Auditing and other services for academies
Since the introduction of academies in 2009, the government is increasingly advocating schools to convert to academy status and, more recently, the joining of already established multi academy trusts (MATs). We can assist you in conversion to academy status and to discharge a number of the statutory and ESFA requirements afterwards.
We are a firm of Chartered Accountants which has been in practice for over 60 years and has offered financial services to grant maintained schools, foundation schools, voluntary aided schools and academies for over 25 years. All of our auditors are qualified accountants and have extensive experience in auditing accounts of schools and academies. At present, we have been appointed as accountants to over 100 primary, secondary and special schools and academies nationwide.
Over the past few years, we have emerged as a significant firm within the Academy sector. Having advised the government on the implementation of the academy accounts model, our Academies Audit Director, Michael Durst, continues to sit on the ESFA Auditors’ Forum. Consequently, we have direct contact with other large providers of academy audits as well as the ESFA and are able to help mould the sector’s bespoke auditing and accounting regulations. Accordingly, we are aware, at an early stage, of technical developments in the academies sector and any important updates such as changes to the Academies Accounts Direction. Indeed, with all of our staff members’ considerable experience within the sector we are well placed to provide you with excellent technical expertise not only with reference to specific legislation surrounding academies and charities, but also taxation implications and other relevant matters that arise during the course of the year.
We have recently been appointed as a preferred supplier of financial services by Church Marketplace, a nationwide body of Catholic organisations – recognition of the excellent audit and other associated work we have carried out for our existing Catholic academies. We were heavily involved in resolving an historic issue surrounding the accounting treatment of land & buildings, specific to faith academies, which has now almost been exclusively adopted across the sector.
Our services for schools and academies include:
- preparation of statutory accounts;
- statutory audit and regularity review;
- annual audit of end of year certificate (teachers' pensions);
- preparation of annual Accounts Return;
- annex G returns;
- Responsible Officer review - carrying out tests for the Responsible Officer in accordance with the academies’ financial handbook;
- carrying out a review of accounting entries shortly after academy status has commenced, to advise not only on the correct allocation of income and expenses but also the reclaiming of VAT;
- advice on new accounting software to be adopted to satisfy statutory and ESFA requirements;
- a full payroll support to include preparation of monthly payroll and year-end returns;
- company secretarial services;
- preparation of financial procedure manuals;
- HR support;
- due diligence support;
- assistance with the Budget Forecast Return, Land & Building Collection Tool and Gender Pay Gap Reporting;
- added value to the academy dealing with conversion issues, monitoring of returns, cash flow management and wider services or longer term financial planning and development of commercial activities
We include in our audit fee a FREE HELP-LINE SERVICE. Accordingly, whether we deal with any questions by way of telephone, e-mail or letter, no additional charge will be rendered. The support we offer covers all aspects of the bookkeeping, preparation of accounts, returns and taxation as we develop a long relationship with your academy.
For further information, please contact: