Governance, Admissions and Appeals

Go to: Applying to be a Governor

Go to: Admissions & Appeals


A strong, well led, governing body supportive of the school, its staff and its vision make a crucial contribution to the school's well-being and effectiveness.

Governors are the strategic leaders within schools and have the responsibility of promoting high standards of educational achievement, ensuring every child in their school receives the best quality education. According to the DfE Governors' Handbook, the governing body has three strategic functions;

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
  • Holding the headteacher to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils and the performance management of staff
  • Overseeing the financial performance of the school and making sure its money is well spent

Within church schools, Foundation Governors are appointed by a church body and have additional responsibilities within the governing body;

Foundation governors have the responsibility to secure the character of the school as a Church of England voluntary school, that it is preserved and developed on accordance with the school’s trust deed and its ethos statement. This will include facilitating links between the school and its parish and being involved in the preparation of the school’s self-evaluation prior to a SIAMS inspection, and possibly attending the inspection itself.

‘A strong, well-led governing body, supportive of the school, its teachers and its mission makes an important contribution to the school’s wellbeing and effectiveness. The foundation governors will have an especial care for the school’s Christian character.’ (National Society 2013)

Appointing Foundation Governors

For information on the appointment process please see the following documentation: 

Appointing Foundation Governors

DBE Foundation Governor Application Form

The Role of a Foundation Governor

Example Advert for Foundation Governor Vacancy 

Example Flyer for Foundation Governor Vacancy 

Ex-Officio Governor: Guidance for Clergy of their role as a governor

Ex-Offico Governor: Confirmation of Role Form 

Please email info.ed [at] if you would like more information.

Training for Governors

Each of our church schools has a named adviser who is also able to offer in-school training and advice for governing bodies.

Are you interested in becoming a Governor?

If you’re interested in becoming a Governor start by finding out whether your school has any vacancies. If you’d like to become a foundation governor start by checking with the school or the church PCC. 

For information on whether you can get time off for public duties click here.

Please email info.ed [at] if you would like an application form or more information.

Admissions and Appeals


Admissions Authorities


Schools' admissions policies are not decided at a national level. They are set at a local level so that they can take into account the specific needs of their communities. See the table below for who is responsible for admissions (the admissions authority) in each case. 


Type of School 

Who is the admission authority? 

Who deals with complaints about arrangements? 

Who is responsible for arranging / providing for an appeal against refusal of a place at a school? 


Academy Trust

Schools Adjudicator 

Academy Trust

Voluntary Aided schools 

Governing body 

Schools Adjudicator 

Governing body 

Foundation Schools 

Governing body 

Schools Adjudicator 

Governing body 

Voluntary Controlled schools 

Local Authority 

Schools Adjudicator 

Local Authority 

Community Schools 

Local Authority 

Schools Adjudicator 

Local Authority 




Admission authorities must ensure that they are conversant and compliant with the School Admissions Code 2021. To ensure that schools are compliant we advise that schools use the Church of England Admissions Builder Online Toolkit. Schools should also take note of the Diocesan guidance on the use of faith-based oversubscription criteria, which can be downloaded from here. 

We recommend that your admissions arrangements are reviewed annually by using this document-  annual review of admissions arrangements. 


Admissions Timetable 


It takes around 24 months to review, consult and implement new admissions arrangements. So to implement changes for admission entry in September 2022, a governing board would be starting the process in the Summer or Autumn term of 2020. As admissions is an annual process it means at certain times of the year the governing board could be engaged in the appeals, implementation and proposal of more than one set of admission rounds. This can get confusing so we strongly recommend that admissions matters and key dates are embedded into the operational plans/calendar of the governing board.

To try to clarify the process we have produced a governor workflow document to support boards in ensuring that they keep on track.

Key Points: 

  • Governors should review their admission arrangements annually in the summer term or early autumn. see above. 

  • If changes are proposed to the policy or no consultation has taken place over the previous six years a public consultation must take place. 

  • The public consultation must last for six consecutive weeks between 1 October and 31 January

  • Governors should determine (agree and ratify) their policy by 28 February and a copy must be sent to the diocese and the Local Authority by 15 March. This when they should be published on your website.

  • Please remember admissions policies and the timeline for appeals must be posted on the school website each year.

For more details about the consultation process schools should make themselves familiar with the requirements of the Admissions Code. A guide to the consultation process can be found by clicking here.

We have a comprehensive range of training and support. Many of our training courses are suitable for governors. Every school also has a named adviser who is able to offer guidance and support if your school subscribed to the Enhanced Service Plan.

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