Non-Executive Director X 2

Job Title: Non-Executive Director X 2
Contract Type: Permanent
Location: London
Salary: 0 - 0
Reference: Haberdashers' Aske's Federation Trust
Contact Name: Academy Ambassadors
Contact Email:
Job Published: May 02, 2019 13:25

Job Description

Haberdashers' Aske's Federation Trust

Haberdashers' Aske's Federation Trust (the Trust) in South East London seeks a Chair of Finance and non-executive director with corporate governance experience. The Trust values diversity at board level and would welcome applications from across the community. Trust leaders characterise diversity across the following dimensions: gender, ethnicity, age, professional background, training, thought and analysis. Board meetings rotate across the schools in the Trust.


About the Trust

Haberdashers' Aske's Federation Trust is comprised of three secondary schools and five primary schools. These are organised into three all-through clusters. A fourth secondary school is due to open in September 2019 (Borough Academy in London Borough of Southwark). There are currently over 5,000 students with nearly 600 staff and a budget of £33m. All schools are within 30 minutes travelling time, to facilitate easier professional interaction for the sharing of good practice.  In the medium term it is planned to grow the Trust to no more than 15 schools in five clusters to achieve economies of scale within a close geographic spread.  The current clusters are:


Crayford Cluster (London Borough of Bexley)

  • Crayford Temple Grove
  • Slade Green Temple Grove
  • Crayford Academy


Hatcham Cluster (London Borough of Lewisham)

  • Hatcham Temple Grove
  • Hatcham Temple Grove Free School
  • Hatcham College


Knights Cluster (London Borough of Lewisham)

  • Knights Temple Grove
  • Knights Academy


The Trust is named after its benefactor, Robert Aske. He was a Haberdasher, a merchant dealing in raw silk. On his death in 1689 he left £20,000 to build a 'Hospital' (almshouses) and a school. This school operated in Hoxton from 1690 until the 19th century, when plans were drawn up for new schools near New Cross. The Trust is proud to have been educating young people in SE London since 1876. In 2005 the Haberdashers' Aske's Federation was set up to offer an Askean education to more students, and in the last 14 years has grown from one secondary school to an organisation of nine schools educating over 5,000 young people.


The Trust’s schools all serve diverse communities in South East London. Over a third of children attending the schools are economically deprived (eligible for pupil premium funding), which is significantly above the national average. One in five of the children has English as a second language and one in ten has an identified special educational need, which are both in line with the national average. All of the schools are judged good or outstanding by Ofsted. The achievement of primary and secondary pupils in the primary and secondary schools is average overall, but there is variation between individual schools. In its five year strategy the Trust has set ambitious targets for primary, secondary and sixth form performance. To hit them the significant improvements that have already been made in the primary schools must continue and the improvements in one secondary school need to be replicated in the other two.


Plans for the future

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


  1. Curriculum: the Trust plans to complete the alignment of the curriculum and assessment across all the primary and secondary schools.
  2. Free School: The new secondary Academy (Haberdashers' Aske's Borough Academy) will be opening in September 2019, initially in temporary accommodation whilst a new school is built.
  3. Teaching school: Securing the future for the teaching school, Atlas, as the main driver of the Trust’s own school improvement work and a significant provider of school improvement support in the local area.


The Trust’s ambition is to create a fourth all-through cluster around Borough Academy, the new secondary school in London Borough of Southwark. The Trust is seeking opportunities for growth in South East London to create a fifth cluster. One possibility is in the Thamesmead and Abbey Wood opportunity area in the London Borough of Bexley.


Trust ethos & values

The Haberdashers' Aske's Federation Trust vision is built from our values of aspiration and achievement, personal responsibility, self-discipline and mutual respect. It is forward looking and values innovation, but always within the context of its long tradition of providing excellent education.


Role summary

Number of positions advertised: 2



Trustees – or non-executive directors - are both charity trustees and company directors of the Multi Academy Trust; the role is to plan strategy and hold to account the executive and senior leadership team. The board of trustees manages the business of the 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.


Role 1 – Trustee/Non-Executive Director (Chair of Finance)

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 long term sustainability and potential growth, and holding the CEO/CFO to account.


The Finance Committee oversees the Trust’s financial affairs, advising the Trust Board on the budget and financial sustainability, monitoring against budget, ensuring policies are in place to assure that public funds are used correctly and achieve VFM. The Committee Chair also sits on the Trust Board and Strategy Committee. The Finance Committee works closely with the Audit and Risk Committee, which includes members with accounting qualifications.



Person specification

The competencies required for this role include:


  • Finance/Operations Mgt
  • Non-executive/ Trustee



The chair of the Finance Committee should have experience of senior financial and/or operational management and oversight in a successful medium-large organisation and experience of corporate governance. Previous experience in a non-executive role is essential, ideally within an organisation with revenues of min £20M, as is experience of leading a committee. An accounting or MBA qualification would be useful but is not a requirement for the role.


Time commitment

10 hours /month minimum. 10 board meetings pa.


Role 2 – Trustee/Non-Executive Director

The appointed individual will take on the role as Chair of the Hatcham College Local Governing Body (LGB) and sit as a trustee on the Trust board. The LGB is responsible for ensuring quality of provision and the best educational outcomes for the 1,800 children and young people aged 3-18 educated in the three schools in the Hatcham cluster.


Person specification

The competencies required for this role include:



  • Chair
  • Non-executive/ Trustee


  • Change Management
  • CEO/General Management


Applicants should have experience of leading board oversight and scrutiny of several business units (this board oversees a cluster of three schools) within a private sector, public sector or not-for-profit context.


Time commitment

10 hours /month minimum. 10 board meetings pa.


Location of board meetings and Trust website

Board meetings are held at multiple locations. Please see for more information.


Governance structure

Please see


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 (2019)


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 14th June 2019

Interviews:    TBC