Monthly Archives: October 2014

Fis-edsolutions ltd blogs interesting article -Auditors criticise ‘inconsistent’ school governance checks

Central government and local authorities do not tackle underperformance in academies and maintained schools consistently, according to the National Audit Office.

Around £382m is spent each year on school oversight and intervention, but in a report published today, the NAO said neither the Department for Education not the Education Funding Agency know enough about school-level governance to identify risks. The DfE relies on local authorities to oversee governance arrangements in the maintained sector but does not know how well they do it.

In addition, while a ‘fit and proper person’ test applies to governors in new academy trusts, the DfE does not make subsequent checks on them, the watchdog said.

NAO head Amyas Morse said: ‘The Department for Education’s system for overseeing schools is still developing. The department has been clear about the need for schools to improve and nationally education performance has done so.

‘But there are significant gaps in the department’s understanding of what works, and the information it has about some important aspects of school performance is limited.’

The NAO added that the DfE had not clearly articulated some of the roles and responsibilities of external oversight bodies such as the EFA, and there had been confusion about the relative roles of local authorities and academy sponsors.

Commenting on the NAO’s findings, David Simmonds, chair of the LGA’s children and young people board, said: ‘Councils want to intervene more quickly, but decades of giving schools “greater freedom” and “protecting” them from council interference means that local authorities now have very indirect and bureaucratic ways to tackle poor performance and improve schools.

Councils should have a central role in championing educational excellence in their area and challenging schools that fall short, he added. ‘Ironically, the government and academy chains have more direct power than councils to quickly turn around underperforming schools.’

Responding to the report, a DfE spokeswoman said: ‘There will always be more to do and we are certainly not standing still, but with more children being taught in good or outstanding schools than ever before, the NAO’s conclusions are simply not supported by the facts which show the huge progress made thanks to our plan

 

fis-edsolutions ltd reports on census dates

Future census dates

Spring 2015:

  • census day: Thursday 15 January 2015
  • deadline for returns: Wednesday 11 February 2015

 

Summer 2015:

  • census day: Thursday 21 May 2015
  • deadline for returns: Wednesday 17 June 2015

 

Fis-edsolutions reports Fairer schools funding: arrangements for 2015 to 2016

The documents on this page provide information about schools funding arrangements for 2015 to 2016. This includes how the Department for Education (DfE) will allocate an additional £390 million to increase the per-pupil funding of the least fairly funded local authority (LA) areas in England.

Fairer schools funding: arrangements for 2015 to 2016 describes how funding will be allocated by setting minimum funding levels that every LA will attract for their pupils and schools. It also sets out arrangements for simplifying the administration of academies funding and minor changes to high needs funding and the way schools contribute to the carbon reduction commitment.

Local authority schools block units of funding 2015 to 2016 confirms each LA’s schools block unit of funding for 2015 to 2016. The technical note explains how the funding has been calculated.

The operational guide provides detailed information and guidance for LAs and schools explaining the changes that have been made to funding arrangements for 2015 to 2016.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/fairer-schools-funding-arrangements-for-2015-to-2016

 

fis-edsolutions ltd reports on latest Departmental advice to help schools set out their policies on charging and remission for school activities and visits

Sections 449-462 of the Education Act 1996 sets out the law on charging for school

activities in schools maintained by local authorities in England. Academies (including free

schools, studio schools and university technical colleges) are required through their

funding agreements to comply with the law on charging for school activities.

This advice has been written to provide at-a-glance information and complements the

information given in section 7.5 of the Governors Handbook. This advice accurately

reflects the terms of the Education Act 1996, but it is not a substitute for those terms.

Fis-edsolutions ltd reports on New funding will help most disadvantaged 3- and 4-year-olds

Schools, nurseries and childminders will be given up to £300 for every 3- and 4-year-old from a low-income family to help prevent them falling behind before they have even started school, the government has set out today (23 October 2014).

The early years pupil premium, totalling £50 million, is designed to narrow the attainment gap between young children from low-income families and their peers, setting them on a path to a more successful future.

In a response to an early years pupil premium and funding for 2-year-olds consultation published today, the government has also announced that 7 areas will share a £1 million pot to trial the new support ahead of its introduction nationwide next April.

 

Fis-edsolutions ltd reports on Fairer schools funding: arrangements for 2015 to 2016l

 

The documents on this page provide information about schools funding arrangements for 2015 to 2016. This includes how the Department for Education (DfE) will allocate an additional £390 million to increase the per-pupil funding of the least fairly funded local authority (LA) areas in England.

Fairer schools funding: arrangements for 2015 to 2016 describes how funding will be allocated by setting minimum funding levels that every LA will attract for their pupils and schools. It also sets out arrangements for simplifying the administration of academies funding and minor changes to high needs funding and the way schools contribute to the carbon reduction commitment.

Local authority schools block units of funding 2015 to 2016 confirms each LA’s schools block unit of funding for 2015 to 2016. The technical note explains how the funding has been calculated.

The operational guide provides detailed information and guidance for LAs and schools explaining the changes that have been made to funding arrangements for 2015 to 2016.

 

Fis-edsolutions ltd updates on : high needs student place number exceptional cases due by 17 October

The 2015 to 2016 high needs student place number exceptional case process closes on 17 October. Any cases received after this date will not be considered.

Unlike last year there will not be a formal process for academies and FE institutions to make exceptional cases directly to the EFA. Local authorities should submit cases on their behalf. Information relating to this process including how to submit an exceptional case can be found on GOV.UK.

 

fis-edsolutions ltd blogs today announcement that Schools Minister David Laws writes to local authorities about more funding to help schools serve universal infant free school meals.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/universal-infant-free-school-meals-letter-from-david-laws

fis-edsolutions ltd blogs today announcement – Information: new Condition Improvement Fund (CIF) launched

A new Condition Improvement Fund (CIF) which replaces the Building Condition Improvement Fund (BCIF) and the Academies Capital Maintenance Fund (ACMF) has been launched.

The programme is aimed at open academies, those with academy orders signed on or before 1 November 2014 and sixth-form colleges.

Further information about the new fund is available now.

The Condition Improvement Fund (CIF) replaces the Academies Capital Maintenance Fund (ACMF) and the Building Condition Improvement Fund (BCIF). This guide gives information about the Condition Improvement Fund for the 2015 to 2016 financial year.

Only open academies, schools with academy orders signed on or before 1 November 2014 and sixth-form colleges can apply.

CIF 2015 to 2016

Education Funding Agency (EFA) has published the first part of the 2015 to 2016 CIFinformation for applicants (PDF, 162KB, 4 pages) , setting out the eligibility criteria and the key features of the fund. Detailed information to help applicants develop their proposals will be published on this page shortly.

Most CIF funding will be awarded to projects that address building condition issues including refurbishing or renewing roofs, windows or toilet areas and/or compliance issues such as fire protection systems, electrical upgrades or asbestos removal.

A small proportion of the fund will be for projects supporting schools and colleges that need to expand their existing facilities and floor space to accommodate more pupils within their existing age range or address overcrowding or a lack of specialist facilities.

Fis-edsolutions ltd – Reports SORP 2015

This brief guide, published by the Education Funding Agency (EFA), provides academy chief financial officers, auditors, accounting officers and trustees with an overview of the main changes arising from the Charities Statement Of Recommended Practice 2015 (SORP 2015) that are expected to be relevant to them.

It sets out a timeline and specific actions that academy trusts should consider now.

The Charity Commission and the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator issued SORP 2015 on 16 July 2014. It is effective for accounting periods beginning on or after 1 January 2015.