Role and responsibilities of trustees

Trustees are responsible, under the charity’s governing document, for controlling the management and administration of the Foundation.

Trustees are required to act reasonably and prudently in all matters relating to the Foundation and need always to bear in mind that their prime concern is the interests of the Foundation.

Trustees need to take an active part in the running of the Foundation and therefore need to be willing and able to give time to the efficient administration of the Foundation and the fulfilment of its trusts.

Trustees are responsible for setting the strategic aims, objectives and direction of the Foundation. They must identify the risk (including the financial risk) arising from activities undertaken and manage this risk to ensure that the strategic aims and objectives are achieved. Trustees have a statutory duty to make a declaration in their accounts every year that this risk assessment has been carried out.

Trustees should be concerned with future, as well as current, beneficiaries of the Foundation.

Much of the responsibility for running the individual schools of Foundation has been given to the relevant governing bodies via the Articles of Government. However, the trustees retain the ultimate accountability for the Foundation and its component parts (e.g. the schools). That is one of the reasons why the majority of governors are Foundation governors.

The main ‘link’ (apart from the Foundation Office) between the Foundation and its schools is via governors; in particular, the Chairman of governors, who is an ex-officio trustee, reports on the school’s activities at each trustees’ meeting.