Finance & Operations

Operations team

John Robinson | Director of Operations

Helen Caldwell | IT Manager

Artur Rajtmajer | IT Support Manager

Adam Butler | IT Support Manager

Adam Foxall | Senior IT Technician


Finance team

Gill Goulding | Chief Financial Officer

Sarah Ollerton | Financial Controller

Charlotte Nuttall | Senior Finance Manager 

Yvonne Gaskell | Finance Manager 

Lorna Jones | Finance Officer

Michaela Wilkes | Finance Officer

Chelsea Fox | Finance Assisstant



Efficiency and efectiveness of operational structures

Trusts can make the most effective use of centralised processes and back office functions to empower schools to focus on teaching and knowledge building. Strong Trusts ensure all staff and functions are focused on improvement, so that central functions empower teachers and leaders to focus on advancing education. Because School Trusts are public organisations, funded by government with a funding agreement that requires Trusts to spend their money in the way that parliament intends, it is essential that the efficient use of public money is part of our narrative about strong Trusts.

The range of support & guidance provided to Schools to manage financial performance and ensure compliance with statutory regulations includes:

Central management of IT systems, Trust IT Manager, and an IT Support Manager allocated to your school, to support the local IT team. Career pathway and training programme for IT staff. It condition survey and costed IT strategy, with ongoing support to implement. Option to buy into the TCA (Trust Condition Allocation) for IT, which covers lifecycle replacement of all IT infrastructure and associated licences, including:


  • Broadband

  • Web Filtering

  • Antivirus & anti-ransomware

  • Wireless network

  • Servers

  • Backup hardware and software

  • 3rd line server support

  • 3rd line Office365 support

  • Telephone system

  • Centralised procurement and management of Microsoft licensing


  • Procurement

  • Supplier Management

  • IT infrastructure Premises

  • Schools Condition Allocation (SCA)

  • Compliance

  • Risk Management

  • Data

  • Business Continuity

  • Asset Management

  • Legal

  • Funding bids

  • On boarding of schools


  • Condition surveys of the school estate every 3-5 years

  • Costed premises strategy with access to the Trust SCA for priority capital projects

  • Liaise with and support site teams with management of other minor woks

  • Statutory compliance service with trusted service providers*

  • Statutory compliance audit


Risk Management:

  • Risk management dashboard**

  • Development of school risk register, working with senior team

  • Training for Headteacher and senior colleagues

  • Termly risk management review meetings

  • Health & safety competent person*

  • Templates and resources to support H&S and risk management



  • Procurement assistance, in line with the competitive tendering policy

  • Energy procurement

  • Group procurement to achieve the best value where appropriate

  • Advice on procuring through Framework agreements

  • Management of operating leases & contract management





  • Financial Health

  • Budget Setting

  • Finance Process
  • Annual Accounts

  • Payroll

  • Compliance

  • VAT

  • Financial Reporting

  • Audits and  Assurance

  • Banking

  • Training

  • On boarding of schools

Compliance Operating Documents

  • Academies financial handbook

  • Funding agreement

  • Finance manual

  • Scheme of delegation

Statutory returns

  • Consolidated returns

Central Finance Team

  • Chief Financial Officer, Financial Controller, Senior Finance Manager, Finance Managers X3, Finance Officer and Finance Assistant.

  • General finance advice & guidance

  • Training & support

Central purchasing

  • Economies of scale

  • Contracts advise

  • Intercompany recharges

Annual accounts

  • Prepared by accountants

  • Submission to ESFA & companies house


  • External provider central SLA

  • Third party BACS notifications


  • Annual external audit by Accountants

  • Termly internal assurance visits by external provider

  • Teachers’ pensions


Banking Facilities

  • Account opening/closing administration

  • Online banking administration

  • Multi-card (Credit card) facility administration

  • Central DDR/STO & cash on deposit instructions