Governance

We are a Catholic Multi Academy Trust with 25 academies serving almost 8000 pupils across five local authority regions.

The St Ralph Sherwin Catholic Multi Academy Trust is one of four Catholic Multi Academy Trusts (CMATs) that operate within the Catholic Diocese of Nottingham.

The St Ralph Sherwin Catholic Multi Academy Trust is a company limited by guarantee and an exempt charity. The primary governing documents of the Trust are the Memorandum and Articles of Association.

The Trustees are for the purposes of Company Law the Board of Directors and for the purposes of the diocese are the Board of Foundation Directors, to avoid confusion with Diocesan Trustees who govern a different registered charity. The ESFA Academy Trust Handbook (2021) provides detailed information about all requirements of Members, Directors and Governors.

Members

Currently there are four Members including the Bishop of Nottingham. The Members are the same for all four of the Catholic MATs within the Diocese of Nottingham. The Members hold the Directors of the CMAT to account ensuring that they deliver the Bishop’s vision for the CMAT. The Members are supported by the Nottingham Roman Catholic Diocesan Education Service (NRCDES) and hold at least one annual meeting to assess the performance of the CMAT.

Directors

There are seven Foundation Directors on the Board of Directors for St Ralph Sherwin Catholic Multi Academy Trust.

The Directors are responsible for ensuring that the vision set for the Trust by the Bishop of Nottingham is delivered. The Directors are also responsible for upholding the highest standards of governance and ensuring that the strategic plan for the Trust is delivered. Directors are responsible for holding the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Executive Team of the Trust to account for educational standards, overall performance of the Trust and financial probity.

As charity trustees, the Directors must comply with charity and company law requirements.

In discharging its duties, the Trust Board of Directors has the following Committees:

  • Catholic Life
  • Curriculum and Standards
  • Audit, Risk and Governance
  • Finance and Estates
  • HR and Staffing
  • Pay and Performance

Governors at local level

All of the CMATs in the Diocese of Nottingham have Local Governing Bodies (LGBs). LGBs are a Committee of the Trust Board of Directors. Individuals who sit on LGBs are referred to as local governors. This term refers to both Foundation Governors and elected Parent Governors. Local Governors are not Directors of the Trust. The composition of each LGB is a minimum of four Foundation Governors and two elected Parent Governors. The Trust Board of Directors delegate some governance functions to LGBs through the Scheme of Delegation. The Scheme of Delegation for the Trust is reviewed and republished annually and is approved by the Members. The Scheme of Delegation makes clear what functions the Directors have delegated to the LGB of each academy. The Scheme of Delegation is published on the Trust website.

Each LGB plays an important role in our governance and accountability framework. The LGB as a committee of the Trust Board of Directors and governors must understand, support and challenge the academy leadership team to continually raise standards and ensure that the academy meets the needs of pupils academically and pastorally. The LGB is also responsible to the Bishop of Nottingham for ensuring that the Catholic character of the academy is preserved and that links between the local/parish community and the Trust Board of Directors are developed.