Non-Executive Director - Westminster City School (WCS)

Westminster City School is a single academy trust and part of the United Westminster & Grey Coat Foundation which oversees 3 independent schools and 1 other academy. This is a unique opportunity for a practicing Christian, familiar with the academy sector and its regulatory framework, to become the new WCS Chair of Governors and an ex-officio trustee of the Foundation. Board meetings are held in The Pouchot Building, 57 Palace Street, London SW1E 5HJ.

About the trust

Westminster City School converted into a non-selective, boys only secondary in July 2012, and was rated ‘good’ by Ofsted in 2017. The School, as a single academy trust, oversees an annual income of circa £9m, 120 staff and secondary and sixth form education provision for circa 800 students (with 51% of students eligible for ‘pupil premium’ funding). Canon Anthony Ball is the current Chair of Governors and due to step down in November, so the School is looking to appoint a successor as soon as possible to enable a smooth handover. More information can be found via:

https://www.compare-school-performance.service.gov.uk/school/138312/westminster-city-school/secondary

https://get-information-schools.service.gov.uk/Establishments/Establishment/Details/138312#school-governance

The School became part of The United Westminster and Grey Coat Foundation on 31 March 2019 following the merger of the United Westminster Schools Foundation and the Grey Coat Hospital Foundation. The Foundation supports five schools: two state academies (Westminster City School and Grey Coat Hospital) and three independent schools (Queen Anne’s School Caversham, Emanuel School, and Sutton Valence School).  The aim of the charity is to provide public benefit in education through promoting broadly based educational excellence in each of the Foundation’s schools, and to do so within the framework of a Christian ethos. The Foundation oversees a combined incomes of £58m, 900 employees and 4000 pupils and has a small office based inside the Westminster City School campus which provides, inter alia, a secretariat for Trustees and Governors, as well as advice to the schools and Trustees on legal, financial and other matters affecting the world of education. The Foundation has an invested endowment of c.£30m and some property assets. More information can be found via: https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/11464504/officers

https://beta.charitycommission.gov.uk/charity-details/?regid=1181012&subid=0

Plans for the future

The School’s short-term priorities are focused on maximising the education offer to students, especially for its disadvantaged students, and addressing some capital development needs.   

Three key challenges for the School over the next 12-24 months are:   

  1. Overseeing a move from an Ofsted judgement of ‘good’ to ‘outstanding’ and preparing for any upcoming OFSTED inspection.
  2. Raising the profile of the school to increase enrollment numbers and drive new fundraising activity
  3. Working collaboratively with other governors and trustees in the Foundation to help define public benefit and increase interactions across the portfolio of schools. The Foundation enables WCS to provide peer-to-peer CPD opportunities for its teaching staff and extra-curricular opportunities for its students to exhibit their skills with a wider cohort of students across the Foundation via inter-school sport days, concerts and an essay competition.

Future plans: increasing collaboration between Westminster City School and Grey Coat Hospital (the Foundation’s other Academy) and fundraising centrally to increase public benefit and impact.

Trust ethos & values

Building on a strong history and excellent record of educational achievement, to strengthen this provision in both the state and independent sector in a mutually supportive and collaborative environment for the benefit of the Foundation’s pupils.

Role summary

Number of positions advertised: 1

Role 1– WCS Chair of Governors and ex-officio Foundation Trustee/Non-Executive Director

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

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

The strategic expertise required for this role includes:

Essential

  • Chairing experience
  • Education sector and regulatory framework applicable to an academy trust
  • Non-executive director/charity trustee

Desirable

  • Corporate/Charity Governance
  • Regulatory compliance
  • Education leadership incl. governance

Secondary and sixth form education

The trust seeks an experienced governor/trustee/director to offer strategic oversight, support and challenge to the executive team and add to the broad skillset of existing board members. Candidates must be a practicing Christian (not necessarily a regular church attender) and have an understanding of the education sector and regulatory framework applicable to academy trusts as charitable companies.

Time commitment

As the WCS Chair of Governors the time commitment is approximately 90-130 hours over 30-50 days per year.  The WCS governing board meets formally three times a year, and governors are expected to join one on the three committees which also meet 3x per academic year.

In addition, the candidate would become an ex-officio trustee of the Foundation board which also meets 3x per year and most trustees also sit on one of the committees - Finance and Property; Remuneration; and Nominations.

Location of board meetings and trust website

The Pouchot Building, 57 Palace Street, London SW1E 5HJ.

Trust website address http://westminstergreycoat.org/

Governance structure

For more information on the governance structure please see the following links:

Westminster City School:  https://www.wcsch.com/497/governors

UWGC Foundation:  http://westminstergreycoat.org/?page_id=231

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 submit your interest by clicking on the register now button.

Please note candidates should live within reasonable travelling distance of the trust and/or have a link with the region.

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.

Deadline for applications: 12pm 11 July 2020. 

 


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