The Herts for Learning Multi Academy Trust was founded by Herts for Learning Ltd (HfL Ltd), the largest national not for profit schools company.
The decision to set up the Herts for Learning Multi Academy Trust (HfL MAT) arose at the request of schools. Following numerous consultation events with headteachers and chairs of governing bodies, the HfL Ltd Board agreed that there was sufficient interest to proceed in June 2016. The MAT was incorporated at Companies House in July 2016. Work continued with interested schools in 2016 and early 2017 to shape the model and to develop the values and vision and scheme of delegation. During this time there were discussions with the Regional Schools Commissioner (RSC) and the DfE to ensure the HfL MAT would be compliant with requirements to become a sponsor and for schools to apply to convert into the HfL MAT.
Approval and first schools
The MAT received approval to be a sponsor on 21st December 2016. The first group of schools joined us in September 2017, and the second in January 2018. Many of these schools are good and outstanding and are financially stable. We have built a future proof model that is designed to be able to expand using a cluster design and our scheme of delegation will develop to take that into account.
The HfL MAT is inclusive; it is intended to be made up of a healthy mix of primary, secondary and special schools which will mainly be converter academies plus a smaller number of sponsored academies, all within a one hour driving radius of Stevenage. We do not intend to turn schools away that are not yet good or have financial pressures, but in order to manage growth in a sustainable way, our growth strategy will ensure that at least 80% of our academies are good or better and financially secure before adding more.
The MAT works with a range of partners to secure the best value services to meet the needs of its academies.
The MAT is able to draw upon HfL Ltd’s experience of delivering a well-developed range of innovative and high quality school improvement and education business services and track record of working with schools of all types and phases to bring about rapid improvements.
Beyond HfL, the Trust builds on strong relationships with other partner organisations and individuals, including relationships with Teaching School Alliances, NLE, SLE, LLE AND NLGs, NCTL/successor organisation, University of Hertfordshire and HertsCam.