QuickRead: Multi-academy trust governance

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Last reviewed on 17 December 2021
School types: AllSchool phases: AllRef: 33084

How does multi-academy trust governance work?

A multi-academy trust (MAT) runs multiple academies, as opposed to a single academy trust, which runs 1.

All academy trusts have 2 layers of governance (the members of the trust and the board of trustees), and MATs often have a third layer, in the form of local governing bodies (LGBs) within some or all of their academies.

The members found the trust. They:

  • Sit above the trust board and make sure the board is governing the trust effectively
  • Have the power to step in if the governance is failing

Academy trustees sit on the board of trustees. They:

  • Oversee the MAT and guide its strategic direction
  • Hold the executive leaders to account 
  • Oversee the schools’ finances and make sure money is well spent
  • Make sure the trust complies with charity and company law

Have no powers except the ones

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