Academies accounts direction 2014/15

The Education Funding Agency (EFA) released the Academies Accounts Direction 2014 to 2015 on 12 June 2015.

The Charity Commission has issued a new SORP for the period commencing on or after 1 January 2015. Academy trusts whose date of incorporation falls on or after 1 January 2015 must use the new Academies Accounts Direction 2014 to 2015 (SORP 2015), while those academies which were already open on 1 January 2015 continue to use the old Academies Accounts Direction 2014 to 2015 (SORP 2005). Early adoption of SORP 2015 is not permitted.

The new Accounts Direction clarifies a number of issues that have arisen in the past, ie grants and income classification, and disclosure requirements. There are also a number of other changes as follows:

  • Auditors should inform the National Audit Office (NAO) and the EFA if they are issuing a qualified audit report or a modified regularity report to the academy trust, after discussing this with the trustees.
  • The method of submitting the accounts and auditor’s management letter to the EFA should be through Document Exchange.
  • The requirement for a separate value for money (VfM) statement is withdrawn, however the governance statement includes a new section on VfM.
  • Individual disclosure of non-contractual severance payments should now be made on an individual basis regardless of value.
  • There is a new section on disclosure of 'connected charities'.
  • Further guidance on church buildings disclosure – looking at the substance of the agreement rather than the legal form.
  • A new section on accounting for academy combinations and dissolutions.
  • A new section on accounting for agency arrangements.
  • A new section on accounting for risk protection arrangements.

Further information can be found online.