The Oxford Diocesan Bucks School Trust-Governors’ Briefing Pack

The Oxford Diocesan Bucks Schools Trust Empowering our unique schools to excel Governors’ Briefing Pack Sulina Piesse, CEO ODBST We aspire for every pupil and adult to ‘experience life in all its fullness’ (John 10:10)

2 Information pack for schools and academies thinking about joining the Oxford Diocesan Multi Academy Trust (ODBST) 1. ODBST - who we are 2. ODBST vision, values, and summary of our priorities 3. ODBST - How we operate 4. Academisation frequently asked questions and answers 5. School Improvement frequently asked questions and answers 6. Finance frequently asked questions and answers 7. Human Resources frequently asked questions and answers 8. Governance frequently asked questions and answers Appendices 1. Appendix 1 – Summary of ODBST scheme of delegation and governance structure 2. Appendix 2- Our Member and Trustee profiles 3. Appendix 3- ODBST’s unique selling points 4. Appendix 4- ODBST’s growth plan which shows how we can accommodate your application to join our family of schools 5. Appendix 5 -ODBST’s Shared Services Team support for our schools

3 1. ODBST - Who we are Our organisation, the ODBST, is a Church of England Multi Academy Trust (MAT) which operates in the Buckingham Episcopal area of the Diocese of Oxford. It covers Milton Keynes and Buckinghamshire. We are a MAT with sponsorship powers from the Department for Education (DfE). Our ODBST Trustees welcome applications from all schools interested in joining us: community or Church of England; primary or secondary; mainstream or special. We offer our communities high quality inclusive education, welcoming children from all faiths and none. There are currently 13 Primary schools that are part of our ODBST family. 11 of these are converter academies (5 of the schools were community schools before choosing to join the ODBST) and 2 are sponsored academies. This reflects the powerfully attractive MAT we have developed. Our Schools, Our Learners, Our Trust Our unique schools continue to retain their own character and individual feel just as the individual members of any family make up the whole whilst being individuals. They offer a broad, balanced, and exciting curriculum which allows all children to learn with interest and enthusiasm. Our schools are central to their community but are also committed to working collaboratively with other schools so that we are all able to learn and grow together. Our learners are at the centre of all we do; empowered to learn and achieve; valued within our schools as resilient, active, and responsible citizens; served so that they develop and thrive (intellectually, socially, culturally, and spiritually); aspire to reach their fullest potential. The ODBST strives to enable strong and effective local leadership that is supported and challenged to recruit, train and retain high quality staff and we offer career advancement opportunities within our group of schools. Our staff are passionate about giving all pupils the tools to be the best that they can be, providing them a plethora of opportunities and experiences for enriched learning, and working with governors to make key decisions in the best interest of the school community they serve. Our family of schools in the ODBST Chesham Bois CE School Thomas Harding Junior School Great Horwood CE School Padbury CE School St John’s CE Primary School, Lacey Green Longwick CE Combined School Christ the Sower Ecumenical School Woodside Junior School Curzon CE Combined School Elmtree Infant School The Downley School Chenies School

4 2. ODBST vision, values, and summary of our priorities “Empowering our unique schools to excel” Each of our schools has a unique character of its own and we will work to ensure that this vision embraces all our pupils and adults, regardless of background and belief. We empower our schools to deliver a broad, enriched, and exciting curriculum, coupled with a shared zest for life and learning. We have identified 4 core values: Inclusivity, Community, Service, Empowerment that resonate with what we believe the ODBST Learner, and Leader should follow and live by. They reflect the values that are central to our schools and the diocese. Through our values, we aim for excellence for everyone in our Trust. Building on the uniqueness of our pupils, families, and school communities, we strive to enable everyone to develop and thrive intellectually, socially, culturally, and spiritually. We aspire for every pupil and adult to ‘experience life in all its fullness.’ (John 10:10) Our ODBST values in action Our inclusivity value will be seen in action when our differences become our strength and achievement. Our community value will be seen in action when pupils and adults are learning, loving, achieving, and flourishing together. Our service value will be seen in action when pupils are seeking the common good in all that they do. Our empowerment value will be seen in action when our pupils are able to say, ‘I am special because…and I am learning to excel at…’

5 At ODBST this means that everyone is accepted and supported, regardless of faith or culture. We will strive for everyone to be given every opportunity to reach their potential. We believe everyone is unique and everyone matters. Many pupils and staff in our schools will come from diverse home backgrounds and our pupils will be at different stages of their own academic and spiritual journey during their time in school. All pupils will receive support, guidance, and challenge so that they are motivated, ambitious, and courageous individuals who seek to be the best they can be. We embody the experience of an inclusive community, where we share our gifts, where the emphasis is on what we can contribute, rather than on what we might receive and where we give to each according to need. “Our differences are our strength as a species and as a world community” Nelson Mandela

