

10th October 2008 at 01:00

Most organisations have a risk register, but while risk assessments are common in schools, registers are not.

A good risk register sets out the main dangers faced by an organisation. Often in business these are financial, but it can include anything that would have an impact on the business.

Developing such a risk register can minimise threats to a school's performance. So what should you include in it? Of course, the budget is a risk - an overspend or some projected income not arriving - but there are other, just as important dangers.

Some risk registers have complex scoring systems, but I believe in keeping it simple. Anything too complicated will probably be more trouble than it's worth. It's best to focus on rating the impact of something happening as very high, high, low or very low and the likelihood of something happening as very likely, likely, not very likely or highly unlikely. So, for example, the school burning down would have a major impact, but is unlikely.

The register is only any good, however, if it includes actions to mitigate likelihood and if it is monitored regularly by governors. For instance, if most of the senior management team retire at the same time, there's likely to be a pretty serious impact on the performance of the school. Good succession planning will mitigate this risk and reduce the impact on the school's performance.

Of course, you can't eliminate risks entirely, but a good register will manage them.

Alan Wells, Chair of governors at a north-east London primary.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now