Non-Executive Director X 2

Job Title: Non-Executive Director X 2
Contract Type: Temporary
Location: Lancaster
Salary: 0 - 0
Reference: The Bay Learning Trust
Contact Name: Academy Ambassadors
Contact Email:
Job Published: December 03, 2018 15:23

Job Description

The Bay Learning Trust seeks to appoint up to two new board members with significant skills and experience – along with a valid professional qualification – in the field of finance and HR. The trust anticipates a period of growth and is looking to strengthen its governance arrangements accordingly. This is a ‘open’ trust and provides for both Anglican and non-church (faith) designated academies.  The trust actively seeks a mix of academies within the trust and thus applicants of all faiths, or of no faith, are welcome. Board meetings are held at The Lodge, Ripley St Thomas, Lancaster.

About the trust

The Bay Learning Trust was set up by Ripley St Thomas CE Academy in 2016 to provide a local solution for primary and secondary schools in the geographical area of Morecambe Bay.

Ripley is an ‘Outstanding’ academy and teaching school with its own SCITT (School Centred Initial Teacher Training). The area has pockets of high deprivation and coastal deprivation and schooling is also affected by the existence of two selective non-fee-paying grammar schools.

The trust hopes to bring schools together to provide better education for local young people. At present, it comprises two schools, Ripley (1750 pupils) and Carnforth High School (700 pupils). It has also been designated as the sponsor for Morecambe High School (1400 pupils) which will join the trust early in 2019. Other local secondary and primary schools are exploring the potential to join the trust and thus they anticipate further growth in due course.

Plans for the future

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

  1. To successfully integrate Morecambe High School into the trust;
  2. To maintain Ripley's ‘Outstanding’ status, as well as moving Carnforth from ‘Good’ to ‘Outstanding’ and enabling Morecambe to move from ‘Inadequate’ to ‘Good’;
  3. To embed the notion and practice of collaboration, so that best practice can be shared across the area for the benefit of all its young people;
  4. To develop governance across the schools within the trust through restructure, training and networking.

The trust additionally seeks to develop its expertise and work with more primary schools, as well as looking to establish the new primary SCITT alongside its existing ‘outstanding’ secondary SCITT.

The trust has a long term aim to contribute to the establishment of improved provision in the area for children who struggle to cope in normal mainstream schools. They are therefore seeking how they might support alternative provision.

Trust ethos & values

The trust is committed to always putting its young people first and believes young people should have

opportunities to develop in body, mind and spirit, and that all can be successful. It celebrates the values of reciprocity, generosity, openness, honesty and humility.

Role summary

Number of positions advertised:
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 and the management of a dynamic structure. The role also includes contributing to financial planning for sustainability and potential growth, and holding the CEO/CFO to account.

Person specification

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)

  • CFO/ Finance
  • HR
  • Corporate Governance
  • Risk


  • Change Management
  • Growth Management
  • Legal/ Compliance
  • Restructuring

The trust is specifically seeking one experienced individual with a qualification in the field of finance to contribute broadly to its board operations, with a key focus on the Finance and Resources committee, overseeing upwards of £20m of public funding. This individual therefore needs to have experience of working at board level, with a track record of reporting on the financial performance of a large organisation with a significant bottom line. In addition, the trust seeks someone with corporate HR skills who has worked with staff across a range of sites to create harmonisation in terms of policy and best practice.  Both candidates are likely to have expereince of managing risk in their relevant fields and will hold the ability to challenge the executive team, which is essential, as is a strategic view of the trust’s work.

Time commitment

The board currently meets three times a year (once each term). The trust also has three sub-committees (Audit, Finance & Resources and Quality & Standards) which meet ahead of the main board meetings, and report to it. Consequently, new trustees will be expected to attend one sub-committee as well as board meetings. Meetings are likely to be scheduled for late afternoon/early evening to suit trustees. A programme of training is also available. Trustees are normally required for an average of 4-6 hour per month.  

Location of board meetings and trust website

Trust board meetings are held at The Lodge, Ripley St Thomas, Ashton Road, Lancaster, LA1 4RR

Trust website:

Governance structure

Background on academy trusts

Academy schools, which are charities run independently of local authority control, now account for 74% of secondary schools and 31% 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 832 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: Friday, 1st February 2019