I joined my child's school as a parent Governor about three years ago. For the first year I coasted, read all the briefings, did some training and tried to do my bit. In the second year I wanted to make a difference. What I discovered was that my Governing body did many things very well, but other things less well.
I decided to make an impact using my core web/technology skills and was greeted with polite support, but was largely unsuccessful. Frustrated I went on more training, and spoke with other Governors, on the training sessions, only to learn that my experience was far from unique.
Therein I began to connect and contact other governing bodies in my borough and five months on I am now the Chair of an association of schools, with representation from 55 schools in my borough, supported by the local authority.
I think the model of governing bodies and their recruitment from education, community and parents is a strong, but my experience has shown that the model must be rigorously re-enforced.
I would welcome contact from any governor or interested party keen to learn from my personal experience and that of the association I launched.