The pain of sudden loss

1st June 2001 at 01:00
IS it true we are going to lose two of our local education authority governors again? We've only just got them and, to our delight, the authority went outside the party networks to find them, because their own faithful are over-extended. I can't believe it.

Well, don't. It's only a proposal - part of a series on which consultation has just come to an end. I know that many people have objected to making governing bodies smaller again so soon, especially as some may have recruited with difficulty.

In any case, the change, even if it happens, is unlikely to curtail the period of office of governors in post.

It is very good if the 1999 additions caused some LEAs to be less political in their choices, if only because party activists are sometimes too busy to give time to the school.

A headteacherof a comprehensive in another LEA is a parent governor of our school and has been suggested as a possible chair next time round. Is this legal? Our head would welcome it. This is a very big urban comprehensive.

It's not illegal. Whether it is desirable I'm less sure, as I know very well what the workload both of a head and a chair in a large school is like and it would really be an exceptional person who could even contemplate it, at least in a school where the governing body is working properly. And what about the day-time commitments?

Apart from this, you need to be very sure that your chair will represent the whole governing body and its distinctive role - again it would be an exceptional person who did not become too close to the head, which would not be good for either in the long run.

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