Finance and data

What is the role of the bursar, business manager and resource management advisor

Read about the different roles and what type of support is given by:

What is the role of a school bursarial officer?

The school bursarial service are a team of experienced education specialists within the council who offer a client focused buyback service covering both operational finance support, and strategic finance consultancy.

Schools can buy in at 3 different levels of support depending on their level of need. Each school who buys in will have a dedicated school bursarial officer.

The bursarial officer can provide:

  • essential frontline support to schools to assist with statutory and financial requirements in raising standards, efficiency and effectiveness.
  • advice, training, help with budget setting, trouble shooting and expertise in the use of financial management systems (FMS).
  • access to and support with using their comprehensive budget planning, monitoring and cashflow tool.

School bursarial officers can also provide very short term emergency cover for school business manager (SBM) / finance officer absences (subject to capacity).

Schools can also purchase pay as you go support and training (subject to capacity).

See SLA for more detail.

What is the role of school SBM mentor/ support outreach?

SBM mentors / support outreach are experienced practitioners with a wealth of experience in school business management as identified in their profiles.

SBMs aim is to support schools by offering outreach & peer to peer support as needed by the school.

SBMs can support and mentor junior and new SBMs.

SBMs can be deployed in a school on a part time basis where the school does not have an SBM either temporarily or longer term to support the financial and other business aspects required by the school

The cost and scope of this support would be agreed between schools. Long term support could be via a formal SLA / job share. For shorter periods of mentoring / support it may take the form of telephone/ email and on site advice on agreed days per week or month.

What is the role of school resource management advisor (SRMA)?

SRMA’s are experts on school resource management, and can provide independent, expert advice and tailored support to address current or future forecast deficits where these exist.

Schools can request a free SRMA deployment from the ESFA via their local authority (for maintained schools) or Academy Trust (for academies). Contact Kim Price or Alison Bennet for details (see below).

The deployment will include a review of data with leaders and the SRMA will then produce a report containing an analysis of the budget using ICFP and a series of costed recommendations.

SRMA deployments can:

  • promote and share best practice on managing resources including the use of DFE tools and resources and identifying new procurement opportunities.
  • identify opportunities where schools can improve efficiency/increase their revenue generation
  • support schools to strengthen their governance and oversight of their finances.
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Last updated: 12 Jun 2024