Pay not a priority
Pay is not the answer to helping school governors become more professional or effective, the former permanent secretary at the Department for Education, Lord Bichard has said.
He was responding to comments made last week by Ofsted chief inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw, who said he wants to see more professional leadership among governing bodies with some governors being paid. The idea could be used to attract governors to work in challenging schools, Ofsted suggested.
However, Lord Bichard, who advises the Ten Governor Support service, said: “I have spent the last 18 months travelling around the country speaking to local authorities about raising governance standards – and the message is clear: school governors can be ineffective, not because they lack motivation or incentive, but because they so often lack the confidence and understanding as to what good governance actually looks like.
“For the most part, governors are bright, engaged, motivated individuals who often do not possess the necessary practical information with which to hold the school executive to account.”
Sir Michael made his comments as he launched the new School Data Dashboard, an online reporting tool designed to help governors hold headteachers to account. Visit: http://dashboard.ofsted.gov.uk/
Schools that have done the most to boost the attainment of their Pupil Premium students could win awards of up to £10,000. Entries are now open for the inaugural Pupil Premium Awards, an initiative announced by deputy prime minister Nick Clegg last year.
The awards are aimed at recognising schools which have boosted the performance of disadvantaged pupils and successfully closed the attainment gap. Regional winners will be invited to a national ceremony in the summer when overall prizes will be announced. The closing date for entries is April 17 and the final is to be held on June 26. Visit: www.pupilpremiumawards.co.uk
Revising for money
Doing homework or revising are among the most common tasks that teenagers do to earn pocket-money. A study has listed the most common “chores” that parents ask of their children in return for pocket-money. Top of the list is tidying their bedroom, followed by doing the washing up and behaving well. Doing homework or revision comes fourth ahead of hoovering and looking after pets. The study of 1,000 parents by PKTMNY – a pocket-money website – found that the most lucrative chore is washing the car, which pays an average of £3.57, and that the average weekly pocket-money for eight to 14-year-olds is £6.17.