- Human Resources
Wave Multi Academy Trust oversees the performance of nine Alternative Provision academies and two medical academies in Devon and Cornwall. The trust seeks three new non-executive directors/charitable trustees (finance, HR & legal) to support delivery of its strategic priorities: business growth and development. The board is ambitious and aims to collaborate to expand to sixteen academies and introduce ‘the Wave Teaching Methodology’ into mainstream schools to support vulnerable pupils in other settings over the next two years. Board meetings are held in Truro and St Austell.
About the trust
Wave Multi Academy Trust opened in 2013 and is an established and successful multi-academy trust (MAT), made up of nine Alternative Provision academies (APs) and two medical academies offering education for vulnerable pupils aged 4-16 in Cornwall. The trust has a national reputation for the delivery of outstanding pupil outcomes. It provides support to enable pupils to reintegrate into mainstream or special schools; or for students in year 11 and the last four terms of secondary education, integration into the world of work or further education. The trust educates 450 pupils, employs 340 staff; and its income is £18million.
The trust recognises that pupils may have experienced a range of situations resulting in behaviour patterns (including trauma, separation, anxiety and loss) leading to students being placed at one of the schools. Consequently, the trust aims to provide an academic, emotional, social and behavioural development curriculum that enables pupils to succeed in their learning and positively improve their communication skills for life. The objective is to enable pupils to return to a longer term, and more mainstream, educational provision.
Plans for the Future
The key challenges for the board over the next 12-24 months are:
- Business growth – the trust currently operates in Devon and Cornwall but seeks to grow to provide specialist support to vulnerable pupils in Somerset, Dorset and Plymouth. The trust is working closely with local authorities, the Regional Schools Commissioner’s Office to prioritise the communities which would enable more pupils to benefit from its high quality alternative provision. Growth of the trust necessitates the delivery of due diligence and negotiation with a number of key stakeholders to manage the process of change once the Board has agreed to formally sponsor an additional alternative provision school
- Business development – the trust has developed ‘the Wave teaching methodology’ a pedagogical approach which is underpinned by research and has a positive impact upon pupils’ achievement. Its specialist staff are providing peer-to-peer teaching support to mainstream colleagues to support the needs of vulnerable pupils in other settings, and help them retain stability in their learning environment. This specialist outreach work has the added benefit of generating additional income for the trust to enrich the provision for its own pupils and professional development opportunities for staff. The trust is also working with the Anna Freud Trust to engage parents in raising achievement for their child/ren. A positive impact upon pupils was evident after the first ten weeks of the programme’s delivery.
Trust ethos & values
Wave Multi Academy Trust actively promotes positive, inclusive values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect for and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs. It believes that British values are those values expected of anyone living in Britain, regardless of their nationality, culture or religious belief.
The trust’s ethos reflects these values, placing great emphasis on building positive relationships in school, amongst the students themselves and between staff and students. It strongly believes students should not merely be taught such values but that they are embedded into school life and how things are done.
Wave Multi Academy Trust strives to support its students to develop into confident, happy, successful young adults who have empathy towards and an understanding of those less fortunate than themselves.
“Those pupils who are hardest to reach are often the pupils who require the most love yet seek it in the most unloving of ways. Their behaviour is the key. It’s their way of communicating and we as professionals working with them have the responsibility to try and understand it, help them to understand it and build a relationship with them to try and help them to move forward.”
Please see https://wavemat.org/about-us to find out more.
Number of Positions Advertised: 3
Role 1-3 – Trustee/Non-Executive Director
Wave Academy Trust seeks three non-executive directors to support the MAT in its ethos/values and development. Trustees are responsible for overseeing growth and providing support to the trust board. As a trustee/non-executive director, individuals are expected to provide scrutiny and challenge to the board.
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.
The strategic expertise required for this role includes:
- Finance OR
- HR OR
- Audit and risk
- Restructuring, change management
- Due diligence, employment law
- Corporate Governance
The trust welcomes applicants who support the ethos and values of the trust, with either financial, legal or HR expertise.
Candidates should also have:
- Critical listening skills, ability to ask effective questions;
- Strategic thinking;
- Excellent communication;
- Problem solving and analysis;
- Knowledge and understanding of local requirements and issues (eg community, business)
6 to 10 hours per month minimum. Six trust board meetings/year plus at least one strategic away day and trustees will also be expected to be part of one of the board’s committees.
Location of Board Meetings and Trust Website
The trust’s website is: https://wavemat.org
Board meetings currently start at 10am (but there is flexibility to change to suit majority) and are held in Truro or St Austell.
For more information please see https://wavemat.org/governance-1
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 980 multi academy trusts of 2+ 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.
“Academy 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 (2017)
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 www.academyambassadors.org.
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.
Deadline for applications: Friday 14th June 2019.
Interviews: will be arranged to suit applicants’ availability.