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Academies Financial Handbook 2019 – What you need to know

The ESFA’s Academies Financial Handbook provides a financial and governance framework, for academy trusts, with handbook compliance being a key clause within every trust’s funding agreement. This year, the handbook focuses on internal scrutiny more than ever before.

It attempts to set out the requirements for effective financial governance and management of funds, so that trusts meet the public standard of accountability while not compromising too much of the financial freedoms which they need over their day-to-day operations. The Handbook covers six main areas which are:

  • Roles and responsibilities;
  • Main financial requirements;
  • Internal scrutiny;
  • Annual accounts and external audit;
  • Delegated authorities; and
  • The regulator and intervention.

Since its inception in 2012 the guidance has been re-issued every year with changes made by the ESFA in response to sector developments and trusts’ experiences. The changes to the 2019 edition, as set out below, reflect the ESFA’s increasing emphasis on the importance of strong financial control and governance. See an extract of the article below:

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