Annual Governance Statement – January 2017

Downs View Infant School Annual Governance Statement

January 2017

We are very pleased to report on the governor focus for 2016 and the planned next steps for 2017. We want to ensure that our pupils progress appropriately in their education and to ensure that we all adhere to Downs View Values. The Governing Body recognises for this to happen, the children must be supported by a well led, professional and enthusiastic staff working together in a positive and safe environment. The Governing Body has a good working relationship with the Headteacher and we have been working to deliver the Key priorities identified in the School Plan.

Governance Organisation & Arrangements:

Since reconstitution in September 2014, the Governing Body of Downs View Infant School appointed six new governors and five governors have been re-elected. The Governing Body meet 10 times a year. Where possible, governors have been and will be recruited to match skills identified to provide effective governance of the school.  The skills and experience of the current members and their respective business/community interests are listed on the school website, along with a profile of each individual governor.  The skills audit is currently being updated as part of an exercise to map and share the skills and experience of all of the governors.  The skills audit is required to be reviewed and updated on an annual basis.

We currently have one governor vacancy. Details of governor’s attendance at meetings are updated regularly on the school website.

The Governing Body have three core strategic functions which are:

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction

Governors along with all staff set the school’s strategic framework, identified key priorities and have monitored progress against success criteria. We prepare reports to identify areas of strength, and areas for development in relation to school improvement priorities and milestones. Governors have high expectations of attitudes to learning and positive behaviour in the school and strive to ensure the wellbeing of staff and children.

  • Holding senior leaders to account for the educational performance and achievement of the school and all its pupils

Governors provide challenge and hold the senior leadership to account for improving the quality of teaching and learning and school performance. We do this through questioning the Headteacher and analysing data on children’s progress during Governing Body meetings and governor monitoring visits. We also hold the Headteacher to account for the performance management of teachers and teaching assistants. Governors with the Educational Improvement Partner conduct the Headteacher’s annual appraisal and set the objectives for the following year. 

  • Overseeing the financial management of the school and making sure that its money is effectively and appropriately spent


Governors receive a financial report from the Business Manager at each Governing Body meeting and we discuss the budget and ensure the school is makes efficient use of its budget and provides best value for money.

Each year the Governing Body considers:-

  • Standards of attainment and progress of all children
  • Attendance and punctuality
  • Staffing
  • Finance
  • Health and Safety
  • Regular Reviews School Development Plan and the School’s Self Evaluation (SEF)
  • Monitors the implementation and impact of Pupil Premium and Sports Funding and statutory policies across the school.

What have governors done during 2016:

  • Governors were successful in gaining GOVERNOR MARK, a national quality accreditation award which recognises excellence in school governance.
  • Governors scrutinised data made available and verbal presentations followed by question and answer sessions. We were assured that expectations were high and measures were in place to maximise opportunities to learn and make progress, so the school achieves the best possible outcomes for every pupil. The school’s strong focus on disadvantaged pupils’ achievement has eliminated the difference between pupil premium children and non-disadvantaged nationally in EYFS in 2016.
  • The Chair met with the School Improvement Partner who enjoys visiting the school and she was impressed by the school’s progress.
  • Dealing with the challenge of the implementation of the new National Curriculum and the introduction of assessment without levels. Governors have come to understand the impact of the changed content in the curriculum for each year group and the demands this places on teaching and learning processes. School data shows 100% good teaching with 58% outstanding.
  • Governors reviewed statutory policies due for renewal and ensured polices complied with the Department for Education requirements and Local Authority recommended list.
  • Governors have monitored the school during numerous focused visits to the school and provided feedback reports to all governors.
  • Governors have all been updating their knowledge, understanding and competence with regard to changed safeguarding and anti-radicalisation statutory requirements.
  • Several members of the governing body have been trained in financial management to ensure that the budget is managed effectively.
  • All governors have reviewed and updated their Enhanced DBS checks to ensure that these meet the new requirements which came into effect in September 2016.

Foci for Governance in  2017 

  • To closely monitor areas for improvement identified in the School Plan
  • Supporting/challenging the improvement of (subject) outcomes
  • The use of the Pupil Premium funding and its impact on pupil progress
  • Increased understanding of national processes for assessment of progress and attainment
  • Raising the profile of governors and their work with pupils, parents and the wider community
  • Reviewing performance and training of governors


Felicity Moore

Chair of Governors

January 2017

Download the Report