6 At ODBST we work in unison with all our families. Together we learn, love, achieve and flourish. Within our family of schools, each individual is encouraged to discover and grow their talents to their fullest potential. We believe by encouraging, inspiring, and building each other up we secure the best outcomes for every member of our community. We believe quality relationships and partnerships are a central element of interdependence: all are needed and valued, and each person is important. We will work together to support each other so that everyone can make a contribution, and everyone feels included. We encourage everyone to have a sense of pride in their community and the wider world. “The minute we become an integrated whole, we look through the same eyes and we see a whole different world together” Azizah Al-Hibri

7 We encourage everyone to look after themselves and others around them. We encourage pupils in our schools to seek the common good in all that they do through acts of kindness. The ODBST believes that our gifts and talents are to be used in ways that will improve the lives of themselves and others. We help children to develop skills that will allow them to participate fully and contribute positively to the social and cultural life of modern Britain, maximizing opportunities for our pupils to serve their school and local community. We create a culture where serving one another and the wider community is celebrated and seen as an important mark of character development. We regularly invite visitors to our schools who are making a difference to society through their service and courageous advocacy, to inform and inspire us and to present positive role models with ethical and moral integrity for us to follow. “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others” Mahatma Gandhi

8 At the ODBST we will encourage everyone to trust in their own capabilities and to recognise their potential. We want to challenge ourselves to be the best we can be – even when this becomes hard. We will do this by leading by example, supporting, and guiding one another, celebrating accomplishments, providing opportunities for all, developing confidence, resilience, and perseverance in both our children and our adults. We will encourage curiosity with a mindset of continuous improvement and personal growth. We want our pupils to be able to say, ‘I am special because… and I am learning to excel at….’ "There is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind" Virginia Woolf

9 3. How ODBST operates ODBST schools operate with a high level of accountability devolved to each Local Governing Body (LGB), which is supported by a “School to School” improvement model, facilitated by a core team of experienced professionals (i.e., ex-headteachers, lead inspectors) at the centre of the organisation, in partnership with the Oxford Diocesan Board of Education (ODBE). The Trust retains a service charge to cover the cost of its corporate work, providing support to schools across a range of services. This is illustrated by our ‘wall of support.’ O T er ice ro ision Trust Diocese Blend of Trust Diocese in nce rocurement dmissions remises Ofsted upport chool mpro ement o ernor upport Oper on l suppor t Tr ining fegu rding

10 The ODBST ensures it brings, develops, and makes use of the expertise of its staff to serve all its schools, the children and young people and the local communities. We are committed to drive improvement. We provide a wide range of services which ensure our schools and governors operate within an effective and strong frameworkwhich allows all our children to learn and flourish. Improving life chances by maintaining a high-quality offer of learning, development, and support for all is pivotal to our vision: ‘Empowering our unique schools to excel’.

11 The ODBST Leadership model Trustees • Michael Mill (Chair of the Board) • Michael Phipps (Vice-Chair of the Board) • The Rt Revd Dr Alan Wilson (Bishop of Buckingham) • Denise Shepherd (Chair –Academy Improvement Committee) • Revd Canon Rosie Harper • Andrew Jeffrey (Chair - Finance, Resources, Pay & Personnel Committee) • Kieran Soughton • Tony Wilson (Diocesan Director of Education) • Sulina Piesse (Chief Executive Officer) Officers • Sulina Piesse (Chief Executive Officer) • Ruth Falkus (Chief Finance Officer) • Rachael Hollinshead (Chief Operating Officer) • Gillian Nickless (Director of HR) • Deborah Stainer (Governance Professional) • JanMartin (Director of Education) • Lorraine Quirk (Challenge Partner) • Victoria Davies (Finance Officer) • Rebecca Hussein-Allin (HR Officer) • Emily Gatis (Marketing and Communications Administrator) • Rob Halls (Challenge Partner) • Ella Swinhoe (Operations Partner) • Christine Smith (Finance Officer) • Natalie Mitchell (HR Officer)

12 As a charity and company limited by guarantee, the ODBST is governed by a Board of Trustees who are responsible for and oversee the management and administration of the Company and the academies run by the Company. Governance arrangements comply with our articles of association. All our schools have their own Local Governing Bodies (LGBs) who serve our local communities. The communities which serve our Trust are diverse, which both enriches the Trust and makes it sensitive to local needs, pressures, and opportunities. Although Trustees delegate considerable responsibility to LGBs, there is oversight and scrutiny by them. The ODBST help support the LGBs to shape the needs of their communities. Our Trustees are accountable to external government agencies including the Department for Education (for the quality of the education they provide) and Ofsted (both at a school level for the quality of education and across the MAT as part of their Academy Trust Review cycle). Each school with their LGBs have systems in place through which they can assure themselves of the quality, safety, and good practice which the ODBST provides. Local governing bodies (LGBs) There is a real focus on maintaining schools in their communities and for the ODBST to be responsive to parents and other communities’ interests. Trustees are elected to establish LGBs to focus this individuality and contextual reflection. To achieve this, Trustees are clear about the levels and areas of delegation of Trustee responsibility to a local level through a Scheme of Delegation. Please see Appendix 1 – Summary of ODBST scheme of delegation. Our LGBs have a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities and have the right skill set, (through a rigorous induction, ongoing training program) to ensure theydrive a clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction within the ODBST family; hold leaders to account for the educational performance of their school, its pupils, and staff; overseeing the financial performance of the school with its delegated budget, making sure its money is well spent and assuming delegated responsibility for ensuring that the school fulfils its statutory duties. Having a local governing body is an essential feature of the ODBST as these local governors understand their schools well-the staff, the parents, the children, and the community. LGBs play a pivotal part in canvassing the views of our academies’ stakeholders, which we believe is essential to the success of all our schools. Trustees ODBST Trustees are mainly appointed by Members. The Trustees set the strategic direction of the Trust, hold Senior Leaders to account and, as a business, oversee the Trust’s financial performance. They are both company directors and charity Trustees for the ODBST. They retain overall responsibility for the operation of the ODBST and its academies and determine the level of delegation and the subsequent level of autonomy at the level where decisions can best impact on the quality of education and the experience pupils in the school. Members The Members at ODBST are akin to the shareholders of a company. They have ultimate control over our Trust, with the ability to appoint the Trustees and the right to amend the Trust’s articles of association.

13 4. Academisation frequently asked questions and answers a. What is an Academy? An academy is a government funded school that is independent to the Local Authority. Whilst academy status gives schools additional responsibilities and greater freedoms, in terms of the day to day functioning an academy will not be noticeably different for parents/the community compared to a Local Authority maintained school. Responsibility for funding an academy, monitoring performance and any capital projects will fall to central government rather to local government, although in reality this will be via an Academy Trust. If the decision is made to transfer to become an academy, the school and governing body will join an academy trust, which is a charitable company. No one can make any money from the company. The company is limited by guarantee. It does not pay dividends and makes no profit. b. How much work is it to become an academy within an established Trust? The conversion process is managed by the ODBST team to enable the school to remain focused on the day to day running of their school. However, it helps if there is a standing Governing Body working group who can be involved in the statutory consultation. The school bursar and Headteacher will also need to be around in the run up to key dates identified by the DfE to ensure the various documents are signed and submitted in time. c. What does the conversion process involve? After you as a governing body have expressed an interest, and made the final decision to join the ODBST, you will need to register your request to join us, which will also need to be sent to the Diocese for approval. An application to the DfE for an Academy Order can be made at any stage of the process and does not commit you to becoming an academy within the ODBST, but usefully it releases Academy Support Grant funding that covers the costs of conversion (legal, new IT systems, and related set up costs) before works turn to detailed legal processes. You must complete a statutory consultation with interested parties before the funding agreement is signed, which is one of the final parts in the process. Key steps: 1. The Governing Body formally agrees to consult on becoming an academy and within which MAT 2. Obtain the Secretary of State’s initial consent by securing an “Academy Order” 3. Carry out the necessary consultation and decide to proceed 4. Agree a supplementary funding agreement with the DfE and the MAT 5. Ensure that the school site is made available to the MAT via leases and/or supplemental agreements 6. Ensure that financial systems are in place to manage funding 7. Transfer, renew or procure new contracts, service level agreements and licenses, and purchase insurance as appropriate 8. Transfer under TUPE all contract arrangements for staff. This is a formal legal consultation process which is separate from the consultation with all stakeholders. This would not start until after the vote by the Governing Body to apply for academy status

14 d. How will the ODBST prioritise the order for conversion? The academy conversion journey will be individual to each school but will include a Due Diligence process which the ODBST carries out. The formal process can happen any time between applying for the Academy Order through to conversion. This process may identify issues which will require attention before conversion is complete. In conversation between the school, the Trust and the Local Authority, a convenient date for conversion will be developed and requested as part of the application process. e. How long does it take for a school to become an Academy? It is expected that most schools are able to convert to academy status in around five to eight months after achieving the initial DfE approval to proceed. f. Do schools need to consult before converting? Yes. All schools are required to carry out a consultation, but it is up to each school to decide whom and how to consult. There is no legally specified length of time for the consultation and schools have flexibility in how it is conducted. We are currently consulting with parents, staff, local schools, and the local community. We will also conduct information sessions for pupils. g. How should we engage interested parties? Whilst it is a legal requirement to carry out a consultation, there is no specification about how this should be carried out. An early consultation could take place at the point the governors are considering whether to become an academy asking opinions on whether to progress the idea, whereas later on in the process, the consultation would be more along the lines of whether there are objections to the proposal to become an academy with a specific MAT. A 4-week consultation period during term time with a public meeting is considered appropriate by the Diocese. ODBST will be present at the consultation meeting and will provide documents for the process. It should be noted that a public consultation is separate to the staff consultation which relates to TUPE.

15 5. School Improvement frequently asked questions and answers a. How many schools are in the Trust? Currently there are 12 schools in the ODBST. b. Of these, how many are requires improvement category schools and how many are good or outstanding? Of the schools in the ODBST, 1 school is not yet good – all the rest are good schools. The Downley joined the ODBST as a sponsored school as it was graded as an inadequate school. The school joined the ODBST on 1st September 2023. c. What difference has the ODBST made to the schools within it? There are various measures and metrics that could be used, although their validity varies. If looking at Ofsted, our schools which have all been inspected over the last 18 months have all remained good schools with specific reference given to the contribution the ODBST team has made to their effectiveness. Evidence suggests we have positive impact on the quality of education, assessment and tracking of pupils’ outcomes; challenge and support cycles; governance, including LGB training, HR services, safeguarding support, well-being initiatives, and leadership development at all levels. d. Is the O T’s focus tomaintain good and outstanding schools or to bring up failing schools? The ODBST is a trust open to all schools and we do not nor will the DfE allow us to cherry pick specific grades of schools. We have had a run of good schools join us, but this has given us the capacity to extend the offer of support and a possible home to schools causing concern such as with The Downley. This is important given our Christian foundation and, also serves to give our leaders and managers the opportunities of providing system leadership in other schools – which is a key driver for schools who wish to be rated as outstanding. e. Who makes decisions regarding the Curriculum? The devolution of decisions and accountability is set out in our scheme of delegation. The curriculum is a delegated responsibility to Local Governing Bodies. The ODBST produces an overarching curriculum statement and provides guidance on areas where trustees need to remind LGBs of their statutory responsibility – i.e., sex and relationships education. In setting out these guidance/policy statements the directors do not seek to dictate the content of the curriculum or what is taught. Officers will monitor LGB decisions on the curriculum through their visits. Academies are able to offer a more flexible curriculum, but they are required to provide a ‘balanced and broadly based curriculum’. The teaching of English, Maths, and Science would, of course, remain central and as a church school RE would be important. The teachers and governors will work with the ODBST to implement the curriculum to best meet the needs of its pupils using the freedoms available to it.

16 f. What would happen to SEN provision? We would continue to provide the same support for pupils with an ECHP and for those in receipt of SEND top up funding and indeed the funding for this element continues to be provided by the Local Authority. The Local Authority retains its responsibility for statutory duties, obligations and procedures remain in place when a school converts to academy status. g. How does the ODBST monitor standards and on what evidence are judgements made? We use the Ofsted handbook to judge pupil outcomes and Ofsted processes to ensure that this is backed up by the work and teaching seen in school. We use a central tracking system in our schools to ensure that our training and CPD for teachers, leaders and support staff has a common vocabulary and we support leaders and governors in their vital role of holding the school to account for the progress pupils make. The DfE uses end of key stage assessment outcomes to measure and hold to account Trustees for the outcomes of their schools and we would expect governors to similarly understand the information in Raise Online and understand how it may be reflected in judgements made on the overall effectiveness of the school. The ODBST will have ultimate accountability for the performance of each school, not the LGB, although robust monitoring and support will be expected from everyone involved.

17 6.Finance frequently asked questions and answers a. How is the funding calculated for schools? Funding for academies is currently matched to the Average Weighted Pupil Unit (AWPU) in the LA in which the school sits. So, the ODBST schools are funded in the same way as maintained schools with a slight top-up to cover the LA central services which the school would have to source independently. The Education Funding Agency passes the funding to the ODBST monthly and this is then credited to each school’s bank account for governors to decide how to spend. The ODBST has a % service charge for the services it provides to its schools which is kept centrally. Premises funding is now devolved to the ODBST, and we have a process for allocating most of this to the highest priority condition issues with allowance for schools to bid for smaller or undertake specific projects. The service charge pays for all the services required by the school and it is rare to re-charge the school for any central purchases. b. Can the ODBST change the funding formula for just one school in the Trust, or does the same formula apply to all schools? The same process for funding applies to all schools in the trust. Our master funding agreement with the DfE sets out how we are expected to manage funding, and this applies to all schools in the trust. Directors can remove delegation from a school if there is evidence that pupils’ outcomes are not improving or that the LGB lacks the skills to manage their stewardship effectively – but this a similar power that the LA held. c. Is there a risk the ODBST could reduce our funding? So long as the funding formula stays the same then schools should receive the same funding. We are, however, in a world where national funding formulae are suggested, and this could see our schools get either more or less according to how this is designed. There are currently no plans to have GAG pooling, where the Trust determines the level of funding to each school separately regardless of the funding formula. d. Will there be a capital fund or a specific grant for insurance to cover for emergencies in academies? Academies are required to cover insurance at specified minimum levels of cover. The ODBST will ensure that the necessary insurance is in place through the Government’s approved insurance scheme (RPA). e. Who would own the land and buildings? The land and buildings remain in their current ownership but are made available to the academy via a 125- year lease and/or a supplemental agreement with the diocese. f. Will we retain the existing financial systems? The Trust has one financial system and so it may be necessary for the school’s system to migrate to

