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Budget Forecasting

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Budget Forecasting

Forecasting is a prediction and best estimate of the school’s financial position at the end of the year. It should include any variances from the budget plan set earlier in the year and any additional anticipated expenditure or income.

Monitoring is a regular review of income and expenditure to ensure budget share is being spent appropriately and allocations within the budget are made to the correct codes. Checks should also be made that budgeted income is collected and allocated.    

Schools are required submit a Quarter 2 half yearly forecast to provide a best estimate of their financial position at the end of the financial year. Quarter 2 is after close down of period 6 (September). Please see the SAP timetable for the deadline date.

It is required that Schools regularly review and monitor their current position for any changes that may have an impact on their financial position at year end. Forecasts are reviewed at County to identify any underlying issues. This can include a predicted  excessive surplus or a possible deficit year end position.

Predicted Deficit/Surplus

Schools that are experiencing difficulty or a deficit budget will be supported and contacted by School Finance Management Advisory Team to assist with a recovery plan to bring the school back into a balanced and sustainable financial position within as short a timescale as possible.

If you predict a deficit balance please email schoolfinance@buckscc.gov.uk

A deficit school is required to submit evidence of monthly budget monitoring.

A school predicting an excessive surplus may be contacted by County to request details of their plans to spend their surplus. This is to ensure their school budget is being utilised to provide high quality teaching and learning and raise standards and attainment for all their pupils.

Forecasts When & How

The Q2 forecast is statutory and must be returned by the required deadline, usually in October. The timetable is published on the SAP Accounting Timetable on the schools web



Return to LA by


Qtr 1

April - June

Summer half-term

Approved Budget / Financial plan to be submitted

End of Summer term

First monitoring for Deficit schools

Qtr 2

July – September


Autumn Half-term October (date published on schools web)

Half-year review after the start of the academic year Forecast Q2 return compulsory

Qtr 3

October – December


Late February/Early March

Submission of provisional budget.

Qtr 4

January - March

End of Spring Term

Year-end processes

The schools finance team run workshops for Q2 Finance to assist with completion of the Q2 Forecast spreadsheet. Please see the training and workshops page on the Schoolsweb Training & Workshops

Please see the following for further information Budget Forecasting

Updated 03.10.2018

To be reviewed by 30.09.2019

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