About the trust
Vision Multi Academy Trust (MAT), formed in July 2017, is a trust with a cluster of three primary schools working in close partnership. Among the trust academies East Ward Primary School, which has nursery provision and 450 children on role, Higher Lane Primary School and Sunny Bank Primary do not have nursey provision and have 460 and 250 children respectively.
The trust celebrates a history of collaboration and challenge. The schools in the trust have experience of working together on joint curriculum projects, shared CPD, moderation, challenge partners and developing senior and middle leaders. The trust benefits from experienced Headteachers across its academies, who have worked in other Local Authorities and have the capacity within schools to provide school-to-school support.
Each of the trust academies is very different in make-up and each academy faces its own challenges; pupils in the trust come from a number of different backgrounds.
Number of Positions Advertised: 4
Role 1 & 2 – 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.
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 to account.
In the interests of safeguarding, all trustee appointments would be subject to an enhanced disclosure and barring service check.
The competencies required for this role include any of below:
Desirable (due to multiple roles, candidates may be accepted who possess one or more of the skills below)
- Growth Management
- Succession Planning
- Health and Safety
- General Business Skills
The ideal candidate will be able to draw on their experience of having a senior role in business, commerce, industry or the public sector and apply their skills in the context of education. They should be able to synthesise information from a range of sources and question/ constructively critique various solutions to inform the decision-making process. The strongest candidates will be able to contribute to the trusts strategic planning and will have a keen eye on the strategic goals and challenge and support the executives to ensure individual academies and thus the MAT overall performs well.
Trust meetings are held THREE times each year (autumn, spring and summer) and are generally held on Tuesdays starting at 6pm with each meeting lasting up to 2 hours. The trust also has two sub-committees (HR & Standards and Finance, Audit & Risk) and trustees may be invited to join one of the two sub-committees. The sub-committees are each held THREE times a year and are scheduled to precede a full trust board meeting (possibly a week or two before). Sub-committee meeting times are flexible to suit the attendees.
The trust is introducing a ‘link trustee’ system where certain trustees are linked to a particular academy and they may be invited to occasional events and to visit the academy to see it working in the normal day. This will allow the Board to see how its polices and decisions impact teachers and children on a daily basis.
There is the potential for trustees to access training as necessary, some of which can be done online. An induction programme will be arranged to meet individual needs and ensure that new trustees are able to grasp the key issues in the trust quickly.
Overall trustee will be expected to devote (on average) up to 6 hours per month to trust business. This would include reading papers etc ahead of meetings and all training and visits.
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.
The strategic expertise required for this role includes:
- CEO/General Management
- Corporate Governance
- Legal/ Compliance
Members meet three times a year, the main purpose of which is to take updates on progress etc and for members to affirm the trusts’ approaches. Meetings tend to last up to an hour. One meeting runs straight into the Annual General Meeting. Members may also periodically receive papers from other trust meetings which need to be read to keep abreast of the trust’s actions. Altogether a Member may need to allocate up to 5-6 hours per YEAR in total.