Lydiate Learning Trust

Lancashire and West Yorkshire | Liverpool
  • CEO/ General Management
  • HR (Employment Law / Industrial Relations)
  • Human Resources
Deadline date: 23rd October 2020

Lydiate Learning Trust is seeks a new Non-Executive Director to join its board. Established in January 2015, Lydiate Learning Trust is a Multi-Academy Trust (MAT) with an ethos rooted in the belief that every child should be afforded the very best opportunities in life. The trust currently has two secondary academies (Deyes High School and Childwall Sports and Science Academy) and a Studio school for ages 14-19.  The Studio School will close in July 2020.  The trust also has a large teacher training centre known as the AMP SCITT (Associated Merseyside Partnership, School Centered Initial Teacher Training).  Board meetings are held at either of the two secondary academies (Maghull or Childwall areas of Liverpool). 

About the Trust 

The trust serves 2,400 pupils across its three academies and has a budget of £17m. The rate for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities within its academies ranges from 4% to 24%. The trust serves a diverse range of students from varying ethnic backgrounds and the proportion that speak English as an additional language ranges from 4% to 24%.   The proportion of students that are deemed ‘disadvantaged’ varies from 14% to 48%.  These students attract additional funding to the trust which is used to try and narrow the gaps in attainment and progress in comparison to the other students.   
The AMP SCITT is underpinned by a shared passion and drive to train and develop outstanding and inspirational teachers who are highly employable, highly successful educational professionals and leaders of learning.  It is governed by the SCITT Executive Board which reports directly to the trust board.  
The trust is also a strategic partner in the Holy Rosary Teaching School Alliance which spans both the Primary and Secondary sectors and includes 12 Primary Schools and three Secondary Schools. 

Plans for the Future 

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

  1. To improve the academic standards, achievement and progress across the trust.
  2. To ensure financially viability and sustainability of the MAT.
  3. To further develop a strategy for recruitment, retention and succession.  

Long-term plans:

  • To develop a clear strategic vision and establish an ethos/culture that people buy into.
  • To develop quality governance across the trust to provide the support and challenge required
  • To provide a learning environment of the highest quality.
  • To develop new partnerships 

Trust Ethos & Values 

The ethos of Lydiate Learning Trust is rooted in the belief that every child should be afforded the very best opportunities in life. The trust believes that all pupils are entitled to attend a school where the aim is “to excel in all that we do so that everyone flourishes and achieves their full potential.” 
To achieve this, the trust has agreed to place teaching and learning at the centre of all that it does. It aims to make the process of learning vivid and challenging, to determine the individual needs of every student and to have high expectations of every member of its school community. 

Role Summary 

Number of positions advertised: 1

Role – Non-Executive Director (Trustee) 

Non-Executive Directors (Trustees) - 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 Directors 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 appointments will be subject to an enhanced disclosure and barring service check. 
Person Specification Every Non-Executive Director 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:

The strategic expertise required for these roles includes: 

Essential  (due to multiple roles, candidates may be accepted who possess one or more of the skills below)
  • CEO/General Management  
  • Change Management
  • Growth Management
  • HR 

Applicants should evidence strategic leadership skills, be emotionally intelligent, effective communicators and have experience of providing constructive challenge and critical insight. Applicants should have commercial acumen and business focus, honesty and integrity and genuine enthusiasm for improving education. It is also essential that Directors respect and maintain confidentiality. 

Good academy trust boards act together, corporately, in the interests of the children but they also retain strong, independent thinkers who are able to provide robust challenge. We encourage all applicants who believe that they meet the skills criteria to apply.

Time Commitment 

The trust board meets twice per term (autumn, spring and summer). Meetings tend to start between 5.30pm and 7pm and last up to 2.5 hours.  The trust has used a range of technology to ensure Directors can ‘attend’ by audio connection and also uses a web-based portal to store documents which can be accessed by all Directors, minimizing paper documents.  Some Directors may be invited to join subcommittees that oversee Audit (one meeting per year), Finance & Resources (1 per term) and Curriculum Standards and Outcomes (1 per term).  The invitation to join a subcommittee will depend on skills, interest and availability.  Overall, Directors are likely to need to devote an average of around 8 hours per month. There is a chance there may need to be extra meetings to oversee the closure of the Studio School but these are not expected to be excessive. 

Location of Board meetings and Trust website

Deyes High School, Deyes Lane, Maghull, L31 6DE or  Childwall Sports and Science Academy, Queen's Drive, Liverpool, L15 6XZ     

Details of the Trust Governance Structure are also available on the trust site. 
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 832 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.


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

Key dates

Deadline for applications: ​

Friday 23rd October 2020

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.