Brief Introduction to the Governance of Wellington College China Schools
Wellington College China currently has nine governors who are jointly appointed by Wellington College China and Wellington College in the UK. Currently, the Board has British and Chinese educators, a legal expert, finance experts, a tax expert and entrepreneurs who understand how to operate in China. Wellington College China governors are always available to provide advice and support to any of the Wellington China colleges.
A subset of five of the nine Wellington College China members form the School Affairs Committee (SAC) for each college. This is the legal board for the college, where key strategic decisions are approved. The SAC meets twice a year. The members for Wellington College International Shanghai (Joy Qiao, Helen Kavanagh, Chen Wei, Patrick Allen, Scott Bryan) and their biographies can be seen below.
Each college’s SAC is supported by three sub-committees, which are the forums for more detailed discussions on focused topics. This is also where external advisors are invited to attend for support where needed (for example, facilities management experts). The three sub-committees are: Academic, Facilities and Services, and Finance.
The 3 sub committees meet prior to each of the SAC meetings. Educational needs of the college always come first. The recommendations and meeting minutes of the three sub-committee meetings are then submitted to the SAC meetings.
The college budgeting process and timeline is designed to support each college’s strategic planning. All Wellington College China colleges are not-for-profit organisations. Financial management is driven by educational quality. Thus, any surpluses generated are invested back into the colleges. Wellington College China governance undergoes an annual evaluation process to examine the effectiveness of its strategic leadership.
The Board works with an experienced UK school governance specialist who provides ongoing training and support. This process keeps the board professional and adaptable to the school’s needs. The role of a governor is to be a ‘critical friend’ to the school leaders. ‘Critical’ in order to continually strive to raise the bar and hold the leaders accountable to deliver ever higher standards. ‘Friendly’ because the role is supportive with a mutually shared vision.