What is a multi-academy trust?
A multi-academy trust is a formal collaboration between two or more academy schools, where all of the schools in the trust are overseen by a single board of trustees. This board is directly accountable to the Secretary of State for Education.
Why is my school thinking of joining a Multi-Academy Trust?
Evidence suggests that schools working together in formal partnerships leads to improved standards. Joining BDMAT will give your child’s school increased opportunity to collaborate with other academies within our MAT.
Why BDMAT rather than another Multi-Academy Trust?
Birmingham Diocesan Academies Trust (BDMAT) is a West Midlands based multi-academy trust committed to providing high quality education for all the pupils in its schools. We are guided by our Christian mission and aim to ensure that our pupils and staff enjoy ‘life in all its fullness’ (John 10:10). Our purpose of ensuring high quality education is delivered through shared best practice across our family of schools; combined with support from our central team.
What are the benefits?
Being part of BDMAT will allow your school to:
- Work collaboratively with other schools, sharing best practice and learning;
- Be more financially efficient by using centralised services;
- Receive a tailored school improvement programme;
- Gain support with recruitment and advice on legal issues.
Will the school lose its independence by becoming part of a multi-academy trust?
Although there will be a single board to oversee all the schools in the multi-academy trust, each school still has the opportunity to maintain a local governing body. The governors on this local board are there to represent the interests of their school. In addition, headteachers continue to lead their own schools in the multi-academy trust but are more able to focus on teaching and learning as many of the operational aspects of school management are dealt with by the trust.
Do schools in a multi-academy trust receive more funding?
Academies receive the same levels of funding for their pupils as local authority maintained schools, and there is no longer additional funding for being in a multi-academy trust. At BDMAT a percentage of your school’s budget is put into a central pot to provide HR, finance, legal support and school improvement, as it does for maintained schools by the local authority.
Will being in a multi-academy trust have an impact on the curriculum?
There is no intention to make major changes to the current curriculum as it supports your pupils extremely well. Academies do have greater freedom when determining the curriculum but still need to have regard to any proposed changes by the Government. The MAT will co-ordinate and promote its academies to work together more closely to encourage curriculum innovation and sharing of good practice.
Will my child have new teachers when the school joins BDMAT?
When a school joins BDMAT the staff currently employed by the school transfer into the employment of the Trust. Staff have more flexibility to move between schools to share good practice.
Will the school’s name change if we become an Academy?
No. The only change may be if your school decides to use Academy rather than School in its name but this is up to the governing body.
Will the school’s uniform change?
No. Each school will retain its separate identity and there will be no school uniform changes on becoming part BDMAT.
Will there be changes to the length of the school day or term times?
There are no plans to change the length of the school day or make any changes to the term times at present or for the foreseeable future. Changes could be made but these would only be done after full consultation with parents and staff and even then, would only be made if it was in the best interests of the pupils in your school.
How will this affect our governing body?
BDMAT has overall accountability for the operating of academies within the Trust but delegates much of the responsibility down to the governing bodies (known as Local Academy Boards). Local Academy Boards with the Headteacher will be responsible for overseeing the day-to-day running of each individual academy, spending the funding allocated to it, the school’s admissions, pastoral support and teaching and learning.