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Last reviewed on 18 October 2021
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School types: Academy · School phases: All

The budget approval process can vary from trust to trust. Use these examples to get an idea of what the process might look like in your multi-academy trust, where you could be involved and what you'd need to do.

Our associate education experts Brendan Hollyer, Graeme Hornsby, David New and Martin Owen helped us write this article.

The full board of trustees must approve the budget

The full board must:

  • Ensure rigour and scrutiny in budget management (any committees responsible for finance must also ensure this)
  • Approve a balanced budget and minute its approval
  • Make sure budget forecasts are compiled accurately, based on realistic assumptions, and reflect lessons learned from previous years

This is outlined in sections 2.9 to 2.11 of the Academy Trust Handbook (ATH).

Do this through:

  • The questions you ask when scrutinising the budget 
  • The information you receive as part of the budget commentary

If you sit on a local governing body (LGB), your role will depend on your trust's scheme of delegation. 

The following sections look at how the budget approval process works in multi-academy trusts of different sizes. These examples will give you an idea of

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