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haysmacintyre's Schools Briefing - Summer 2020

13th May 2020

Welcome to the latest version of our Schools Briefing.

Perhaps we should rename this publication the COVID-19 Briefing as all the articles recognise the current pandemic. I appreciate that most of our readership will also be extremely busy dealing with its impact, none more so than school bursars who are having to juggle day to day concerns with longer term planning considerations. 

Steve Harper’s article on budgeting and forecasting is therefore particularly relevant, as is Nick Bustin’s paper regarding the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Alice Palmer reminds us of the importance of the separate financial planning and monitoring of a trading subsidiary to ensure that it has sufficient reserves at the time that any profits are paid to the school in order for it to avoid tax. I am grateful again to Tabitha Cave and James Garside from VWV who explore the current challenges of collecting debts. 

Many schools will be seeking more borrowings to replace shortfalls in fee income and to cover working capital requirements. I have provided a short reminder of the legal requirements when borrowing and Richard Weaver considers how endowment and restricted funds can be managed to good effect. It is likely that more schools will be considering merger opportunities and so we include an article from Tom Wilson on the financial aspects of a due diligence review. Rakesh Vaitha prepares us for the increased risk of fraud during this emergency and Andrew Roberts provides steady advice for managing investments in volatile times. 

Let’s hope that schools are open again when I’m writing the editorial for our next publication

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