Non-Executive Director x 5

Job Title: Non-Executive Director x 5
Contract Type: Permanent
Location: Redcar
Salary: 0 - 0
Reference: Galileo Academy Trust
Contact Name: Academy Ambassadors
Contact Email:
Job Published: January 20, 2020 15:14

Job Description

Galileo Academy Trust, comprising ten primary academies in the Redcar and Cleveland area, seeks to recruit trustees with skills in HR, Safeguarding, Finance, Health and Safety and Corporate Governance. In addition, the trust seeks to recruit two Members - the Member Board provides oversight and scrutiny of the work of the Trust Board in line with objects of the trust. Trust Board and Member Board meetings are held at the headquarters of the trust in Kirkleatham. Applicants of all faiths and of none are welcomed.

About the trust

Established in April 2018, Galileo Academy Trust is a group of ten primary schools across Redcar and Cleveland Local Authority (LA) areas. These schools are Westgarth Primary School, Wheatlands Primary School, Green Gates Primary School, Galley Hill Primary School, Lakes Primary School, New Marske Primary School, Ings Farm Primary School, JE Batty Primary School, St Peter’s Church of England Primary School and Coatham Church of England Primary School.

Galileo Academy Trust has strong connections with the Diocese of York, in particular the Diocese of York Educational Trust (DYET). DYET’s aim is to fulfil the Church of England’s vision for education. This takes as its starting point the words of Jesus, who said that he came so that all may have ‘life in all its fullness’ (John 10:10). DYET is committed to Church schools working in partnership with Community schools for the benefit of the localities they serve.

Galileo provides an opportunity for schools to convert to academy status where:

  • Individual schools can thrive in their own context and in line with their own vision and values;
  • Church of England schools can remain committed to maintaining their distinctiveness, based upon their Christian vision and values;
  • Schools can adopt dynamic collaboration, working in conjunction with a range of partners to deliver tailored programmes of school improvement that will meet the needs of each school;
  • Services are available to schools that will support improvements to teaching and learning, allowing schools to focus on their core business;
  • Flexibility is allowed for schools to continue their own journey and to adapt to their specific circumstances;
  • Opportunities exist to operate in close partnership for the good of all of the trust’s schools.


Plans for the future

The key challenges for the next 12-24 months include:

  1. Consolidation of the trust by working collaboratively with each other across all schools in the trust;
  2. Strengthening corporate governance from Members to Trustees and Trustees to the Local Governing Bodies to ensure School Improvement is at the heart of the trust;
  3. To work collaboratively both in the Tees Valley and beyond in order to share and benefit from expertise.

Trust ethos & values

Galileo is built upon the shared values of learning, accountability, respect and integrity. These values are at the very core of the Galileo Academy Trust and firmly embedded in all of its schools. All leaders, teachers, staff, parents and children alike embrace the values to complement each individual school’s values and visions.

A key component of the Galileo vision is having strong family values. Galileo is a family that embraces school-to-school support and the sharing of good practice throughout the trust. Every school and every individual is included in the vision. The trust actively encourages collaboration and working as a team to create and deliver the best possible education experiences for every pupil within the trust.

More information on the trust’s vision and values is available here:

Role summary

Number of positions advertised:

Up to 5

Roles 1-3 – 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 details the knowledge, skills and behaviours required for effective governance:

The strategic expertise required for this role includes:

Essential (due to multiple roles, candidates may be accepted who possess one or more of the skills below)
  • CFO/ Finance
  • HR
  • Corporate Governance
  • Education Leadership
  • Non-executive/ Trustee
  • CEO/ General Management
  • Health and Safety


The trust seeks to recruit up to three candidates, possessing a variety of professional skills, expertise and knowledge. Included in this is specific experience in finance within a public sector setting, at CFO/ Director level, and experience of working in a strategic HR role. The trust is also keen to hear from any candidates who possess prior knowledge from within an educational leadership context, including experience in safeguarding, education standards or special education needs and disability (SEND). These areas are not, however, a prerequisite for application.

Time commitment

One day per month including preparation time although more frequent meetings are required from time to time.

Roles 4&5 – 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. At Galileo Academy Trust the members are expected to be signatories for the academy trust, to attend three meetings per year, and to add to the already broad skillset within the existing team of members.

Person specification

The competencies required for this role include:

  • Non-executive/ Trustee
  • Corporate Governance
  • CEO/ General Management
  • Audit Committee Chair
  • Remuneration Committee Chair
  • Strategic

Candidates are expected to have a strong and clear grasp of corporate governance, including a current or previous role in which strategic oversight and accountability is central. Furthermore, prior experience in a non-executive or trustee position is vital to this role, along with senior expertise from a general management position in a large and complex organisation. Experience in the not-for-profit or charity sector is advantageous, but not essential.

Time commitment

The members board typically meets once per year for the Annual General Meeting and informally up to twice a year for a briefing from the Chair of the Trust and CEO on developments and plans for the year.

Location of board meetings and trust website

Room 201, The Innovation Centre, Vienna Court, Kirkleatham Business Park, Redcar, TS10 5SH

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.

“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.