Established within the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portsmouth, the Trust was originally formed as the ‘Catholic Academy Trust in Havant’ in 2011 when Oaklands Catholic School became one of the first Catholic Schools in the County to convert to an Academy.

The Trust was re-named as ‘Edith Stein Catholic Academy Trust’ in 2017 and in 2021 Corpus Christi Catholic Primary School joined the Trust.

 We work together to provide the best opportunities for every child; constantly seeking to improve the outcomes of all children across all year groups in the two schools currently in the Trust, from Year ‘R’ to Year 6 at Corpus Christi Catholic Primary School in North End, Portsmouth and from Year 7 to Year 13 at Oaklands Catholic School & Sixth Form College in Waterlooville.  The core aspect of our collaborative work is to ensure good Catholic Education for all, upholding the Bishop’s mission and vision for education across the Diocese. To this end, there is a need to have skilled individuals with a variety of backgrounds and ideas, to bring their experiences to the highest levels of governance and ensure that every child’s needs are understood and supported. Schools in The Trust have a strong relationship with 8 other non-academy schools  in the ‘Edith Stein Partnership’.
The Board is seeking to appoint up to four new Trustees, preferably practising Catholics, but essentially people with board level experience in the areas listed below and a desire to deliver the best possible education for our young people and the best working environment for all our staff:

  • Corporate/Charity Governance and/or
  • Education Leadership and/or
  • Financial Management/Accountancy and/or
  • Human Resource Management and/or
  • Legal and/or
  • Marketing/Branding.

The term of office is typically four years and during that period we expect active contributions to key board decisions. Specifically in the next 12 – 24 months the Trust’s key focus areas will be

  • Continuing our commitment to providing a high quality and distinctly Catholic education, with Christ and the teachings of the Catholic Church central to all that it does;
  • Developing a robust and unified strategy. Oaklands and Corpus Christi came together ‘mid-phase’ with individual development plans already in place; the expanded Trust shall review its strategy in August 2022 and over the next two years continue a narrative that is being shaped by the nascent Diocesan Strategic Plan for Education;
  • Forecast and navigate the anticipated financial challenges for the next few years; further developing the Common Services Platform which underpins ESCAT core business; Educational improvement, HR, Resources, Finance, ICT and Estates are all functions that have started to be align and centralised. The alignment and centralisation of these key business functions bring economies of scale, financial gains and greater flexibility. Our Common Services Platform commenced in April 2021, the services have still to reach maturity and this area remains a key priority over the next few years.

What’s involved?Trust Board governance in education is a strategic, ‘eyes on, hands off’ commitment which typically involves attending six board meetings per year (Sep, Dec, Feb, Mar, May and Jul) and giving between 8-10 hours’ of your time on average each month to read and comment on papers, preparing for meetings and visiting the schools. Due to the prevailing COVID climate, visits are currently limited and meetings convened virtually, but will be ‘in person’ when it is safe to do so.

As a Trustee/Director you will be responsible for:

  • Ensuring clarity of vision, ethos and strategic direction;
  • Holding executive leaders of the schools to account for the educational quality and performance of the organisation; the overall quality of the education students receive, and the effective and efficient performance management of staff;
  • In addition to overseeing academic operations, an academy director is also accountable for the business operations of the Academy. Directors create and execute business plans, establish annual budgets and oversee the financial performance of the organisation, making sure its money is well spent.

All roles are entirely voluntary and ‘pro bono’.At ESCAT we value everyone highly, promote positivity, equality and harmonious relations and will tackle any form of discrimination to ensure a wholly supportive, safe and secure environment.  We seek to remove any barriers to access, participation, progression, attainment and achievement and encourage and warmly welcome applications from people of all backgrounds.What Next? If you are interested in becoming a Trustee & Director, please contact the Clerk to the Board of Directors for more information and to arrange a conversation with the Chief Executive Officer (Mr Matt Quinn) or the Chair of Trustees (Mr Marc Evans):

Claire Colley Clerk to the Board: