Plymouth special school granted new powers over its governors
THE GOVERNING Body of Mill Ford Special School in Ernesettle have received a new 'Instrument of Government' after an order was made by Plymouth City Council in the autumn.
The changes mean the school can arrange and adjust its body of governors as it sees fit – particularly in taking on governors who have no children at the school but can offer expertise in certain areas.
Mill Ford School was joint first of the schools in Plymouth to reconstitute its governing body under the new arrangements.
Claire Wills, deputy head at Mill Ford Special School, said: "The Government has changed the constitution of governors and in doing so have made it more flexible in schools.
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"We changed as the joint first school in Plymouth, we have made our governing body fit our needs as a school as opposed to meeting set criteria.
"It's a really good thing for us. We recently advertised for new governors and said we were specifically looking for certain skills. For instance we are in need of some building maintenance so we sought someone with experience in the building sector. Another area we advertised for assistance in was the finance sector.
"By running the governing body this way it helps the school fulfil its needs as opposed to only taking on parents."
Paul Jarvis, chair of the governors, added: "This really is an exciting time for the school's Governing Body.
"Reconstitution, in line with new rules that came into force in September, has enabled the school's Governing Body to ensure we have the right mix of skills and experience to help obtain the best outcomes for the pupils and the school.
"At an extra-ordinary meeting in October, Mill Ford School's Governing Body unanimously agreed to reconstitute. The Governing Body have now received their new "Instrument of Government" and were joint first of schools in Plymouth to achieve this.
"This ensures a stronger governing body, bringing a broader range of expertise, which had been identified by a skills audit of the current governing body."