Case study 26

A governor has been helping and supporting a parent through a complaints process, formulating written correspondence etc. Although the complaint is regarding their child at the school, the parent also has some concerns regarding the behaviour policy at the school. The complaint is at stage C and a meeting has been scheduled with the complaints committee for next week. The parent has asked the governor to attend as their companion.

The school’s complaints procedure usually contains information regarding the parent being allowed to bring a colleague for support.

Has the governor been helping as a friend or as a governor?

The governor may be putting themselves in difficult position here. As a governor, they need to stand by corporate decisions of the governing body. All policies at the school are agreed by the governing body prior to the school staff implementing the policies.

We would advise that the governor should not attend the complaints committee meeting with the parent.

When parents approach governors with some concerns at the school, the governor should refer them to the relevant procedure i.e. the school’s complaints procedure. The involvement of governors during the complaints process will mean that they are unable to sit on a committee to determine that complaint.