Report of the Director of Community and Children’s Services.
Trustees are asked to note five non-public appendices at Agenda Item 16.
Trustees considered a report of the Director of Academy Development on the Academies Development Programme and the following points were made:
· A Trustee reported that the Finance, Audit and Risk Committee had discussed outstanding matters on property and pensions issues at its meeting on 1 July 2020, and had been advised that work was underway to resolve these, including the transfer of the schools’ leases to the Trust. The freeholders of both schools had given consent for the transfer of leases and this work was on target to be completed by the end of July 2020, when the Department for Education would be approached for final sign-off. The pension scheme liabilities of the two academies would be underwritten by the Education and Skills Funding Agency. Updates on agreeing the transfer of the leases would be reported to the Chairs of the Board of Trustees and the Finance, Audit and Risk Committee when available.
· Condition surveys of the two schools had identified that they were in generally good condition, but a separate fire risk assessment would be completed for both academies. The Trust’s School Condition Allocation funding would increase for future years to fund capital works across the Trust’s increasing number of academies.
· In considering the size of the Local Governing Body of the City of London Academy Islington, Trustees noted how this varied from the Trust’s recommended model. The Chief Executive Officer suggested that the Trust put its case for a smaller Governance model at the annual meeting with the strategic partners. A Governance Self-Review was underway across the Trust which could offer a vehicle by which the new academies could review current arrangements and the Scheme of Delegation also promoted consistency of practice across the Trust.
· Trustees discussed the commitment of the City, University of London and KPMG to continue as ‘Strategic Partners’ to the City of London Academy Islington and the City Academy, Hackney respectively. Discussions were underway on how these organisations could best be supported to maintain strong links with both their individual academy partners and the wider Trust moving forward.
· Discussions on the progress of academy capital builds would be considered in the non-public agenda under Item 16: CoLAT Academies Development Programme - Update - Non-Public Appendices.
· The Legal Due Diligence reports for the City of London Academy Islington and the City Academy, Hackney to inform the Board of Directors and Board of Trustees decision to transfer these academies undertakings into the City of London Academies Trust be noted;
· The necessary resolutions to accept the transfer of the City of London Academy Islington and the City Academy, Hackney undertakings to the City of London Academies Trust by 1 September 2020 be approved;
· The proposed membership of the Local Governing Bodies of the City of London Academy Islington and the City Academy, Hackney, which would be outside the ‘model’ for Local Governing Bodies within the City of London Academies Trust as previously endorsed by the City of London Corporation be approved and the appointment of the Chair of governors for each Local Governing Body be approved (subject to the decision of the Education Board); and,
· It be agreed that City, University of London in respect of the City of London Academy Islington, and KPMG in respect of the City Academy, Hackney, should continue as ‘Strategic Partners’ to these academies after the undertakings are transferred to the City of London Academies Trust and that authority be delegated to the Chief Executive Officer in consultation with the Chair and Deputy Chair of the Board of Trustees to negotiate and agree the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding, and to sign the document, in each case on behalf of the City of London Academies Trust, subject to the decision of the Education Board.