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Trustees and Chair at Inspire Partnership Academy Trust

Academy Ambassador
Greenwich, England
Closing date
18 Feb 2022
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Schools need support now, more than ever. Strong leadership at board level is required to navigate the challenges they face. Inspire Partnership Academy Trust in South East London seeks four trustees, one of whom will assume the role of Chair of the board.

The Academy Ambassadors programme brings the expertise of the business world onto boards at single-academy and multi-academy trusts (SATs and MATs). Academy trusts exist to improve the outcomes of young people; at the highest levels of governance, they need highly skilled individuals with a variety of experiences to hold executive leadership teams to account. Insights from a wide-range of backgrounds ensure that boards are able to make informed choices on decisions that impact the lives of children and staff.

The Academy Ambassadors Programme is funded by the Department for Education, to match senior business leaders with academy trusts looking to strengthen their boards. By working together, inspirational educationalists and talented business leaders can provide a better future for the next generation.

The opportunity

The Inspire Partnership Academy Trust (IPAT) currently serves more than 4,000 primary aged children and their families at nine schools in Greenwich, Medway and Croydon, where the trust is driven by a moral purpose to 'transform the lives of children' through partnership and collaboration. Historically, IPAT has chosen to work with schools which have needed to improve, largely in areas of high deprivation, where communities most need their schools to provide outstanding education. Through a strong partnership approach the trust have built a track record of success, not only bringing about that improvement but developing in its team the expertise to replicate this, both in schools that join with the trust and in supporting the education sector more widely. That is not to say there is not further work still to be done, particularly taking into account the impact of the Covid pandemic on young people and their families and in raising standards in vulnerable schools that have joined the trust leading up to that period.

The board seeks four business leaders with board level experience in:

  • CFO/Finance Director
  • Chairing at Board Level
  • IT/Digital Transformation
  • Legal/Compliance
  • Education Leadership

Among the roles the trust is seeking to recruit to, is that of the chair of trustees to commence in that role no later that September 2022.

Throughout your term of office (typically four years, but this may vary between trusts), you will be an active contributor to key board decisions. Specifically, in the next 12 - 24 months the trust's key focus areas will be:

  1. Standards - To ensure that: Standards in our most vulnerable schools are at least in line with national expectations in all key measures and that trust averages match or exceed this.
  2. Leadership - To ensure that: Our regional hub model for school improvement and central team services has been fully implemented.
  3. Efficiency - To ensure that: Our regional hub structure, financial planning, monitoring and reporting framework and internal scrutiny cycle are fully embedded across the trust.

What's involved?

Board governance in education is a strategic, 'eyes on, hands off' commitment which at Inspire Partnership Academy Trust involves:

On average the time commitment equates to 6-8 hours/month minimum for trustees. The chairing role necessarily attracts a higher time requirement, owing to the increased demand and responsibilities of this position.
The trust holds 4-6 board meetings/year plus 3-6 committee meetings/year. Meeting are usually held on a Wednesday or Thursday evening at 6pm (remote access for the majority of meetings is supported). Trustees are also expected to attend the annual away day, as well as at least one day to visit schools.
On top of these commitments, trustees will spend time on required reading of meeting papers and attendance of relevant training. There may be occasional additional meetings or draws on your time depending on specific trust needs.

You will be responsible for:

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction
  • Holding executive leaders to account for the educational performance of the organisation and its pupils, and the effective and efficient performance management of staff; and
  • Overseeing the financial performance of the organisation and making sure its money is well spent

As an Academy Ambassador, you will join our ambassador network which provides resources, guidance, networking events and webinars to support you in your role.

All roles are pro bono.

The Academy Ambassadors Programme is committed to supporting boards with inclusive recruitment practices, and we actively encourage applications from individuals from diverse backgrounds.

What next?

Please register your interest now to be considered for the role.

When you select the option to Apply you will be redirected to the Academy Ambassadors webpage where you will find a full role specification with more details of the opportunity and the trust, including details of how to apply for the position.

Please be aware the closing date may change if we have received sufficient applications.

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