Stephen Timms – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the Department for Education

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Stephen Timms on 2016-06-15.

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, which Commissioner would make the decision in a case where a multi academy trust operating in one region wished to expand by adding a school in another region.

Edward Timpson

The National Schools Commissioner allocates a lead Regional Schools Commissioner (RSC) to Multi Academy Trusts (MATs) and sponsors who are operating across more than one region.

The lead RSC ‘owns’ the relationship with the MAT, and is responsible for negotiating any strategic decisions, such as expansion, which has an impact on multiple regions.

Where a MAT wants to operate across more than one region, the lead RSC would meet with the trust and agree to the expansion in principle. The formal decision concerning the individual academy or free school joining the MAT is taken by the RSC for the region in which the school is located. The decision is informed by the lead RSC’s view of the MAT’s capacity and capability.

For national trusts, that have a relationship with the National School Commissioner, decisions by RSCs about MAT expansion are informed by the views of the National Schools Commissioner who has a national view of the trust’s capacity.

This information is publicly available and can be found in the RSC decision-making framework on GOV.UK at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/517565/RSC-Decision-Making-Framework.pdf