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Reviews of Governance

External Review of Governance

An external review of governance involves approximately 3 days of governing board and review team joint commitment (over a period of several weeks) and also includes a follow-up visit to review impact and governing board progress at 4-6 months post-review.



To support the governing board in moving forward from Ofsted recommendations and/or a facilitated self review of governance resulting in an action plan that the governing board will own.

Stage 1: Format and agree review process and conduct desktop analysis (approximately 3 weeks)

Prior to the 'review day'; the review team will liase with the governing board and its governance professional/clerk to obtain information and documentation enabling the reviewers to conduct a desktop analysis of the governing board’s systems and processes, and to identify key focus areas for the review.  The review team may also request that a reviewer attends a governing board meeting as an observer.


Timescale:  we will request documentation to be received at least fourteen days prior to the 'review day'.

Documentation to be requested is likely to include:

  • Governing board membership (including information on the roles delegated to individuals - e.g. safeguarding governor) 
  • Committee structure, membership and terms of reference, for any committees
  • Part I minutes for the most recent year of meetings (FGB and committee)
  • One example of the Headteacher's report
  • Summary of School Development Plan (or similar)
  • Policy review schedule
  • Governor training records / information regarding any recent governing board self-evaluation and/or training undertaken 
  • A completed impact statement for each governor (template is available to download below)

Other documentation may be requested by the review team and/or will be obtained from the school's website.

Stage 2: The review day

On this day, which will usually take place in-school, the review team will hold meetings with as many governors as possible including the chair, vice-chair, headteacher and safeguarding governor.  The review team will also typically meet with the governance professional/clerk.  Other meetings will be scheduled with individual governors (ie in relation to designated roles) and/or in groups/committees - as will be confirmed by the review team following its desktop analysis of documentation and processes of the governing board.


Timescale: The final format of the review day will be confirmed at least seven days prior to the review day to support governors to plan their availability.  Governors may be required to attend for up to 2 hours, depending on the roles held, and the review day is typically around 4 hours' duration in total.

Stage 3: draft report and scheduling whole-board feedback/self-evaluation session and development of action plan 

A draft report will be produced by the review team.  At this stage, the review team may also request additional information.  Timescale - 14 days.


A date, time and venue will be scheduled for a 90 minute feedback and facilitated self-evaluation session for all governors to attend and participate in development of the governing board's post-review action plan.  Timescale - to fit with the availability of the governing board.

Stage 4: final report and post-review follow-up


The review team will deliver its finalised report on findings and recommendations, including its capture of the draft action plan as developed at the feedback and facilitated self-evaluation session.


Four to six months after the review there will be a follow up visit from one of the review team, to support the board in reviewing its progress against the action plan.