Governing Body Review

Governing Body Review

This page refers to our governing body reviews for schools and academies; though we also do governance reviews for multi academy trusts.


To support your governing body to undertake a critical review of your key responsibilities, identify potential areas for development and support the development of plans to meet these needs. 

This provides a robust impartial review to give the governing body assurance in key areas that it can use to support judgements on the governance of the school. 

A team including Ofsted trained inspectors will provide the critical support and challenge throughout the review.


The three core functions on which the Governing Body should focus are:

  • Ensuring that the vision, ethos and strategic direction of the school are clearly defined
  • Ensuring that the Headteacher performs his/her responsibilities for the educational performance of the school
  • Ensuring the sound, proper and effective use of the school’s financial resources

The review will focus on the following key areas for governors:

1. How governors set the strategic direction of the school

2. Governing Body effectiveness in monitoring:

  • Teaching and learning / measuring progress
  • Safeguarding
  • Finance and HR

The review will include:

  • Key person interviews – Chair, Headteacher and other Governors such as Chairs of Committees
  • Document review:
    • Review sample of the last twelve months Governing Body minutes
    • Review sample of any sub-committee minutes from the last twelve months
  • Review the availability and appropriateness of key policies including Safeguarding
  • Review Governors training and skills and how this fits with their role
  • Review of Financial Management

Review process

1. Initial meeting

Meeting with Headteacher and GB Chair to talk through the approach.

2. Document review

GB effectiveness:

  • Sample minutes from GB and other meetings for previous year
  • Terms of reference for committees
  • Key policies 
  • Governing Body development plan

Teaching and learning:

  • School data presented to governors
  • SEF / school improvement plan
  • Minutes of Curriculum committee


  • Safeguarding policy
  • Legal compliance
  • Link to GB / Committee papers

HR and Finance:

  • Minutes of Resources / HR committee
  • SFVS
  • Scheme of delegation


Are all policies in place and are they regularly reviewed?

  • Evidence of governor input and sign off
  • Do governors have identified responsibilities and what training have they received to enable them to undertake them?

3. On-site interviews

Meetings with:

  • Chair of Governing Body
  • Headteacher
  • Committee chairs / nominated leads

Areas for review:

  • How the governing body have made a difference
  • Teaching and learning / measuring progress
  • Safeguarding
  • Finance

General areas for review:

  • How do you work as a Governing Body?
  • What are your strengths and areas for development?
  • Are you clear on your vision, objectives and key pertinent issues?
  • What are your priorities?
  • How do you measure delivery against your priorities?
  • What training do you provide for governors?
  • What are your clerking arrangements?

4. Self review

  • Audit of governors skills
  • Facilitated Governing Body self-review session to identify strengths and areas for development

5. Final report

6. Feedback and action planning

  • Feedback to the Governing Body against key areas / findings
  • Action planning session with the Governing Body

To find out more, contact us online or call our office on 0844 967 1111.