Strand 2: Great Governance Models for governing multi academy trusts
The vital importance of innovative and effective governance Frank Green CBE, Schools Commissioner
Models of governance – challenges and opportunities Emma Knights, Chief Executive, NGA Nick Mackenzie, Partner and Deputy Head of Education, Browne Jacobson
Emma Knights, Chief Executive, National Governors’ Association Nick MacKenzie, Partner, Browne Jacobson LLP 5 March 2014 Governing Groups of Schools Models of Governance : Challenges & Opportunities
Getting the Board composition right Deciding the committee structure What is delegated to school level? When is a governor not a governor? Will this structure stand the test of time? Learning from others – across the schools sector and other sectors session overview
how do we … effectively link the work of the local boards and main board?
linking board to local boards … people segregation of people right people right place link governors management team documents scheme of delegation expectations & entitlements codes of conduct process reporting meeting timetabling review of effectiveness links
approaching committees in a MAT? Delegation same delegation between LGB’s/academy councils? restrict sub- committees? shared committees? meeting protocols? Clerk & Process common clerk? governance manager? common format for paperwork? frequency of meetings?
further information www.nga.org.uk www.education-advisors.com
Key points for discussion: Getting the Board composition and school committee structure What is delegated to school level? When is a governor not a governor? Scalability: what changes need to be made as groups grow and diversify
Who governs what? – Live models of governance – Panel debate Facilitated by David Wootton, CEO Salford Academies Trust and IAA Board Member
Jo Williams Chair of Governing Council Dixons Multi Academy Trust Bradford Context - Growth of our MAT Governance Structures Issues and Benefits
Nigel Gann, The Anglican Diocese of Bath and Wells
The Diocese of Bath & Wells Multi Academy Trust and Local Governing Boards
Challenges DfE deadlines and moving the goalposts Finding the governors Establishing areas of responsibility Protecting Christian distinctiveness while maintaining the skills base of the GB Accountability
Lessons learned Powers Power depends on knowledge and information, and is less important, in an organisation committed to partnership working, than who is entitled to know what, and to speak about it. Partnership being more important than power is more likely to be sustainable in an environment where education is perceived as a public good, rather than a source of power or profit. Vision The importance of the vision which is shared by those engaged in a diocesan multi academy trust Education is a public good An ethos where integrity is valued more highly than ideology and compliance Geographical integrity Attachment to the local community & enabling school-school co-operation are critical elements of both democratic accountability and parental engagement with school
Structure & powers: Maximum delegation to LGBs Maximum consultation Maximum flexibility in school delegation Minimum bureaucracy Challenges DfE deadlines & moving goalposts – VC membership; offering alternative sponsors; DfE departmental attitudes to expansion/limitations on growth Finding governors Establishing areas of responsibility for LGBs/MAT Protecting Christian distinctiveness >< ensuring skill base of governors
How is this “great governance”? The structure enables (after Glatter): Localism: power & control are dispersed rather than concentrated at the centre Co-operation: (e.g. with other schools, especially DBE & MAT schools) is encouraged and enabled, with heads and other leaders working in teams, governors serving on each other’s bodies, etc.); A strong focus on communities: LGBs recruited from geographical communities including congregations; Local stakeholders can have a sense of belonging (the biggest challenge for LGBs is what they say to parents, pupils, staff, communities); Probity – no-one has financial interests invested in the MAT; and There is a shared vision in the form of a common ethos and academy mission statement.
The Aldridge Foundation: Culture not process – making governance integral to success Liz Dawson, Governance Manager Alan Brooks, External Affairs Director
The Aldridge Foundation Approach Alan Brooks, Director of External Affairs Liz Dawson, Governance Manager
Distributed Governance Model Separate charitable trusts Strong sponsor leadership & representation on governing bodies Working closely with LA co-sponsors Regular monitoring and support through network of Academy Directors Education Director’s role to support progress
Separate Trusts – Shared Goals Reach Good then Outstanding judgements from Ofsted Improve teaching and learning, offering the right curriculum to ensure that all groups of students make the same levels of progress Reach maximum capacity in student numbers Acquired the Governance Quality Mark Secure a solid, steady and positive reputation in all our respective communities, ensuring that we are highly esteemed and valued locally Embed entrepreneurship effectively, with measurable, positive impact on outcomes, aspirations and progress of students.
