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Clerking / Governance Professional (5)

A background/knowledge of the education system is not required for the role of clerk. However, this would be beneficial. Many administrative roles would have transferrable skills.  Specific knowledge of legislation, terminology, etc, will form part of the induction process.  Support on this will be provided by the team at Shaping Governance.

If you are currently a school governor, then this also provides a good grounding in the role of a clerk.

All Governing Boards need a clerk who will:

  • Work with the Chair of the Board to arrange meetings, including assisting with agendas, sending out invitations and ensuring all required documentation is provided in a timely manner.
  • Attend meetings (usually late afternoon/early evening, for around two hours) to take minutes.  Discussions, challenges, questions and actions should be noted.
  • Produce formal minutes within set timescales & any follow-up actions.
  • Provide administration of governance systems, updating relevant documentation in line with procedures.  
  • Ensure that governor records are up-to-date.
  • Provide advice to governors and the schools on correct governance procedures and how to improve governance.
  • Support the development and performance of the governing board.
  • Building effective relationships with the Board and all related parties.

One of the great things about becoming a self-employed clerk with Shaping Governance is that other than the actual meetings, the work of a clerk can fit around your other commitments.  The total hours per day/week that you will work will depend upon how many schools you clerk for.  

A typical governing board meeting takes a total of approximately 8-10 hours, and this can be split into three sections;

  • Meeting preparation & agenda setting;
  • Attendance at the meeting itself – usually around 2 hours, online or in-person;
  • Write up of minutes and any follow-up actions and updates to records.

There are deadlines around the preparation for meetings and the production of follow-up documentation, but they allow you flexibility around other commitments.

Most governing boards meet between 6-9 times a year.

Clerks need to be highly organised and have the following skills/attributes:

  • Effective organisation & a systematic approach.
  • An eye for detail – and be accurate.
  • Solid technology skills and IT literacy, including Google Drive, MS Office, and Governance platforms (although training is given for the latter).
  • Good communication and relationship-building skills.
  • Able to present information in varying formats.
  • Effective time management and punctuality. 
  • An understanding of the principles of confidentiality.
  • Ability to provide clear, logical and impartial advice.
  • Ability to undertake research.
  • Knowledge of, or willingness to learn, the function of school governance and where to access relevant legislation, statutory guidance, etc.
  • Ability to understand and work within individual school / Trust strategic priorities, values, ethos and culture.
  • Ability to get to meetings, which usually take place in school.

At Shaping Governance, we have an established induction process to help new clerks get up to speed quickly and effectively.  We provide you with all the training you need to be able to use your skills in the role of clerk.  

All information and documentation required for the start-up of your role will be provided.  This includes a full working procedures manual and all required schedules and templates.  Shaping Governance has delivered high-quality clerking services for a number of years, and so there is a well-established process which includes QA of all your documentation prior to release to the client.

There is an office-based central team who will always be on hand to help.  This includes the provision of any client-specific information and a full briefing before the commencement of the clerking duties.

Shaping Governance will allocate a mentor to you when you first begin to provide services.  This will remain in place for as long as needed.

In addition, we run regular clerking briefings, allowing you to meet the full team and discuss best practices, etc. 

Governor Recruitment (1)

If you are interested in becoming a school governor, you can contact us for an informal chat, and we can tell you more about the role, or if you have a school in mind – contact them directly.

Multi-Academy Trusts (2)

In a multi-academy trust, the board of trustees (sometimes known as directors) is legally accountable for the decisions made in all its academies. However, this does not mean the board is required to make them all itself; it can delegate decisions to the CEO and and it is committees or local boards.

Multi-Academy Trust (MAT) is an academy trust that operates more than one academy school. Academy schools are state-funded schools in England which are directly funded by the Department for Education and independent of local authority control.

School Governor (5)

Category: School Governor

Not quite everyone, but in general anyone aged 18 or over can be a governor or trustee (with some exceptions). You don’t have to work in education or have children at the school to be a governor. A governing board is made up of different community stakeholders, which form a diverse group of people, with different skills, experiences and interests.

Category: School Governor

No, the role of a school governor is voluntary. Did you know that there are around 250,000 governors across the country, governing around 27,000 schools?

Category: School Governor

School Governors oversee the leadership and management of a school. They ensure strategy, policy, budgeting, and staffing are organised in the best way possible to ensure the effective running of the school.

Category: School Governor

All Governing Boards have different structures so there is not a simple answer to this. Governing Board meetings are usually around 2 hours long, although some can be longer. As a rule of thumb, you are looking at monthly meetings of 2 hours across the academic year, plus some additional engagement. But as we say all schools are different, so before you commit check with the school.

Category: School Governor

Schools have governors to ensure the effective running of a school and to ensure the headteacher is held to account for doing this.

Shaping Governance (4)

Category: Shaping Governance

Shaping Governance is a leading provider of governance improvement and support services for schools, academies, and multi-academy trusts across the education sector. Our mission is to help schools and trusts thrive by offering professional advice, training, clerking and resources to enhance their governance practices. We are dedicated to promoting excellence in education through effective governance.

Send us an email, and we can arrange a conversation with you to tell you more about how Shaping Governance can help you. Email:

Category: Shaping Governance

Shaping Governance is a leading provider of governance improvement services.  We work with 100s of schools and academies each year and also work in other sectors, ensuring that our support is grounded in what works.  No matter what service you use, you will receive high-quality governance support that makes a positive difference to your practice.  Check out what our customers think on our IMPACT page

Category: Shaping Governance

Shaping Governance has been proven to immediately make a positive impact in all those schools that use us.  Our ‘review and improve’ services have also been cited in Ofsted reports as making a difference.

Shaping Governance is your very own governance improvement partner.

Category: Shaping Governance

Shaping Governance is more than a company name; it’s what we do!  Since 2017, we have been providing a variety of services that target support where needed.  Our appreciative approaches really value what governors do and help them to get the most out of their governing experience.