Bay Education Trust (BET)

South West England | Paignton
  • Audit
  • CFO/Financial
Deadline date: 28th February 2020

The Bay Education Trust consists of three academies serving the needs of over 2000 primary and secondary aged pupils in Paignton. The trust board is completing a transformation programme and seeks one additional Member. Board meetings are held in Paignton Academy TQ3 3WA.

About the trust

Bay Education Trust comprises two primary schools (Curledge Street Academy TQ4 5BA and Kings Ash Academy TQ3 3XA) and one secondary school (Paignton Academy TQ3 3WA), offering provision for students up to the age of 16. In the surrounding area there are also three local selective schools and this influences the trust cohort.

 Approximately 40% of student at both the secondary school and one primary receive free school meals and a further 60% of the students in the second primary are in receipt of these. In addition to this, many pupils at the trust have special education needs and this influences the trust’s strategy and approach.

 The trust currently has two ‘Good’ ratings from Ofsted and one ‘Requires Improvement’ rating for Kings Ash Academy which is expected to be re-inspected and judged ‘good’ within the current academic year. The board is the employer of 400 members of staff working across the trust and oversees a budget of approximately £13m.

Plans for the future

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

  1. Financial stability - the trust is currently subject to a Financial Notice to Improve (FNTI). It has complied with all the associated conditions and currently engages in termly monitoring conversations with the Education and Skills Funding Agency to ensure repayment is achieved whilst also improving educational standards.
  2. Improving facilities - the trust has recently been successful in applying for several Condition Improvement Fund bids. Work is underway and beginning to improve the learning environment; however, there is still much to be done to make the buildings fully fit for purpose.
  3. Pupil outcomes – the trust is focused on maintaining improving standards at the primary academies and increasing literacy standards at the secondary school.

Once these challenges have been met the trust will then explore options for growth through potential expansion or merger.

Trust ethos & values

The trust upholds five key values throughout its work:

  • To uphold the highest moral values with openness trust and integrity.
  • To serve every young person their families and the needs of the community.
  • To be child centred and inclusive valuing individual learners.
  • To work in partnership through a collaborative approach driving standards.
  • To achieve consistent teaching and pedagogy.

 

Role summary

Number of positions advertised: 1

Role 1 – Member

Members act as guardians of the constitution and typically meet formally once a year primarily to:

  • Appoint or remove directors/trustees;
  • Appoint the external auditors and receive the audited accounts;
  • Amend the Articles of Association (subject to any restrictions created by the Trust’s Funding Agreement of Charity Law);
  • Change the name of the charitable company and ultimately, wind up the academy trust; and
  • Issue direction to Trustees to take specific action.

With the exception of the Chair of Trustees, Members do not hold dual roles but may meet during the academic year to enable them to keep up-to-date with trust developments and fulfil their functions. Members do hold significant powers and P45 - 47 of the Governance Handbook provides more detail:  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/governance-handbook

The strategic expertise required for this role includes:

Essential

  • CFO/ Finance
  • Corporate Governance
  • Non-executive/ Trustee

Desirable

  • Qualified Accountant
  • Audit/ Internal Controls 
  • Compliance 

Time commitment

One Annual General Meeting plus 2-3 Extraordinary General Meetings each academic year.

Location of board meetings and trust website

Board meetings usually start at 5pm and finish at 7pm and are held at Paignton Academy, Bay Education Trust Head Office, Borough Road, TQ3 3WA. www.bayeducationtrust.org

Governance structure

Details of the trust’s governance structure can be found on the trust’s website:

https://www.bayeducationtrust.org/bet-governance-structure/

Background on academy trusts

Academy schools, which are charities run independently of local authority control, now account for 69% of secondary schools and 33% 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 900 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. 

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 send your CV and a short expression of interest detailing which role you are applying for to [email protected] 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.

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 –