Governance Arrangements

Governance Arrangements - 2019 / 2020

As trustees of St Stephens Junior School, it is acknowledged that they have overall responsibility for ensuring that St Stephen's Academy Canterbury has an effective and appropriate system of control, financial and otherwise. However, such a system is designed to manage rather than eliminate the risk of failure to achieve business objectives, and can provide only reasonable and not absolute assurance against material misstatement or loss.

The board of trustees has delegated the day-to-day responsibility to the Headteacher, as accounting officer, for ensuring financial controls conform with the requirements of both propriety and good financial management and in accordance with the requirements and responsibilities assigned to it in the funding agreement between St Stephen's Academy Canterbury and the Secretary of State for Education. They are also responsible for reporting to the board of trustees any material weaknesses or breakdowns in internal control.


The information on governance included here supplements that described in the Trustees' Report and in the Statement of Trustees' Responsibilities as published in the annual accounts. The board of trustees has formally met 5 times during the year. Attendance during the year (2019/2020) at meetings of the board of governors was as follows:

Trustees Meetings attended    Out of possible
Vic Hester       4   5
Chris Barton 3   5
Lisa Carlson 4   5
Dr Andrew Connell 2   5
Laura Cutts (left office Nov 2019) 1   1
Jayne Dowkes (left office Nov 2019) 1   1
Dr Amanda Gosling 5   5
Sarah Heaney (left office Nov 2019) 1   1
Rev Kevin Maddy (left office Mar 2020) 2   3
Marie Montague 1   5
Tony Payne 2   5
Bernadette Pearl (left office Nov 2019) 1   1
Stuart Pywell (Accounting officer left office Aug 20) 5   5
Barnaby Sandell 4   5
Lena Seed (left office 31 Aug 2020) 3   5

Members of the board have carried out training, have attended governors visits to the school and have attended social events organised by the school.

The board has carried out a skills audit and have identified areas for training.

The board has worked well with the Senior management team and will continue to do this. The members have identified the need for an additional member and have considered a number of options, with a view to inviting an additional member in the coming year.

The board have identified the need for additional Trustees and will invite nominations from parents.

The Full Governing Body meets 4 times each academic year and with each sub-committee that monitors and regulates a particular area, meeting a further 3 times across the year. The minutes of all meetings are distributed amongst all governors and all relevant matters are reported and ratified by the full governing body. The members of St Stephens Junior School also meet a further 5 times per year taking a strategic full of the school’s future. All procedures are put in place to ensure effective oversight is maintained. Due to Covid-19 fewer meetings have taken place, however the members and trustees have communicated via Zoom at regular intervals.

The Finance and Audit committee is a sub-committee of the main board of trustees. Its purpose is to monitor the budget and expenditure of the school to ensure sufficient controls are in place, and to ensure compliance with necessary ESFA regulations. The committee meet four times during the year.

Attendance at meetings in the year was as follows:

Trustees Meetings attended    Out of possible
Vic Hester (Chair of Governors) 2   2
Lisa Carlson 1   2
Dr Andrew Connell 2   2
Laura Cutts (left office Nov 2019) 1   2
Dr Amanda Gosling 1   2
Sarah Heaney (left office Nov 2019) 1   2
Tony Payne 1   2
Barnaby Sandell 1   2

The information on governance included here supplements that described in the governor’s report and in the statement of governors responsibilities.

The Members (also trustees in school) have met formally 3 times during the year in person and 10 times via Zoom during the Covid lockdown. Attendance at meetings of the members was as follows:

Trustees Meetings attended    Out of possible
Vic Hester (Chair of Governors) 10   13
Chris Barton 13   13
Dr Amanda Gosling 9   13
Rev Kevin Maddy (appointed March 2020) 2   3
Barnaby Sandell (appointed March 2020) 10   10

In addition, there is a Teaching and Learning Committee with responsibility for the oversight of the curriculum areas in school, a Nursery Committee charged with the oversight of the Acorns Day Nursery, a Health and Safeguarding Committee which looks after health and safety for the site as a whole as well as having overview of safeguarding matters and a Personnel committee.

Membership of the committees is held for an academic year and can be rotated after that period. At the first Full Governing Body meeting of the year in September, trustees are voted onto the various committees for the coming academic year. Lists of committee members for the year 2019/2020 are shown in the document “Membership of Committees”

All Trustees and Senior members of staff undergo an enhanced DBS check with Barred List check in accordance with Keeping Children Safe in Education 2020.  In addition, all Trustees (since January 2015) and senior members of staff involved in the running of the school have been checked against the Section 128 Barred List.

Headteachers: Mrs Laura Cutts & Mrs Sarah Heaney Address: Hales Drive, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7AD Tel: 01227 464119 Email: admin@ststephensjuniorschool.co.uk
St. Stephen's Junior School is the operating name of St. Stephen's Academy, Canterbury - A company limited by guarantee registered in England no. 07441370
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