Non-executive Director/Trustee at Plymouth CAST

Salary details not provided
24 Nov 2021
03 Dec 2021
Professional / Specialist
Contract Type
Could you be a Trustee and Academy Ambassador in the South West of England? Plymouth CAST seeks a non-executive director/Trustee to join its board. Board meetings are usually held at PL5 3AG, or via Zoom where necessary.

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 service 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 Catholic Diocese of Plymouth formed Plymouth CAST in April 2014 to improve the performance of its schools. The trust's mission is to be a community of outstanding schools in which its pupils flourish in safe, happy and stimulating environments and leave with the knowledge and skills, personal qualities and aspirations, to make the world a better place, inspired by the Gospel.

Plymouth CAST is a multi-academy trust of 34 Catholic schools across the South West of England comprising 2 single sex secondary schools based in Plymouth and 32 primary schools. With schools located across the South West, from Penzance to Poole, and covering seven local authorities, the trust is one of the largest multi-academy trusts (MATs) in the south west region.

The trust currently employs circa 800 staff; has 7,000 pupils on roll and an annual income of circa £40m.

The trust's strategic aims are:
  • To ensure that every pupil is educated in safe and stimulating environment, inspired by the gospel, and leaves with a vision of service for humanity, especially the vulnerable.
  • To ensure that every pupil receives an excellent education, which fulfills their academic potential and provides each with the qualifications, skills and qualities that will help them to thrive in adult life.
  • To ensure that CAST is a fully sustainable trust capable of providing all the necessary resources and equipment to fulfill its educational ambitions.

The board seeks one business leaders with board level experience in:
  • Strategic Leadership/General Management

Throughout your term of office (typically 4 years, but this may vary between trusts), you will be an active contributor to key board decisions. Specifically, the trust's key five year strategic goals are:
  • Schools - All schools are assessed as consistently good or better against both Ofsted and Canonical inspection criteria.
  • Pupils - Disadvantaged pupils are provided with a learning environment that enables them to achieve in line with or better than the national average for non-disadvantaged pupils.
  • Culture - The organisational culture of the trust promotes opportunities for all staff and pupils to develop, learn and grow in an environment where every individual is respected, and diversity is celebrated.
  • Leadership - To meet the Bishop's Conference requirement that only practising Catholics are recruited to reserved operational posts.
  • The Trust - The trust is financially secure holding reserves at a minimum of 2%.
  • Reinvestment - Ensure that reinvestment funds of at least £1M are generated every year.
  • Environment and Sustainability - Minimise the Trust's impact on the environment through year on year reductions in its carbon footprint to reach net zero by 2030, and to implement sustainability within the curriculum through the embedding of Laudato Si.
  • Marketing and PR - All schools to meet target pupil admission numbers.

What's involved?

Board governance in education is a strategic, 'eyes on, hands off' commitment which at Plymouth CAST involves attending c. five board meetings per year, plus four committee meetings, amounting to approx. 7hours time per month.

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.

People from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

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 web-page 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. This full specification is also found below.

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