Stakeholders, clients and the environment
Pages 9

The concept of an institution’s ‘environment’ is somewhat arbitrary because to suggest a definition presumes a distinction which can be erroneous and potentially misleading. It is particularly difficult to determine whether certain groups of ‘stakeholders’ such as pupils/ students, parents and governors should be regarded as internal or external to the institution. Where do the boundaries fall, and how permeable are they? Governors are an obvious case in point, especially given the legislation that gives them a wide-ranging set of decision-making responsibilities in major areas of a school’s activities. On this basis, governors might well be ‘placed’ within rather than outside the institution, especially if an analogy with the board of directors is considered viable. An important part of the justification for reform of the composition of the governors was to give the ‘consumer’ a greater and more direct influence in institutional decision-making. Hence the substantial increase in parental and community representation on school governing bodies.