A STANDOUT performance from Workington Academy students kicked off an evening of discussion on the vital role of community volunteers in school governance.

More than 70 members, trustees, Local Advisory Board (LAB) members and school leaders gathered for Cumbria Education Trust’s Annual Governance Conference and were treated to a preview of the Performing Arts students’ production, Seussical the Musical.

News and Star: Enthusiastic support from the audienceEnthusiastic support from the audience (Image: Submitted)

Each year, the conference held at the University of Cumbria in Carlisle aims to increase the effectiveness of the trust’s established governance framework, through shared insights and collective efforts. The trust currently educates more than 5,000 children from across Cumbria at its 13 primary and secondary schools, with LAB member volunteers playing a key role in providing oversight and community leadership at each school.

External speakers this year included Matthew Humphrey, Partner at RSM UK Ltd, who delved into the crucial aspects of decision-making, risk and control and Mark Gregory, Regional Director at One World, on leadership culture.

News and Star: George Beveridge CET Trust Chair in discussion with delegatesGeorge Beveridge CET Trust Chair in discussion with delegates (Image: Submitted)

A panel discussion chaired by Matt Hood, CET trustee and Chief Executive at Oak National Academy, invited LAB members to share their experiences and encouraged conversations around effective governance.

A final session focussed on Ofsted inspections and the pivotal role trustees and LAB members play.

Anna Carroll, headteacher at Longtown Primary School, said: “It was wonderful watching the talented children from Workington Academy performing.

News and Star: Mark Gregory from One World quizzes the audienceMark Gregory from One World quizzes the audience (Image: Submitted)

“It made us all remember why we were there, as the children are at the heart of everything we do. It was great to have the opportunity to network with other LAB members and share good practices throughout the evening.”

Anyone interested in becoming a LAB member at a CET school, can find out more at  cumbriaeducationtrust.org/labrecruitmentpack or by emailing lhewson@cumbriaeducationtrust.org