Governance and Scrutiny Group

Strive Training is a London-based private training provider that empowers students with increased skills, confidence and motivation to succeed.

Terms of reference

Strive Training is committed to delivering a good service to its learners, apprentices, employers and stakeholders. Leaders and managers have identified that the principles of good governance are implicit in its strategy and operations but now wants to make this explicit both in its day to day work and in its regular scrutiny of all aspects of the organisations activity.
Strive has high expectations of itself, its learners and staff.

The key areas of scrutiny will be through reporting on the following
  • Recruitment, retention, attendance, achievement (outcomes), progression of learners
  • Quality assurance and quality improvement
  • Employer and Stakeholder Engagement
  • Compliance, audit and inspection
  • Staffing and resources
  • Finance and budgets
  • Safeguarding, health and safety
  • Equality Diversity and Inclusion
  • Chair Dr Maxine Room CBE
  • MD Jonny Philips
  • Operational Director John Stapleton

Additional members/observers will be co-opted as necessary for input and expertise.

  • To ensure robust and diligent scrutiny of all aspects of Strive Trainings work
  • To ensure the organisation meets the requirements of Ofsted
  • To ensure compliance with audit requirements of funders
  • To meet the duties under the Nolan Principles
  • To ensure all statutory, legal and financial duties are met or exceeded
1.AELP code

Putting the trainee, apprentice and employer first
Promoting high expectations and ambitions for trainees, apprentice and staff
Listening to trainees, apprentice employers and staff
Promoting inspirational training, teaching and learning and assessment
Creating a safe environment for trainees and apprentices to train, learn and develop
Providing strong strategic leadership and challenge to the senior team
Demonstrating accountability to all stakeholders, including publishing accurate and timely information on performance
Ensuring the achievement of equality of opportunity and diversity throughout the organisation

2. Ofsted

Ofsted inspectors are likely to want to see that in terms of leadership governance-

  • Meetings take place on a reasonably regular basis, perhaps once or twice a ‘term’ – say three, or four, times a year (although there is no Ofsted stipulation on frequency).
  • The meetings have a strong reporting focus on learners’ performance via a number of appropriate measures and that this performance is measured against KPIs for the business; this might encompass retention rates, attendance, achievement of qualifications, job outcomes etc. depending on the types of provision we run.
  • There is a similarly strong focus on the outcomes of key quality improvement activities, what they are telling senior managers about the provision and what, if anything, is being done as a result.
  • Challenge is provided to senior managers on any areas of underperformance and that actions are set and completed to rectify them; and that these actions have a positive impact.
  • The ‘board’ is involved in ratifying the Self-Assessment Report and Quality Improvement Plan, and any other key plans for the business.
  • That the ‘board’ receives regular safeguarding updates on matters such as safeguarding disclosures, staff training on safeguarding etc.
3. Audit and Inspection by ESFA of ITP’s

A key responsibility of the manager who will lead the assurance team will be to “oversee, develop and manage a programme of assurance monitoring visits that targets specific risk issues and complement existing assurance activities”.
Also to be “responsible for ensuring appropriate quality assurance and continuous improvement procedures are in place to enable the assurance work to be delivered to the high quality standards expected”.

They must also carry out “horizon-scanning, anticipating the impact of emerging policy and sector changes, as well as technological opportunities, acting as a champion for associated business transformation”.

The post-16 financial intervention support manager must act as a “national link” between the provider market oversight unit and the ESFA intervention team “on all things relating to intervention with ITPs”.

They must “attend meetings at ITPs, providing challenge and advice on the financial position of institutions as required”.


In addition to regular management meetings that are noted/minuted There should be regulars planned meetings of the scrutiny group. A minimum of one per month in the first instance with agendas and papers sent out at least one week in advance.
Standing items would be

  • MD’s report- an over view of the organisation progress against business plans.
  • Key performance indicators and objectives
  • Data dashboard with specific focus depending on theme of year ( see suggested calendar)
  • QIP/SAR reports
  • Safeguarding/health and safety reports (by exception)
  • Financial reports
  • Audit and compliance including preparation for Ofsted
  • Equality, diversity and inclusion reporting
  • HR issues and resources
Suggested cyclical year calendar
Month /Date of meeting Agenda items/Reports/activity Responsibility tba
September In addition to Standing items each month
-focus on outcomes
-contract compliance
-staff appraisals /review
October SAR/QIP review
Ofsted preparation
November SAR
Performance management (staff)
December Safeguarding report Autumn term
Away-day- business review and planning
January Review of Autumn term ALL
February Financial focus in preparation for year end, budget setting OD/MD
March Equality, diversity inclusion report
Away-day Business planning and review
April Budget outturn OD
May Review of contracts/sub contracts OD
June Employer and stakeholder review ALL
July Learner review OD
August Preparation for new term/outturn OD/MD