VALUE FOR MONEY STATEMENT
I accept that as accounting officer of the Northern Lincolnshire Catholic Academy Trust I am responsible and accountable for ensuring that the academy trust delivers good value in the use of public resources. I am aware of the guide to academy value for money statements published by the Education Funding Agency and understand that value for money refers to the educational and wider societal outcomes achieved in return for the taxpayer resources received.
I set out below how I have ensured that the academy trust’s use of it resources has provided good value for money during the academic year.
The Northern Lincolnshire Catholic Academy Trust is committed to achieving value for money.
The Trust monitors the educational standards of each academy on a termly basis through the analysis of data. Projections are reported and barriers towards achieving targets for each academy are discussed. Intervention strategies put in place by each academy are considered as are the support mechanisms that the academies can give to one another. Furthering the developments of 2013/2014 of an executive headship post being created to support leadership in another Academy, in 2014/2015 Link Directors have been attached to all Academies to enable more rigorous monitoring and evaluation of standards and systems. These link Directors report back to the full board.
Finance Government and Oversight
Each Academy has a local Governing Body Finance Committee. Minutes of these meetings go to Academy’s full Governing Body. Financial reports are given to the Trust on a termly basis. Any variances in the budget apportionment, deficit, predicted deficits, have to be reported with reasons given. In 2014-2015 no predicted deficits were reported by the Academies. Surplus monies in reserves and carry forwards have been accounted for in future plans for budget spending. In 2014/2015 the Trust established an Audit Committee to scrutinize all Academies budgets. Capital expenditure as well as being monitored by the Trust on a termly basis is also monitored by the Diocese.
The Academies in the Trust have begun to work collaboratively on procuring services to reduce costs. For example from 2012-2014 we have built upon this and have negotiated joint procurement for a Human Resources service level agreement at reduced costs due to the number of academies involved. In 2014/2015 we have built upon this further jointly procuring CPD for staff. We have also procured a joint Health and Safety SLA.
Better Income Generation
Each Academy has avenues where additional income is generated for example with regards to lettings. In 2014/2015 joint income generation is an area that the Trust still wishes to develop. The Trust, however, has made use of each Academies venues as a way of saving money. The Trust has reduced outgoings.
Reviewing Controls and Managing risks
Each Academy has a responsible Officer, who is not part of the Governors’ Finance Committee, but who monitors all financial matters and reports back to the full Governing Body. In 2014/2015 the Trust established an Audit Committee as an additional control mechanism.
Areas to develop
To continue to work further on procuring joint services to enable reduced costs.
To continue to explore joint ventures for generating income.