The Trust is led by a CEO and employs a small team of centrally based staff working out of a central office in St Austell. Back office functions are centralised although the underlying ethos of the Trust is to keep central spending as small as possible and invest as much as possible in teaching and learning.
The Trust Board is made up of volunteers, mainly people who have been school governors in the past but also including people with specific business or educational skills. They set the strategic direction for the Trust, hold the Trust to account for its outcomes for students and oversee the work of the Executive Officers.
Each school has a Local Governing Body (LGB) who have delegated responsibility for standards and outcomes in that school, its safeguarding and its relationships with external stakeholders, especially parents. The Chairs of LGBs are held to account by the Board for outcomes in those areas.
The Trust Board is held to account by the Regional Commissioner for Schools in the South West, by the Education & Skills Funding Agency and by a group of people known as Members. Members exist in charitable organisations to play the role of shareholders in a publicly limited company.
The Members guard the values and ethos of the Trust and monitor the activities of the Trust to ensure that it is providing best value for parents, children and the wider community. Members appoint the majority of the Board Directors (‘Trustees’) and so can influence the makeup of the Board if they have misgivings over its direction.
Overview of how the Trust is governed
There are three tiers of governance for the Trust. The top two tiers – Members and the Board of Directors – are required by the Articles of Association. The third tier – Local Governing Bodies (LGBs) – are optional but the Board sees local governors as having an important role and each Trust school has their own LGB.
Members – appoint the majority of Directors; guard the values and ethos of the Trust; and monitor the activities of the Trust to ensure it is providing best value for parents, children and the wider community.
Directors – set the strategic direction for the Trust; hold the Trust to account for its outcomes for students; and oversee the work of the executive officers.
Governors – have a delegated responsibility for standards and outcomes in their school; its safeguarding; and its relationships with external stakeholders, especially parents.
To ensure clarity over who is responsible for what – for example between governance and executive officers and between the Board and LGBs – a Scheme of Delegation has been drawn up together with various Terms of Reference.
Structure and Meetings
Members meet three times a year and the spring term meeting includes the Trust’s AGM.
The Board has one standing committee – Audit.
Local Governing Bodies meet six times a year. The Chairs from each LGB meet together at least once a term.
Principles for school leaders, directors and governors:
✦ You have to buy into the vision of the drive for outstanding. ‘Good’ is not good enough
✦ This is a long term relationship based on mutual trust and confidence in each other. It requires all of us to have the courage to admit we have it wrong or need help and the generosity of spirit to put all of the Trust children first, not just the ones in your own school
✦ Openess, transparency and accountability are required of each school
✦ All resource costs have to be strictly controlled. The aim is to deliver a low cost, high value education
✦ Governance at a local level and Board level has to be strong and effective. Not all governors will be able to meet the demands of the role
Role of the PLT Board
✦ Set the strategic direction of the Trust
✦ Ensure there is a continuous drive to improve standards in every school
✦ Maintain a level of financial probity and effectiveness
✦ Quality assure governance at a local level
✦ Assess, consider and reduce risks to the Trust and to the children and staff within the Trust
✦ Delegate powers to Local Governing Bodies
Role of Local Governing Bodies
✦ Act within the agreed Scheme of Delegated Governance Functions
✦ Set targets for the school and monitor progress towards those targets
✦ Take responsibility for standards, safeguarding and safety on the school site
✦ Take responsibility for the oversight of the delegated budget
Our region stretches from Fowey to Mevagissey, including all the urban areas and villages in-between. It is St Austell Bay and the surrounding Clay hinterland. It is an area characterised by:
✦ Low levels of post 16 education in the workforce and below average wages
✦ Below average proportions of economically active adults
✦ Below average engagement with university
1. Every academy improves – measured by overall attainment and progress, Ofsted grade and Trust wide monitoring.
2. Grow the Trust further to maximise potential economies.
3. Every academy has cost effective and high impact support in finance, HR, IT and premises.
4. Academy staff are highly effective in their roles through training and support.
5. Governance is insightful, appropriately challenging and strategic at all levels.
6. Leadership development and succession planning is embedded in the system.