Local Advisory Board
What is the Local Advisory Board (LAB)?
The Local Advisory Boards have been developed by the ACE Learning Trust Board in place of the Local Governing Body and has identified the following key roles for them to undertake:
- To advise/act as a critical friend to the Head of School/Principal;
- To advise the board of trustees about local issues they need to consider that affect the academy;
- Represent the local community;
- Represent the Academy in its community;
The main purpose of these roles is to enable the LABs to be able to express and act on local views and issues – views of parents, staff and the community etc. One of the key purposes of the LAB is to ensure that the ACE Learning ethos, vision and aims are evident throughout the Academy.
The four roles translate specifically into the following tasks:
- it acts as a key link between the Academy, parents and local community;
- it supports the work of the Academy in the community;
- it supports the Head of School/Principal and Academy Leadership Team in the development and implementation of the Academy Development Plan and other relevant plans, ensuring that the ACE Learning ethos remains at the heart of the Academy community;
- it ensures the implementation of Academy policies;
- it offers challenging but positive and proactive support to the Head of School/Principal;
- it regularly reviews the Academy’s performance;
- overseeing and monitoring the effectiveness of local strategies;
The LAB will consist of five people who currently are:
- a parent from each school.
- a community representative from each school.
- a member of teaching staff from each school.
- a member of non-teaching staff from from each school.
- a trustee (will act as Chair of the LAB) from each school.
The ACE Learning Governance Model is different to the way a governing body in a non-Academy or traditional school undertakes governance.
The LAB’s role is not to “manage” the Academy as such. This is done through the Board of Trustees. Therefore, the LAB is not required to take decisions on staff or financial matters affecting the Academy. LAB Member have an understanding of strategic issues that impact on the Academy, and are updated on them regularly by the Head of School/Principal, but they are not required to have direct responsibility for them. Instead the LAB should be in a position to assess the impact of the Academy locally; how it is contributing to the local community, how it is relating to local families and how it understands local issues. This in turn, will enable the LAB to contribute effectively to decisions which may require LAB involvement.
As the Trust Board takes responsibility for educational standards, legal compliance and financial viability, the LAB then has the time to investigate the standards on the ground, to see how they are working, and explore how the ACE Learning aims, vision and ethos is being understood and expressed in the way the Academy operates. LAB Members views as part of the community are vital in this discussion.