School and Governor Support (S&GS) is available, through Birmingham City Council (BCC), to maintained schools and academies for an annual subscription charge currently standing at £2,100 (as a fully traded service we are required to recover 100% of our operating costs). During 2018-19, 77% of all maintained schools and academies in Birmingham have subscribed to our service.
We provide a wide range of services for school leaders and staff, governors, trustees, chairs of and clerks to governing boards (GBs), supporting them to deal effectively with all aspects of day-to-day school leadership and management – other than those relating to the quality and effectiveness of teaching and learning – and create strong governance.
Subscribers have access to the following core elements of S&GS:
- advice on routine matters relating to the day-to-day management and governance;
- updated guidance on managing key roles and responsibilities; and
- consultancy in more complex and challenging situations that require a tailored solution leading to a satisfactory outcome.
Subscribers tell us that what they value as benefits of their subscription includes:
• Unlimited telephone and email access for advice from team members with a vast range of knowledge, skills and experience. This advice is often enhanced by our unique partnerships with other BCC colleagues and services;
• Generous support via face-to-face consultancy on more complicated or sensitive matters that often require a visit to your schools or attendance at meetings;
• A growing number of customised guidance documents aimed specifically at Headteachers, Governing Boards and Clerks;
• A Fortnightly Update for governors, identifying upcoming training and linking this to current issues for note and action;
• Termly briefing sessions for Chairs and also for Clerks;
• Training for Clerks and Governors – some at no additional cost and some at a reduced rate for subscribers.
Additional benefits, new this year, include all of the above as well as:
• Focused training on various current and significant issues for school leaders and governors, at no additional cost (previously charged and detailed in our service offer and training programme);
• A renewed and revised relationship with consortia which means that more of you get to see more of us, as well as hearing about our work on the things that seem to challenge you the most;
• A termly briefing document that looks back at the five most significant issues that we have dealt with over the term (5 to Thrive). This will be shared via the consortia and can be expanded upon when we meet in person or kept as a useful guide for future use;
• Increased advice and support with governor recruitment.
During school term time we are contactable by phone between 08:15-17:15 (Monday - Thursday) and 08:15-16:15 (Friday), and will respond within three working days to our subscribers’ emails. We comply with and work within BCC’s procedure for handling comments, compliments and complaints, and all our team members have an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service Certificate.
S&GS continues to be both proactive and responsive to the needs of its subscribers. We also work collaboratively with other BCC education services and partners to ensure that subscriber needs are met in a consistent and timely manner. We will continue to provide the same great service, delivered by the same team you have been working with this year. However the team behind the service is also committed to further improvement, to gaining a better understanding of and adapting to the challenges you face. Your feedback is vital in helping us to achieve this – please do let us know what you think and how you believe the service can be improved.