The Board of The City of Liverpool College has adopted a version of ‘Policy Governance’ based on a model of governance developed by John Carver.
Carver believes boards should be concerned primarily with policy setting and performance monitoring and that senior staff should be trusted to run the organisation. The aim of his approach is to free boards from detail in order to concentrate on strategic leadership.
The Board operates by creating and monitoring policies that state its expectations. Each category starts with the Board’s broadest statement of its values before moving, level by level, to more specific statements. The four categories are:
1) Strategic Aims which define what the organisation should produce, for what people and at what cost benefit (see SA 1);
2) Governance Processes – how the board will operate (GP 1-13);
3) Board – Principal Delegation delineates the manner in which the Board delegates its authority to the Principal and monitors its use (BP 1-5); and
4) Executive Restrictions state which practices, situations or conduct the Board believes must be prohibited in order to safeguard the College operationally, legally and ethically (ER 1-9).
Once the Board feels it has reached a sufficient level of specificity in each category, the Principal is empowered to act on “any reasonable interpretation” of the policies. Via reports to the Board, all Board policies will be monitored on a regular basis to ensure compliance.
The Policy Governance model usually entails most Board decisions being made in full Board meetings so that all governors are involved in all decisions and committees are kept to a minimum needed to help the Board rather than staff. For FE colleges, the Audit Committee is a permanent committee required under the Post 16 Audit Code of Practice. The Board can also establish standing committees and task and finish groups as it decides appropriate.
The Board has also adopted the AoC’s Code of Good Governance for English Colleges and reviews this Manual with reference to the provisions of this Code as part of the annual review of the Board Policy Manual.
The previous standing orders and code of conduct have been subsumed within this manual where applicable, the main sections being GP 3,6,9, & 12 (standing orders) and GP 8 (code of conduct).
Clarification and guidance can be obtained from the Clerk:
Clerk to the Board
The City of Liverpool College
Room 2/21 The Learning Exchange
Tel: (0151) 252 3688