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What is a MAT?

The Multi Academy Trust (MAT)

The multi-academy trust is the most formalised type of collaborative structure available for schools.

Schools who see the benefit of working together with other schools, in a more formal arrangement, choose to work as a Multi Academy Trust. All academies within a MAT are governed by one trust and a single board of Directors. This is the organisation that runs a number of academies under a single charitable company. The board of Directors is responsible for decisions relating to how each academy is run, however, each individual academy retains its own governing body and the Trust delegates some of its functions to the governing body.

Accountable and Responsible

The schools’ governing bodies will operate subject to the control of the multi-academy trust which has ultimate responsibility for the running of the individual academies.

The multi-academy trust will be accountable and responsible for the performance of the each of the academies in the chain and may delegate its decision-making powers to the governing boards of the individual academies if it wishes. The multi-academy trust will enter into a master funding agreement with the Secretary of State for Education and funding is allocated to each individual academy via a supplemental agreement between each academy and the Secretary of State for Education. The multi-academy trust retains an element of each academy budget centrally which it can use to make purchases – such as shared services – on behalf of the academies under its control.

Driving up standards

Due to economies of scale, multi-academy trusts can often negotiate contracts and services that achieve better value for money than if the academies negotiated these individually.

Where a multi-academy trust structure is used, the academies staff are employed by one employer, the multi- academy trust. This enables staff resources to be moved more easily between the academies. As the multi-academy trust is a single entity, it is envisaged that schools can achieve strong collaboration and drive up standards by providing a consistent strategy and vision across a group of schools working together. Schools within this arrangement support eachother ensuring that all schools within the MAT continue to improve.