Accountability Framework

Clervaux Garden School’s Accountability Framework outlines where responsibility and accountability sits for the key functional areas within its educational provision among tiers of governance and management.

The Board of Trustees of Clervaux Garden School is the legal governing body for the school.  The Board holds and fulfils all statutory responsibilities, in terms of charity, company and education law.  It approves and monitors the School’s educational and financial plans and budgets, admissions, workforce planning and holds legal liability for the Single Central Record and statutory policies.

Delivery of the School’s performance and operation is primarily delegated to the Head Teacher and Senior Leadership Team. The Head Teacher is responsible for meeting all educational and operational targets set by the Board of Trustees for outcomes in the School, with support from the Senior Leadership Team.

Clervaux Garden School is a member of the Ruskin Mill Trust Group.  The Board of Trustees has the option of delegating management and day-to-day functions and/or consulting or receiving advice from the Director of Schools and/or wider Executive Team of Ruskin Mill Trust. 

Over the last 30+ years, a distinct research-based educational method known as Practical Skills Therapeutic Education (PSTE) has been developed by Ruskin Mill Trust.  PSTE is the method which informs the curriculum of Clervaux Garden School and the way in which care is delivered to children in its associated children’s home. 

The Board of Trustees decides which specialist support services the School will receive from Ruskin Mill Central Services.  The following is available: school improvement/quality assurance; safeguarding; finance; human resources; staff training and development; health and safety; residential; premises and estates; IT & MIS; admissions; marketing and communications and legal. 

The framework articulates responsibilities in areas where it is important to define roles across the tiers of governance and management.  It does not lay out every legal responsibility of a charity trustee, company director or governor nor prescribe every activity in the remit of the governance layers; rather it is concerned with the core activities that are carried out within each area of operational delivery. The Accountability Framework is updated on an annual basis in order to ensure that delegated responsibilities can be aligned with organisational need.


The Trustees at Clervaux Garden School provide strategic leadership; setting a path for the school and its students that results in the best standards of education and care. Our Trustees bring with them a wide range of experiences and skills that ensure the school is well led and managed and that the vision of the Trust is braded through all that we do.

Helen Kippax – Chair

Helen has a diverse background in fine arts, social care and educational development including helping to establish a Steiner School in Sheffield. Helen undertook an HNC in Fine Arts as a mature student and set up and ran her own gallery in Sheffield. Helen joined Ruskin Mill Trust in 2004 and was tasked with setting up the Trust’s third centre, Freeman College in Sheffield. Helen was Principal of Freeman College until 2012 when she became a Trustee of Ruskin Mill Trust and Senior Mentor. Helen has gained an MSc in Practical Skills Therapeutic Education from the University West of England and continues to support and research the method of PSTE as a Trustee for Ruskin Mill Trust. Helen provides mentorship to senior leaders across the Ruskin Mill Trust group.

Constantin Court

Constantin joined Ruskin Mill Trust in 2007. Constantin has a vast experience in social and educational establishments, working across different regulative frameworks in organisations who apply the insights of Rudolf Steiner in a contemporary way.  Constantin has  worked with children and adults in Germany, Palestine, Israel, Switzerland and Egypt before coming to the UK.

He was instrumental in developing Ruskin Mill Trust’s first school, Brantwood Special School and is now Director of Practical Skills Therapeutic Education (PSTE) Pedagogy and a member of the Executive Team Ruskin Mill Trust with responsibility for quality assuring Practical Skills Therapeutic Education and overseeing the Trust’s staff development and training programme, Hiram Education and Research Team (HEaRT).

Oliver Cheney

Oliver has over 20 years experience of working with young people with Autism, ADHD, learning disabilities and mental health issues. Oliver joined Ruskin Mill Trust in 2001 and over his time at the Trust has held a range of roles, progressing to Principal and Executive Principal. Oliver is currently Director of Colleges and Rise and is a member of the Ruskin Mill Trust Executive Team. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience regarding the work of the Trust, in particular his in-depth understanding of the needs of the individuals the Trust works with.

Leigh Bown

Leigh has extensive experience in residential care and has worked for the Care Quality Commission (CQC), before returning to Ruskin Mill Trust as Director of Residential. He has responsibility for quality and compliance in the residential provisions across the Trust’s school and colleges.

Chloe Hindmarsh

Chloe is an Education specialist with a broad range of experience. She joined the Trust as a teacher in 2009, and worked in both education and residential care with students from Freeman College and Clervaux Trust. As part of her MSc in PSTE, she transformed the staff training partnership with Crossfields Institute, into the Hiram Education and Research Team (HEART), part of the RMT Group.

She has since undertaken roles in Quality Assurance and Project Management, as well as NATECLA National Coordinator, and more recently as Senior Lecturer in Teacher Education and Collaborative Course Leader at Sheffield Hallam University. As a Trustee, Chloe holds a focus on the quality of teaching and learning across all centres.

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