David Backhouse

About me:
As a Chair of Governors for 20+ years across 4 schools, I have extensive experience of leading their Governing Bodies through challenging and occasionally difficult situations, including HT appointments, suspension and dismissal of HTs, redundancy (at all levels), managing budget deficits, multi-million pound building programmes and conversion from Community to Academy status.

I have chaired Appeal Panels for: Complaint Reviews, Disciplinary (Staff), Flexible Working, Grievance and Permanent Exclusion.

I became an NLG in the first cohort in March 2012

Governance experience:

  • Primary
  • Secondary

NLG experience:

Several deployments guiding CoGs to bring order and direction to dysfunctional GBs or to provide support in managing disruptive Governors and inappropriate behavior. These usually meant attending GB meetings as an observer.

Providing procedural advice to CoGs (and HTs). Typically, telephone advice and/or an occasional meeting.

Conducting investigations into allegations of misconduct.

Providing whole GB training on Governance in general, e.g. for new Governors, as well as leading specific training sessions on Roles & Responsibilities of CoGs, Budget Setting, Complaints Handling and HT Performance Management.

1. Strategic Leadership 5. Compliance
Creating a shared vision, ethos and strategic direction Understanding the regulatory framework for governance
Strategic planning for schools and boards Compliance with the Academy Financial Handbook
Strategic financial leadership Readiness for Ofsted
Strategic HR leadership Effective Safeguarding
Strategic business leadership Strategic leadership of SEND and inclusion
Leading change management Strategic leadership of Pupil Premium and provision for disadvantaged pupils
Stakeholder engagement & communication Data management and GDPR
Managing and prioritising risks Health and Safety responsibilities
Equality responsibilities
Investigations, panels and appeals
2. Accountability 6. Evaluation
Strategic Leadership of school improvement External Reviews of Governance
Creating accountability structures, SMART targets and KPIs MAT Health Checks
Planning and leading strategic monitoring Reviews of LGBs
Presenting and analysing data Skills audits and action planning
Triangulation, benchmarking and holding to account Facilitated governance self-reviews
Headteacher performance management Performance Management of Chairs
Monitoring of staff performance management Governor appraisals
CEO performance management
Chair performance management
Complaint investigation and management
3. People 7. Other areas of expertise
Team leadership Leading governance networks
Recruiting and retaining the governance team Developing governor training
Succession planning Delivering governor training
Creating a team culture Developing governance support materials
Expectation setting and conduct
Holding the governance team to account
Creating a governance development plan
Relationship management
Conflict management
Meeting management
4. Structures 8. NLG Training Completed
Governance team organisation, processes and structures – constitutions, terms of reference, role profiles NLG induction
Creating a scheme of delegation Essential deployment skills
Governance in a Local Governing Body Power of Coaching
Trust board governance External Review of Governance
Forming a Trust board Governance leadership programme (DfE)
Forming a MAT
Joining a MAT
Governance in Federations