The MAT Excellence Awards concluded with resounding success, honouring exceptional individuals and organisations across various categories.

What sets these winners apart? Join us as we uncover the inspiring stories and unravel the key factors that paved the way for these exceptional achievers to claim their well-deserved recognition.

MAT of the year - E-ACT

The panel were impressed with E-ACT’s comprehensive approach, including community hubs, corporate partnerships and the school improvement framework. Serving schools in some of the most deprived communities, the trust is committed to inclusion and impact.

Lifetime achievement award - Gillian Hindle and Joy Clark, Oak Trust

‘The two most amazing women I’ve been privileged to know’ is how one colleague describes Gill and Joy. Together they have been the driving force behind the creation of the Oak Trust, and combine over 50 years of service in schools in the Manchester and Oldham area.

Trust executive team of the year - The Priestley Academy Trust

The trust’s investment in school improvement, values and commitment to #bethechange came through clearly for the judges. A focus on structures, systems and process is enabling the team to achieve transformational change and improved outcomes for pupils.

CEO of the year - Mark Wilson, Wellspring Academy Trust

Mark’s commitment to inclusion, his trust community and the benefits of an innovative learning environment all drew the attention of the judges. Mark’s values and philosophy have supported the growing of a successful organisation over a period of time.

Wellbeing trust of the year - The Park Academies Trust

The judges all commended the long-term, sustainable approach of the trust, and the focus across children, families and staff. Effective working with outside agencies is making a real difference, and there is depth and substance to mental health provision.

Employer of the year - New Collaborative Learning Trust

Staff find NCLT a friendly, caring and flexible place to work, with plenty of potential for progression and collaboration. The judges appreciated how people strategy is being translated into practical, sustainable and replicable action, and its positive impact.

Growth and impact award - Bishop Bewick Catholic Education Trust

The trust demonstrates a compelling drive to improving educational outcomes for some of the most deprived communities in the North East, with their commitment to social justice through educational excellence and collaborative approach to school development.

Digital innovation award – Shaw Education Trust

For SET, technology is not an add-on – the iPad project has changed their education offer. The judges were impressed by the extent and impact of the programme, its sustainability, and how it enhances opportunities and experiences for a range of students.

Inclusivity award - Lionheart Educational Trust

Staff and student voice are central to the trust’s approach. The judges appreciated the impact of action being taken in a range of areas, such as recruitment, career development and the curriculum, and the focus across faith, ethnicity, class and LGBTQ+.

Governance professional of the year - Rebecca Rafferty , Changing Lives In Collaboration (CLIC) Trust

The judges praised Rebecca’s enthusiasm, initiative and impact on systems and processes. She has radically improved the trust’s governor training offer, transformed communications and is a champion for governor recruitment, retention and succession planning.

Environmental trust of the year - Windsor Academy Trust

WAT’s commitment to a greener future is evident in their range of action around sustainability, in terms of curriculum, careers and estates management. The judges commended their holistic approach, as well as the progress made towards net zero goals.

CFO of the year - Benedicte Yue, River Learning Trust

The judges commended Benedicte’s innovation, system leadership and dissemination of knowledge for the benefit of the sector. Benedicte has transformed her role from a financial to strategic one, enabling reinvestments and ensuring financial stability.

Community trust of the year - Ormiston Academies Trust

OAT have chosen to focus on social action, giving back and achieving real change for the communities they serve. The judges praised the impact of the #Wewill project, which has engaged 9,000 young people in social action, enabling them to make a difference.

Nominations for the MAT Excellence Awards 2024 are open! Categories now include options for organisations that work with trusts, providing products or services to meet their needs.Which category will you enter?