Governance Health Checks

Governance Health Checks
Further to the existing training and development opportunities and external review of governance programme, the Governance Services Team has developed a suite of lighter touch audit tools to provide a ‘Health-Check’ or assessment on governance skills, experience and practices. The tools are expected to assist governing boards in their own development and provide a guided assessment conducted by a Governance Professional by way of a written report for the board to action as part of their own self-evaluation and quality assurance processes.
The following Health-Checks are currently available for purchase on a commissioned basis:

Health Check A – Governance Self-Evaluative Audit Tool

The Governance Self-Evaluative Audit Tool is based on the DfE Governance Competency Framework, incorporating skills in key areas of governance such as strategic leadership, accountability and compliance. This is a comprehensive tool which will assist in providing evidence of the governing board’s effectiveness and, where appropriate, areas for development. This Health Check is intended for those boards that have a proven history of effectiveness and maybe judged as good or better from Ofsted. The service recommends a full External Review of Governance for academy trusts requiring support and improvement.

  • Self-Evaluation matrices, based on the key themes of the DfE Governance Competency Framework will be circulated to all governors to grade, in their own opinion, their effectiveness in specific areas of governance and evidence this as part of their narrative.
  • The chair of the governing board will have additional questions based on their respective roles.
  • The clerk to governors will also be invited to complete a self-evaluative matrix, based on the key themes of the DfE Clerking Competency Framework, and grade, in their own opinion, their effectiveness in specific areas of clerking and support and evidence this as part of their narrative.
  • All responses will be reviewed by a Governance Professional and a written report provided to highlight collective strengths and identify areas for development which can then be incorporated into a comprehensive action plan for the continued improvement of the governing board.

Health Check B – Training and Development Audit

The Training and Development Audit Health Check is aimed at assessing the existing skills and experience of each individual governor on the board and provides a written report which identifies possible routes for specific training and development.

  • Individual governors are requested to complete an online survey which includes a skills audit and asks a number of questions about their involvement on the board.
  • An experienced Governance Professional will review and assess the data and information provided.
  • A short-written report will be provided to the board which will identify areas of training a development for individuals and the board as a whole.

Health Check C – Governing Board Meeting and Documentation Review

The Meeting Review Health Check will be conducted by an experienced Governance Professional and is aimed as a review of current practice and effectiveness of board meetings.
  • A Governance Professional will attend, by appointment, a meeting of the governing board or committee
  • An assessment will be made on a number of factors including the quality of information provided by leaders, the quality of challenge and support provided by governors to school leaders and the general proceedings of the meeting, including chairing and support by the clerk to the board.
  • Documentation will be reviewed prior to the meeting including the subsequent minutes of the meeting.
  • A written report will be provided to the board highlighting areas of good practice and areas for development, where appropriate.

Further information and costs can be gained by contacting Marie Ahmad, Governance Development Officer on 01204 332104 or via email at