Strategy and Governance

Baines Cutler is a leading provider of strategy and governance consulting to the independent schools' sector. Tim Baines has been the UK's leading schools' auditor for the last 10 years and has acted for schools of all sizes and types including top schools, school groups and international schools. In that time Tim has provided strategic and governance advice and has worked with senior management and governors on many awaydays and planning meetings. We now advise across a wide range of skill areas - from strategic reviews to mergers and governance projects.. Details of our Strategy and Governance Consultancy services are below.

Strategic reviews

Strategic reviews

With growing pressures on school finances some schools are carrying out fundamental reviews of their strategy, with no options ruled in or out. Schools carrying out such reviews often examine major internal changes e.g. becoming co-educational in the sixth form or across the whole school or stopping boarding. Even more radical options are merger, closure or converting to academy status. Successful schools are also looking closely at strategy with a changing UK and international market. Such schools often examine overseas franchises, a UK based international school, supporting an academy, becoming coeducational or opening a junior school. However governors often want an independent view of their proposals.

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School mergers

School mergers

The number of school mergers in the UK is growing. Pressures on school finances mean that some schools are keen to find merger partners. Other schools and educational groups are keen to grow their networks and to find merger schools. But which schools would make suitable partners and will the newly merged school be successful? Whether it’s identifying potential merger partners or governors wanting someone to give an independent but informed view of their plans there is a role for an outside advisor.

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Governance reviews

Governance reviews

Once in a while most schools like to consider their governance arrangements. How many people are on the board of trustees and do they have the necessary range of skills? How often should the board meet? What sub-committees should the school have and what should be their terms of reference? How much involvement should governors have in the day to day life of the school and how much should they let the SMT manage and just provide oversight? How should they develop long-term strategies? Many schools like to involve an external specialist to help them in reviewing these questions.

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