And A Shared Vision Exceptionally successful Capable, independent & entrepreneurial Proud Praised Proud Respectful Respectful SAFE & HAPPY Well -equipped Well-advised Responsible Responsible Healthy
Beyond Process Governor department links Hearing Student Voice Strategy days Expert Advice
New For 2014 Joint Principals and Chairs of Governors Forum Governors in the academy day Pan academy governor events
Mark Blois, Chair of Governors, LEAD Academy Group
‘Go forth and innovate’: summary and closing remarks Les Walton CBE, Chair, Northern Education Trust
Working in partnership to fulfil the potential of children and young people Les Walton CBE Chair Northern Education Trust March 2014IAA National Conference “No organisation can be better than its governance and leadership” - Nick Weller, IAA Chair
Working in partnership to fulfil the potential of children and young people Go forth and innovate: a summary and commentary on the three aspects of Governance 1.The vital importance of innovative and effective Governance 2.Models of Governance 3.Managing the dynamics of sustainable growth
“We need constancy of purpose within a turbulent environment ” Nick Weller Leaders with constancy of purpose in a world of constant change Broad and balance curriculum with particular focus on sport, performing arts and leadership Understand organisational development Policy focus Quality Standards ‘The secret of success is constancy of purpose’ Benjamin Disraeli
Localism, power and control are increasingly dispersed rather than concentrated at the centre. This is a phenomena which applies to more than education Mass production: vertically integrated Many remote external suppliers Many internal links in supply chain Virtual organisation: horizontally disintegrated Short-term collaborations Electronic links Non- competitive business processes outsourced Core competences only Lean production: vertically disintegrated Complete set of internal business processes More focused: fewer internal links in supply chain Closer relationships with fewer suppliers Evolution of Supply Chains Professor Amin Rajan
Lord Adonis stressed a new moral purpose which is focusing on the 50% requiring clearer pathways to employment and skills development
My response – a lot of the system (league tables etc.) is reinforcing academic achievement at 16. Also governors and leaders will need to tackle the hard job of catching the rabbits of vocationalism and academia If you don't know where you are going, any road will take you there. If you chase two rabbits, both will escape. The first rule of focus is this: wherever you are, be there
The Schools Commissioner, Frank Green, says Trusts should focus on total quality rather than be externally inspected purpose in a world o Broad and balance curriculum with particular focus on sport, performing arts and leadership Understand organisational development Policy focus Quality Standards ‘ Create constancy of purpose for continual improvement of product and service’ Edward Deming
Constancy of Purpose Time3- 7 Years Progress Developing a shared Picture of Transformation Vision Eliminate dependency on Ofsted Do not rely on any national initiative Current reality Wake up an realise you are part of the Global Environment Clarity of purpose Build in quality into everything Immmerse Governanc e Consider the locality Invest in internal training Commission support from those you trust Persuade Government that individual Academies will improve as the system they are part of improves Agree percentage targets are no substitute for leadership Ensure Governors and staff train together Values Improve constantly and forever
Many presenters stressed the need to ensure the fundamentals of effective governance are in place Committee room, designed 1901, in Halifax Town HallHalifax Town Hall
Different MAT, Umberella Trusts and collaborative Governance Structures were described Emma Knights emphasised getting Board composition right Deciding the committee structure What is delegated to school level When is a governor not a governor Will this structure stand the test of time Learning from others – across the schools sector and other sectors
Different Governing Models were described Jo Williams – Dixons Academies Trust Nigel Gann – Diocese of Bath and Wells Neil Wightman – Nottingham Catholic Education Service – Umbrella with ability to intervene The Aldridge Foundation – distributed leadership and separate trusts
All presenters supported Boards which included skills and representation and also linked with the community
The size and structure of local governing bodies was discussed. Everyone agreed that the Board needed to be kept small with a mixture of skills and representation
Schemes of delegation were considered very important – encouraging ‘earned autonomy’. However there is a need to manage carefully Boards which may readily give up their autonomy. -“Need to win hearts and minds as local governing bodies give up responsibilities” “Some local heads and governors wish to keep local control?” “Need for harmonisation of policies across different schools,”
A model was described which considered the key elements in linking the Trust Board to local boards People Segregation of people Right people right place Link governors management team Documents Scheme of delegation living document! Expectations and entitlements Codes of conduct Process Reporting Meeting timetable Review of effectiveness
Brown Jacobson considered the need to be clear about delegation and streamlined processes. They also stressed the importance of the clerk Delegation Same delegation between LGBs / academy councils? Restrict sub-committees? Shared committees? Meeting protocols? Clerk and Process Common clerk? Governance mandate? Common format for paperwork? Frequency of meeting ?
Goals and objective 12 2 Policies Authority of the Board above this line Authority of the Principal below this line 4 Regulation 6 Operations Documents Process Reports with Standards Product Reports with Standards 10 8 The Policy Clock Regina Paul USA The MAT Board and the local governing bodies should clearly understand where authority lies
Making best use of external support and challenge is not always done well. High performance requires high support and high challenge
Many people considered that Boards cannot include all the skills you need. I mentioned the NET non executive programme supported by the Chamber of Commerce, Institute of Directors and LEPS. I also stressed the need to encourage ethical scrutiny. I also described how we used observers on the YPLA Board Ethical scrutiny Non-executives Board observers
The Aldridge Foundation focused on people development including the hearing of the student voice Governor department links Hearing Student Voice Strategy Days Expert Advice Joint Principals and Chairs of Governors Forum Governors in the academy day Plan academy governor events
The principles of public life and the need to be central to our work Leaders with constancy of purpose in a world of constant change Broad and balance curriculum with particular focus on sport, performing arts and leadership Understand organisational development Policy focus Quality Standards
What it means to be a member of a multi academy trust Being very clear about the relationship between the NET Trust and the local governing body Transition Boards Imposing or requesting an Education Improvement Board Key recommendations regarding the establishment of an IEB or SIB The role of NET where a governing body is selecting the sponsor Renewing a governing body Attracting new governors Providing a unique offer There was a lot of discussion in managing change, particularly with Boards which were reluctant to change. The key issues discussed are listed below.
The LEAD Trust described the importance of managing growth The Cabot Trust described their approach to establishing a new academy Protocols for joining and importance of locality Analysis of need and support capacity What does new partner bring? Attitude of potential partner to collaboration Capacity to respond Central Team should be a place to aspire to Use of SLEs Get policies right Have robust risk register Do due diligence at least three times – ask what prevents this school from being outstanding? Finally…………………..
Cabot Protocols for joining and locality Analysis of need and support capacity What does new partner bring? Attitude to collaboration Capacity Central Team – a place to aspire to Use of SLEs Get policies right Robust risk register Due diligence at least three times – what prevents this school from being outstanding
Outstanding governance is about keeping it simple Support leaders – don’t meddle Create sustainability The Leigh Academies Trust said
And finally…….my recommendations for the next steps We need workshops where Trusts are able to share their practice in detail. For example: Who is on your Board? How do you recruit? What is your structure? How do you develop the expertise of your governing body, your executive and central team? How do you manage across a distance? etc.