Local Leader of Governance Pilot

Local Leader of Governance pilots have taken place in Derbyshire and Northamptonshire.


Derbyshire Pilot:

In order to build leadership capacity, Derbyshire worked with the Regional Advocate to identify chairs from secondary schools with a proven track record of improving governance to be accredited as Derbyshire Leaders of Governance (DLGs).  Crucially they had the time to support other chairs and governing boards. The recruitment process and development programme mirrored, and sought to build on, that available currently to NLGs. The programme consisted of:

  • Induction
  • Mentoring and coaching development
  • Reviews of governance training
  • Shadowing

The main focus for the DLG is to use their knowledge and experience of governance to improve school performance and, through working with others, provide support to chairs across the county.  In summary, DLGs are invited to:

  •  support a chair of governors at a school other than their own;
    • work with the DCC, diocese, local teaching school or other contacts to determine opportunities for deployment, and to accept, where reasonable and practicable, requests for support from these bodies;
    • accept requests from the DCC, diocese, local teaching school or other contacts to support a chair of governors, where reasonable and practicable; and where appropriate, actively seek his/her own opportunities for deployment
    • regularly update  DCC, proactively and as requested, on the deployments he/she is undertaking (the details being subject to the school’s agreement);
    • contribute to DCC events and/or meetings where reasonable;

We now have 5 DLGs (Derbyshire Leaders) in the secondary phase.

The LA holds regular meetings with all the leaders of governance in Derbyshire and there is no distinction between the NLGs and DLGs. The advocate invites the DLGs to the development for the NLGs.

The head of governor supports with the coordination of the work of the Leaders  (Local and National) in Derbyshire and, in the longer term,  aims to capture the impact of their work.  More recently the LA has facilitated a meeting between the Teaching School Alliances and DLG’s.  As a result, there is now a DLG aligned to each teaching school and more regular meetings are planned with a focus on school improvement within a school led system.


Northamptonshire Pilot:

Northamptonshire is keen to develop its system leadership capacity through seeking to appoint a number of specialist leaders to support quality of governance across the county. 

Local Leaders of Governance (LLGs) will be deployed to support schools who have identified an improvement area in their current leadership and governance or who wish to develop further in this area to improve outcomes for the school and learners and will be linked to Teaching School Alliances across Northamptonshire.

 The main focus areas for an accredited LLG will be to ensure there are:

  1. Raised expectations of the roles and responsibilities of governors (DfE, Ofsted ….)
  2. Greater accountability of governors to others (DfE, Ofsted, parents, ‘pupil voice’,)
  3. Governors ensuring continuous school improvement within an increasingly ‘school- led’ system
  4. Governance operating within a more diverse school sector (Governance operating within move to academies, multi academy trusts, free schools etc with varying schemes of delegation)
  5. Greater focus on governor training and development (as highlighted in changes to Ofsted Inspection Framework 2016)

LLG Role

A LLG will provide support and guidance to Governing Boards who are seeking to further develop their capacity to provide leadership and bring about continuous school improvement.

 A LLG could be involved in any or all of the following:

  • Supporting schools in securing and/or improving their Ofsted grading for the ‘effectiveness of leadership and management’. This might include allocating a LLG to an IEB (Interim Executive Board) in response to a school going into ‘special measures’;
  • Supporting a governing board in undertaking a review of their effectiveness using an agreed self-evaluation tool;
  • Supporting a new Chair of Governors or Chair of a committee;
  • Supporting those with ‘lead governor’ responsibilities in such areas as Pupil Premium, Safeguarding, Special Education Needs and Disability (SEND), Budget setting/Finance etc.;
  • Supporting the implementation and/or development of governor learning walks and other monitoring strategies;
  • Providing bespoke training and development for a governing board and/or group of governors;
  • Coaching and mentoring new and existing Chairs of Governors;
  • Providing a short term response to a loss of expertise in a Governing Board. 

Further information on the Northamptonshire LLG Pilot:

LLG Recruitment flyer

LLG Application form

LLG Information for applicants

LLG Reference request form

Pilot governance structure map