Nottinghamshire Schools Portal

School Finance & Audit

School Finance & Audit

Managing school finances is one of the most complex and time-consuming tasks for any school or academy, especially with the legal complexities and strict regulations that surround it.

Our School Finance Team are here to support you with this by providing trusted financial support and advice, helping you ensure the best use of your budget and resources. We are a dedicated team of friendly, professionally qualified staff with many years’ experience of working with schools and academies along with a proven track record of providing comprehensive support, advice, guidance and training covering all aspects of managing your school’s finances.

The principles of financial management may be standard, but we recognise that the skills, knowledge and experience of those managing them are not. Our support is tailored to meet your needs. As well as covering your statutory requirements, we also offer a range of sold services.

What we offer:

Our Basic financial support package* includes: 

  • Dedicated telephone helpline (0115 977 2211) - open 9am-4:30pm during term time and 10am-3pm in school holidays (until 1pm 24th December & closed between Christmas and New Year)
  • Remote access to SIMS FMS to enable us to deal with complex queries
  • Speedy resolution of financial transaction queries
  • Integrated salary calculator and multi-year budget planning tool
  • Comprehensive guides for budget setting and reforecasting
  • Cashflow spreadsheet
  • Final accounts guidance and production of year end governor report in Consistent Financial Reporting format
  • Submission of Consistent Financial Report to the DfE
  • Regularly updated financial guidance and procedure notes
  • Strategic financial guidance from experienced officers when required
  • Advice and guidance if you amalgamate/federate or academise, including ongoing support after the process
  • Support on the Local Bank Account Scheme
  • Leasing support and approval
  • A 1.5 hour one to one session for new Headteachers and Business/Office managers

*Please note the basic financial support package is currently only available to LA maintained schools, although the Budget Planner may be purchased separately.

On-Site Support

  • Select half or full day visits - the combination, number and content is for you to decide, but advice on what can be covered is always available
  • We aim for visits to be delivered by a named finance contact to ensure continuity and that an understanding of your needs is maintained
  • Visits can be extended on an hourly basis, depending on the availability of your Finance Officer
  • A bursar service is available if required
  • A bespoke service to provide financial support can be provided on request if your Office Manager is absent. This is subject to availability
  • Assistance with completion of the REC1 return. This can be done either onsite or remotely


We offer a variety of training courses throughout the year for new and more experienced staff. The courses normally available, and months in which they usually take place, include:

  • Introduction to Finance and Budgeting – September
  • FMS training – September and January
  • Reforecasting – October
  • Final Accounts – February
  • Budget setting – February and March

We will also prepare new training courses whenever there are substantial changes to accounting or reporting regulations or new financial reports are required by the DfE.

School Audit

The NCC Internal Audit service for schools was combined with the School Finance Team on 1st April 2019. We now provide an independent and supportive audit service delivered by professionally qualified and highly experienced staff.

All primary and special schools are required to have an audit of their financial controls and procedures every five years, and secondary schools every three years. We will create a suggested contract in the S4S portal for all schools due for an audit this coming year.

We are currently trialing a different approach to our audit work to reduce the cost to schools. Schools will be able to choose between the standard audit and the new self-assessment approach by contacting the School Finance Team to discuss the two options. The two different approaches cover the exact same areas of school finance and governance, the new approach reduces the time taken for our staff to complete their work by asking schools to complete a questionnaire and gather more information and records before the audit visit to the school. The new self-assessment approach will only be available to schools which received a positive audit opinion at their previous audit.

Academy Support

Schools converting to academy receive strategic support from the School Finance team for closing the accounts of the maintained school and advice on finalising their old financial system. Academies can then purchase ongoing support by the day or half day as required or in the form of a bursar service.

"The service, resources and expertise provided by the NCC School Finance team is exceptional. The structure of the support is extremely well planned, providing the most up to date legislative guidance available. They provide regular outstanding training sessions for all key areas of the financial year and are always able to assist with specific finance queries and challenges that schools are faced with. I cannot recommend them highly enough." Louise Kinsella, Office Manager, Ranby C of E Primary School

“The Finance Team have been supporting Redlands Primary School for many years and will, hopefully, continue to do so for many more to come. The service is exceptional; the team’s knowledge is entirely appropriate, and our consultant is professional, conscientious and often goes above and beyond to support the school’s requests and to resolve our queries.” Toni Allport , School Business Manager, Redlands Primary and Nursery School

“The support we have receive from the NCC Finance Team is always excellent whether it is a site visit or a telephone call. It is very reassuring to know that there is friendly team with expert knowledge and guidance on the end of a telephone call and that nothing is too much trouble. The school visits from the team are always very informative and helpful and as a school we find their knowledge and guidance invaluable.” Mrs S Stringfellow, Office Manager, Priestsic Primary and Nursery School

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School Finance & Audit Contact

Aaron Connor or Rachel Livesey
0115 977 2211



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