A new constitution
We have been having a think about the role of BASG and its ways of working. It has been driven partly by the ongoing search for purpose and effectiveness, but also by a need to economise – financially and in terms of human time – in order to be sustainable. Our ideas are embodied in a new constitution. Click here to see it New Constitution. Its main features and the thinking behind them are set out here. We proposed to:
- establish that the principle role of BASG is to act as a collective, representative voice for Bucks governors. There are other functions but they are secondary to this one. A question: is there such a voice and how do we know what it is saying?
- adopt a membership model in which all governors and trust board members are automatically members of BASG. This is an approach used by many other local associations around the country, including the buoyant Oxfordshire one next door. Among other benefits it eliminates the burden of maintaining membership records. It raises the important question of democratic legitimacy: some governors may not want to be spoken for in this way. The draft constitution provides for an opt out to tackle this;
- operate mainly as an electronic network, making use of the website and social media. Again, this is a matter of effectiveness and economy. The days of envelope stuffing have to be over. Members’ meetings addressed by visiting speakers will be held only when there is a specific purpose and expectation of a large enough turnout;
- by the above means reduce costs to a bare minimum. On that basis give everyone a fees holiday this year at least (but see next bullet). It would be improper to maintain a substantial bank balance without actively using it for the benefit of members;
- explore other sources of funding, possibly by way of voluntary contributions. Some local associations work successfully this way. (Some are funded by their local authorities, or by schools via local authority buy-back mechanisms, but neither of these is likely to be open to us).
A revised Constitution was adopted at the AGM in March 2018.
Let us know what you think. Comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks