Smart Governance Structure
Governance at Smart follows the model of multi-academy trusts, with Members and Trustees. In addition, Smart maintains Governing Boards for the schools.
The Members are responsible for the ethos of the Trust and appoint up to eight Trustees. As Smart is a (not-for-profit) company, registered at Companies House, the Members serve as shareholders in order to comply with corporate governance. MATs are also charities, though governed by the Secretary of State for Education rather than the Charities Commission. Many charities have a Nominations Committee: as an Academy Trust, our Members serve a parallel function, as they are responsible for appointing up to eight of the Trustees.
Trustees serve as the directors of the company and hold legal responsibility for Smart. They are a diverse group, bringing a wide range of leadership experience from across a number of sectors. The Trust Board meets at least six times each year and is Chaired by Sandy Christie. Sandy is also a Member, ensuring strong communications between these two groups. The Board of Trustees delegates day to day operations to the Chief Executive. With an "eyes on, hands off" approach to operational decisions, they monitor the work of the trust and ensure that it strives to fulfil the Smart vision and meets all legal requirements. To enable this to be done, there are four committees of the Trust Board constituted with delegated powers. These are:
- The Finance, Audit and Risk Committee, which oversees financial health and the support services delivery. It carries out the functions of the Audit and Risk Committee as defined in the Academies Trust Handbook.
- The Performance and Curriculum Committee, which oversees the delivery of education in Smart schools.
- The Performance Management and Staffing Committee, which undertakes delegated responsibilities relating to remuneration of senior staff.
- The Appeals Committee, which meets should the need arise to hear appeals that are to be considered by the Trust Board.
Task and finish committees can, from time to time, be established by the Trust Board to carry out particular delegated duties determined by the Board.
The Governing Boards of the schools are also committees of the Trust Board, but membership is not made up of Trustees, but of local governors and parent governors. Smart has one Joint Governing Board serving Cheviot Primary and Farne Primary, two neighbouring schools which share an Executive Head Teacher. Smart has six Local Governing Boards, each serving one of the other Smart schools.
Everyone involved in governance across Smart is committed to seeing the Trust vision delivered for the successive cohorts of children whom we have the privilege to educate.
The governance structure can be seen as a diagram in the pdf below.