What do governors do?

Governors are the largest voluntary organisation in the UK with just over 300,000 members.  They are essential to the work of schools and are legally responsible for it but are not involved in the day to day running of the school.  This is managed by the Senior Leadership Team which leaves governors free to focus on their core functions of:

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
  • Stringently holding the headteacher to account for the education performance of the school and its pupils, and the performance management of staff
  • Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent

Governance at Patcham High School

In March 2015 the governing body of Patcham High School was reconstituted and it now allows for 18 governors in total made up from several different categories.

All terms of office (other than headteacher) are for four years, although a governor may resign at any time.

The work of the governing body is split into three committees and is led by the Chair of Governors.  For more information, including membership, see the Committees page.

All governors are expected to be ‘critical friends’ to the school, supporting the whole school team and, when appropriate asking questions. Broadly the work involves the following:

  • Attending full Governing Body meetings
  • Joining a committee and attend its termly meetings
  • Exploring and forging links with the school – for instance with school improvement areas, subject areas or a particular aspect of school life (a key stage, Special Needs etc)
  • Building links with other Governing Bodies – for instance with our feeder primary schools and other Secondary Schools across Brighton and Hove
  • Occasionally attend school events

Governors join a committee and attend full governing body and committee meetings termly and at least once a year, one of the ‘governor’ days held each term. They also commit to undertake training (which is free) as necessary to carry out their role.

Positions of Responsibility


Chair of Governors Andrew Saunders
Vice Chair of Governors Mike Sandeman
Chair of Resources Committee Stephen Berry
Chair of Student Family and Community Committee Caroline Greenfield, Vice Chair Mike Sandeman
Chair of Steering Group Juliet Greenwood
Chair of Teaching, Learning and Outcomes Committee Andrew Saunders