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SCHOOLS. New Governors Finance Training- April 2011 By Christine Atkinson (Schools Management Accountant). Best Outcomes for our Pupils. Topics. How the Local Authority (LA) receives its money to fund schools How schools are funded by the LA

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New Governors Finance Training- April 2011

By Christine Atkinson (Schools Management Accountant)


  • How the Local Authority (LA) receives its money to fund schools

  • How schools are funded by the LA

  • How schools plan to spend their money (3 year budget plan spreadsheet)

  • How schools monitor their spend (monthly reports)

  • Level of school balances

  • Useful budgeting tools

How central government calculates local authority funding for schools
How Central Government calculates local authority funding for schools

Pupil numbers recorded on the January census (schools, pupil referral units, alternative provision, early years census for 3 and 4 year olds in Private, voluntary and independent (PVI) settings)

  • Government give the authority a guaranteed unit of funding (GUF) per pupil £4,613.11 in 2011-12

  • Pupil numbers * GUF = Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG), this grant funds schools, PVI’s up to 15 hours free entitlement per week and some central services.

Guaranteed unit of funding guf
Guaranteed Unit of Funding for schools(GUF)

  • The is the amount the Government allocates an LA for each pupil.

  • 2008-09 £3,715.46

  • 2009-10 £3,851.24

  • 2010-11 £4,014.55

  • 2011-12 £4,613.11 (£4,014.55+ £598.56)

    Increase of £598.56 was due to the mainstreaming of standard fund grants

  • ERYC 8th worst funded authority in 2011/12

Dedicated schools grant dsg 2011 12
Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG) 2011-12 for schools

  • Schools census 43,637

  • PRU census 20

  • Alternative provision 131

  • Early years census 1,630 (includes 356 fte nursery pupils doing extra 2.5 hours)

  • Total 45,418

  • multiplied by GUF £4,613.11 = £209.518m

    (split £188m schools, £21m central services)

How schools are funded
How schools are funded for schools

  • Each local authority will have its own funding formula to meet local needs

  • Majority allocated according to pupil numbers on the January census. (approx 60%-75%)

  • Infant class size funding (multiples of 30)

  • Block sums – basic allocation where costs are incurred irrelevant of size

  • Special educational needs (SEN)

  • Disadvantage pupil funding- social deprivation/ personalised learning/ pupil premium

    (formula funding manual on the schools intranet)

  • Other grants- ie Standards funds, SSG SSG(P) -now mainstreamed into the DSG

  • YPLA funding – sixth forms

How schools plan to spend
How schools plan to spend for schools

  • Use the 3 year plan spreadsheet

    Covers every element of school spend. Ie staffing, premises, equipment and materials, income

    Very detailed with every item of income and expenditure a school will incur.

How schools monitor their spend
How schools monitor their spend for schools

  • Schools receive monthly reports from the councils ledger.

  • Schools have a choice of:

    • Inputting directly into the councils ledger

    • Operating their own bank account and paying their own invoices. (schools need to reconcile)

    • Using FMS (financial management system) the schools own system and sending invoices to County hall. (schools need to reconcile)

Level of balances
Level of Balances for schools

  • Schools carry forward balances forward from one year to another, whether a surplus or a deficit.

  • However there is a maximum a school can carry forward 2011-12, secondary 2% all others 5% or £20,000. (or will be taken off the school).

  • Schools can apply by 31 December to carry forward more for a specific reason

  • Current level approx £7.5m

  • Funding should be spent on the pupils in schools now

Value for money
Value for money for schools

  • Best use of available resources, including getting better outcomes for the same spend, or freeing up resources that are being used inefficiently for other purposes.

  • The deployment of classroom staff is the most important financial decision in a school (approx 78% of spend in a school).

  • Annual contracts need careful consideration, especially photocopying contracts. (United Carlton – councils contractor).

  • As a governor do you know what annual contracts you are entered into, cost, end date etc?

  • Schools finance have prepared annual contract details for schools to review for 2009-10 and 2010-11 as a one- off exercise.

Accountability role
Accountability role for schools

The head teacher and professional staff are accountable to the Governing Body for the schools performance. The GB must be prepared to explain its decisions and actions. GB part of leadership and management of the school.

  • Self evaluation

  • School improvement plan

  • Outcomes of OFSTED inspections

  • Monitor and analyse performance data

  • Take account of needs of vulnerable pupils and their outcomes

Accountability cont
Accountability (cont) for schools

  • Monitor the effectiveness of the deployment of resources to achieve best value

  • Understand and implement the school’s statutory duties and ensure compliance

  • Understand the schools strengths and weaknesses

Tools for schools

  • Spreadsheets

    -3 year Budget plan

    -pupil numbers

    -Budget Adjustment Scenario calculator

    -school meals,

    -predicting the year end balance

    -annual contracts

  • Reports

    -Monthly East Riding Financial Reports

Guidance for schools

  • Monthly Finance newsletter

  • Termly Governors newsletter (ask to see previous ones)

  • Formula Funding Manual

  • Early Years Single Funding Formula and delivery of free Early years provision for 3 and 4 year olds

    Need to adopt (on the schools intranet)

  • Scheme of Financing Schools

  • Finance Manual adapted for schools

Information you should see if on the finance committee
Information you should see if on the finance committee for schools

  • Projections of pupil numbers

  • Extracts from the 3 year budget plan

  • List of all annual contracts and Service Level Agreements (SLAs)

  • Monthly monitoring reports

  • School development plan

  • Key indicators – benchmarking against others

  • Latest audit/ OFSTED report

Governors need to approve annually
Governors need to approve annually for schools

  • Annual budget by 31 May

  • Best value statement

  • Statement of internal control

  • Charging policy

Schools financial value standard sfvs consultation
Schools Financial Value Standard (SFVS) consultation for schools

  • The Secretary of State abolished the Financial Management Standard in Schools (FMSiS) on 15 November 2010.

  • Government consulting on its replacement, ends 30 April 2011.

  • Less onerous on a school and no formal assessment.


Pupil premium
Pupil Premium for schools

  • Additional funds for poorest children who achieve less well

  • New funding from government savings

  • 2011-12 eligible for free school meals

  • 2012-13 extend to reach pupils eligible in the past

  • Transparency about how spent. Ask schools to report to parents annually

  • Change performance tables to reflect attainment of pupils who attract the premium

Consultation on school reform
Consultation on School Reform for schools

  • White Paper- ‘Rationale & Principles’ for reforming school funding

  • Consultation outlines what the government believes are flaws in the current system and the key characteristics of a new system

  • Other areas included within the consultation were Academy funding, pupil premium, high cost pupils and early years funding.

  • Potential introduction of a national funding formula

  • ERYC submitted their responses to the consultation May 2011

  • Further consultation to follow in the summer after taking the results of the first consultation into account

Finance training for governors
Finance Training for Governors for schools

  • In January organised 3 training sessions for Governors

  • In March organised 5 training sessions for the Head, finance officer and a Governor from each school

  • recommend a finance governor sits in on the 3 year plan visits

  • Training given to individual school governing bodies -2 hours – cost £180.

Academies for schools

  • Require new Bank Account Setting up

  • New financial system required- 3YP/Accounting Package

  • New reporting format- Charity Accounting SORP

  • All SLA’s/Contracts need renegotiating

  • Committee’s need to be set up e.g. Audit

  • Responsible Officer