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As specialists in the education sector we act for the many different types of academies – MAT, SAT, free schools and a UTC.

We regularly send emails to our clients detailing changes, these can be from a number of sources:

  • ESFA
  • Schools North East
  • Kreston Network

We summarise these changes in our newsletters, together with other changes which we trust you will find useful.

We are fully conversant with Companies and Charities Acts legislation relating to academies, along with an understanding of the requirements of the ESFA.

This expertise is based on our knowledge gain whilst working with academies for over 12 years.  Originally for sponsored academies (under the Labour administration) through to new types, converted free school and a UTC.

During that time we have not only assisted with the yearly compliance matters but also helped with:

  • Assisting with the conversion process
  • Management accounts including cashflow management
  • Establishing the correct structure to minimise potential tax liabilities
  • Undertaking due diligence for schools joining new trusts or on behalf of the trusts taking on new schools
  • Review of VAT requirements and assistance with the returns
  • Preparation of budget forecast returns
  • Liaising with the ESFA

Our academy team is lead by three partners who are supported by four managers who have nine teams which work onsite.

Our comprehensive range of services include:

  • Preparation of Charity SORP, Companies Act and ESFA compliant financial statements
  • Audit of the year-end financial statements
  • Preparation of the Academies Annual Return (AAR)
  • Annual audit of the AAR
  • Preparation of management accounts for governors/trustees
  • Internal assurance reports lead by an internal auditor
  • Budgeting, whether for internal use or for reporting to the ESFA
  • Audit of teachers pension scheme
  • Assistance with VAT returns or S126 returns
  • Trustee training
  • Assistance and advice with academy specific accounting systems
  • Preparation and audit of school fund accounts
  • Design and monitoring of internal control and finance systems
  • IT support, including design of new systems, whether financial or otherwise
  • Payroll services

We have recognised the links between education and business have become even stronger. In summary, we believe that we can help bring a sound commercial approach to our education clients.

Take a look for yourself.

Academies Benchmark Report


Northern Star Academies Trust has worked with the Clive Owen LLP team since 2016 and have found them extremely knowledgeable and capable, and responsive to the changing agenda of the Trust and educational sector as a whole. Their specialist experience within the education sector gives them a unique insight into the challenges we face as a multi academy trust. We really appreciate the level of support they provide, from general forward planning to the detailed preparation regarding key timings for the year end audit and expert advice on key topics. Lastly, the annual Kreston Academies Benchmark Report, co-written by Chris Beaumont of Clive Owen LLP, is increasingly useful as a data analysis toolkit.

John Barker, Chief Financial Officer, Northern Stars Academies Trust

Macmillan Academy have had a close working relationship with Chris Beaumont and his team for a number of years, and we have been delighted with the support we have received. The team’s proven track record in the field of Academy and Charity accounting has benefited us on numerous occasions. They are always on hand for assistance, and their advice in relation to the Charity SORP, Charities Act and VAT issues has been of particular assistance.

J McCallum, Deputy Principal at Macmillan Academy


CALL US 01325 349700

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