18 the MATs. g. How would we get a capital building project carried out? The ODBST is part of a pooled capital funding scheme coordinated through the Oxford Diocesan Board of Education (ODBE) and is awarded an annual allocation from the Department for Education. This is allocated to schools on the basis of our condition surveys. Our condition survey will be updated as part of the conversion process. Being part of the ODBST which has more than 5 schools and will have more than 3,000 pupils, additional capital projects which will serve all schools will be made possible. h. As a school, we were left money in trust. We are working on plans which would use much of that money, but what effect would joining ODBST have on our ability as a governing body to choose how that money is spent? Any money left in trust to a school, remains in trust and under the ownership of the trustees. Conversion would have no impact on how it is spent. ODBST would only seek to reassure itself that the company’s good name or reputation was not compromised by the actions or decisions of trustees of any private fund. i. Would this have any impact on our funding from the ODBST? Not on the base funding – however if there were any decisions made by private fund trustees to, for example fund an employee, ODBST would expect any such payment to be made through the school’s payment mechanisms and so vectored through the school’s main bank account. j. Can you advise us of the tender process which ODBST undertakes for contractors/suppliers? In most cases this is a local decision – however for core processes (i.e., payroll) we undertook a classic tender process with board level decisions. In some cases, schools are beginning to want to explore joint/shared procurement and officers would use leadership briefings to explore these areas with our schools. The core package of ODBE support is included within the ODBST service charge. k. What is ODBST policy on selling school assets...e.g., playing fields? Any assets are on lease to ODBST only, so we have no power to sell them.

19 7. Human Resources frequently asked questions and answers a. What happens to all of the staff? All staff are entitled to transfer, under TUPE regulations, to the Academy with their same terms and conditions as at present. ODBST continue to operate under nationally agree teachers pay and conditions and local authority schemes for non-teaching staff. b. Can you advise on any changes to pensions and employment details for staff? Current employees undergo a TUPE process which protects their pay and conditions at the point of transfer – this applies to both teaching and non-teaching staff. The ODBST is a member of the TPA and LGPS and has chosen to maintain the Teachers pay and Conditions as set out in the latest STPCD. Non-teaching staff continue to be paid using Green Book and local salary scales (where applicable). c. Can you advise on the training and support for our school admin/bursar with regard to monthly budgeting/finance system? All our bursars get extensive training, and the finance team provides half-termly meetings/briefings for finance managers to come together to discuss their work. We have finance team members who will work in schools where there are particular needs. d. What support is there for schools with recruitment? Our HR team will support schools with day-to-day recruitment queries. In terms of selection processes, the ODBST would support any leadership recruitment but we tend to find that schools want to manage other roles internally.

20 8. Governance frequently asked questions and answers a. What are the expected changes to the Governing Body? The ODBST has a central board of Trustees, appointed by the Oxford Diocesan Board of Education, which is responsible to the Secretary of State for overall standards for each school in the ODBST and for maintaining a strategic oversight of the Trust. The school’s Local Governing Body, which is a committee of the Trust, will also be established which will be responsible for the day-to-day operational matters, and accountable to the board of Trustees. This relationship is explained in detail with the Trust’s extensive Scheme of delegation. Recruiting and retaining governors with key skills and experience remains a key task for all schools and the ODBST are committed to supporting governors in their role. b. What will happen to local links and partnerships that we already have? These will continue. By joining the ODBST it does not preclude schools from being part of local partnerships which are for the benefit of the school. c. What will our governing body delegated powers and functions consist of? It would be called a Local Governing Body (LGB) and its delegated powers are set out in what is known as a scheme of delegation. Although the ODBST is accountable for the success of your school, we are committed to delegating powers back to local schools so that they maintain their individuality. The Scheme of Delegation is available for schools to consider in this pack. d. If we were to be part of the ODBST would the Trust have the final say in everything that Governor's decide? No, it doesn’t necessarily work like that; the scheme of delegation captures the general principles and in many important aspects of school governance, everything stays the same but with different terminology. There will be some areas where the ODBST would be directly involved - e.g., in Headteacher recruitment- and there could conceivably be some scenarios, such as in finance or school improvement, where the ODBST would make a final decision on the basis that the underlying accountability for the school lies with the ODBST and the LGB has failed to demonstrate its effectiveness. Whilst such a scenario hasn’t arisen to date, we would always seek to discuss matters firstly with the local governing body.

21 e. What support is there for schools who are recruiting governors? The usual sources/pools are explored and there is also support from the ODBST to recruit suitable governors.

22 Governors’ Briefing Pack Appendices

23 Appendix 1 – ODBST scheme of delegation Introduction The Oxford Diocesan Bucks Schools Trust (referred to as ODBST) is a charitable company limited by guarantee and single legal entity overseen by a single governing board (the ODBST Board of Trustees) which is ultimately accountable for all pupils, employees, schools, monies, assets and compliance with statutory duties. The Trust’s purpose is defined by the company ‘objects’ in the Articles of Association which, in summary, is ‘to provide education for public benefit’. A copy can be found here: Oxford Diocesan Bucks Schools Trust - Key MAT information and Statutory Documents ( The Trust is regulated by the Department for Education (DfE) which has delegated oversight responsibility for the performance of every academy trust in England to Regional Directors (RD) and the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA). The Trust’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Chair of Trustees are invited to an annual Trust Review meeting with a representative of the RD. The Trust contracts with the ESFA to receive funding via Funding Agreements: Oxford Diocesan Bucks Schools Trust - Finance ( The Funding Agreements stipulate several regulatory requirements including compliance with the Academies Trust Handbook. Governance Structure Key: purple = Trust wide remit; blue = school remit. School LGB Headteacher School LGB Headteacher School LGB Headteacher School LGB Headteacher School LGB Headteacher Chief Executive Officer (the Accounting Officer) & MAT Officers Members Oxford Diocesan Board of Education Board of Trustees Finance Resource Audit Pay & Personnel Committee School Effectiveness Committee Articles of Association Scheme of delegation

