Non-Executive Director

Job Title: Non-Executive Director
Location: Unknown
Reference: Inspire Trust
Contact Email:
Job Published: March 28, 2018 14:56

Job Description

Inspire Trust

Inspire Trust seeks to recruit three new members and a new non-executive director onto its board. This is a collaborative of educational institutions grown from a strong learning community model; covering learners aged 3-19. Board meetings are held in the Rotherham area.

About the Trust

The trust’s journey began nine years ago through the development of a highly effective mixed age learning community. Its academies share a common ethos, vision and principles and work collaboratively to improve the educational offer and opportunities for children and young people of the community to improve outcomes and life chances.

Inspire Trust aims to be forward thinking and innovative; demonstrating successfully its commitment to work in partnership. Its vision is predicated on institutions retaining its own Headteacher / Principal, leadership team and local governing body, under an 'earned autonomy' model. Fundamentally, the trust seeks to ensure that all areas continue to flourish and it continues to provide the best possible learning and care.

Committed to financial stability and efficiency, budget planning is focused and professional, with leaders being offered a service which will maximize the funds for front line services and provision with access to a range of corporate services, saving time and effort, reducing administrative burdens and allowing individual schools to concentrate on teaching and learning, improving outcomes and changing lives.

The trust comprises Sitwell Junior School - Junior School approximately 330 pupils (ages 7 to 11), Oakwood High School Secondary approx 1050  pupils (ages 11 to 16); Thomas Rotherham College Sixth Form College approximately 1400 pupils. It is engaged in conversations with a further two secondary schools and partner primaries. The trust is also a strategic partner with another Rotherham multi-academy trust.

Plans for the Future

The key challenges for the board over the next 12-24 months are:

  1. Improving progress
  2. Improving outcomes
  3. Retaining our strong financial position in a turbulent funding framework

The trust’s growth strategy is predicated on an understanding that each institution has a contribution to make, can and should be challenged, through the frameworks established and will drive school improvement.  It is building firm foundations and through this a collective capacity to support and challenge.

Trust Ethos & Values

With a strong emphasis on respect for all, the trust forges effective and supportive relationships with both pupils and adults in its learning community. Together, schools within the trust maximise every opportunity to achieve success for all, inspiring pupils to achieve excellent academic progress.

Further information -

Role Summary Number of Positions Advertised: 4 Role 1 – Trustee/Non-Executive Director

Trustees – or non-executive directors - are both charity trustees and company directors of the academy trust; the role is to hold to account the executive and senior leadership team. The board of trustees manages the business of the academy trust and may exercise all the powers of the trust. The trustees ensure compliance with the trust’s charitable objects and with company and charity law.

Non-executive directors will be responsible for maintaining stability during a period of rapid growth and the management of a dynamic structure. The role also includes contributing to financial planning for sustainability and growth, and holding the CEO/CFO to account.

The competencies required for this role include:


  • CEO/ General Management
  • Corporate Governance



  • Non-executive/ Trustee
  • Audit Committee Chair
  • Remuneration
  • Committee Chair
  • Corporate Governance
  • Strategic

Person Specification

This individual must have the skills and experience necessary to understand, evaluate and provide strategic input in respect of educational progress against targets. They must have experience of performance management, engagement with stakeholders, self-evaluation and acting as a critical friend. It is the trustee’s responsibility to agree the Operational Scheme of Delegation to ensure financial probity and regulatory and legal compliance.

Time Commitment

4-6 hours per month (on average).

Roles 2-4 – Member

A member is able to alter the trust’s Articles of Association and appoint (or remove) trustees/directors where necessary. They provide independent oversight to the work of the board of trustees in order to ensure suitable accountability for its decision making and strategy. At Inspire Trust the members are expected to be signatories for the academy trust and to add to the already broad skillset within the existing team of members.

The competencies required for this role include:


  • Corporate Governance
  • Legal/ Compliance
  • Non-executive/ Trustee


Desirable (due to multiple roles, candidates may be accepted who possess one or more of the skills below)

  • Audit Committee Chair
  • CFO/Finance
  • IT/Technology
  • Branding/ Marketing
  • Change Management
  • CEO/ General Management
  • HR

Person Specification

Members should ‘be eyes on and hands off’ to avoid undermining the boards’ discretion in exercising its responsibilities. The trust is looking for core governance skills and the ability to review effectiveness of governance. Members may specialise in a number of occupational areas, including those considered above.

Time Commitment

3 hours per month (maximum).

Trust Website

Governance Structure

Background on Academy Trusts

Academy schools, which are charities run independently of local authority control, now account for 71% of secondary schools and 26% of primaries – and their number is growing all the time.

Many of these schools are grouped together as multi-academy trusts (MATs). There are currently 980 multi academy trusts of 2+ schools.  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.

“Academy boards must be ambitious for all children and young people and infused with a passion for education and a commitment to continuous school improvement that enables the best possible outcomes. Governance must be grounded in reality as defined by both high-quality objective data and a full understanding of the views and needs of pupils/students, staff, parents, carers and local communities. It should be driven by inquisitive, independent minds and through conversations focused on the key strategic issues which are conducted with humility, good judgement, resilience and determination.”  Source: Governance Handbook, Department for Education (2017)

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 do not need to have any specialist knowledge of education. 


Academy Ambassadors is a non-profit programme 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 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

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 1st June, 2018