Non-Executive Director

Job Title: Non-Executive Director
Contract Type: Temporary
Location: Chester
Salary: 0 - 0
Reference: Christleton Learning Trust
Contact Name: Academy Ambassadors
Contact Email:
Job Published: August 09, 2018 10:47

Job Description

Christleton Learning Trust seeks two members and one non-executive director to join its expanding board. Board meetings are held in the Chester area. 


About the Trust

The trust is a specialist education group that works with public and private clients to transform the quality of education and skills provision. With wide-ranging experience and a network of world-renowned experts, the trust continues to be at the forefront of education development and reform.

The trust consists of three schools, Christleton High School, Christleton International Studio and Queen’s Park High School.


Plans for the Future

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

  1. To strengthen governance from outside the school sector by identifying strong trustees who can contribute to the effective and robust management of the trust;
  2. To achieve sustained and substantial growth while maintaining the trust’s high standards and vision in its schools.
  3. To maintain and improve standards in all schools.

As the trust embeds its vision and expands, it will further develop its relationships with other similar organisations in the Chester and North West region.

The trust is holding discussions with the aim of expanding its offer to partners both local and international. Its aim is to engage with other schools, and eventually welcome them into the trust as partners. This will enrich each organisation and strengthen the trust’s ability to support similar schools.


Trust Ethos & Values

Christleton Learning Trust exists to serve young people, to educate, enlighten and give them the expertise and confidence to succeed. The trust believes that through its values, honest and open collaboration, higher standards will be achieved.


Role Summary

Number of Positions Advertised: 3

Roles 1 & 2 – Members

Members are signatories to the articles of association and can pass a special resolution to amend the articles of association. They are responsible for appointing trustees, according to the trust's articles of association, and can also remove serving trustees where necessary and appropriate.

Members have oversight of the trust's governance and should keep themselves informed about how the board is performing and have an awareness of when they may need to exercise their powers to ensure effective governance.

The competencies required for this role include:

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

  • Corporate Governance
  • Non-executive/ Trustee


  • Strategic
  • Finance


Person Specification

Both of the roles require individuals possessing strong ‘general’ skillsets from across the business sphere but with a specific requirement for corporate governance. Experience working in a non-executive/trustee role is essential.

The trust also seeks complementary skills, as listed in the ‘desirable’ section, to help develop its board strength and breadth.

Time Commitment

Members are expected to attend up to three meetings per year. They are encouraged to know the schools and attend school performances.


Role 3 – 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:

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

  • Strategic leadership and management
  • Business development experience/expertise
  • Non-executive Director/Trustee


  • Growth Management
  • Legal/ Compliance
  • Real estate/ Property
  • Risk
  • Change Management
  • Entrepreneur/Founder


Person Specification

The trust is looking for an individual, demonstrating some or all of the above essential criteria; this includes a requirement for an individual with significant experience in Business sector, who can deal confidently with senior individuals on all matters related to strategic planning and change.

While it is acknowledged that not all candidates will possess all skills, it would be advantageous to identify an individual with experience of managing rapid growth and sustaining quality across a number of establishments, including underperforming organisations.

Ideally, candidates will possess a sound grasp of the current political climate and of financial and resource management. An awareness of organisational structures, acquisitions and mergers would be advantageous. The trust requires and a strategic thinker with excellent communication skills, who is forward thinking and embraces change.

The individual should actively support the trust’s ‘inclusion ethos’, reflecting the belief that all young people can achieve, given the opportunity to feel included in, and empowered by, the learning environment.

Time Commitment

8 meetings per year


Location of Board Meetings and Trust Website

Queen's Park High School, Queens Park Road, Chester, CH4 7AE.


Governance Structure


Background on Academy Trusts

Academy schools, which are charities run independently of local authority control, now account for 73% of secondary schools and 29% 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 760 multi academy trusts of 3+ 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: Tuesday, 14th August 2018