24 The governance structure diagram could be viewed as hierarchical but the Trust Board would prefer to view itself as sitting behind the Local Governing Bodies (LGBs). Trustees have chosen to appoint Local Governing Bodies (LGBs) as part of its structure of committees, as these are at the frontline of detailed information about how their schools are performing. It has chosen to opt for parental representation of the Trust at this local level, from within the community the school serves. As a result, the Trust Board recognises and appreciates the strategic leadership input of local governors who oversee delivery of the Trust’s vision and strategic plan priorities to make a positive impact on children, their families, and local communities. Members The role of Members is to act as the guardians of the Trust’s constitution (Articles of Association). Every academy trust has Members who have a similar role to shareholders of a company (but to clarify, there are no shares in an academy trust) and the Oxford Diocesan Board of Education (ODBE) is a Corporate Member of the Trust. In addition to attending the Annual General Meeting, Members are made aware of any key factors affecting the Trust and its educational and financial performance. Members: 1. Are the subscribers to the memorandum of association (if they signed the legal documents to open the Trust). 2. May amend the Articles of Association subject to any restrictions created by the funding agreement or charity law. 3. May, by special resolution, appoint new Members or remove existing Members other than, where there is one, the foundation/sponsor body and any Members it has appointed. 4. Have powers to appoint/remove Trustees as set out in the Trust’s Articles of Association and powers under the Companies Act 2006. 5. May, by special resolution, issue direction to the Trustees to take a specific action. 6. Appoint the Trust’s external auditors and receive (but do not sign) the audited annual report and accounts (subject to the Companies Act). 7. Have power to change the company’s name and, ultimately, wind it up. Board of Trustees (can also be referred to as Directors as MATs are also companies). The Trustees are both charity trustees and company directors and must comply with the Trust’s charitable objects, with company and charity law and with their contractual obligations under their funding agreement with the Secretary of State. The Members appoint the majority of Trustees. The Diocesan Director of Education and the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) are ex-officio Trustees. The Trust Board may appoint co-opted Trustees for their skills, knowledge and experience. Trustees shall, for each school year, elect a chair and vice- chair from among their number. The Trust Board is ultimately accountable to the DfE for the quality and effectiveness of its educational and financial performance, governance and ensuring compliance with statutory duties and regulatory requirements. The Trust Board has appointed the Head of Governance as the Company Secretary and has access to its own legal and other specialist advisors. The Trust Board is collectively responsible for fulfilling three core functions: 1. Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos, and strategic direction. 2. Holding executive leaders to account for the educational performance of the organisation and its pupils, and the performance management of staff. 3. Overseeing and ensuring effective financial performance.

25 For transparency, the names of the Trust’s Members and Trustees are published on the ODBST website: Oxford Diocesan Bucks Schools Trust - Members and Trustees ( Committees The Scheme of Delegation is a key governance document because without it, it is not clear how accountability and decision-making works within the trust. This is why the Academy Trust Handbook requires it to be published on the Trust’s website. It is especially important that maintained schools joining academy trusts take time to understand the Scheme of Delegation so that they are clear about the ODBST’s approach to local governance and which functions are delegated. The Trust Board’s Scheme of Delegation (SoD) is reviewed annually and sets out what the Board has opted to delegate to its committees and executive/senior leaders. This is on the understanding that they will carry out their delegated duties strictly in line with committee terms of reference (Appendices B-D) and the Scheme of Delegation Matrix (Appendix A) and to maximise effectiveness, efficiency and impact from the Trust’s governance arrangements. The Trust Board has absolute discretion to alter or withdraw any provisions of the Scheme of Delegation for individual schools and any delegated duties exercised must be reported back to the Trust Board via the committee meeting minutes and annual reports. Effective relationships and two-way communication to/from the Trust Board and its committees are also facilitated through termly Chairs’ forum meetings as well as ODBST Governance Collaborative Professional Development events and webinars. All policies referred to in this scheme of delegation relate to the current policies stored in the ODBST Policies SharePoint and/or published on the website Oxford Diocesan Bucks Schools Trust - Policies ( The Trust Board takes out indemnity insurance annually to protect those working in it, or on behalf of it, from civil or criminal proceedings where they are acquitted by the court from liability for negligence, default, breach of duty or breach of trust in relation to the affairs of the Trust. This includes the Trust Board and all Trust Committees, including LGBs. In addition to having Local Governing Bodies for each school, the Trust Board has two Trustee committees- Finance, Revenue, Audit, Pay and Personnel (FRAPP), which undertakes the legal responsibilities of audit, and the School Effectiveness Committee (SEC). The Terms of Reference for FRAPP and SEC are found at Appendices C and D. As with all committees, the Trust Board has the power to change the constitution and powers of its committees at any time, and this includes the membership of those committees too. Key Principles of Delegation (Sept 2022).

