Academies: A Changing Landscape

Read the stories behind the photos:
Academies: a changing landscape
Frank Green
Schools Commissioner
June 2014
My background
• Chief Executive of Leigh Academies Trust for five years –
group of seven schools in Dartford (3 secondary, 2
primary, 1 Special, 1 UTC) – soon to expand to 10.
• Built up over the past 10 years from 1 City Technology
• Prior to this headteacher since 1992.
Growth of a sponsor
LAT 2008 - 2013
• In 2008 we set the goals as shown in the slide
• Currently 3 secondary, 2 primary, 1 special, 1 UTC
• Web pages show detail: www.leighacademies
Role of the Schools Commissioner
• lead communications between DfE and the education sector
• initiate brokerage of academy arrangements between those schools
that would benefit most from an academy solution and established
sponsors with a good track record of performance improvement
• encourage and help nurture potential sponsors from schools and
community sectors
• influence school-to-school support and working closely with ministers
to shape the future development of the academies and free schools
• From September 2014, line management of the 8 regional schools
commissioners (RSCs).
Current picture
Academy growth since September 2010
• Over 4,300 open
academies and free
in England.
• Around 30% are
601 are Primary
487 are Secondary
14 are Special academies.
3 are PRUs academies.
• 617 approved sponsors
ready for projects.
• We have approved 279
sponsors since Jan 2013.
Vision for academies system
• Self-managing, self-improving system
• School-to-school support and
• Ultimate goal: More children, more
quickly, achieving much more.
• 90% and 100%
• 1/3
• Self-managing:
– RSCs and HTBs
– Schools in Trusts
– LA role
• Self-improving
– Teaching School Alliances
– Challenge Partners
– Other private providers
Academies are working together to improve
All schools that are performing well are expected to work with another school to
bring about an improvement in standards
An Academy is part of a chain if it is part of a Multi-Academy Trust, an Umbrella
Trust, or a collaborative partnership
Academy chains are growing rapidly with hundreds of Academies now part of
The Primary Academy Chains Development Grant is available to support schools
coming together in a Multi-Academy Trust
Special Academies can support improvements to SEN provision and attainment
and well-being of pupils with Special Education Needs
Options for Collaboration
• The Multi-Academy Trust model – a group of schools which work together
under a single Trust. This model has been in use for some time in
sponsored academy chains
• Umbrella Trust Model –an overarching umbrella trust which has oversight
of what is happening in each school and will be able to influence how the
schools in the chain are run. Each school has its own Academy Trust
• Collaborative Partnership chains - very flexible, with no shared
… but it is how these are put into practice
that makes the difference.
Multi-Academy-Trust Model
There is only one legal entity accountable for all schools
within the chain, the Multi-Academy Trust (MAT). The
MAT has one set of Articles which governs all the
academies in that chain.
The MAT has a master
funding agreement with
the Secretary of State
The MAT may set up either a local governing body or advisory body for each academy. The MAT
can agree to delegate some matters to this local governing body.
The MAT has a master
funding agreement with
the Secretary of State
Academy 1
Academy 2
Academy 3
Local Governing Body
/Advisory Body
Local Governing Body
/Advisory Body
Local Governing Body
/Advisory Body
Umbrella Trust Model
The Umbrella Trust can have a number of collaborative roles and it is for the
schools involved to agree what the Umbrella Trust’s roles and responsibilities
will be. Examples of functions include setting a joint vision and strategies for
the group of schools, procuring services etc.
The schools or group setting up the
Umbrella Trust can agree the Umbrella
Trust’s membership. If the Academies
want to be linked by shared governance
then it can be agreed that the UT
appoints a number of
members/trustees in each Academy.
Appoints Trustees
Oversight of
performance, clear
School Improvement Board
The AT and UT may agree
for the UT to support the
academies in improving
standards. The UT could do
this through establishing a
Academy A
Academy B
Multi-Academy Trust
Funding Agreement
Funding Agreement
Funding Agreement
The Academies continue to exist as separate legal entities which sit under an overarching
Umbrella Trust.
