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Governance Arrangements

Structure for website

 

Our Members have ultimate responsibility for the Trust achieving its charitable objectives. They sign off the articles of association and have power to appoint and remove the Trustees. 

Our Trustees collectively deliver the three core functions common to school governance;

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
  • Holding the Executive Principal and Aspire Central Team to account for the educational performance of the Trust and its pupils, and the performance management of employees; and
  • Overseeing the financial performance of the Trust and making sure its money is well spent.

Our Local Advisory Bodies (LABs), one for each academy, are responsible for:

  • Acting as a “critical friend” by evaluating and challenging under performance, supporting and understanding progress and being consistent in the drive for educational excellence at all levels of academy life.
  • Working with the academy to build a unique vision for the academy to create and further develop policies and procedures to support the academy in achieving its Education Plan.
  • Taking on a community focussed role by using the collective knowledge and skills to promote the academy and to enhance relationships with all key stakeholders, the local community and local business. It is essential that the LAB to provide local knowledge - the academy, its community and its market.

Schedule of Governance Delegation Matrix

Governance

 

Board of Trustees

Local Advisory Body (LAB)

Has legal responsibility for each Academy and Teaching School; their governance and statutory compliance all regulations and Acts of Parliament, the operation of the Academy, including health and safety;

Has the authority to delegate responsibilities to Local Advisory Bodies (LABs), to the Aspire Central Team and to the Academy Principals

Has responsibility for developing and evaluating its own arrangements, processes and effectiveness in line with the legal requirements as set down in the Articles of Association and the Master Funding Agreement

Has joint responsibility, with the Members, for the recruitment of Trustees. Formal responsibility for appointment ultimately rests with the Members

Has responsibility for succession planning and the selection of the Chair of Trustees, Committee Chairs, and LAB Chairs to ensure an appropriate balance of skills and effectiveness

Has responsibility for the induction of new members, and ongoing training and development

Has responsibility for ensuring effective, two way communication between the LAB and the Trust

 

To hold LAB accountable for achieving the outcomes of their KPIs, strategic plans, financial efficiency and for the educational performance of the academies

 

To support the LAB in challenging and supporting their academies effectively, and ensuring statutory responsibilities are met

 

To approve the appointment  of LAB chairs

Has responsibility for implementation of actions required to comply with statutory regulations, the Funding Agreements and Trust policies

Has responsibility for ensuring it has all information needed to maintain oversight of the Academy’s activities perform effectively in their role, that information received is read, monitored and challenged

Has responsibility for evaluating its own processes and effectiveness in line with the legal requirements as set down in the Articles of Association, the Master Funding Agreement and any other requirements as defined by the Trustees

Has responsibility for participation in Trust working parties and forums in keeping with the philosophy of ‘Together we work smarter’

Has responsibility for succession planning and the recruitment of the Governors to ensure an appropriate balance of skills and effectiveness (as per terms of reference)

Contributes to the recruitment of the LAB Chair, approval must be sought from the Trustees

Has responsibility for the induction of new members, and ongoing training and development

Has responsibility for ensuring effective, two way communication between the LAB and the Trust

 

Strategy and Communication

 

Board of Trustees

Local Advisory Body (LAB)

Develops the overall strategic vision for Aspire Academies Trust, its Academies and the Teaching School

Approves the Aspire Strategic Plan, and each setting’s Education and Business Plans (November / December meeting)

Carries the ultimate responsibility for the overall performance of Aspire Academies Trust, its Central Team, each Academy and the Teaching School

Has responsibility for ensuring the Aspire Central Team delivers delegated responsibilities to a high standard and in line with the strategic vision

Has responsibility for the communication of its clear strategic vision for and to all its Academies and the Teaching School

Has responsibility for agreeing the principles underpinning community and stakeholder engagement

Has responsibility for reviewing and providing challenge to the Aspire Central Team on consolidated reports on community and stakeholder engagement

Agrees the principles underpinning each Academy’s admissions policy, in line with the local authority admissions policy

Agreeing the principles behind the Trust’s strategic marketing plan

Has responsibility the development of the Teaching School as a marketing tool for the Trust’s expansion and its attraction of employees and pupils

Has responsibility for overseeing the implementation of the Aspire Strategic Plan in a way appropriate to the specific qualities and community characteristics of each Academy

Together with the Principal oversees the development and regular updating of the academy’s Education Plan for approval by the Trustees

Has responsibility for supporting the Academy in its self-evaluation to identify significant strengths or weaknesses (academic, operational, human resources, financial, governance and/or leadership)

The Principal and the LAB Chair are responsible for ensuring that all Governors have all the information they require to be well informed about both the Academy and the Trust

The LAB Chair and the Principal are also responsible for ensuring the views of the LAB are well communicated to the Aspire Central Team and to the Trust

Has responsibility for knowing and understanding the Academy’s links with the community, parents, carers and guardians

Has responsibility for supporting challenging and advising the Academy as it seeks to improve and enhance these links

Has responsibility for ensuring a presence at Academy events in order to facilitate and improve community engagement

Has responsibility for understanding the principles on which the Academy’s admission policy is based

Has responsibility for managing any appeals to the admissions process

Has responsibility for providing support, challenge, advice and encouragement in the area of marketing of the Academy and Trust

 

Education

 

Board of Trustees

Local Advisory Body (LAB)

Carries the ultimate responsibility for setting targets for and maintaining the overall academic performance of Aspire Academies Trust, its Academies and the Teaching School

Has responsibility for thoroughly evaluating and challenging consolidated Trust information to assess performance and regulatory compliance

Considers and approves the draft school and business plans for supported / sponsored academies, reviews and monitors them.

