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Role

Non-Executive Director X 2

Job Title: Non-Executive Director X 2
Contract Type: Contract
Location: Stroud
Industry:
Salary: 0 - 0
Reference: Thomas Keble School - July19
Contact Name: Academy Ambassadors
Contact Email: academyambassadors@newschoolsnetwork.org
Job Published: July 08, 2019 15:59

Job Description

 Thomas Keble School

 

Thomas Keble School is a single academy trust seeking two new trustee/non-executive directors with expertise in change and project management or finance to support the trust board in managing its key challenges, namely to fulfil the conditions of a Financial Notice to Improve issued by the Education and Skills Funding Agency whilst delivering an inclusive curriculum for pupils of all abilities. Board meetings are held in, Stroud, Gloucestershire.

 

About the trust

Thomas Keble School converted to academy status in August 2011. This school has a published admission number of 136 pupils but new housing developments have resulted in the need to provide education for 25 additional pupils.  Whilst the school has relatively low deprivation compared to other similar schools nationally, with only 7% of its pupils eligible for free schools meals, conversely it has a significantly higher number of pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) (figure varies between 21-25%) plus 36 pupils have an Education and Health Care Plan.

 

Since September 2016, the average number of pupils joining the trust at expected levels of prior attainment (in terms of their SATs results) has decreased. This, combined with the trust’s SEND profile, has presented significant challenges in terms of curriculum planning. The trust looks to support the ongoing progress of its SEND pupils and address the challenge of providing effective intervention for a growing population of children with low prior attainment. This, along with changes in the local authority’s approach to High Needs funding and provision and introduction of the National Funding Formula has also resulted in significant funding pressures. The school has been working with the Education Skills and Funding Agency (ESFA) to address the financial challenges following the issue of a Financial Notice to Improve (FNTI) in January 2019: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/financial-notice-to-improve-thomas-keble-school

 

Plans for the future

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

  1. Financial stability and sustainability: to achieve a balanced budget scenario in the short and longer term. The school has been working with a Schools Resource Management Adviser and the ACSL to evaluate the effectiveness of current ways of working and identify areas to improve efficiency. Implementation of the resulting reports/action plans is already underway and generating cost savings. The board will continue working with the ESFA to meet the conditions of the FNTI and get it lifted as quickly as possible.
  2. Governance: to develop and monitor strategies which will: deliver a cumulative surplus scenario as quickly as possible; maintain high quality standards of education and pupil outcomes; and comply with the regulatory framework relevant to charitable companies in the education sector.
  3. Strategic direction: to explore the viability of joining a multi-academy trust (MAT) which aligns with the school's inclusive ethos. The Trust is interested in finding out more regarding the South West Regional Schools Commissioner’s plans to establish a new MAT partnership in Gloucestershire where Thomas Keble may have an opportunity to shape its future to benefit local pupils.

 

Trust ethos & values

Thomas Keble is an inclusive school committed to delivering high quality education outcomes for children within the local community. The school believes in a personalised curriculum which stretches and challenges all pupils irrespective of ability. Thomas Keble’s strong pastoral system supports every child to achieve more than they initially thought possible.

 

Role summary

Number of positions advertised: 2

 

Role1– Trustee/Non-Executive Director

Trustees – or non-executive directors - are both charity trustees and company directors of the academy trust. The core functions of their role are: ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction; holding executive leaders to account for the educational and financial performance of a charitable company funded by the public purse.

 

The board of trustees manages the business of the academy trust and may exercise all the powers of the trust in compliance with its charitable objects, company and charity law.

In the interests of safeguarding, all trustee appointments would be subject to an enhanced disclosure and barring service check.

 

Person specification

Every trustee is expected to abide by the trust’s code of conduct and the seven principles of public life set out by Lord Nolan: selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership.

 

The Competency Framework for Governance (DfE) 2017 sets out the six competency areas, the (Nolan) principles and personal attributes the trust expects all trustees to demonstrate. The latter being: committed, confident, curious, challenging, collaborative, critical and creative.

 

The strategic expertise required for NED role 1 includes:

 

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

  • Change management
  • Project management
  • Corporate / Charity governance

 

Desirable

  • Due diligence (in particular, experience of moving from a single academy trust to multi-academy trust)

 

 

The strategic expertise required for NED role 2 includes:

 

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

  • CFO/Finance
  • Corporate / Charity governance

 

Desirable

  • Growth / Risk management 

 

 

Time commitment

7 hours /month minimum.

 

Location of board meetings and trust website

Board meetings are held at Thomas Keble School, Stroud, Gloucestershire, GL6 7DY.

Trust website: https://thomaskeble.gloucs.sch.uk/

Governance structure

Please see: https://thomaskeble.gloucs.sch.uk/information/governance/?doing_wp_cron=1548771022.6815 779209136962890625

 

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 855 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. 

 

Applications

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 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: 31 August 2019