Manor Community Academy
2017 ANNUAL STATEMENT OF GOVERNANCE
The Academy converted to join Northern Education Trust in March 2015. The conversion of the school to a Northern Education Trust academy led to an Interim Board which operated for six months. The newly configured local governing board has been fully operational since September 2015 and responsibilities are aligned to a detailed improvement plan with clear lines of accountability for staff and governors at all levels.
Local Governing Board Constitution
There are currently 7 governors at Manor Community Academy and there are no vacancies at this time. All governors have given a written undertaking to the Trustees on their appointment
The breakdown of the governors in keeping with the Scheme of Delegation includes:
- Chair of Governors
- Vice Chair of Governors
- 1 Parent Governor
- 1 Staff Governor
- 3 other governors
- The Principal as ex officio
- The Director of Northern Education Trust Secondary Academies (Non Executive Governor)
- The Achievement Partner (Non Executive Governor)
The governance arrangements have existed since September 2016. The Academy has fully implemented the Northern Education Trust Portfolio and Constituency Representation Model. Portfolio Holders have been identified following the Ofsted framework descriptors and the academy's priorities:
|Portfolio Holders||Names assigned to|
|Outcomes for pupils||Tom Argument (Vice Chair of Governors)|
|Teaching, Learning & Assessment||Shaun Hope|
|Leadership & Management||Frank Reid (Chair of Governors)|
|Community/PSHE and citizenship||Alison Lil ley|
|Finance & Resources||Shaun Hope|
|Health and Safety||Alan Gill|
The Portfolio Holders report into both the local committee boards and the full local board meetings. Each local committee meets at least four times per year and the local board meets four times per year. Additional committee meetings are sometimes requested by the chairs of committee.
The full local governing board has formally met four times during the year. Attendance during the year at meetings of the full local governing board was as follows:
|Governor||Possible Attendance at Full Governors||Actual Attendance at Full Governors|
|Net Director of Secondary Academies||4||3|
The Audit and Risk committee is a sub-committee of the main local governing board. The purpose of the Audit and Risk committee is to monitor the integrity of the financial statements of the academy, appoint internal and external auditors, develop a risk assessment model, consideration of the condition and suitability for learning of the academies buildings, review the procedures for risk assessment of health and safety and review the adequacy and security of arrangements for employees and contractors. Attendance at meetings in the academic year 2016 - 2017 was as follows:
|Governor||Possible Attendance at Audit and Risk||Actual Attendance at Audit and Risk|
The Achievement and Climate committee is a sub-committee of the main local governing board. Its purpose is to consider and approve curriculum provision and associated teaching and support staff resource, approval of improvement plans, monitoring of student outcomes, monitoring of student attendance, performance of student cohorts, monitoring of provision for the most vulnerable students and monitoring of the quality of teaching and learning across the academy. Attendance at meetings in the year 2016-17 was as follows:
|Governor||Possible Attendance at Achievement and Climate||Actual Attendance at Achievement and Climate|
Continuing Professional Development
To support the local governing board with continuing professional development last year 2016/17 the total amount allocated was £1000 and the total amount actually spent was £350.
The allocated amount spent included expenses claimed by governors in travelling to events. The Chair and Vice Chair attended NET training throughout the year and Alan Gill attended training in relation to health and safety and student performance via Hartlepool Local Governors Association. The Governing Body has also accessed training through their subscription to 'Governance Matters' and training has been provided through the academy's Business Lead in matters relating to finance. Training in relation to 2016 onwards performance measures was provided by the Vice Principal Achievement and Progress and the Achievement Partner.
For 2017/18 the budget allocation will be £1000 although additional funding will be available from the School Improvement Funding allocation of the budget should there be a need for further training.
