Dr Vanessa J Ogden, CEO of Mulberry Schools Trust, spoke at our MAT conference about how to scale culture and the importance of maintaining a strong sense of identity across your MAT as you grow
Join us at a free training session on getting the most out of Arbor Insight this Autumn
Chris Kirk's latest blog for us looks at the four common tensions faced by MATs when centralising operations, and how to avoid them
25 June 2018
In my previous blog, I talked about how schools can adapt the one size fits all approach to assessments to better serve the needs of SEN students. Part two will talk in more detail about how schools can opt for flexible assessments without having to deal with the administrative burden
18 June 2018
Five years have passed since the 2013 review of the National Curriculum first gave schools the chance to Assess Without Levels (AWOL). In this blog, I’ll talk about the initial interpretations of these reforms, the challenges that they created for schools and just how this opportunity can be used to meet the needs of learners more effectively.
Speaking at our MAT conference, Hugh Greenway argued that creating trust among the people in your MAT is crucial to running a successful operation.
At our MAT conference, Scaling Sustainably: Centralisation vs. School Autonomy, Hugh Greenway, CEO of the Elliot Foundation spoke about the challenge of keeping the big picture in view when managing operations across a trust, arguing that this is the biggest challenge to scaling a MAT
Chris Kirk's latest blog looks at how using an ‘operating model approach’ can help MATs ensure they’re laser-focused on delivering their vision
Independent educational consultant John Leonard recently wrote a blog for us about the most important things that MATs should consider before setting out to procure, including knowing exactly what it is that you want to get from your new system and how procurement can help you achieve economies of scale. Read part 2 of his presentation here
John Leonard, independent consultant and tender expert spoke at our Scaling Sustainably conference last month about the key things MATs should consider in order to get the most out of the procurement process, including knowing exactly what it is that you want to get from your new system before you set out to procure
REAch2 is the latest MAT to move its schools to Arbor’s simple, smart cloud-based MIS
Read our take on the questions you should ask your suppliers, including your MIS to ensure you’re GDPR compliant
Chris Kirk, Ex-Partner for Education at PwC, and formerly GEMS DfE. recently wrote about the 6 phases of MAT growth (and the crises that follow), explaining how as MATs grow in size and complexity the leadership style needs to flex, else crises can occur. Below Chris has summarised what type of MAT fits into what phase of growth, as well as what early warning signs to look out for to avoid the 6 common crises he highlighted from occurring.
One of the biggest challenges MATs face is getting the right infrastructure and systems in place to support growth. We invited Dominic Norrish, Group Director of Technology at United Learning, to speak about his experience of deciding how and when to scale systems within a MAT. We’ve summarised his presentation below.
Last week, we brought together 100 MAT leaders to discuss how to ‘scale sustainably’
At a recent residential programme for MAT CEOs we were discussing different models for improving schools across a MAT, and how any chosen strategy needed to change and adapt at different points in a MAT’s growth
For a while now, the government has been debating the best way to help MATs grow
The pace of change in education is increasing fast, with new structures, policies, funding formulae and technologies announced seemingly every month. How can schools manage this change?
Schools, Trusts and LAs increasingly ask us how they can centralise their data, but they sometimes don’t know where to start and what their broad options are.
With the launch of the completely new, cloud-based SIMS8, it’s now an inevitability that all schools will be switching MIS, it’s just a question of whether they’ll be retraining on the new SIMS or an alternative provider. This is a good opportunity to select the system that best suits your school, LA or MAT and provides value for money.
24 November 2017
The debate surrounding how to track in-year progress at both schools and MATs is constantly evolving. Since the removal of levels, schools and trusts have been struggling to find a replacement to ensure consistency and comparability in measuring assessment data. Here's our two pence on which methods have been successful within the trusts and schools we work with.
When schools run by a Trust or a Local Authority represent two versions of this same group approach, how can you prove which adds greater benefits?
19 October 2017
Measuring staffing typically accounts for 70%-80% of a school’s budget, but after gathering feedback from the dozens of different MATs we work with, we found that the measures MATs and schools are currently using vary wildly
Now that ASP has been updated with KS2 2017 data, we’ve had lots of schools asking how they can get training on using ASP and Arbor together - the good news is we’ve got 3 free recommendations for you!
The DfE has launched Analyse School Performance (ASP) to replace RAISEonline - but what's it actually like using it for meaningful performance analysis?
Just as sales and marketing automation have transformed the private sector, so too we think that school automation will transform the education sector over the next 5 years by saving staff time on repetitive administrative tasks, allowing them to focus on teaching!
From our discussions with 100s of MATs, we’ve learnt some great lessons about how the 4 types of MAT scale their systems and people. We've summarised everything we've learnt in this handy post!
At the start, MATs are small and can cope with manual processes and procedures, spreading staff across multiple institutions, and allowing schools a certain degree of discretion over how they manage themselves. However, as the number of schools approaches 5, the central team (who often also work within a school) become overstretched.
We challenge the notion that MAT alignment and school autonomy are oppositional. In fact, alignment can enable autonomy if you have accountability and transparency in place!
Reducing time spent on data & assessment is THE KEY to reducing additional teacher workload
22 February 2016
3 ways to use your precious capital smartly This is the time in pre-opening when the EFA cheque book is out for IT which can be a hugely daunting task for the uninitiated.
14 December 2015
As schools develop their own means of tracking and showing progress, I’ve noticed certain key principles are often used to underpin no-levels assessment frameworks
Earlier this year Ofsted announced that they will begin inspecting academy chains, meaning that now is a more important time than ever for multi-academy trusts to have a full, detailed understanding of the performance of all their schools. If you are a trustee, director, governor, or part of an executive management team, access to clear and timely performance data is crucial to your ability to monitor outcomes and pinpoint areas of underperformance.
23 September 2015
The findings of the Commission on Assessment without Levels, originally established in February 2015 to bring greater clarity to the move beyond levels, were finally published last week. But what exactly does the report say? Here are the 5 things you need to know.
16 September 2015
Assessment for Key Stages 1 - 3 has changed, and with it the Ofsted inspection framework. As you begin the new school year, here are 3 ways to impress Ofsted with your new no-levels assessment framework.