Non-Executive Director/Member

About the Trust

The Dover Federation for the Arts Multi Academy Trust (MAT) has 4 academies located in south-east Kent with 1,400 pupils in total on roll and 240 staff. The trust receives revenue income of 9.7 million pounds across all key stages.  Trust schools include Nursery, Infant, Junior and Secondary. This includes a range of Ofsted results: Astor College, Requires Improvement; Barton Junior School, Good; Shatterlocks Infant School, Outstanding; White Cliffs Primary College for the Arts, Good which also runs Pebbles Nursery which is graded Outstanding.

The trust has a high percentage of English as another language and free school meal students and high social deprivation levels. The secondary school operates within an area where there are selective grammar schools, which makes hitting national targets for standards very challenging. However, the trust often exceeds these targets and believes fervently that all children deserve excellence in teaching and learning, regardless of ability, aptitude and background.

All schools in the trust serve disadvantaged communities with a significantly higher percentage of children eligible for pupil premium.  (Astor 48%, Barton 44%, Shatterlocks 24% and White Cliffs 52%).   This funding is used to support individuals to achieve the best outcomes possible.

Role summary

Number of positions advertised: 5

Role 1 – Member

The members are a collective whose responsibilities include making alterations to the trust’s Articles of Association and appointing (or removing) trustees 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 members hold the trustees to account to ensure the charitable objects of the trust are upheld and that the trust remains a going concern.  Members also appoint the external auditors on the recommendation by the Chairman of trustees. At the Dover Federation for the Arts MAT members are expected to be signatories for the academy trust, to attend one meeting per year, and to add to the skillset within the existing team of members.

Person specification

A new independent member is required. The trust would welcome application from individuals experienced in MAT governance, chairing and ability to follow the remit of a member by holding the chairman of the trust to account within the limits of the members’ remit. This is an urgent appointment after a sudden retirement.

The competencies required for this role include:

Essential

  • Corporate Governance
  • Chair
  • Risk Management

 

Role 2– Trustee/Non-Executive Director with HR/Employment Law experience

Trustees – or non-executive directors - are both charity trustees and company directors of the academy trust. The core functions of their role are to ensure 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 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)

  • HR/Employment Law
  • Restructuring
  • Compliance

Desirable

  • Corporate Governance
  • Driving Change

Person specification

The trust would welcome applications from qualified solicitors, whether working in legal practice or in a corporate context. Applications from candidates with expertise in either employment law or commercial law would be particularly welcome. Alternatively, applicants may have HR director level experience within a corporate context.

Role 3 Trustee/Non-executive director with finance experience

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

  • Audit
  • Chair
  • CFO/ Finance

Desirable

  • Qualified Accountant
  • Risk

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.

NED roles that require financial competency 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/CFO to account.

Role 4– Trustee/Non-Executive Director with Current Education Experience/Knowledge

Trustees – or non-executive directors - are both charity trustees and company directors of the academy trust. One of the core functions of their role is to hold executive leaders to account for the educational performance of the organisation and its pupils and the performance management of staff. 

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)

  • Standards
  • Curriculum
  • Intent, Implementation, Impact
  • Compliance

Desirable

  • Corporate Governance
  • Primary KS1 and KS2
  • Secondary KS3 and KS4
  • 6th Form KS5

Person specification

The trust would welcome applications from those with current experience working within education at any or all of the Key Stages.  Applications from candidates with expertise in driving through change, school improvement and raising attainment levels for vulnerable groups would be particularly welcome.

Role 5– Trustee/Non-Executive Director with Marketing/PR and/or Managing a positive culture for Change

Trustees – or non-executive directors - are both charity trustees and company directors of the academy trust. The core functions of their role are to ensure 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 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)

  • Branding
  • Marketing/PR
  • Restructuring
  • Compliance

Desirable

  • Corporate Governance

Person specification

The trust would welcome applications from those working in publicity, the community, management or with a proven track record of driving through positive growth and change. Applications from candidates with expertise in either Marketing, Design, project management, commercial law or public relations would be particularly welcome. Alternatively, applicants may have director-level experience within a corporate context.

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: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/583733/Competency_framework_for_governance_.pdf

NED/Trustee - any skills relevant to growth and development ideal - must have time to commit

and be flexible in their approach. 6 - 8 meetings/year along with training and strategy

days/evenings.

Role spec: Any expertise above would be ideal and can be developed into the NED role required for succession planning.

Time commitment

6 hours /month minimum.

Location of board meetings and Trust website

Meetings take place in the Boardroom based at the Trust Office CT170AS


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