Published: 00:01, 13 October 2017
Schools across Kent are facing a governor recruitment crisis which is affecting children's education, it's been warned.
Analysis of figures from Kent County Council (KCC) by the education charity Governors for Schools has highlighted there are 564 vacancies to be filled.
Dartford, Gravesham and Sevenoaks are short by 150, Ashford, Shepway and Dover by 145, Canterbury Swale and Thanet are looking for 113 governors and Maidstone, Tonbridge & Malling and Tunbridge Wells need 156.
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The data the team looked at showed vacancies going into the academic year 2017-18 including co-opted, foundation, Diocese and Trust positions across the county’s 593 schools.
Chief executive of Governors for Schools, Louise Cooper, said: "While many of the headlines at the moment are around teacher shortages, the problem in recruiting governors is just as acute.
"Governors are critical in ensuring that schools are being managed efficiently and effectively so that they can deliver excellent education."
LISTEN: Schools are facing a shortage of governors
Ms Cooper says the shortage of governors will have a negative effect on the educational outcomes for pupils.
"Becoming a school governor is an incredibly rewarding experience, through which people learn new skills – many of which can be transferred back into the work place and help with career progression," she added.
"Schools have an increasing need for professional expertise so we are renewing our efforts to attract volunteers, particular those with legal, HR, finance, facilities management and IT skills.
"Volunteering as a governor is a great way to contribute to your community and use your skills and experience to improve the lives of local children."