National Centre for Circus Arts

Image: Bertil Nilsson

How we work

Established as a Higher Education Institution in 2001, the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama is a charitable company limited by guarantee.

Working through a shared consultative and decision-making structure, the eight Schools agree the Conservatoire’s overall strategy and policy. The relationship between the Conservatoire and each School is set out in a financial memorandum and an operating agreement and agreed with the School’s governing body. While each of the Schools remains a legally autonomous organisation, the Conservatoire is ultimately accountable for the proper use and stewardship of the public funds it receives. The Conservatoire’s main tasks are to:

  • plan, deliberate and take decisions about the Conservatoire’s strategy and development
  • facilitate collaborative working and joint activities between the eight Schools, their staff and students
  • liaise with external funding and regulatory bodies such as the Higher Education Funding Council of England (HEFCE) over funding, reporting and other relevant matters
  • promote the collective interests of the Conservatoire and its Schools

The activities in support of the Conservatoire’s functions consist mainly of:

  • deliberative meetings of a governing board, sub-committees, an academic board and working groups
  • preparation of policy and other relevant papers
  • maintaining records
  • data collection, analysis presentation and reporting
  • financial planning and management
  • overseeing joint projects, conferences and performances
  • administration of the above

Conservatoire Leadership Board

The Principal and the Chief Operating Officer & Registrar share executive responsibility for the organisation, direction and management of the Conservatoire and the leadership of its central staff. The Chief Operating Officer & Registrar is designated as the Accountable Officer and takes responsibility for the day-to-day conduct of the business of the Conservatoire.

The Conservatoire Leadership Board (CLB) provides the collective leadership for the Conservatoire. It is chaired by the Principal and consists of all the Principals/Directors of the Conservatoire schools and the Chief Operating Officer & Registrar, supported by senior staff of the Conservatoire’s Central Services Team.

The CLB considers matters relating to policy and receives reports on the work of the Academic Board and the Conservatoire’s various committees and working groups, and considers recommendations from these bodies. Full meetings of the CLB are held three or four times a term.