The Council of Governors (CoG) reports to the members of the Alice Smith Schools Association (ASSA) annually at its AGM, held in February each year. In addition, the Council of Governors meets approximately twice a term to discuss strategic matters of the school.
1. Membership in the Subcommittees
The Council is supported by six subcommittees: Education, Governance, Finance, Master Plan (infrastructure), Development and Head of School Evaluation.
2. The Subcommittees in the Council
To support the strategic work of the Council. It will focus on short and long-term coordinated educational planning for the benefit of both current and future children in the school in these key areas:
- Academic Achievement
- Quality of learning and teaching
The group will:
- Act as a sounding board and provide feedback to school leadership.
- Recommend areas for action and development.
- Recommend a strategic academic agenda.
- Bring strategic academic agenda items and recommendations to the full council for discussion and adoption.
- Review and make recommendations to the Council of Governors on long-range financial projections that reflect the aims, strategic plans and goals of ASSA.
- Review and make recommendations to the Council of Governors on annual budgets, including proposed fees, in light of current School improvement plans, long-range plans and any other factors that may be relevant.
- Ensure that the capital structure required to support long-range plans and annual budgets is consistent with the aims, rules and regulations of ASSA and makes best use of the Associations resources and capabilities.
- Ensure that long range plans and annual budgets include appropriate performance tracking matrices, monitor these and report to the Council of Governors on them as appropriate.
- Review requests for expenditure out with approved budgets or requests to reallocate budgets and make recommendations to the Council of Governors on approval.
- Ensure a process that result in a timely and accurate preparation of interim and full year financial statements, appropriate financial analysis and reporting on these and report to the Council of Governors on the same.
- Review proposed appointment of the external auditor with the ELT and make recommendations to the Council of Governors as necessary.
- Review financial and accounting policies in force from time to time and ensure that these are consistent with aims of ASSA and recognised accounting standards.
- Ensure the implementation of internal controls and financial operating policies and procedures that minimize the risk of loss to ASSA.
- Specifically ensure the policy on delegated authority is appropriate to safeguard the assets of ASSA while allowing the ELT to effectively manage the day-to-day operations of the School within approved budgets.
- Advise the Council of Governors, other Council Sub-Committees and/or the ELT on the financial viability of initiatives proposed or under consideration by them.
To review regularly and make recommendations to the Council of Governors (CoG) on steps required to ensure that:
- The CoG is populated with the best and most effective people (the function of the traditional nominating committee).
- New governors are welcomed and become effective as soon as possible.
- All governors are thoroughly trained.
- The CoG conducts a rigorous annual self-evaluation and acts on the outcomes.
- The CoG maintains continuous and effective communication with its community.
- The CoG safeguards, updates and passes on its institutional knowledge and experience.
iv. Master Plan
- To monitor and provide consultative assistance for implementation and construction of the School’s Master plan across both school campuses.
- To ensure that the school has in place appropriate procedures for estimating cost, tendering competitively, administering and managing projects.
- To ensure construction of new facilities is in accordance with the School’s Master plan adopted and approved by the School.
- To report to the Council of Governors on implementation of the Master plan and coordinate with school leadership on communication with the Parent Body.
- To monitor the cost of implementation of the Master plan, ensuring that commitments made are within budget.
- To monitor variations to commitments made to validate necessity and impact on cost.
- To ensure that projects are completed safely, to quality, within budget and on time.
- To monitor implementation with respect to key issues, for example issues of health and safety, operating cost and environmental sustainability.
- To offer comment on, and advice to School Leadership on implementation of the Master plan.
- To serve as a check and balance to the decisions of School Leadership.
- To confirm on behalf of the Council of Governors, tenders submitted.
- To confirm the appointment of professional consultants that have not been previously appointed where the scope of their work is likely to be in excess of RM500,000.
- To review and update the Terms of Reference for the Committee as it deems necessary for confirmation by the Council of Governors.
- To initiate discussion and support the full Council with strategic decision-making in relation to aims identified in the strategic themes of Our partnerships and Our sustainability in the Strategic Plan 2015-2020.
- The committee will bring strategic agenda items, often with recommendations for further action or implementation, to the Council for their deeper discussion and consideration in detail.
vi. Head of School Evaluation Subcommittee (HoSEC)
- The Head of School is the sole appointee of the Council of Governors. As an essential function of school governance, it is the direct responsibility of the Council to evaluate the Head of School.
- The entire Council will have input into both setting goals and annual evaluation.
- A select committee-Head of School Evaluation Subcommittee represents the Council and is responsible for the setting of goals and evaluation.
- The evaluation process follows an annual cycle.
Governors are bound by a Code of Conduct that explicitly states all governors should have a long-term strategic view, and be bound by the principle of collective responsibility on decisions made at Council-level. Governors also self-evaluate their performance in line with UK guidelines.
Trustee and ordinary governors have the same level of responsibility. Trustee governors were the original foundation of ASSA, and are a mean of ensuring some continuity of strategic view, in what is often a very transient body. Ordinary Governors are nominated and elected directly from the members of ASSA, and can serve for up to three consecutive terms.
To contact the Council, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. To know more about the Council, please click here.
Click here for this week's full issue - 3rd November 2017