Has responsibility for ensuring sufficient resources are allocated to deliver the highest possible quality of teaching and learning

Has responsibility for the strategic vision for the Trust’s curriculum framework

Sets the strategic vision for the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils, incorporating fundamental British values

Sets the strategic vision for the use of Pupil Premium and Sports Premium funding

Has responsibility for engaging fully with both internal and external inspection and review processes

Receives final inspection reports, including meeting with the lead inspector during MAT or Academy inspections to represent the Trust

Acts as the Authorising Body as named within inspection reports

Has responsibility for supporting the Academy in its self-evaluation to identify significant strengths or weaknesses

Is responsible for knowing and understanding the Academy’s response to the recommendations of the last internal and external inspections and any significant changes in the quality of education or care

Considers and approves the draft school and business plans for transitional and high performing academies, reviews and monitors them.

Is responsible for knowing, understanding and challenging the overall quality of pupils’ achievements and learning (achievement, attainment, progress, attitudes)

Is responsible for knowing and understanding the achievement and learning of different groups of pupils (such as special needs, looked after children, racial groups, students with disabilities, students with English as an

Additional Language, and those with higher learning potential)

Has responsibility for understanding the Academy’s own evaluation of the quality of teaching and learning, and the outcomes of any internal or external reviews

Has responsibility for supporting and challenging the Academy in its Education Plan and in delivering its programme of improvement through effective monitoring and evaluation

Has responsibility for agreeing the principles through which the Academy’s curriculum policies are developed, in line with guidance from the Aspire Central Team

Has responsibility for knowing and understanding the Academy’s evaluation of the quality of its curricular and extra-curricular provision

Has responsibility for supporting and  challenging the Academy in the development and implementation of its curriculum  framework and its extra-curricular provision

Has responsibility for the development, review and compliance monitoring of appropriate academy-specific policies including, curriculum, raising attainment, behaviour and academy improvement, in line with the Trust’s policy schedule

Receives summary welfare reports including (i) child protection (ii) exclusions (iii) serious disciplinary incidents (iv) attendance (v) behaviour  in order to ensure the LAB is fully aware of the Academy’s activity in this area and can support and challenge appropriately

Has responsibility for knowing and understanding the Academy’s self-evaluation of the quality of spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils, incorporating fundamental British values

Has responsibility for knowing and understanding statutory requirements, and challenging the Academy’s summary reports

Understands the requirements of inspection process and supports the Principal in being ‘inspection ready’ for both internal and external inspection and review processes

Has responsibility for engaging fully with the inspection process, including meeting with the lead inspector

Has responsibility for supporting before and during an inspection, using their deep knowledge of the community and team

In partnership with the Principal, communicates the outcomes of the inspection process with parents, carers and guardians

 

Finance

 

Board of Trustees

Local Advisory Body (LAB)

Has legal responsibility for all Aspire Academies Trust assets, registers, accounts and financial returns

Has legal responsibility for compliance with the provisions of the Funding Agreements

Develops the overall strategic vision for the finances of the Trust as a whole, its Teaching School and Academies, including establishing a funding model

Sets the financial parameters within which the academies and Teaching School budgets are created

Considers and approves the draft academy budget and key issues

Approve the Aspire Academies Trust consolidated annual budget

Develops the overall strategic plan for capital expenditure taking into account the individual academies’ Education and Business Plans

Is responsible for approval of the Trust’s financial policies

Consider the benchmarking and proposed changes to ensure the school budget achieves value for money

Ensure that appropriate steps have been taken to obtain best value in supported / sponsored academies.

Approve opening of new bank accounts

Approval of purchases according to schedule of financial delegation

Considers and evaluates performance against KPIs set by the Trust in relation to academics, finances and other matters

To ensure the solvency of the Trust, safeguarding its assets

Prepare for the CFO the priorities for the education, Pupil Premium and sports premium grants.

