The standard is intended to help maintained schools and the local authority ensure that they are meeting the basic standards to good financial health and resource management.

To continue the on-going support to the safeguarding of public funds, and to get best value from them, the Department for Education (DfE) has updated the Schools Financial Value Standard (SFVS) guidance.

SFVS is a mandatory return for all schools maintained by the local authority and all Oxfordshire maintained schools are required to complete their SFVS by the specified submission date. Although it does not require any external assessment a copy of each completed SFVS signed by the Chair of Governors must be sent to the local authority.

The deadline for your school’s 2023-24 submission will be 9 February 2024. All returns must be submitted electronically to The local authority will review all returns. You do not need to wait until the deadline to complete this return.

The Schools Financial Value Standard 2023/24

The checklist asks 30 questions of governing bodies in 6 areas of resource management.

  1. Governance (5)
  2. School strategy (3)
  3. Setting the annual budget (5)
  4. Staffing (4)
  5. Value for Money (7)
  6. Protecting Public Money (6)

For each question, there is a requirement to provide:

  • An answer of – Yes, In Part or No 
  • Comments, evidence and proposed actions – this is a free text box where Schools are encouraged to give support for their answer. 

The checklist guidance provides clarification for each question, examples of good practice, and details of further support available to assist schools in addressing specific issues.

The standard, and checklist are self-explanatory, and each contains all of the information required to complete the annual assessment. There are also direct links to concise, simple support notes for each question.

Further information on SFVS and the assessment form and additional information can be obtained from the DfE website