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Updates on School Operations

We partner with School and Academy Trust sector bodies The Confederation of School Trusts (CST)Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL) and The Trust NetworkThey continue to advocate hard on behalf of schools and trusts and are offering guidance and advice on operational issues.

Some key items are highlighted below.

Air Quality and Ventilation
Discovery webinar for CST Members, Tuesday 1 February, 9:00-10:00am

Following the DfE Guidance and issuing of CO2 sensors during the end of 2021, CST and Barker will be running a seminar on air quality and ventilation for CST members. Barker will be joined by Matt Isherwood from The Trust Network and Estates Director at Brooke Weston Trust to explain how trusts are implementing these guidelines in schools. There will be a Q&A session to address member queries.

This session will explore:
• How to use CO2 sensors and the data they provide
• How to use risk assessments to manage air quality
• How to use operations/management protocols to manage air quality
• When and where to use air purifiers
• Other longer term solutions and considerations

Please note that this session is open to CST members only.  You can check the Barker website for future runnings of this session and other webinars.

Academies budget forecast return
There will now only be a single budget forecast return (BFR). Academy trusts are no longer required to submit a separate budget forecast return outturn. The outturn information is now permanently included within the budget forecast return. Updated guidance can be found here. The Academies Planning Calendar has also been updated with this information.

Academies Revenue Funding Allocations – 2022/23 timetable
The DfE has published details of the 2022 to 2023 general annual grant allocation statements timetable.

In July the DfE set out the schools, high needs and central school services national funding formulae (NFF) for 2022 to 2023. Provisional 2022 to 2023 NFF allocation tables and technical notes have been published, along with the NFF policy document detailing changes.

It is important to note that individual schools’ and academies’ actual funding may be different to the amounts shown in these tables. This is because local authorities continue to set a local formula, in consultation with local schools’ forums, and within the framework of the schools operational guide for 2022 to 2023 to determine individual schools’ budgets in their areas.


The DfE will begin issuing 2022 to 2023 general annual grant allocation statements towards the end of February 2022. They expect to issue all allocation statements to academies that opened before or on 1 January 2022 by the end of March 2022. Allocations for 2022 to 2023 for February and March 2022 opening academies will be issued by the end of April 2022. The DfE will publish general annual grant allocations guidance in February 2022 before they start to issue the allocation statements.

16 to 19 funding allocations supporting documents for 2022 to 2023 have also been published which provides information for 16 to 19 institutions about calculating their 16 to 19 revenue funding allocation.

Hockerill Class Room

Keeping Children Safe in Education – Proposed Revisions for September 2022
The DfE has published a consultation which seeks views on proposed changes to the statutory guidance Keeping children safe in education 2021 with a view to making changes for September 2022. The consultation response form can be accessed here. The Draft September 2022 guidance is available here. The consultation closes at 11:59pm on 8 March 2022.

CST are running a series of Strategic Safeguarding seminars in early March as part of their Masterclass series. Find out more HERE.

National school breakfast club programme
Considering the COVID-19 pandemic and the challenges that schools have faced, the DfE has extended this provision beyond April 2022 and expanded school eligibility. Participating schools will receive 100% subsidies until the end of July 2022 and schools will be eligible for the programme if they have 40% or more pupils in bands A-F of the income deprivation affecting children index (IDACI). The guidance says the DfE will contact eligible schools this month.

School resource management self-assessment checklist – new guidance
The checklist for 2021/22 has been published. All academy trusts which have an open academy on 31 December 2021 must complete the self-assessment checklist (which you do each year). The deadline to submit your 2021/22 checklist is 15 March 2022.

The checklist is intended to help trust boards to:
• Check you have appropriate financial management and governance arrangements
• Check you are meeting the right standards to achieve a good level of financial health and resource management
• Identify areas for change to make sure resources are used to support high-quality teaching and the best education outcomes for pupils.

Hockerill Classroom

This is an update to the school resource management self-assessment tool (SRMSAT), which previously consisted of the self-assessment checklist and dashboard. The self-assessment dashboard has been moved to the benchmarking website.

Barker can help with completion of your checklist and development of this into your estates strategy.

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