Lumen Learning Trust
14 days ago
Lumen Learning Trust, a primary phase multi-academy trust of three primary schools based in Surrey seeks two non-executive directors and two Members. Board meetings are held in Shepperton.
About the trust
The Lumen Learning Trust (LLT) is a primary-only trust, based in Spelthorne. Whilst being part of Surrey, Spelthorne’s demographic is not the typical ‘leafy Surrey’ we all think of, and experiences higher levels of deprivation. In our schools percentages of pupil premium averages around 25% (13% being the national average) The Trust is committed to ensuring that all children, whatever their background, have opportunities that will allow them to become successful adults. The Trust currently has three primary schools, a Children's Centre and a nursery. The Trust has 1527 pupils on roll, 239 members of staff and a gross income of £7.2m. A further school is expected to join the Trust in April 2019.
The governance structure of Directors, Members and Governors, working with the school leaders, is pivotal in the aim to make every community school at least a Good school. At the heart of what LLT does the provision of high quality teaching and learning. The Trust talent-spots and develops staff, considering all of the teachers as potential future leaders, with a high number already achieving as specialist subject leaders. Through cross-Trust working, we provide solutions to remove barriers to learning. Innovative approaches are led by a skilled Executive Principal with a proven track record in school improvement, who is a National Leader in Education and an Ofsted Inspector. In addition to the schools, the Trust deploys educational consultants who provide both internal and external school improvement support. With the expertise in the Trust, it has become a go-to place for those seeking knowledge in a number of areas, be that child protection and safeguarding or new initiatives, such as the Bridge Builders Mentoring Scheme in primary schools.
Plans for the future
The key challenges for the board over the next 12-24 months are:
- To ensure that all of the schools in the Trust achieve a Good Ofsted category. Both Saxon and Echelford have achieved this. Riverbridge is due an Ofsted inspection for the first time since joining the Trust, as a supported school. It is expect that Riverbridge will achieve a Good outcome.
- Retaining, recruiting and developing staff. Given the proximity of Lumen schools to the London Boroughs, London Weighting provides a recruitment challenge. LLT aims to attract high quality staff by emphasizing staff development, in particular the opportunities to support other schools. In addition, we work closely with South Farnham School Centred Initial Teacher Training programme which enables us to ‘grow’ our own teachers from graduate teaching assistants to qualified teachers. To date this approach has been successful, but we are mindful that this is an ongoing national challenge and we continue to look for creative ways to keep the staff in whom we invest so much, as well as attract those that share our vision for our children.
- To identify the appropriate new partner schools to join the Trust. Directors are keen to retain the original ethos of the Trust, with local provision for the local community, rather than building a brand or expansion for expansions sake. Consequently we are fairly ‘choosy’ about who joins us. Through our commitment to supporting other local schools we are able to generate income as well as grow our network in different ways.
Trust ethos & values
Lumen Learning Trust puts the children’s needs at the heart of its provision. It is committed to enabling children become successful lifelong learners and happy fulfilled adults who can make positive choices about their future. For more information, please see https://www.lumenlearningtrust.co.uk/page/?title=About+Us&pid=38
Number of positions advertised:
Roles 1 & 2 – 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.
Both non-executive directors will also join the Business and Management Committee which meets once a term and occasionally more often if required. Directors will receive monthly management accounts electronically from the Head of Finance. They would also attend the main Trust Board which meets termly, following the B&M Committee, approx. a week later. The competencies required for these roles include:
- CFO/ Finance OR
- CEO/General Management
- Non-executive/ Trustee
- Corporate Governance
- Real Estate/Property
CFO/Finance: the trust welcomes applicants with an accountancy background, either with experience of accountancy or for example with an ACA or CIMA qualification
CEO/General Management: candidates are welcome with experience of budget management in a finance or operational role. Multi-site experience and risk assessment skills would also be an asset.
6 hours /month minimum.
Role 3 & 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. Annually they receive a copy of the Trust annual accounts. The annual general meeting for Members usually takes place in November each year.
The competencies required for this role include:
- Non-executive/ Trustee
- Corporate Governance
The trust is eager to appoint two Members who will be happy with the “eyes on, hands off” role and will uphold the ethos and aims of the Trust. Corporate governance, trustee or non-executive director experience would be an asset.
2 hours /month minimum. One meeting a year.
Location of board meetings and trust website
Board meetings are held at Saxon Primary School, Briar Road, Shepperton, TW17 0JB. Please see https://www.lumenlearningtrust.co.uk
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 firstname.lastname@example.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.
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: Wednesday 13th March 2019