Sciennes Parent Council – Roles of office bearers
The Elected Roles on the Parent Council are as follows: Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer and Convener of the Fundraising and Events Group. Elected Roles can be done by more than one person on a joint basis (like a ‘job share’).
If you are a parent/carer at Sciennes Primary, you can come along to the AGM to vote or to stand for an elected role. If an elected role is unfilled, voting is carried to the subsequent Parent Council meeting which is also open to all Sciennes parents/carers.
If you have any questions or would like to have an informal chat about any of the roles, please get in touch via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Chair or Co-Chairs (elected role)
The Parent Council should always be chaired by a member of the Parent Forum. The success of a meeting can depend upon how it is chaired but remember, the Chair is the person who makes sure things get done; not the person who does everything. This role can be done on a shared basis by Co-Chairs in which case the holders of the role should agree on tasks.
There are two basic jobs the Chair should do:
1 – Guide the Parent Council to achieve its aims
2 – Chair the meetings of the Parent Council
Some of the duties of the Chair are as follows:
- Liaise with the Clerk on the agenda and meeting arrangements.
- Welcome members and introduce guests.
- Ensure fair discussion and that everyone gets a chance to have their say.
- Stop anyone taking over or dominating discussions.
- Get through the agenda on time.
- Sum up issues, points and decisions.
- Ensure decisions are carried out.
- Support good governance by having an awareness of the Parent Council Constitution and an understanding of Parent Council legislation and guidance.
- Work with the Treasurer to ensure that proper financial accounts are prepared for meetings, including the Annual General Meeting.
- Assist the Parent Council in its efforts to have a strategic approach through supporting the development and monitoring of the Parent Council Action Plan, liaising with subgroups and ensuring the Parent Council is mindful of the need for succession planning.
- Attend external training and meetings which support the work of Sciennes Parent Council such as Neighbourhood Meetings of Head Teachers and Chairs.
- Have periodic meetings with the Head Teachers to discuss matters of relevance to the Parent Council and the wider parent forum.
- Take part in the recruitment and interviewing of senior school staff (note – this requires completion of the CEC Recruitment Training).
The Convener is also an Ex Officio Trustee of Friends of Sciennes School and is required to attend those meetings.
The Vice Chair (elected role)
Where the Chair is absent from any meeting or there is at the time a vacancy in the office of the chair, the Vice Chair is to act as Chair for all purposes. The Vice Chair can also provide advice and support to the Chair.
The Chair and Vice Chair may decide to formally share tasks – such as subgroup liaison or attending external meetings. The Chair and Vice Chair should meet periodically to review Parent Council progress.
The Treasurer or Co-Treasurers (elected role)
The Treasurer is responsible for the proper handling of the finances of the Parent Council, but not the actual raising of money. The Treasurer role can be done on a Co-Treasurer basis in which case the holders of the role should agree on tasks.
The tasks of the Treasurer include:
- Having a clear and accurate book-keeping system that records any money received and how the money is spent.
- Maintaining the bank account. It is good financial practice to require two out of three of the Officers’ signatures on cheques to allow any money to be withdrawn or spent.
- Producing a report for each meeting stating money paid into, or out of, the account since the last meeting.
- Advise on the amount of money available for the group’s work and warn of excess expenditure.
Prior to the Parent Council Annual General Meeting ( AGM) the Treasurer should arrange for the year’s accounts to be independently checked (audited) and agreed with the Chair. The Treasurer should present the audited financial statement at the AGM and answer any questions on the accounts.
The Vice Treasurer (elected role)
The Vice Treasurer supports the Treasurer in the the proper handling of the finances of the Parent Council, but not the actual raising of money.
Convener of Fundraising and Events.
Role Description for Convener of Fundraising and Events Group (“FEG”).This role would be suited to a ‘job share’. The Convener is also an Ex Officio Trustee of Friends of Sciennes School and requires to attend those meetings.
Key Qualities – must be able work well in a team, work in partnership with the school and the Chair of the Parent Council as well as FSS; able to appreciate different talents and diversity. Be comfortable with being an advocate for the school and its values and develop links between the school and the local community; should be proactive but also reactive to change (ie organise a Bake sale for world disaster at short notice). Understand that change can be good and that new ideas can be used in an evolving school population.
- Work with the school, the Chair of the Parent Council and the wider Parent Council to identify priorities for fundraising and support the FEG team to generate ideas to achieve these
- Work with the school, the Chair of the Parent Council and the Finance Team to agree fundraising targets for the year
- Draft a fundraising and events plan
- Organise events and activities appeal to a range of interests and personal budgets to ensure there’s something for everyone
- Use different fundraising approaches for different purposes.
- Be approachable and listen to new ideas (especially when they are inclusive and potentially involve a diverse section of the Sciennes Family) and help facilitate their implementation.
- Enable members of the Sciennes Family to contribute any particular skills or talents they have
- Convene meetings of the FEG
- Work together with parents and teachers on common tasks and develop positive relationships
- Appreciate everyone’s contribution of effort or money – however small
- Celebrate success and thank people
Information about Parent Council Sub groups
The Parent Council has subgroups to carry out specific tasks.
If new sub-groups are being set up these should be given a clear remit with someone taking responsibility for organising the group and reporting back to the Parent Council.
Sciennes Parent Council Subgroups include:
- Fundraising and Events
- Playground Improvement Group
- Health and Wellbeing
The only elected Sub Group Convener is for the Fundraising and Events Group.
The Clerk (paid role)
The Clerk is a paid role and plays an important role in supporting communication between Parent Council members themselves and between the school, the Parent Council and the Parent Forum.
Some of the duties of the Clerk are to:
- Make arrangements for meetings and prepare an agenda in consultation with the Chairperson.
- Send a notice of the meeting, venue and agenda to all Parent Council members so that they will receive them in good time for the meeting. Agendas should be sent out for all meetings even if they are held at the same time and place each month.
- Keep a record of everyone attending the meeting and any apologies for absence.
- Let Parent Council members know about all correspondence received and report any action taken since last meeting.
- Take a minute of meetings, recording decisions and actions to be taken and by whom. This can be a task that is shared amongst members of the Parent Council to allow the Clerk to participate in discussions.
- Provide minutes for all Parent Council members prior to or at meetings.