Reviews of Governance


We conduct Reviews of Governance (virtually via Zoom or in person)

  • Would you like to verify the effectiveness of your governance?
  • Do you intend to follow best practice guidance to review your governance practices and procedures, as set out in the Charity Governance Code (endorsed by the Charity Commission)?
  • Is your school about to undergo a major structural change?
  • Are you a new Chair of Governors wanting to start with confidence?
  • Do you need an external review prior to your next ISI inspection?

Whatever the background, AGBIS provides a tailored review service for governing bodies where an experienced review team will visit your school and conduct a detailed review of your governance arrangements. AGBIS has conducted numerous reviews, so the procedure is now well honed and brings many benefits for the schools concerned. Whatever the size of your school, it will undoubtedly benefit from a review. We have a ‘standard’ review package that is conducted in four stages:

Stage 1 The date of the review along with the terms of reference and programme are agreed, usually two to three months in advance of the review. The school then arranges for governors to complete an online survey, the results of which are passed to the AGBIS review team, who will devote at least a day each to preparing for the review.

Stage 2 The AGBIS team of two, occasionally three, reviewers visit the school for two days. The team will meet the Chair, Head, Head of a Preparatory Department, Bursar, Clerk and Committee Chairs on an individual basis. Other meetings, including those with governors and senior managers, normally take place in a group setting although anyone may request an individual meeting. At the end of the visit, the Chair of Governors (and the Vice Chair or Head if requested by the Chair) will be given an oral de-brief on the main findings. 

Stage 3 A written report is produced, outlining findings and recommendations which the Governing Body might like to consider. A draft to confirm factual information will be made available in advance of the final report being issued. The final report is confidential between AGBIS and the governors.  However, the latter are free to present a copy to schools' inspectors if they so wish. Two working days of the total time are allocated to compiling and agreeing the final report. An example of this report can be provided so that governors can understand the level of detail that it will contain.

Stage 4 A follow up is offered one year after the review, to see what recommendations have been implemented and assess the overall value of the review.

AGBIS conducted a bespoke and detailed review of governance at Merchant Taylors' School, Crosby. Their orchestrated process culminated in a clear pathway to optimise Board efficiency and fine tune our strategic approach. Their recommendations, many of which are being implemented, will help underpin the workings of the Board and its Committees which are pivotal to the future development and continuing success of Merchant Taylors' School.

Philip J Marshall

Chair of the Board of Governors, Merchant Taylors’ School, Crosby

‘We have just had an AGBIS governance review at Wellingborough and I can highly recommend the exercise to any Chair or Board looking to sharpen up their governance.’

Peter Tyldesley

Wellingborough School

AGBIS undertook a governance review of Plymouth College as an early action in my tenure as Chairman. This has acted as a superb catalyst for change at Board level. It gave the Board strategic options to consider to improve and modernise the way in which the school is governed together with tactical “easy wins”. The reviewers quickly got to the heart of the issues and recommended practical implementable solutions. We have already put in place many of the recommendations - and as a result enhanced the effectiveness and cohesion of the Board and its sub- committees. The review was excellent value for money and has really stimulated change at the top!

David Woodgate

Chairman, Plymouth College

The Bury Grammar School Review of Governance, carried out by AGBIS, was an extremely beneficial experience for the Board of Governors. It was expertly and most professionally carried out by Cheryl and David. They were extremely thorough and, after a two-day period, they concluded with very useful, pragmatic recommendations and a most informative report. As a result of this Review of Governance we will now become much more efficient and informed. The whole process has enabled us to move our governance up to the next level of very good practice.

Bury Grammar School Governors

Bury Grammar School

Thank you for your continued support this year. The Headmaster and I have really enjoyed working with you over these past few months and found both the AGBIS review and Strategy days extremely beneficial, we continue to work through your recommendations and look forward to working with you again next year.

Gabby Covill

Ibstock Place School

For further information and details of our current rates please contact the Regional Officer at [email protected] or call the AGBIS office on 01438 840730.