Categories of Governor
Governors may be appointed by and from different bodies (parents, staff, local authority,
community, foundation) but the ultimate aim and concern of all governors has to be the
welfare and progress of all children in the school and of the school as a whole. A brief
description of the categories of governor are set out below:
 
Foundation Governors
Foundation governors are appointed by the school’s founding body, the church or other
organisation named in the school’s Instrument of Government. Foundation governors
have to ensure compliance with the Trust Deeds of the School.
 
Parent Governors
Parent governors are elected or appointed from all parents and carers of registered pupils
at the school. However if insufficient parents stand for election, the governing body can
appoint parent governors. A parent governor is a representative and not a delegate of
the parents. Therefore parent governors do not have to vote in a particular way because
they have been pressed by other parents to do so. Parent governors are on the governing
body to promote the interests of all children in the school.
 
Staff Governors
Staff Governors are elected by staff at the school. All paid staff at the school are eligible
to become staff governors. The head teacher is a staff governor, but is also a member of
the governing body by right. Staff governors have equal status in the responsibility they
share with all members of the governing body. Staff governors do not have to vote in a
particular way because they have been pressed by other staff to do so.
 
Authority Governors
Authority governors are appointed by the local authority, that is Bedford Borough Council. 
Bedford Borough can appoint any individual it thinks is suitable for school governorship,
many local councillors are school governors. Like all governors, authority governors must
act in the best interests of the school and wider community and cannot be mandated to take
a particular stance on issues. However, their knowledge and understanding of council
priorities can inform debates.
 
Community Governors
Community Governors are appointed by the governing body. Any member of the local
community may be appointed, they will represent community interests. Community
governors can be persons who live or work in the community served by the school, or
persons who do not work or live close to the school, but are committed to good governance
and the success of the school. Community governors must act in the best interests of
the school and cannot be mandated to take a particular stance on behalf of a particular
section of the community. However, their involvement in the community will inform
debate and priorities on the governing body.
 
Associate Members
Associate members are not governors, they do not vote during full meetings of the
governing body and they are not recorded on the Instrument of Government. However
they can be awarded voting rights as part of a governing body committee.
 
Governing bodies benefit hugely from being able to draw on expertise and experience
from outside the formal governing body and therefore may appoint associate members
for particular reasons or projects. Associate members are appointed for between 1
and 4 years.
 
The above text has been sourced from the Bedford Borough Council website: