London, 3 July 2020 – The Chartered Governance Institute UK & Ireland has today published guidance on ‘Managing conflicts of interests (including related party transaction) in academy trusts’.
Louise Thomson, Head of Policy (Not for Profit) at the Institute says:
“We have seen a number of academies get into difficulties in recent years over conflicts of interest or related party transactions, an area of governance that causes confusion and misunderstanding in many charities, academies included. Charitable status places a duty on those leading the academy trust to act in the best interests of the trust’s charitable objects and avoid conflicts of interests. It is important that trustees are aware of this and able to recognise what constitutes a conflict or related party transaction, hence the reason for the guidance.
“Avoiding all conflicts of interests and loyalty will not be possible or even preferable, so it is essential all academy trusts have robust and effective measures in place to manage real and perceived conflicts. If trustees and senior staff members can identify, avoid and manage conflicts of interest, this will allow them to demonstrate that public funds have been used appropriately, thereby protecting the reputations of the academy trust, its trustees and its senior managers.”
The guidance, which includes a specimen conflict of interests policy, covers the following areas:
Appendices relating to legal definitions of ‘related’ or ‘connected’ persons and the ESFA online procedure for related party transactions are also included.
The guidance is free to download at cgi.org.uk/academytrustsconflicts
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Notes to Editors: