Converting your school to an Academy will allow you to be released from the controls of Local Education Authorities and give you greater control over your own finances.
Our 2019 academies benchmarking report is here – how does your school compare? 2018 was an interesting year for academies, with many experiencing further financial uncertainties and pressures along with increased consolidation in the sector. Benchmarking your academy and understanding where others are managing to be more efficient may help you to identify key areas which could help you achieve savings at your trust. Click here to download a copy.
The services we provide to academies from our Birmingham office are as follows:
Transition to Academy status
To assist your school in taking on the increased freedom and responsibility that comes with becoming an Academy we are able to:
- undertake a due diligence review of the financial, governance and funding implications of conversion;
- identify alternative methods of financial support if your school has a funding deficit; and
- provide guidance on the obligations associated with the Teachers Pension Scheme and Local Government Pension Scheme.
We are one of the main audit providers for Academies. This, together with our wealth of experience across numerous sectors, allows us to provide you with the specialist knowledge and quality advice that you need to operate efficiently.
Annual accounts preparation
Preparing the annual accounts to meet regulatory and statutory requirements is complex and time consuming. We have extensive experience of this process and so are able to produce your Academy’s annual accounts to a high standard in a cost effective manner. Our service includes:
- preparing accounts from your Academy’s year end trial balance;
- assisting your governors with completion of the Trustees Annual Report;
- ensuring the accounts fully comply with your Academy’s Financial Handbook, including the latest updates; and
- dealing with all aspects of accounts submission to ESFA, Charities Commission and Companies House.
Assisting with financial compliance
Governance is a key component of running a successful Academy. The main areas that we can assist you with are:
- establishing key financial policies and procedures including risk management and internal control;
- providing information for the Local Government Pension Scheme and FRS17 reporting requirements;
- providing guidance with training governors in their responsibilities as company directors and charity trustees;
- company secretarial obligations; and
- setting up your accounting system.
Support for your finance function
We can provide support for your finance function in all its activities from assisting you with your staffing requirements on an interim management basis, from senior finance staff to simple completion of monthly monitoring returns. These services include:
- assistance with budget setting;
- monthly maintenance of budgets and reporting to governors;
- transaction processing;
- completion of Teachers Pension Scheme and TR17a returns; and
- interim financial management services, by standing in for staff on holidays, sickness etc.
Academy status provides schools with the opportunity to raise additional income for capital and revenue projects free of Local Education Authority control. We are able to offer the following assistance in providing a fundraising strategy:
- undertaking fundraising studies to test the feasibility of raising the required funds;
- setting up the process for appeals management;
- advising on major donor development and retention; and
- developing marketing strategies which includes; market research, press campaigns and advertising.