The standard helps schools and local authorities meet basic standards for good financial health and resource management.


Schools financial value standard


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Checklist guidance


Dashboard guidance


Additional resources

ODT, 46.2KB

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Local authority maintained schools must submit the SFVS annually to their local authority. Local authorities use this information to inform their programme of financial assessment and audit.

Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the Department for Education (DfE) has decided that the SFVS return should be delayed this year. This is to take account of the current pressures schools and local authorities are facing.

For the financial year 2020 to 2021, schools should submit their SFVS to their local authority no later than 28 May 2021.

Local authorities should submit their assurance statement to the DfE within 6 weeks, no later than 9 July 2021.

Academies should use the school resource management self-assessment tool.

Send feedback on the tool and guidance to [email protected].

If you’d like to receive occasional updates from the DfE on topics and products related to school resource management, sign up to our schools business professionals contact list.

Schools financial standard

The standard consists of a checklist and a dashboard.

The checklist asks questions of governing bodies in 6 areas of resource management. It provides clarification for each question, examples of good practice, and details of further support available to assist schools in addressing specific issues.

The dashboard shows how a school’s data compares to thresholds on a range of statistics identified by the Department for Education (DfE) as indicators of good resource management and outcomes. It provides explanations of each of the indicators and helps schools to fill in their data and understand the results.

The SFVS document, checklist and dashboard guidance, and additional resource documents are appropriate for the 2019 to 2020 and 2020 to 2021 reporting year. These documents will be updated in June 2021.

The ‘Schools financial value standard’ document is not accessible because it has tables with complex structures, hard to read text contrast and some links do not contain context in the link text. This means it doesn’t meet Web Content Accessibility Guidelines success criteria 1.3.2 meaningful sequence, 1.4.3 contrast and 2.4.4 link purpose. Our teams are working with user researchers to understand the best way to meet users’ needs and aiming to fix it by May 2021.

Published 28 February 2019
Last updated 4 February 2021 + show all updates

  1. Update: The Schools financial value standard (SFVS) return deadline for the financial year 2020 to 2021 has been delayed.

  2. Updated ‘Schools financial value standard’ to correct a bug that was occurring when users put data into the pupil to teacher ratio field.

  3. Updated ‘schools financial value standard’ with red, amber and green ratings based on 2018 to 2019 data.

  4. Added information about returns for local authorities during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Updated the .xlms tool to include bug fixes, and the dashboard and checklist guidance to include formatting changes. Removed the form and support notes.

  5. Updated the dashboard in the 2019 to 2020 SFVS to include additional RAG ratings for average teacher cost and spend on teaching staff as a percentage of total expenditure, so that schools can benchmark different years of data. Also updated the dashboard guidance to reflect these changes.

  6. Added a link to free training on ICFP for school leaders.

  7. In ‘12. Section C’ and ‘13. Section C’ of the 2019 to 2020 dashboard guidance, we added a correction to the ‘calculating your data’ formula.

  8. Added minor clarifications to our recommendations on how often governors should receive monitoring reports in the 2019 to 2020 checklist guidance.

  9. Updated the schools financial standard to the 2019 to 2020 version.

  10. Updated section 20 and 21 of the ‘2019 to 2020 checklist guidance’ and the ‘2019 to 2020 schools financial value standard’.

  11. First published.