[Type here] Page | 26 Matrix of Delegated Authorities Glossary to Table of Responsibilities ODBST has adopted the following matrix. MEMBERS: Under normal on-going Trust activities the Members do not get involved with the day-to-day operations of the Trust Board or the leadership activities of the CEO. Members keep a watching brief through access to minutes and meetings with the Trust Board Chair and the CEO when required. Members hold the Trust Board to account for the effective governance of the Trust, but they have a minimal impact on the running of the Trust. Members are essential to the integrity of an academy trust structure. They are the last line of defense from the failure of governance and failure to uphold the charitable objects of the organisation. The Members comprise the Bishop of Oxford, the Diocesan Board of Education, acting corporately by hand of its Director, and two further Members appointed with the consent of the Diocesan Board of Education. Perform The individual/group will follow agreed policies and procedures or carry out specified duties. They are accountable for executing or implementing decisions or policies. They may be required to report on the delivery of duties/actions. In the case of (i) the CEO, reports will be to the Board, (ii) the LGC, they will be making reports in relation to their school to the Board and/or CEO (as appropriate) and (iii) the Head, they will be making reports in relation to their school to the CEO and/or LGB (as appropriate). Consult The individual/group that should be consulted as part of the process of completing a particular task. This role describes those whose knowledge and expertise is important in making the decision but does not imply that their input will be followed in all circumstances. This role is a supporting role Recommend The individual/group should make recommendations as to how a particular task should be completed or what particular course of action should be taken. The Recommend role typically involves a significant element of work in a decision. They may gather relevant input (Consult) and propose a course of action—sometimes alternative courses, complete with pros and cons so that the Approver’s choices are clear, simple and timely. Agree This role represents a formal approval of a recommendation. The 'Agree' and the 'Recommend' should work together to come to a mutually satisfactory proposal to bring forward to the Approve group. Not all decisions need an Agree role, as this is typically reserved for those situations where some form of regulatory or compliance sign-off is required. Approve Approves the decision or activity. Accountable for making sure the activity is satisfactory and meets performance standards. May delegate work. There must be only one Approve body specified for each task. Monitor The individual/group which observes, checks and ensures the delivery of a particular task. They may be required to report to other groups. Scrutiny The individual/groups will undertake a careful and detailed examination of a particular task to ensure compliance. TB Trust Board LGB Local Governing Body CEO Chief Executive Officer (or members of the shared services team –SST- to which the function is delegated) ODBE Oxford Diocesan Board of Education

Page | 27 Table of Responsibilities A. STRUCTURE & APPOINTMENTS Appointed Position HT LGB CEO TB MEMBER 1. Role descriptions for Trustees Recommend Approve Monitor 2. Trust Committees- FRAPP and SEC- (structure, role descriptions, terms of reference and membership) Recommend Approve Monitor 3. Trust Committees- LGBs (structure, role descriptions and terms of reference) Recommend Approve Monitor 4. Trustees (Appoint /Remove) Recommend Approve 5. Trust Board Chair (Appoint/ Remove) Approve Monitor 6. Trust Board Chair 360° review Consult Consult Approve Monitor 7. Co-opted Trustees (Appoint/ Remove) with ODBE consent Recommend Approve Monitor 8. Trust Board Vice Chair (Appoint /Remove) Approve Monitor 9. Appointment /removal of LGB Chair Consult Recommend Recommend Approve 10. Appointment /removal of LGB Vice Chair Consult Approve Monitor Monitor 11. Appointment /removal of Foundation and Skills LGB governors Consult Recommend Recommend Approve 12. Election /removal of Parent and Staff governors Recommend Approve Monitor Scrutiny 13. Appoint elected Parent and Staff governors (following local election) Recommend Approve 14. CEO (Appoint/ Remove) Approve

Page | 28 15. Accounting Officer (Appoint/ Remove) Approve 16. Chief Finance Officer (Appoint/ Remove) Recommend Approve 17. Governance Professional (Appoint/ Remove) Recommend Approve 18. Headteacher (Appoint/ Remove Recommend Approve Scrutiny 19. Appoint other members of the Shared Services Team Approve 20. Other senior school staff including Deputy and Assistant Heads and School Business Managers plus other interim senior leaders Recommend Approve Consult 21. Remove local governance professional to the LGB Recommend Approve Consult Monitor 22. Appoint other school teachers, teaching assistants and support staff Approve Consult 23. Dismissal of other staff (not HT) Recommend Approve Consult 24. Determining early retirement or requests for flexible working Recommend Approve Consult

Page | 29 B. STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES Duty HT LGB CEO TB MEMBER 1. Determine the Trust’s culture, Christian values and ethos Consult Consult Recommend Approve Consult 2. Determine and deliver the Trust’s strategic objectives, vision, Strategy and Key Performance Indicators Consult Consult Recommend Perform Approve Scrutiny Monitor 3. Determine and deliver each school’s strategic objectives, vision and strategy in line with the Trust’s vision, ethos and values Recommend Approve Consult Monitor Scrutiny Monitor 4. Effectiveness and scope of shared services providedto the schools by the Trust Consult Consult Perform Monitor 5. Determine Trust policies in line with the Trust’s ethos and values as a single entity Perform Perform Recommend Scrutiny Approve Monitor 6. Determine local school policies and internal procedures in line with the school’s ethos and values Perform Approve Scrutiny Monitor