Continuing professional development for the full governing board is anticipated to include:
- Governance Quality Mark awareness
- SEMH training - provided by Principal and Hartlepool LA
- Safeguarding Updates - provided by the Academy Safeguarding Lead
- Continued Financial Awareness - provided by the Academy Business Lead
- Further training on new performance measures - provided by the Vice Principal Achievement and Progress
- Advice and guidance in relation to progress in mathematics - NET
- Advice and guidance in relation to progress in science - NET
At the point of conversion, a skills audit was taken which informed the membership and constitution of the Governing Body. This allowed us to ensure that each portfolio area was led by an experienced and competent governor. The skills audit will be carried out annually and is due for completion during the Autumn Term of 2017. The areas addressed at the last skills audit heavily indicated the need to understand Financial Regulations as a training need for all governors and our Business Lead has focused upon this with a particular focus upon the Achievement and Climate committee chair and vice chair.
Annual Skills Audit
As a local governing board we undertook an annual skills audit in June 2015 and recruited our governors with support from Northern Education Trust. The membership of the local board and the appointment of portfolio holders was made as a result of this audit. A review of the capacity of governors has meant a change to the Chair of the Audit and Risk Committee. At the moment, we do not feel that there is a need for further recruitment although the continuing professional development needs identified above indicate the areas in which we want to further develop our capacity.
The predecessor school's last full inspection (Section 5 of the Education Act 2005) was May 2014 when it was judged Inadequate/Serious Weaknesses by Ofsted. Subsequent Section 8 monitoring visits judged the Academy to be making progress towards the removal of Serious Weaknesses. The last Section 8 monitoring visit was in February 2015. Since conversion, the academy has had four assisted reviews led by school improvement leads who are Ofsted inspectors; these have judged the academy to have moved from the judgement of Inadequate. At this point the academy judges itself to be requiring improvement with the capacity to move to good. This is corroborated by the latest review held in May 2017.
Academy Impact on Outcomes
The Academy was on an upward trend with regard GCSE examinations between 2013 and 2015 but was subject to a dip in results in 2016. The upward trend is expected to return for 2017 results.
The governors have formed a monitoring support group which meets regularly alongside the academy improvement partner and provides appropriate challenge and support. This exemplifies one of the core functions of the local governing board- and is a key priority in the Academy Improvement Plan. It shows how the governors on the local governing board operationalised their core functions and make an impact on the raising standards agenda and student outcomes in the academy.
Regularity, Propriety and Compliance.
We the local governing board members have signed the National Governors Association Code of Practice for governors which includes the Seven Principles of Public Life established by the Committee on Standards in Public Life [the Nolan Committee] which guide our work. In addition, we have signed the Pecuniary Interest Statement making declarations of any conflict of interest or perceived conflicts of interest. Declarations within this include:
|Board Member||Pecuniary Interest Declared||Date|
|Shaun Hope||Hartlepool College of Further Education||December 2016|
|Alby Pattison||Hart Biologicals||December 2016|
The Manor Community Academy website includes a page on 'Governance' which lists who the academy governors are. The website has been refreshed using the Department for Education (DfE) Governors' Handbook published in September 2014, intended for maintained schools and academies and
- outlines the core role and functions of school local governing boards
- summarises all of the specific legal duties on local governing boards
- signposts more detailed information on legal duties and supporting guidance and resources
It also sets out what the academy sees as the purpose of the local governing board and what the role of a governor is. A review of the website by an Ofsted inspector was recently undertaken and the academy website is currently compliant with legislation.
There are three core strategic functions of local governing boards:
- Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
- Holding the principal to account for the educational performance of the school and its pupils; and
- Overseeing the financial performance of the academy and making sure its money is well spent.
As governors we understand that evidence suggests that governors that carry out their role well do so by:
- understanding their strategic role - building a productive and supportive relationship with the principal while holding them to account for school performance and taking hard decisions in the light of objective data;
- ensuring governors have the necessary skills and commitment, including to challenge the school to bring about improvement and hold leaders to account for performance;
- appointing an effective chair to lead and manage the governing board
- appointing a high quality clerk to advise them on the nature of their functions and duties and who ensures that that governing board operates efficiently and effectively;
- evaluating their performance regularly in the light of expectations and other good practice and making changes as necessary to improve their effectiveness; and
- governing more than one school to develop a more strategic perspective and create a more robust accountability through the ability to compare and contrast across schools.
As governors we acknowledge we have responsibility for ensuring that manor Community Academy within Northern Education Trust has an effective and appropriate system of control, financial and otherwise.