Strategic vs operational: practical examples

Governors should set the school's strategy and hold senior leaders to account - not get involved in the day-to-day running of the school. Sometimes it's hard to walk this fine line, but our practical examples will help you clarify your role.

Last reviewed on 24 March 2021
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 5140
  1. School policies
  2. Pupil premium
  3. School budget
  4. Teacher pay
  5. Staff surveys
  6. Parent complaints
  7. Departmental improvement plans
  8. School newsletter
  9. Introducing split-year groups
  10. Changing the way homework is given
  11. Health and safety inspections
  12. Monitoring the Single Central Record (SCR)
  13. Remote learning

The examples in this article are illustrative - you won't come across all of them in your time as a governor. They're meant to help you work out what is and isn't your role. They'll also help you to say no if you're asked to do something outside your strategic remit or to discuss it with your headteacher if you're not consulted. 

School policies Your role (strategic) As governors, you have an important role in contributing to the strategic direction of many policies, and in checking and approving some policies once they've been written. You also can hold the senior leadership team (SLT) to account for how policies have been implemented, and whether they've been successful. School leaders' role (operational) The SLT will actually write and implement the policies, this isn't your role. Read more in our article on governors' role in