Governors, especially parent governors, should be chosen for the values that they bring to the governing body as consumers, not because they have vested interests either politically or professionally in the management of schools. It remains for the parents at each school to decide which candidates to elect, having studied the curriculum vitae of those coming forward.
Perhaps it would help my hon. Friend to know that we are making arrangements for a sample survey of schools to collect information about the number of candidates who have offered themselves for election as teacher and parent governors, the turn-out for elections, the number of candidates from different sectors such as the ethnic minorities, and the balance between the sexes. The survey will also look at the background of parent governors, especially to assist us in ascertaining the business representation of the co-opted governors. That will give us information about the occupational background of all governors.