School budget monitoring: questions to discuss

Learn about what you'll want to cover in your leadership budget monitoring meetings. Use our questions to help you spot any issues and get suggested next steps to help you keep costs down.

Last reviewed on 11 May 2021
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 5407
  1. What does a budget monitoring meeting involve?
  2. What you'll need to cover 
  3. Income 
  4. Staffing costs and expenses 
  5. Curriculum, premises and other costs

What does a budget monitoring meeting involve?

Budget monitoring meetings between headteachers and school business managers (SBMs) are an opportunity to:

  • review whether you're spending in line with your projections
  • understand the school's current financial situation in more detail
  • identify current and potential problems
  • discuss steps to keep you on track

It's up to you how often you have these meetings, it could be for example every month or term. 

How to prepare 

Headteachers: set the agenda for each meeting by pulling together a list of questions you want to focus on – use the list below to help you.  

You won't need to ask all the questions at every meeting. Some will only be relevant at certain points in the year, and where this is the case, we've recommended a specific time to ask them.  

SBMs: share the budget report