Managing school finances
Resources, templates and financial guidance to support the governance of school finances and financial reporting. Annual financial reporting is due to the Ministry on May 31 every year.
|Level of compliance||Main audience||Other|
Boards, principals and proprietors all have different responsibilities in the school financial management and financial reporting. In additional to their role overseeing the financial governance of schools, there are specific requirements across all areas of finance that must be adhered to.
Boards, principals, and proprietors will be required to read further at the links referenced below.
- Schools’ annual report (annual financial statement)
- Model liquidation statement: Kiwi Park School
- Quick reference guide for new funding and programmes
- Financial Information for Schools Handbook (FISH)
- Model financial policies
- Internal control resources
- Cyclical maintenance provision resources
- Attendance dues accounts: State-integrated schools
- Capital works: State schools
- Capital works: State-integrated schools
- Raising funds: State-integrated schools
- Related parties: State-integrated schools
- School annual accrual report (SAAR) guidelines, checklist and certification
- School tax issues
The annual report contains your school's audited annual financial statements. These show how the school board has used its funds to achieve its charter goals.
|Annual report timeline|
|End of January||Payroll end of year report and error schedules available to schools.|
|February/March||Board approves the draft annual report to send to your auditor.|
|31 March||Draft reports need to be with your auditor.|
|April/May||The board needs to sign the statement of responsibility and financial statements. Your auditor will follow with a signed audit report.|
|31 May||Deadline for the annual report and audited financial statements to be submitted to the Ministry.|
As soon as possible after the audit is complete, the board must ensure its annual report is available to the public on an internet site maintained by or on behalf of the board. Read more about planning and reporting, including key dates at planning and reporting guidance.
More information to help you prepare and file your annual report can be found on Annual reporting guidelines.
Annual report checklist
Make sure that you can check off each of the following items before you send your annual report to the Ministry.
- Analysis of variance
- Statement on Kiwisport funding
- Financial statements (all pages – please check)
- Statement of Responsibility signed and dated
- Audit report (not the management letter) signed and dated
Submitting your report
Use the Secure Data Portal to send us your annual report.
Find out more about your publishing and privacy requirements at publishing your documents online.
Kiwi Park Models, training and worksheets
Access our useful training resources, worksheets and checklists at Schools' annual report (annual financial statement) resources.
The Kiwi Park School model liquidation statement illustrates the suggested format and content for your school’s statement of movements in equity, statement of financial position and notes to the statements.
For guidance on best practice in financial governance, financial management and reporting, see the Financial Information for Schools Handbook (FISH) [PDF, 2.1 MB]
Download a Microsoft Word version of the handbook:
These Kiwi Park School example policies have been developed to help your school manage a range of common financial situations:
- Asset management policy [DOCX, 15 KB]
- Cash management policy [DOCX, 22 KB]
- Credit card policy [DOCX, 23 KB]
- Entertainment policy [DOCX, 15 KB]
- Finance policy [DOCX, 14 KB]
- Protected disclosures policy [DOCX, 17 KB]
- Schedule of delegations [DOCX, 20 KB]
- Sensitive expenditure policy [DOCX, 15 KB]
- Theft and fraud prevention policy [DOCX, 30 KB]
- Travel policy [DOCX, 17 KB]
The internal control checklist and segregation of duties matrix are designed to assist you with assessing the existing internal control environment at your school or kura.
These tools will help you to identify areas where there may be weaknesses or deficiencies in the control environment, and where consideration should be given to implementing additional controls.
- Internal control checklist [XLSX, 32 KB]
- Blank segregation of duties matrix [ZIP, 86 KB]
- Small schools: Segregation of duties matrix [ZIP, 83 KB]
- Large schools: Segregation of duties matrix [ZIP, 87 KB]
The cyclical maintenance provision is an estimate of the future costs of maintaining school buildings, and is required to be recorded in your annual financial statements.
Estimating your cyclical maintenance costs requires the use of judgement. These resources will help you complete your cyclical maintenance provision calculations and provide guidance on what supporting documentation to retain as evidence for your annual audit.
State-integrated schools must provide audited annual attendance dues accounts to the Ministry of Education.
Accounts requirements and templates
Our Circular 2021/02 explains the requirements of your audited annual attendances dues accounts.
We've created model annual attendance dues accounts for a fictitious integrated school proprietor called Proprietas Trust. The model provides a template you can follow, and illustrates the required content and format of the annual accounts.
- Proprietas Trust model accounts example [XLSX, 20 KB]
- Model for calculating attendance dues data [XLSX, 20 KB]
The following guide sets out the list of lawful items that attendance dues can be used for.
Boards need to manage funds for capital works in accordance with your school's 5-year agreement for capital funding (5YA).
Proprietors of state-integrated schools own or lease their school property and are responsible for capital works. Boards can undertake capital works with the proprietor's and Ministry of Education's approval. Read about the correct process when your board undertakes and funds capital works on land owned by the proprietor.
Both boards and proprietors of state-integrated schools can raise funds. These funds must be used for purposes that match the roles and responsibilities of each party.
This guidance includes examples of related-party disclosure notes that cover the most common disclosures that your school may need to make in its financial statements.
The school annual accrual report (SAAR) guidelines and checklist show how your school should update its financial records for EdPay payroll information.
The SAAR certification form is to be used by your school as evidence that the personnel cost contained in your financial system has been reviewed and is correct.
Your school needs to keep the certificate with your personnel records and show it to your school auditor.
If you have difficulty accessing these documents contact your school finance adviser.
Your school board, school trust and parent teacher association (PTA) needs to know about how the Charities Act 2005 affects you and whether you need to register with the Charities Commission.
- Read more at School tax issues.
- Our Circular 2018/01 provides more details on payments by parents, such as fees and donations.
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