Non-Executive Director x 2

Location
Bromley (City/Town), London (Greater)
Salary
Unpaid, voluntary
Posted
17 Aug 2017
Closes
29 Sep 2017
Ref
The Spring Partnership Trust
Sector
Education
Skills
Finance
Availability
Evenings, Weekdays
Frequency
Termly
Organisation
Academy school

The Spring Partnership Trust (TSPT)

The Spring Partnership Trust is a ‘primary school only’ multi academy trust based in Bromley. The trust seeks two non-executive directors with general strategic and management skills to join their board. The majority of board meetings are held at Hayes Primary School, George Lane, Bromley BR2 7LQ

About the trust

The Spring Partnership Trust (TSPT) is a ‘primary school only’ multi academy trust based in Bromley. The trust currently consists of Hayes Primary School, St Mary Cray Primary Academy (SMCPA), Dorset Road Infant School (DRIS), Castlecombe Primary School, Midfield Primary School and Leesons Primary School. Overall, the trust has a turnover of approximately £10M, 2000 pupils and 250 staff.

The directors (which includes the Executive Head Teacher) of The Spring Partnership Trust are a group of highly ambitious, proactive, professional and dynamic individuals. They have just been shortlisted for the 2017 ‘Outstanding Governance in a Multi Academy Trust’ Award by the National Governance Association in recognition of the enormous transformation that the Trust has experienced in the last few years in delivering much improved outcomes for children and their families.

The Trust’s transformation began approximately seven years ago when the governing body of the then maintained Hayes Primary School appointed a new Chairman and shortly thereafter a new Headteacher, Mrs. Brinkley, who remains with us today as the Executive Headteacher.  This resulted in the following significant changes: -

  • Significant improvements in teaching and learning and outcomes for children leading to a ‘Good’ inspection in 2013 and more recently an external assessment as ‘Outstanding’
  • Very significant improvements in governance including comprehensive school visits, robust procedures and a clear focus on meeting statutory obligations
  • Conversion to an Academy in 2011
  • A successful application to become ‘sponsor status’ and subsequent sponsoring of Saint Mary Cray Primary School in 2014 resulting in the formation of TSPT
  • Rapid and vast improvements in teaching and learning and outcomes at SMCPA, where the school was self-assessed as ‘special measures’ in November 2014 improving, according to external assessment, to a robust ‘Good’ in July 2016.
  • Seconding Mrs. Brinkley to DRIS where standards were improved to result in a ‘Good’ inspection in 2016
  • Castlecombe Primary joining the Trust in September 2016 and subsequently demonstrating rapid improvement as confirmed by a recent (May 2017) Ofsted Monitoring visit
  • DRIS joining the Trust in September 2016 and securing its future by closer working with Castlecombe
  • Very good results at KS2 in Summer 2017

In addition, as a result of continuing to develop relationships with other schools, Midfield and Leesons (both Ofsted Good) voluntarily joined on 1 December, 2016.  In the short to medium term, the trust expect to expand further possibly by way of developing regional clusters.

The character of this expanded trust is very varied.  The largest school will be a 3 form primary while the smallest is a one form infant school of just 67 pupils.  The schools are located in very different areas.  One is in an affluent stable community whilst some are located in areas of need with transient populations which have concomitant very high levels of pupil premium funding and associated social need. 

A notable feature of the trust is the leadership structure.  The trust are quite clear that ultimate executive authority is not shared between the various Headteachers but resides solely in the Executive Headteacher, currently Mrs. Brinkley, who is also the Accounting Officer.  They are proud that the four new schools have chosen voluntarily to join this structure and recognise the trust that the leaders of these new schools have put in us to lead them effectively.  An essential aspect of the trust’s future success will be maintaining and fostering excellent relationships at all levels.

The challenge for the trust is to continue to integrate all these new schools into a cohesive whole where there is mutual support and improvement together with benefiting from economies of scale both in terms of being more efficient financially but also in reducing teachers’ workloads.  Also, the governance structure and procedures need to be further altered so that the trust board takes a high level strategic view and delegates more whilst also coordinating carefully with the work of local governing bodies.

Trust ethos & Values

The trust is firmly committed to ensuring that every child receives the very best education and ensures this by instilling:

  • Standards -Aspirational
  • Pride.
  • Resilience
  • Individuality -celebrating each child teacher and school
  • New starts – reinvention and change to think about how to do things differently
  • Growth mind set.
  • Excellence.

Role specification

Number of Positions Advertised:  2

Role Title(s):

  • Non-executive director

Role Summary:

The trust is currently looking to recruit two experienced senior business professionals to join the trust’s board of directors. The appointed candidate will be joining the trust at an exciting time as they continue to consolidate recent expansion.

Directors set the strategy for TSPT as a whole, support and challenge the Executive Headteacher, ensure the financial stability of the trust, promote the safeguarding and wellbeing of children and support the achievement of educational excellence.

The key challenges and opportunities will be centred on the successful consolidation of the schools who recently joined the trust.  The role is very varied, interesting and a delightful opportunity to support young children, their families, their communities and the extremely committed and dedicated staff.

The successful applicants will be subject to a full Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) disclosure.

Person Specification

Potential candidates are likely to have most of: -

  • (Near-) Board level experience in SME’s or equivalent.
  • Experience of working across physical sites and facilitating groups working together.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills.
  • Proactive with initiative to get fully involved

Core Competencies:

  • Senior/ General Management
  • Strategic
  • Corporate governance
  • Understanding of school systems and pupil data would be an advantage.

Time commitment

Initially, the commitment for this voluntary role would be approximately 2 hours per week on average of which much would be reading. There are approximately 2/3 meetings per term (generally held either at 7.00 PM or 8.00AM) with additional ad hoc meetings and visits to schools. 

Other

The trust practices safer recruitment and the successful candidate will undergo a DBS search.

Background on academy trusts

Academy schools, which are charities run independently of local authority control, now account for 70% of secondary schools and 25% of primaries – and their number is growing all the time.

Many of these schools are grouped together as multi-academy trusts.  If the schools are to fulfil their potential, the trusts need non-executives (known in charity law as trustees) to bring a wide range of skills and experience to help guide strategy, ensure their ambitions can be soundly financed and keep their schools up to the mark delivering for their pupils.

Trusteeship is a voluntary, unpaid role for people who have the energy and skills to make a real contribution to shaping the future of our schools.  You don’t need to have any specialist knowledge of education. 

Applications

Academy Ambassadors is a non-profit organisation which recruits senior business leaders and professionals as volunteer non-executive directors onto the boards of multi-academy trusts. If you are interested in applying for the role please send your CV and a short expression of interest detailing which role you are applying for to academyambassadors@newschoolsnetwork.org. Please note candidates should live within reasonable travelling distance of the trust and/or have a link with the region. For more information, please call 0207 952 8556 or visit www.academyambassadors.org

Key Dates

We strongly recommend applying as early as you can to have the best possible chance of being considered as we may change the closing date if we have received sufficient applications. Applicants should be aware of the following key dates in the recruitment process –

Deadline for applications: Friday 29th September 2017