School Funding Team Protocols

School Funding Team Protocols


Here you are able to download the latest versions of the key Financial protocols, which govern the delegation of funding to schools in Bradford and define the requirements placed on Governing Bodies in the management of school budgets.

  • Scheme for Financing Schools
  • Financial Classification of Schools
  • Light Touch Financial Monitoring Scheme (Scorecard)
  • Surplus Balances Protocol
  • Deficit Budget Protocol

Click here to access information for individual schools


The Scheme for Financing Schools (applicable from 22 May 2024)

The Scheme for Financing Schools (‘the Scheme’) is a legal document, which governs the relationship between the Local Authority and schools in the management of delegated budgets. The Scheme provides for the delegation of Financial and managerial responsibility to Governing Bodies of schools and describes the regulations and conditions to which Governing Bodies should adhere, in order to remain accountable to the public and the Local Authority.

The Scheme applies in respect of all community, nursery, voluntary and foundation schools and community special schools maintained by the Authority. Bradford’s Schools Forum has the power to agree amendments to the Scheme, following consultation with schools.

The Financial Classification of Schools (re-issued January 2024)

The Classification is calculated on an academic year basis, and is updated each year.

The Financial Classification system was established in July 2006.  Please click on the link above to access the full  document. Information on the Category for each school is available to access here.

The Light Touch Financial Monitoring Scheme (Scorecard) (re-issued January 2019)

The Light Touch Financial Monitoring Scheme (LTFM; also known as ‘the Scorecard’) is a protocol that exists primarily to encourage the timeliness of reporting from schools to the Local Authority. It is a scoring system, which is used to distinguish between schools monitored on a "light touch" basis and those schools requiring a more "watchful eye" approach.

Schools amass points, on a rolling programme, based on their scoring against the agreed criteria, which include meeting required dates for the submission of key Financial returns to the LA. Schools are split into 3 categories. Schools scoring fewer than 20 points are placed in the “Green” category and are subject to “light touch” monitoring. Schools scoring at least 20, but fewer than 40 points, are placed in the “Amber” category and are subject to a greater degree of monitoring and challenge. Schools scoring 40 points or more are classed as “Red” and are subject to “watchful eye” (monthly) monitoring. The scoring system is updated at the end of every Quarter and the scorecard is published for schools to access.  The individual Scorecard for each school is available here.

Surplus Carry Forward Balances Protocol (re-issued April 2024)

The Surplus Balances Protocol (also know as the ‘Intended Use of Balances’) describes the process to be followed by schools, which have carry forward balances in excess of the thresholds set by the Authority at the end of each Financial year. The Scheme for Financing schools provides for Local Authorities to clawback excessive balances from schools, where these balances have not been properly assigned.

The Deficit Budget Protocol (re-issued January 2024)

The Deficit Budget Protocol describes the process to be followed where schools forecast that they are unable to balance their budget and project a deficit position at the end of the Financial year. Please also see the Deficit Application Template.


For further information on the application and operation of these protocols, please contact :


Back to the Introduction Page

Page owned by Andrew Redding, last updated on 22/05/2024. This page has been viewed 27,450 times.