Page | 30 C. COMPLIANCE Duty HEAD LGB CEO TB Members 1. Agree Articles of Association Consult Consult Recommend Approve 2. Appoint the Trust’s financial auditors on an annual basis Consult Recommend Approve 3. Trust annual report Perform Approve Monitor Scrutiny 4. Annual cycle of business for Trust Board Recommend Approve 5. Annual cycle of business for Local Governing Bodies Consult Recommend Approve 6. Use of LGB half termly agenda template as provided Perform Perform Recommend Scrutiny 7. Provision of LGB draft minutes to Trustees within 14 days Perform Perform Monitor Scrutiny 8. Scheme of delegation: Vary individual school schemes of delegation where additional support is required-see detail of special provisions on p24 Consult Consult Recommend Approve 9. Remove/ amend make-up of LGB Consult Consult Recommend Approve 10. Funding Agreement – comply with all obligations including the Academy Trust Handbook Perform Perform Perform Monitor Perform Scrutiny 11. Regulatory comply with all regulations affecting the Trust (including all charity law, company law, employment law and health and safety) Perform Perform Perform Monitor Perform Monitor Scrutiny 12. Financial controls – implementation of appropriate financial controls and policies so that there is regularity, probity and value for money in relation to the Perform Perform Perform Monitor Approve Monitor Scrutiny

Page | 31 management of public funds 13. Register of business interests, conflicts of interest and connected/ related party transactions Perform Perform Perform Monitor Perform Monitor Perform Scrutiny 14. Growth of the Trust - consider requests from other schools to join the Trust Recommend Scrutiny Approve Scrutiny 15. Compliance with statutory requirements, such as H&S, Fire Management, Safeguarding and Information, Governance and Data Protection Perform Perform Perform Monitor Perform Scrutiny Scrutiny 16. Develop and ensure oversight of all ODBST buildings and property matters (liaison with ODBE where appropriate) Perform Perform Monitor Scrutiny 17. Appoint a Trust Senior Leader as Designated Safeguarding Lead to ensure compliance with child protection legislation via implementation of the Trust’s Child Protection legislation Recommend Perform Approve 18. Appoint a safeguarding lead Trustee Recommend Approve 19. Appoint a SEND lead Trustee Recommend Approve 20. Appoint a SEND local governor to ensure to ensure impact is evident in pupil outcomes from the implementation of the SEND Approve Perform Scrutiny Monitor

Page | 32 code of practice /policy/ EHC plans 21. Appoint a safeguarding local governor Approve Perform Scrutiny Monitor 22. Appoint a H&S local governor to ensure compliance with Trust H&S policies and practices, and appropriate risk assessments are carried out by leaders and external advisers Approve Perform Scrutiny Monitor 23. Approve Admissions policy and/or arrangements (e.g PAN, age) in line with School Admissions and Appeals Code Consult Recommend Approve Monitor 24. Ensure compliance with GDPR and Trust’s data protection policy and procedures Perform Perform Perform Monitor Scrutiny Perform 25. Policies (statutory Trust-wide policies) Perform Perform Recommend Approve 26. Policies- specific school policies Perform Approve Monitor Scrutiny 27. Publish annual strategy and impact reports for grant funding e.g pupil premium and sports premium Perform Approve Monitor Scrutiny 28. Convene local governors for any panels required i.e pay, exclusions, disciplinary, capability, complaints, appeals Recommend Approve Monitor 29. Self-evaluate Trust Board performance and impact annually Recommend Perform Scrutiny

Page | 33 30. Self-evaluate Local Governing Committees’ performance and impact annually and report the outcome to the Trust’s Full Board Meeting Consult Perform Monitor Scrutiny 31. Evaluate the CEO performance and impact annually Consult Perform Recommend Perform Approve 32. Evaluate the Shared Services Team performance and impact annually Consult Perform Approve Monitor 33. Ensure website compliance Perform Perform monitor Perform monitor Scrutiny Scrutiny 34. Maintain accurate and effective and secure employee files- school level Perform Monitor Scrutiny Scrutiny 35. Maintain accurate and effective and secure employee files- Shared Services Team Perform Scrutiny 36. Maintain an accurate and effective and secure Single Central Record (SCR)- school level Perform Monitor Scrutiny Scrutiny 37. Maintain an accurate and effective and secure Single CentralRecord (SCR)- Shared Services Team Perform Scrutiny 38. Undertake pre-appointment checks for staff & governance stakeholders inc. DBS – school level Perform Monitor Monitor Scrutiny Scrutiny 39. Undertake pre-appointment checks for staff & governance stakeholders inc. DBS- Shared Services Team Perform Scrutiny 40. Trust Risk Register Perform Monitor Scrutiny Scrutiny