Measuring the IMPACT of Governance

Impact is something that I know quite a bit about, so much so that I named my company after it – Insight to Impact!  Impact is why I set up my company; I need to see that what I do makes a positive difference, so I wanted to do things my way.  All of our […]


Have you ever been to a Governing Board meeting and thought you were on a different planet?  I work supporting governance improvement across many sectors and know how the constant use of acronyms can lead to vagueness, confusion, and disengaged governors. Those school governors will know that you can’t get through a meeting without someone […]

Transparency in Governance

Buzzword or Byword? How transparent is your governance? Transparency, in a governance context, means honesty and openness, with transparency and accountability generally considered as the two main pillars of good governance. So given the importance of transparency, I needed it to feature in my Advent Calendar looking at tips for good governance. Transparency is a principle […]

Financial Oversight

School Governors have three core roles.  We have already explored earlier this month the first two, and now is the turn of Financial Probity. As Governors, we have responsibility for important financial decisions in our school, and we are ultimately answerable to parents and the wider community for how we use our resources. This is […]

Governing in Special Schools

In addition to responsibilities and accountabilities for educating children in Special Schools, the Governors of Residential Special Schools, have an additional set of social care responsibilities for the accommodation that they provide. The National Minimum Standards for Residential Special Schools – originally published under the Children Act 1989 as amended by the Care Standards Act […]

Creating Whole Trust DNA

Two of the fundamental ingredients in the success of any governance structure are relationships and communication.  When they are lacking, boards lack ambition, drive, and cohesiveness. I have been fortunate to work with many Trusts and even the Department for Education to create governance structures from scratch or refine existing ones and know that my […]

Distributed Governance – creating your own Governance Jigsaw©

Could distributing your governance load be the answer to improving board effectiveness and outcomes for pupils? Absolutely! Nationally, there are over 250,000 Governors in state-funded schools whose volunteering is potentially worth millions, if not billions, to the school community. Whilst many governors give a lot of their time, which according to the National Governance Association* […]

Governor Wellbeing – learning a new skill

As Governors, we know how important learning is to children.  We place a great deal of effort in holding leaders to account to ensure that children in our schools develop the right skills, knowledge and experience to help them achieve. But, just as children in our schools need to learn, research shows that if we […]

Can SOAR’ing Improve Governance?

This week in our Shaping Governance Appreciative Saturday Series, I’m going to focus on a tool that I use all of the time when I need to do a bit of thinking or solution development. But first, let’s think about being appreciative. As an improvement approach, ‘appreciative’ planning stems from the early work of David […]

Holding Executive Leaders to Account

The second of the three core roles of a School Governor, and it’s a biggie! It’s one of the areas that I cover for Governors when I run Shaping Governance sessions with them. It’s usually an area that Governors are either good or relatively poor at and is often a misunderstood area.  Governors may not […]