On Tuesday 10 January 2023, trustees and governors came together for their second seminar of the academic year at Kemble Primary School. At this meeting, Chiquita Henson, Trust Lead (CEO), introduced Martin McLeman as The Corinium Education Trust’s new Chair and welcomed new trustees and governors.
In spite of the challenges ahead facing all schools, the mood of the meeting was positive and optimistic. Claire Minett, Chair of the Trust’s Pay and Remunerations Committee, reported that she felt ‘inspired’ and ‘energised’ by the session.
In her presentation, similar to the one shared with all staff on Tuesday 3 January 2023 at the Trust’s first joint face-to-face in-service training day in three years, Chiquita Henson updated trustees and governors on developments, especially the work undertaken on our organisation’s core vision and values which had been the focus for the first governance seminar of the academic year in September 2022, changes to the composition of The Corinium Education Trust in terms of personnel, staff and those involved in governance, and the exciting opportunities ahead.
Chiquita Henson and Martin McLeman reflected on the steps taken to further strengthen governance and communication between the Board and the schools' local governing bodies and shared our new schedule for trustee visits to schools and local governing bodies.
As new Chair, Martin McLeman will be meeting with our schools' Chairs more regularly in a new forum he has introduced and they will be working with Kathy Jackson, our Governance Officer, to establish a new methodology for evaluating the impact of governance on our schools, children and young people. Furthermore, to support the induction of our new trustees and governors, and support our more established members, Chiquita Henson and Kathy Jackson launched the online new training modules available to Trustees and Governors through the NGA Learning Link. This suite of courses was very well received, alongside the forthcoming face-to-face training events looking at Exclusions in February 2023 and School Funding in June 2023.
Looking to the future, Chiquita Henson, reflected on the capacity within the executive leadership team, and the impact of her new role and the work being undertaken by the Trust’s new School Improvement Leads. She also detailed the work being undertaken across the Trust in response to the principles set out in the White Paper, ‘Opportunity for all: strong schools with great teachers’. While these may no longer be progressing into law, she highlighted their relevance to The Corinium Education Trust and our strategic priorities, including the potential for growth and the ambition behind the planned and proposed capital developments.
During the session, trustees and governors had opportunities to talk about the emerging education landscape, ask headteachers questions about the impact of the rising cost of living on children, families and schools and explore ways in which to engage with stakeholders.
‘A great evening. Thank you for all your hard work to make it so worthwhile. There were certainly a lot of ideas about increasing trustee visibility, engagement and impact which will be taken forward.’ Martin McLeman, Chair of Trustees.
‘I was impressed by the high levels of engagement and interest in the things that matter most to us, our values and our pupils’ learning, wellbeing and life chances. Many of the ideas explored will be incorporated into our wider development plan.’ Chiquita Henson, Trust Lead (CEO).