Each Academy continues to have its own Articles and funding agreement with the Secretary of
It is possible to have a combination of single Academy Trusts and Multi-Academy Trusts under
an Umbrella Trust
Academy GB
Main Board
Academy DG
Standards Committee
Resources Committee
local academy board 2
1-2 academies
local academy board 1
Secondary and Primary
local academy board 3
Primary Academy DG
(in special measures)
3-10 academies
Area 1 Trust
local Academy
1 Board
Area 2 Trust
local Academy
2 Board
local academy
3 Board
local Academy
4 Board
11 – 40 academies
Area 3 Trust
local Academy
5 Board
local Academy
6 Board
local academy board 4
Ministers have created a system of Regional Schools
Commissioners supported by Headteacher Boards which
 Build capacity of DfE to deal with the growing numbers of
 Bring decision making closer to schools – bringing greater
local/regional knowledge and context.
 Give the best leaders greater influence over the direction of the
academies system.
 Regional decisions, centrally supported – create an efficient
system of delivery informed by regional knowledge, supported
centrally by existing teams.
 Create an evolving system – allowing flexibility for the system to
continue to evolve as the number of academies grow.
RSC regions
 England is split into
eight geographically
pragmatic regions of
reasonable size.
 Reasonable spread of
challenge across the
RSC’s roles.
 London is split into
three and combined3
with neighbouring
home counties –
spreading expertise.
RSCs and their HTBs will have four key roles…
– Monitoring performance and prescribing intervention to
secure improvement in underperforming academies and free
– Taking decisions on the creation of new academies and
making recommendations to ministers about free school
– Ensuring that there are enough high-quality sponsors to meet
local need.
• Taking decisions on changes to open academies.
But there are a number of things that won’t
• Accountability lines – ultimate accountability will remain with the
Secretary of State, with decisions better informed by sector expertise.
• RSCs will have no role in relation to maintained schools.
• This is not about changing the role of LAs – although we’ll expect RSCs
and LAs to work together and for LAs to raise concerns about
academies with the RSC.
• DfE will continue to provide resource from Whitehall to support RSCs,
including operational support to implement decisions taken by them.
• Functions such as due diligence & oversight of academy financial
performance will continue to be managed by central DfE.
Regional Schools Commissioners will be
supported by a board of headteachers…
 Role of HTBs is to challenge and advise the RSC,
bringing local sector knowledge/expertise.
 There will be a minimum of six members on each board:
 four places will be elected to HTBs by other academy
heads. These will be heads of academies rated good
or outstanding overall with outstanding leadership and
 two members appointed by SoS/RSC.
 HTBs will be able co-opt other members – on
approval from SoS that this is needed.
 Time commitment: between half a day and one day a
week role (paid/reimbursed role).
HTB elections
The elections will use a first past the post system. We
have established rules for election that:
• ensure we have both primary and secondary
• prevent domination by chains.
Eligibility to stand for election
• current headteachers of individual academies rated by Ofsted as outstanding
or good overall with outstanding leadership and management, or;
• recently (within two years of the election) served as a headteacher of an
academy which met the criteria above at the time of their departure.
Eligibility to vote
• All open academy headteachers in each of the eight regions on 1st May will
be eligible to vote.
• 23rd May - Nomination process opens
• 13th June - Deadline for receipt of nominations - 160
• 23rd June - Elections open
• 11th July - Deadline for receipt of ballot papers / e-votes – 40%
• 16th July - Election results announced
• Each Region has an HTB of 6-8
• Mainly outstanding educational leaders
• 4 elected for a 3 year term– 160 candidates
for the elections, others appointed or coopted
• Meet regularly with RSC to
• Agree decisions on academies, sponsors, etc
• Arrange to commission intervention and support
• Strategic leaders of education system
• Darlington, Sheffield, Cumbria, Oxford,
Bromley, East Sussex, Barnet, North East
Lincolnshire, Staffordshire
• Grouping all schools in a partnership, a
federation or a trust.
• Education Commission
• Discussion of new role for LA and new
relationship with its schools.
• Peer review challenges schools to be better
• Support School improvement by S2SS
• Work with RSCs to support Academies and
Free Schools by providing knowledge
• Become an arm in the array of support that
RSCs can commission, or encourage schools to
commission for themselves
Thank you
[email protected]

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