Key to the financial strength of The Corporation of Oundle School is income generation beyond fees,
including its trading subsidiary and growth of its investments, as well as the growth of the Foundation’s endowment fund.
Both remain priorities for the Governors and the Strategic Plan has highlighted areas where additional income might be gained.
The Governors’ policy, true to the guiding principles of the School’s Foundation and Royal Charter, is that access to the education offered should not be restricted only to those who can afford the fees.
The Schools’ pupils benefit from learning within a diverse community and the bursary policy, ethos and activities contribute to widening access to the education and the facilities they enjoy.
Oundle Scholarships are now, in the majority of cases, honorary in nature with the funding having moved to the support of bursaries.
This means that the School provisions a sum equivalent to 9% of fee income for financial assistance to the families of children who would most benefit from an Oundle education.
This is planned to grow to 10% in the coming years. The COVID-19 pandemic
has had a severe effect globally and created significant challenges during the year for the Schools.
School Fees were discounted to all parents for the summer term and financial assistance offered to those significantly impacted financially by the crisis through an emergency bursary scheme.
The Schools minimised costs wherever possible and utilised government support measures to preserve jobs, but reduced fee and trading income still meant that a financial loss was returned.
The consolidated accounts for the year ending 31 July 2020 showed that the total funds held by the School are £128,668,000.
A long-term financing arrangement for £20m with HSBC has been put in place, thereby providing assurance on the level of cash available to the School.
The Governors consider that access to liquidity is a priority and that the Schools can, with reasonable accuracy, be able to predict their income levels with a long notice period of change.
The Governors have set a minimum level for liquid assets of £4,200,000 (defined as cash at bank and in hand and bonds with a maturity of less than one year), equivalent to six weeks’ expenditure, which has been achieved at the year-end.
Liquid assets at 31 July 2020 were £20,590,000, meaning this target was exceeded.
It is, however, recognised that, in the event of some totally unexpected event, fee income might reduce very suddenly.
The need for dayto-day working capital is met by careful management of short-term liquid resources.
The Governors believe that the School will continue to generate sufficient reserves through annual operating surpluses
to generate resources to fund the continued development of the School.
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