Multi-Academy Trusts (MATs)

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A MAT is established to take responsibility for more than one academy. A group of schools, including those in a federation, could all apply for academy status at the same time as part of a MAT.

The trust consists of the members and the trustees:

  • Members are akin to the shareholders of a company. They have ultimate control over the academy trust, with the ability to appoint some of the trustees and the right to amend the trust’s articles of association.
  • Trustees are responsible for the same three core governance functions performed by the governing body in a maintained school: setting the direction, holding the headteacher to account and ensuring financial probity. Academy trusts are charitable companies and the trustees are company directors who must also comply with company law requirements.

The MAT will be accountable and responsible for the performance of each of the academies. It enters 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. The MAT 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. Schools within a MAT are inspected by Ofsted separately.