Trusts: Understanding the basic principles of annual financial statements

January 2021

This paper provides an overview of the terminology and information provided within trust annual accounts. It
is an introduction to aid understanding by providing a set of principles on which to build your knowledge and

It should be read in conjunction with the Education and Skills Funding Agency Academies Accounts
Direction and Academies Financial Handbook, and for trustees, the Governance Handbook. These
documents along with the ESFA’s Good Practice Guides provide technical sector specific guidance.

Suitable for school/trust business leaders, trustees, CEOs, accounting officers, headteachers, executive
principals, and senior leaders who are new to understanding and analysing trust accounts in strategic decision

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