Holy Trinity Governors; Where do they come from?

Holy Trinity is very unique because it is the only school in the country that teachers children aged 3-16 and is a joint Catholic and Church of England School. Our Governor membership is also unique, there are four practicing Foundation Catholic and four practicing Foundation Church of England Governors. The Foundation Governors are appointed by the Bishop of Hallam (Catholic) and the Bishop of Leeds (Church of England).

The school also has two parent Governors. The parent Governors are elected by parents / carers of pupils at the school.

All of the Governors at Holy Trinity are volunteers, most of them are from the local community and live in the Barnsley area.

What do Governors do?

Governors work with the Head and Senior Leadership Team to drive the strategic development of the school and raise standards of achievement. Every Board of Governors has a statutory responsibility to establish and monitor school policies and evaluate the effectiveness of the school and its curriculum. Governors are also held to account for the school’s performance. The Office for Standards in Education (OFSTED) assumes that Governors know the strengths and weaknesses of the school and will test this assumption during a school inspection.

Statutory guidance for all schools’ states that schools should have Link governors. The term ‘link governor’ is not used in law but schools use it to mean a governor who takes a particular interest in an area of school life. The role of the Link Governor is to provide a link between the Governing Board and the school. When Link Governors visit the school and report back to the Governing Board they help to deepen all governors’ understanding of how the school operates, how the strategic objectives are being pursued, how financial resources are being used and what extra support the school may need to meet its objectives. Without Link Governors, the Governing Board is totally reliant on the Headteacher, or other staff governors, for their understanding of the school. The presence of Link Governors provides an additional source of evidence upon which governing decisions can be made. This additional evidence should enable the Governing Body to better challenge information presented by the school and also better support the school to meet its strategic objectives.

At Holy Trinity we ask our Link Governors to:

  • Gain insight into the life of the school
  • Create and develop relationships with staff, pupils and where appropriate parents
  • Better understand the Governors roles in raising standards
  • Enable a deeper understanding of the school’s current performance, practice, strengths and areas for further development.
  • Observe policies and plans being implemented on a day-to-day basis

The purpose of Link Governor Visits is to:

  • Increase the governing board’s first-hand knowledge about the school and its daily operations; this helps the governors to make decisions about short term and long term school plans
  • Monitor how the school is managing a specific area as well as identifying any development needs
  • Demonstrate to staff that the Governing Board takes its responsibilities very seriously
  • See in context the monitoring systems employed by the school
  • Develop positive links with staff and pupils
  • Provide OFSTED with evidence that governors are engaging with school”
  • Where appropriate engage with parents and carers

What happens after a Link Governor Visit?

  • The Link Governor will produce a report outlining what happened during the visit
  • In the first instance the report is shared with the staff member they met so they can agree it is an accurate reflection of the visit
  • A copy of the final report is then sent to the Head for information
  • The report is then shared with Governors and Staff at Committee / Full Governing Body Meetings

Governors are also involved in other school matters such as;

  • Staff recruitment
  • School admission appeals
  • Hearing appeals and grievances relating to pupil and staff issues

Overview of the Governing Body Role

Governors are volunteers whose main role is to work with the school to make sure that all the children attending Holy Trinity receive the best education in a supportive and safe setting. The Governors at Holy Trinity want to make sure that everyone is clear about the role of the governing body and what the schools vision is.

The Governing body at Holy Trinity is made up of ten people from a range of backgrounds who all have different skills but none of the Governors could do their job without the expertise of the Lissa Oldcorn the Head, her leadership team and all the other staff working at the school. The Head and other staff members attend Governors meetings to ensure the Governors are informed about all aspect of school life.

Holy Trinity is very unique because it is the only school in the country that teachers children aged 3-16 and is a joint Catholic and Church of England school. This means our governor membership is also unique, there are 4 practising Foundation Catholic and 4 practising Foundation Church of England Governors as well as 2 parent Governors. Foundation The Church of England Foundation Governors are appointed by the Bishop of Leeds and the Catholic Foundation Governors are appointed by the Bishop of Hallam. Parent Governors are elected by the parents / carers of pupils at the school. It’s very important that everyone realises that the Governors work as a team. They are not a collection of individuals with separate agenda’s. Obviously on some occasions individual Governors may have different opinions but they are committed to the school and understand their responsibility is to ensure the school’s long term success by holding the leadership team to account.

Governing bodies of Academies have several functions, the main ones being to ensure:

  • The vision, ethos* and strategic direction of the school are clearly defined and that everyone associated with the school understands what they are

  • That the Head teacher performs the responsibilities they hold for ensuring the educational performance of the school

  • Support is provided to the Head Teacher to ensure that all children realise their potential and that all staff are supported and trained to achieve this.

  • The school leadership team is held to account for the provision of teaching and learning

* The school is conducted in accordance with the canon law and teachings of both the Roman Catholic and Church of England in partnership with the churches parish / deadbeat and diocesan levels.

  • Everyone associated with the school understands the school’s vision and ethos for your children
  • Support is provided to the Head Teacher to ensure that your children realise their potential and that all staff are supported and trained to achieve this.
  • Funding is well spent.

They also carry out other important duties which include:

  • Hearing appeals and grievances relating to pupil and staff issues

  • Forming policy on the schools curriculum and collective worship
  • Setting standards for pupils behaviour and discipline
  • Setting and monitoring the schools aims and policies

  • Monitoring specific areas of work e.g health and safety / safeguarding
  • Staff recruitment

In order to ensure the governing body are able to oversee the management of Holy Trinity’s strategy, policy and staffing and make sure that the school works effectively and efficiently throughout the school year they attend a series of Governor meetings. Please look at the Governor section “How the Governors work” for more information.

There is also a Full Governing Body meeting. Each meetings takes place every term. Governors also visit school at other times. Everyone at Holy Trinity wants to give your child the best possible chance in life to succeed and with the right commitment from everyone, governors, the staff and yourselves we will make this happen.

Local Governing Body

When Holy Trinity became an academy on 1 May 2018, the existing Governing Body became the Local Governing Body of the Academy with their existing terms of office. Under the scheme of Delegation there are 8 Foundation Governors, 2 Parent Governors, and 1 Staff Governor.

The constitution of the Governing Body as at September 2020, and for the previous 12 months, is as shown below:

Mrs Pat Hunter is Chair of Governors, the Vice-Chair is Mrs Jane Willis

The Headteacher

Mrs L Oldcorn

Staff Governor

Date Appointed
Term of Office End
Miss S Walker 20 May 2019 Resigned – 01 September 2021

Parent Governors

 
Date Appointed
Term of Office End
Mrs R Asquith 22 May 2019 21 May 2023
Mrs M Watkin 15 July 2021 14 July 2025

Foundation Governors

Date Appointed
Term of Office End
Mrs D Cartwright 8 Nov 2016 7 Nov 2024
Mrs S Armitage 6 Dec 2017 5 Dec 2025
Father B Bell 30 Jul 2021 Resigned – 20 January 2022
Mrs P Hunter 7 Nov 2016 6 Nov 2024
Mrs J Willis 12 Jul 2017 Resigned – July 2021
Mrs S Burton 8 Nov 2016 7 Nov 2024
Father D Brett 12 Sep 2018 Resigned – December 2020
Archdeacon P Townley 8 Nov 2016 7 Nov 2024
Father J Lemeh 2 Jan 2021 Resigned – 18 November 2021

Chief Executive Officer HSPAT

Mr S Davies