Monthly Archives: November 2012

Annal Nayyar and Fis-Edsolutions are awarded Primary School Finance Support Contract

Fis-Edsolutions have been successful in being awarded an additional primary school finance support contract. Annal Nayyar and his team will provide the appropriate bespoke service to this phase.

Academies Capital Maintenance Fund (ACMF) 2013-14

The initial application round for the Academies Capital Maintenance Fund (ACMF) 2013-14 is now open. All academies open by or on 1 January 2013 are eligible to submit an application for up to two projects – either tackling building condition issues or expanding provision.

The deadline for submitting applications is 6.00pm on Tuesday 18 December 2012 (for academies converted before 30 September 2012) and is 6.00pm on Friday 1 February 2013 (for academies converting after 30 September 2012). Academies are encouraged not to leave submission of applications to the final few days. It is intended that successful applicants will be notified by Friday 5 April 2013, giving academies almost a full financial year to spend the available funding.

Annal Nayyar and Fis-Edsolutions Ltd commissioned to produce school Medium Term Financial Plans (MTFP)

Annal Nayyar and Fis-Edsolutions have been commissioned to produce a series of financial medium term budget plans that incorporate both local and national factors. These will look to reflect and incorporate the School Development Plans and provide the financial direction for schools over the coming years.

Academies funding reforms 2013/14 : EFA

The EFAhave produced a filmed version of the briefing for those who were unable to attend.

We have also compiled a list of questions and answers that were asked at the briefing. These frequently asked questions sit alongside the slides from both the funding reform and High Needs events that were held in November.

The FAQs are:

Academies funding reforms 13/14 - This FAQ covers Formula Factors, MFG, LACSEG, Pupil Numbers, SEN, Schools Forum and Pupil premium.

Academies funding reforms 13/14 High Needs – This FAQ covers funding for High Needs Pupils.

Academies funding reforms 13/14 post-16 - This FAQ covers funding for post-16.

Annal Nayyar – Academy and Free School Support

Annal Nayyar and his team can provide schools with the following financial support:

  • A telephone helpline
  • Budget  planning
  • Construction of financial ledger from nominal coding structure to budget population
  • Month end budget monitoring report
  • Production of external stakeholder reports e.g. The FMGS
  • Financial Reconciliations
  • Year-end accounting check and pre check
  • Inventory and Asset Register construction
  • Mentoring of finance staff
  • Training for Governors and SLT
  • Attendance at Governor meetings

Managing the Expansion of the Academies Programme

The National Audit Office has reported that the Department for Education has delivered a fundamental change in the nature of the Academies Programme through a rapid, ten-fold increase in the number of academies since May 2010. This increase is a significant achievement. However, the Department was unprepared for the scale of the financial implications arising from such a rapid expansion. In the two years between April 2010 and March 2012, the Department had to meet an estimated £1 billion of additional costs, while remaining within its overall spending limits.

By September 2012, 2,309 academies had opened, compared with 203 in May 2010. This represents significant growth of 1,037 per cent, most of which has been from schools choosing to convert to academy status. Academies have greater financial freedoms than maintained schools and the Department’s approach to approving applications – coupled with the fact that most converters to date have been outstanding and good schools – appears so far to have managed the risk of schools converting with underlying performance issues. However, more schools with lower Ofsted ratings are now applying to the Programme.  Future applicants may therefore require more in-depth assessment and support to manage potential risks.

Between April 2010 and March 2012, the Department spent a total of £8.3 billion on the Academies Programme.  The NAO estimate that £1 billion of this was additional cost, some £350 million of which was money the Department was not able to recover from local authorities to offset against academy funding. The additional cost of the Programme has increased annually as it has expanded, although the Department reduced its average additional cost per open academy (excluding transition costs) by 53 per cent in the last two years. It forecasts that this additional cost per academy will continue to reduce in future. The rapid increase in the cost of the Programme has led to ongoing pressures on the Department’s wider financial position.  It has had to transfer funding from other budgets to stay within its overall spending limits while

Maintaining the pace of the expansion.

The Department largely relies on the quality of academies’ financial management and governance to safeguard effective use of public money. To date, there have only been a small number of investigations into financial mismanagement and governance failure in academies. Financial mismanagement in any school is a real cause for concern, and such failures in academy schools create the risk of wider reputational damage to the Programme. The Department needs to weigh this risk carefully in operating a light-touch oversight regime.

Amyas Morse, head of the National Audit Office, said:

“The Academies Programme is a key element of the Government’s plans to reform the school system. Delivering a ten-fold increase in the number of academies since May 2010 is therefore a significant achievement. However, the Department for Education was not sufficiently prepared for the financial implications of such a rapid expansion, or for the challenge of overseeing and monitoring such a large number of new academies.

“It is too early to conclude on academies’ overall performance, and this is something I intend to return to in the future. As the Programme continues to expand, the Department must build on its efforts to reduce costs and tackle accountability concerns if it is to reduce the risks to value for money.”

‘Councils criticise early education funding plan’

Council chiefs have attacked Government plans to ring-fence funding for early education for two-year olds, claiming the decision removes local discretion in deciding which children should benefit.

Under a detailed funding package announced by the Department for Education today, councils are in line to receive a basic rate of £5.09 per two-year old child in their area.

By 2015, the Coalition hopes to be providing support covering 260,000 children in England, roughly 40% of all two-year-olds. Funding will gradually increase over the course of the spending review period – from £291m in 2012/13 to £534m in 2013-14 and £760m in 2014-15 – to allow authorities to build capacity.

In the current financial year, cash is being allocated to local authorities through the Early Intervention Grant, allowing them to make their own choices about how much to spend on local needs and priorities.

But Cllr David Simmonds, chair of the Local Government Association’s children and young people’s board said it should not be down to Whitehall to stipulate the criteria for identifying which children are eligible for free early education from September 2014.

‘Councils know he needs of local children best and it should be down to their discretion to decide which children benefit from he increase in provision,’ Cllr Simmons said. ‘By taking the funding for free education for two-year olds into the ring-fenced dedicated schools grant, the Government is further restricting councils’ ability to prioritise locally.’

According to Simmonds, when set against the top slice of £150m for the next two years from the Early Intervention Grant, the decision to ring-fence the funding into the dedicated schools grant represents a ‘substantial reduction in the resources councils can use for early intervention services.’

However, Anne Longfield, chief executive of national charity 4Children, approved education secretary Michael Gove’s emphasis on transparency in funding arrangements. ‘In the Budget it is essential that the chancellor prioritises funding for early intervention as we know this makes a real difference to children and families,’ said Ms Longfield.

 

Rates Relief for Academies

Annal Nayyar writes that the procedure broadly for ensuring rates is a nil cost to an Academy is that you will receive due to your new charitable academy status ,80% relief from the local council – then the EFA will increase your GAG by the balance of 20%  as long as you forward evidence of the adjusted 20% charge that you  are now liable for. Thus overall 100% relief.

 

Employer Governor’s Remuneration

I am involved with a number academies year end statements – I would be very interested to know your views on how you are looking to classify salary’s linked to governors – thus by banding or are you itemising ? This as you can imagine is quickly becoming a very ‘hot topic’. Annal Nayyar

Annal Nayyar – Testimonial from Major Education Sector Supplier -FTSE 100 company

‘ Not only is Annal Nayyar technical knowledge of education finance second to none but every time I have worked with him I have been impressed with his ability to ‘go the extra mile’ for the benefit of the project.  He is remarkably focused on achieving project objectives and never loses sight of the overall aim of helping to achieve better outcomes for young people.  I look forward to working with him for a long time to come’