Headlines: May 28th, 2009

A charity is claiming that governors saved schools more than four million pounds in the last financial year. The School Governors’ One-Stop Shop (SGOSS) bases its figures on the time that volunteers spent serving on school governing bodies.

It estimates that an average governor gives seven hours a month for nine months each year during term times. At the equivalent of the nationally recognised rate of 16 pounds 50 pence per hour, the charity says, that is a contribution worth 1,040 pounds a year by each governor. Its figures also show that nine out of ten people it has helped to place as governors will remain in post for a mnimum of four years. That, it estimates, increases their annual worth.

SGOSS, which is a not-for-profit organisation recruiting and placing volunteer governors in England, says it has published the figures to highlight the relevance and significance of governor volunteering during the recession. While the UK’s Gross Domestic Product has risen by just 0.7 per cent since 2007 the ‘GDP’ of school governors it has recruited has risen by 7 per cent in the same period.

The charity says the figures show that public goodwill has remained strong in spite of the recession and that philanthropy in education is still a priority for the British public. Steve Acklam, the Chief Executive of SGOSS said: “It’s heartening, yet unsurprising, that despite the tough times, the British public’s desire to help others remains strong. It is also an ideal way to build a personal portfolio of experience and responsibility.”