Receives summary reports on the use and impact of Pupil Premium and Sports Premium funding

In high performing academies, considers the draft education budget and key issues, for approval by the Trustees

Has responsibility for maintaining awareness, through the CFO, of expenditure and impact of the budget with regard to best value and improved outcomes for children, including Pupil Premium and Sports Premium funding

Has responsibility for monitoring compliance with Aspire Academies Trust financial policies, KPIs and guidance, and observing proper levels of delegation and protocols

Has responsibility for maintaining awareness of the Business Plan

Ensure that appropriate steps have been taken to obtain best value in transitional and high performing academies

Approval of purchases according to schedule of financial delegation

 

 

 

Human Resources

 

Board of Trustees

Local Advisory Body (LAB)

Is the legal employer of all staff, has responsibility for statutory human resource policies  and appropriate terms and conditions of service; and a Trust-wide DBS procedure

Has responsibility for the recruitment and appointment of the Executive Principal, Academy Principals and senior Aspire Central Team posts

Has responsibility for ensuring sufficient resources are allocated to people development, including CPD and induction

Is responsible for setting the strategic vision for Performance Management across the Trust

Is directly responsible for the Performance Management of the Executive Principal, delegating to specific Trustees, and in line the agreed policy

Is responsible for setting overall policies for safeguarding and child protection and ensuring that relevant training is in place for all

Receives consolidated  reports on exits and terminations from the Trust

Conducts exit interviews with Academy Principals and the Aspire Central Team where they opt to participate

Participates in appeals for grievance, capability, disciplinary and attendance management processes for the Aspire Central Team

Review the staff structure of each academy annually to ensure financial suitability

 

When invited to do so, supports the Principal on appointment panels or otherwise contributing to the appointment process

As invited to do so, contributes to the appointment of the Principal

Monitoring local HR activity and policy, including the process for local performance reviews for members of staff and in particular ensuring that it is within the parameters for the particular Academy established by the Trustees.             

Using key performance data provided by the Academy, usually through the Principal’s report, is fully aware of the       Academy’s activity in terms of its staff, staffing structures and more general HR data and can support and challenge appropriately

Is responsible for knowing and understanding the training requirements for safer recruitment including members’ own training if taking part in recruitment processes

Receives, analyses and challenges summary reports on professional development and training through the Principal’s Report in order to ensure the LAB is fully aware of the Academy’s activity in this area, and can support and challenge the impact of training against standards and progress of pupils

Receives reports in relation to the Performance Management of staff in order to ensure the LAB is fully aware of the Academy’s activity in this area and can support and challenge appropriately

Has an overview of performance management in relation to best value

On invitation from the Executive Principal as line manager, contributes to the Performance Management the Principal

On invitation from the Executive Principal as line manager, contributes to grievance, capability, disciplinary and attendance management processes involving the Principal

Participates in appeals of the grievance, capability, disciplinary and attendance management processes for Academy employees, as well as across the Trust as required. Serves as the final arbiter

Appoints a member of the LAB who has a specific responsibility for ensuring the LAB is fully briefed on the welfare and child protection in the academy

Receives regular reports from the Principal of all employee grievances through the Principal’s Report

Has responsibility for monitoring grievances and for their handling in line with Aspire Academies Trust policy and guidance

Has responsibility for managing or participating in appeals hearings as part of the grievance process

Receives regular reports from the Principal of all employee terminations through the Principal’s Report

Conducts exit interviews with Academy employees (excluding leadership) where they opt to participate

Review the staff structure annually in conjunction with the SBM and Principal

Operations

 

Board of Trustees

Local Advisory Body (LAB)

Has responsibility for agreeing the principles underpinning the provision of information

Has responsibility for monitoring and challenging consolidated, Trust information provided by the Central Aspire Team

Is responsible for ensuring the Trust have a complaints policy for external stakeholders, including parents, and participating in the process where complaints relate to the Trust as a whole or to the Aspire Central Team

Is responsible for setting overall health and safety policies for the Trust

Develops and monitors the group’s risk register and business continuity planning

Develops the overall strategic plan for capital expenditure, buildings and maintenance, taking into account the individual Academy business plans

Is responsible for knowing what information must be and is provided by the Academy.

Is responsible for supporting, challenging and advising the Academy on the quality of that information

Is responsible for reviewing Academy policies (defined in the Aspire Policies Schedule) and their implementation on a rolling annual programme

Receives regular reports from the Principal of all complaints through the Principal’s Report

Has responsibility for monitoring external stakeholder / parental complaints and for their handling in line with Aspire Academies Trust policy and guidance

Has responsibility for managing or participating in appeals hearings as part of the external stakeholder complaints process

Appoints a member of the LAB who has a specific responsibility for ensuring the LAB is fully briefed on health and safety within the academy, through the Business Manager, local premises staff and the Head of Operations

Receives regular summary health and safety reports (including copies of the internal and external health and safety audits) from the Principal in order to ensure the LAB is fully aware of the academy’s activity in this area and can support and challenge appropriately

Has responsibility for knowing and understanding the Trust risk register /management framework including those areas in which the LAB is asked to contribute to action which mitigates, manages, reduces or exploits areas of risk

Receives summary maintenance plans in order to understand any planned capital works and the impact of the strategic plan on the quality of the academy buildings

Although not itself responsible for capital expenditure decisions, the LAB together with the Principal makes recommendations future priorities for capital expenditure and large scale ‘minor works’ in line with the Business Plan

Responsible for ensuring the maintenance of multimedia, IT and software is appropriate to meet the needs of the education of the pupils.