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Governors' Impact Statement

GOVERNORS’ IMPACT STATEMENT
FOR  ROYAL PARK PRIMARY ACADEMY

Vision

The governors of Royal Park hold to their vision of the moral principle of doing what is best for the pupils, and aiming to raise the attainments of all pupils to the highest level possible. As a result, overall good standards are being maintained.

The last school year was one of a number of changes, with Matthew Jones being welcomed as the new Head of School in September 2018. Miss Lynch has remained as the executive head teacher of both Royal Park and Napier Primary in Medway.

Last year saw some changes to our governing body. We welcomed three new governors to the team and they have been successfully inducted. At the end of the academic year, after a number of years being the Chair of Governors at Royal Park, and successfully setting up the new joint governing body, Lesley Robins decided it was time to resign. This was in addition to another experienced governor. Sarah Hall has been voted in as the new CoG, along with Malcolm Fuller as Vice CoG.

Since then there have been further changes. Malcolm Fuller decided to step down as Vice CoG, with Paul Humfryes taking over in this role. We have also welcomed in three new members of our Governing Body with Cathi Barker, Rachael Cushing and Emma Lawrence joining the team.

Governors have three key areas where they need to monitor the school’s progress. The first of these entails “ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction”. Each school has a school development plan, which covers a three-year period, and gives a good overview of the broad aims and objectives. Governors have the opportunity to read and review these, including the RAG ratings and updates, and where necessary, have questioned and challenged head teachers on these.

Governors’ second key area of responsibility is “holding the school leadership to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils”. There is a direct relationship between the quality of teaching and the learning of children. Governors receive regular updates about the percentage of teaching that is Outstanding, Good, Needs Improvement or Inadequate. It is important that all teaching be at least Good but, at the start of the year, some teaching fell below this level. Governors challenged the leadership about what they were doing to change this situation and monitored the impact of the leadership’s actions. Governors also sought to ensure that not only was all teaching consistently Good, but that a good percentage of it was Outstanding. The schools’ actions meant that, by the end of the year all teaching was Good and the percentage of Outstanding teaching has increased.

Throughout the year, governors are provided with data indicating the progress and attainment made by year groups in reading, writing and maths. Governors question the school leadership about this data at regular intervals during the year to find out why some year groups’ attainment was below the level we would expect and what actions were being taken to address the situation. We then monitored the impact of those actions. By the end of the school year, general progress in most Year Groups met the targets set in September 2018. Governors use the data to regularly challenge the leadership as to what they are doing for specific groups of children – i.e. SEND (Special Educational Needs), Disadvantaged, those for whom English is not their first language, and “higher learners (more able)”.

The third key area for governors to focus on is “over-seeing the financial performance of the school and making sure it money is well spent”. Like most schools, Royal Park has faced considerable financial challenges during the school year, with increased demands on a budget that did not increase to the same extent. Governors have reviewed expenditure over the year and are pleased to report that the schools have met the requirements set by the Finance team at TKAT and are financially viable for the next 3 years at least.

Governors regularly review the progress and attainments of “disadvantaged” children compared to non-disadvantaged pupils. The government recognises that, due to a variety of reasons, this group perform less well than non-disadvantaged children and provide specific funding (£1,320 for each disadvantaged child) for the school to help them. Governors need to monitor how the school spends this money and the impact of these actions. We have held regular reviews of data showing the progress and attainment of both groups of children, and our link governor for disadvantaged pupils also conducted a governor visit to both schools to challenge, compare and share best practice.

Whilst recognising that most of the school budget has to be spent directly on the main curriculum, the head teachers and the governors had expressed the need to look at what each school requires across the school grounds to meet the needs of all of the children. This summer saw improvements to the swimming pool and the building of the new outdoor classroom for forest school and science at Royal Park. As well as various other smaller projects, at Gray’s Farm there have been improvements made to the outside area including the introduction of a fenced off stage and quiet area with raised planters and picnic benches.

The last twelve months have not been without challenge for the schools and there is still much to do at Royal Park, but we believe that we can be proud of our progress during the 2017/18 academic year.

Priorities for 2018-2019

1. To recruit, welcome, and induct new Governors to the team, particularly due to the departure of several very experienced governors. To make every effort to ensure that the makeup of the Governing Body reflects the diverse nature of the schools

2. To support Royal Park in the preparations in the run-up to, and for the duration of, the expected Ofsted visit

3. Continue to visit schools for meetings, monitoring visits and other social/school events, and ensure that all these are well-attended, with all governors contributing

4. To ensure that Governors have a good understanding of data, reports and policies, to allow for confidence to question and challenge as well as to celebrate improvements and success

5. Each Governor to know their role and responsibilities within the Governing Body, and to be well-equipped to carry these out

6. To work collaboratively within TKAT. To be open and inviting of our new ways of working and to be up-to-date, as well as be involved

7. To be involved in and prepared for dealing with any issues as they arise that are relevant to the roles of the Governing Body

8. To ensure each Governor has completed up-to-date safeguarding training

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Grays Farm Royal Park Impact Statement f... 29th Sep 2017 Download