Clerk’s quick guide to governance legislation

As clerk, you need to advise the board on good governance and how to follow procedures. Bookmark our quick reference guide to the key legislation and guidance you need to know about and refer to on a regular basis.

Last reviewed on 15 February 2022
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 35250
  1. Your first port of call: the Governance Handbook 
  2. Maintained school regulations
  3. Academy regulations
  4. How to check if legislation is up to date 
  5. Keep this article handy

Your first port of call: the Governance Handbook 

The Governance Handbook will often be the first place to look for anything governance-related. It's not legislation itself, but it:

  • Sets out the core role and functions of the governing board
  • Summarises all the legal duties on boards, signposting to more detailed information, guidance and resources
  • Provides information on the support available to boards to be effective

It's published by the Department for Education (DfE) and is usually updated annually.

Maintained school regulations

Constitution of the board

The School Governance (Constitution) (England) Regulations 2012 set out the rules on how your board must be made up, and who can be on it.

The DfE has published statutory guidance on these regulations, which makes them easier to understand. 

The categories of governor and how they're appointed or elected, including the process for parent and staff governor elections  How many of each