Leader magazineASCL - Association of School and College Leaders

Clerking is serious business...

Who clerks governors' meetings? While in colleges this is a clearly designated role, for schools, in many cases, the clerk is considered primarily a scribe.

However, it is the duty of a clerk to bring to the attention of governors any legal requirements: in particular, that there must be minutes of matters like the delegation of powers and the term of office of the chair of governors.

Many of these issues can be dealt with by the governors adopting standing orders but there will be times when the clerk's intervention is important. In those circumstances, the common position in schools of the clerk being the head's secretary is dangerous. Issues of trust, loyalty and adequate knowledge raise their heads.

Effective and independent clerking is something that schools could usefully learn from colleges. It can prevent significant difficulties.

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