Education Learning Trust

Lancashire and West Yorkshire | Stockport
Deadline date: 28th August 2020

Education Learning Trust seeks to recruit up to three new non-executive directors to join the board. The trust is poised for an important period of growth.  Board meetings are held in the Cheadle, Stockport area.

About the trust

The Education Learning Trust (ELT) was formed by the board of Gatley Primary School, the top-performing primary in Stockport, and in the top 100 nationally, to improve outcomes and opportunities for children and staff, both within the trust and beyond. Bredbury Green Primary joined the trust when it had undergone a period of turmoil and this school has made great strides since joining the trust and the ELT team are looking forward to Ofsted revising the school next year. Meadowbank Primary joined the trust two years ago and the three schools have developed a close working relationship building further capacity and skill. The trust board are looking forward to the autumn term this year when The Kingsway School will join the trust allowing the trust to cater for families in the area from nursery through to age 16.

Plans for the future

Key challenges for the trust over the next 12-24 months are:

  1. To continue to develop the structures that support the ELT
  2. To further develop the capacity within the trust and secure a good or better judgement for Bredbury Green Primary School at its next inspection.
  3. Seek to grow the trust further by adding more schools or possibly adding a new school to serve the Cheadle area.

Long term plans at the trust include developing the unique model of Governance, Teaching and Learning across the Education Learning Trust.

Trust ethos & values

The trust believes working collaboratively as a community of learners is vital to success. It encourages partners to learn from each other through shared acknowledgement of skills and reciprocity. The trust strives to enthuse and develop its learners, both children and adults, to unleash their potential. It wants everyone to have the opportunity to take the lead. Empowering them to take personal autonomy, leading to a sense of control, ownership, contribution, personal growth, pride, self-esteem and self-identity.

Education Learning Trust aims for excellence and has high expectations for all. Its staff want every learner to achieve beyond expectations, while learners can also be innovative and a driving force for change.

Role summary

Number of positions advertised: 3

Roles 1 to 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.

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/CFO to account.

In the interests of safeguarding and in accordance with DfE requirements, all trustee appointments will be subject to an enhanced disclosure and barring service check.

Person specification

Every trustee is expected to abide by 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)
  • Strategic Planning
  • Growth
  • Branding & Marketing
  • HR
  • Corporate Governance

The ELT is looking for a passionate and committed individual to supplement the existing trustees and provide greater capacity as the trust grows.  Successful candidates are likely to have a proven track record of success in their field, ideally managing complex projects or teams over several sites. In addition, candidates should have strong inter-personal skills and be strong ‘team players’ with the ability to contribute to the strategic developments to further improve the trust’s performance and quality.  High standards of conduct and integrity are essential.

Time commitment

The trust board meets once each half-term (SIX times per year).  Meetings tend to be in the middle of the week and usually start between 6 and 7 pm. Timings can be flexible to suit diaries but tend to last up to two hours.  The Board has functioned effectively during the Covid-19 pandemic and all meetings have been held over video software (usually Zoom), however, it is hoped that once social distancing is relaxed the Board will meet (physically) together more often although some trustees may join using the software when necessary.  The Board has two subcommittees, Finance and Leadership Development. Trustees will be invited to join one of the subcommittees depending on skills and interests.  The subcommittees each meet THREE times a year (once each term) with timings similar to the board meetings.  Subcommittee meetings may be a mix of physically present meetings and the use of video calling software.  It is expected that trustees will need to devote around six hours per month (on average).  This will include reading papers to prepare for meetings.

Location of board meetings and trust website

The trust is based at Gatley Primary School, Hawthorn Lane, Gatley, SK8 4NB.  However, meetings are sometimes scheduled in one of the other schools, so trustees get an understanding of each school.  Other locations are:

Bredbury Green Primary School, Clapgate, Stockport, SK6 3DG
Meadowbank Primary School, Councillor Lane, Cheadle, SK8 2LE

Once The Kingsway School joins the trust, some meetings may be at their location on Foxland Road, Cheadle, SK8 4QX

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 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.

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 click on the register now button.

In the interests of safeguarding and in accordance with DfE requirements, all trustee appointments will be subject to an enhanced disclosure and barring service check.

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 email [email protected].

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: Friday 28th August 2020