The Role of the Academy Council
The role of an Academy Council is an important one. It is to provide focused governance for the Academy at a local level and it is the intention of the Shaw Education Trust Board to ensure that the responsibility to govern the Academy is vested in those closest to the impact of decision-making. The Academy Council monitors the Academy's key performance indicators and acts as a critical friend to the Principal and the Academy's senior leadership team, providing challenge where appropriate.
The Academy Councils carry out their functions in relation to their respective Academy on behalf of the Shaw Education Trust Board and in accordance with policies determined by the Trust Board. The act of delegation from the Shaw Education Trust Board to the Academy Council is a delegation of powers and duties, and not a delegation or shedding of responsibilities. The scheme of delegation can be viewed here.
We aim to develop a culture of diversity, equality and inclusion in which all those connected to Shaw Education Trust feel proud of their identity and ability to participate fully in school life. Across our multi-academy trust, our governance roles are composed of approximately 85% white British, 5% minority ethnic background* and 10% wishing not to share their information.
*Similar to pupil data, any individual who is of any origin other than white British, is defined as being of minority ethnic background.
Commitment of Academy Council members
Academy Councillors are asked to:
- prepare for and make an active contribution at meetings of the Academy Council;
- champion the Academy in the local community;
- familiarise themselves with the Academy's policies;
- visit the Academy both during school hours (with prior arrangement with the Principal) and for evening events to get to know the Academy and to be visible to the Academy community
Accountability is a key part of the Shaw Education Trust’s values and, as such, our local governance model is vital to this. We have two models operating across our MAT schools as follows:
1. Academy Councils (ACs)
2. SET and Local Boards (SLBs)
Academy Councils offer a more traditional model of local governance, with an appointed membership board working regularly with schools under our scheme of delegation. ACs will cover both Resources and Education, Standards and Performance and also will have parents as members.
SET and Local Boards have two aspects: Education, Standards and Performance Committees (known as Progress Boards) and Resources Committees (known as Team Around the School Boards) which are run by and made up of SET Central Team specialists. Our duty to engage parents in decision making is met through the Local Advisory Boards (LABs) which are made up of school staff, parents and members of the local community. Local Advisory Boards have been established to fulfil the requirements of the Academy Funding Agreement, which states a Local Advisory Board should be established with “a minimum of two parents of a pupil at the Academy” and, beyond meeting funding agreement requirements, we deeply value the contribution that parents and other members of the community make to our academies.
The Meadows Primary School has chosen a hybrid pathway this current year. We will still be operating a mainly standard traditional Academy Council framework currently, whilst also piloting parts of the Local Advisory Boards approach. This is to ensure rigour in our accountability processes.
Matters related to education, standards and performance are undertaken through the Progress Board, in addition to the Academy Council. The Progress Board meets once every half term.
Matters related to operational issues are undertaken through the Team Around the School Meeting, in addition to the Academy Council. The Team Around the School meets termly.
We meet our duty to engage and consult with parents through local governance through our Academy Council, our Local Advisory Board. Our board meets once every half term.
The Chair of the Progress Board and Team Around the School is Rachel King, National Director for Primary, who can be contacted via Beth Barlow at Governance@shaw-education.org.uk
The Chair of the Academy Council is Gillian Taylor. She can be contact via the school office.
A member of The Shaw Education Trust's Leadership Team attends each of the termly Academy Council meetings.
Dates of Meetings