You will doubtless have heard about the cuts being made in Norfolk County Council. The Children’s Services department is not excluded from these, and there will be reductions in the number of personnel working with schools. There is also a shift to some services that have been provided centrally becoming “traded”, i.e. schools will have to pay for them if they want to continue to receive them.

Although these will impact on schools and hence on the decisions that governing bodies will have to make, there is some good news for governors. The core Governor Services section will remain as before, and no Development Officer posts are going. This is in part because the service is already traded. There may, however, be some changes to administrative support, but Governor Services hope this will not have a major impact on the quality of the service provided.

We will be sorry to lose J’Anne Robertson, who took up the newly created post of Head of Early Years, Schools and Colleges: Governance and Leadership last summer. Governance will still be represented at a high level by a position of Lead Adviser/Manager of Governor Development and Improvement, albeit at a level one below J’Anne’s. This is a continuing recognition by the local authority of the importance of school governance.

In addition to Governor Services, three of the advisers in Educational Achievement and Improvement will have some responsibility for governance issues, more specifically in relation to whole school improvement issues.  For advice of a general nature, and particularly about the work of the governing body, Governor Services will still be the team to talk to.

Further explanation of the new structure will be given at our upcoming conferences.