Governor Fund

A message from the Board of Governors

What is the Governors’ Fund?

Salesbury Church of England Primary School is a Voluntary Aided School, which means that Blackburn Diocese (Church of England) owns the school buildings and contributes to building costs. It's important to note that the school does not receive funding from the Local Authority for the maintenance or refurbishment of any of the school buildings.

Being a Voluntary Aided School also affects the way the school is funded and therefore parents are asked to help. We understand that asking for financial assistance can be challenging, especially considering the stretches and demands on family budgets at the moment, but, we believe you are proud of the school and want to maintain its excellence in all aspects.

Your generosity as parents is invaluable. Therefore, we are humbly requesting a donation of £15 per child (£30 for families with more than two children attending) to support our school. We genuinely appreciate any contribution you can make.

Why does the school need a Governors’ Fund?

School is legally obliged to have this fund in place.

Why do parents need to pay into it?

The Fund plays a vital role in supporting the school's infrastructure and necessary improvements. It contributes 10% towards all works carried out on school buildings, ensuring that essential upgrades can be implemented as needed. In fortunate instances where additional funding is secured from external sources, the fund helps facilitate these improvements as well. It is also crucial to maintain a contingency fund to address unforeseen or emergency maintenance requirements.

What has the Fund been used for recently?

Funding in recent years has enabled the replacement of toilets for children in reception, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2, carried out extensive roofing repairs, replaced the main foyer entrance, carried out paintwork to the front of school and created access directly to and from the school hall.  The Governors’ Fund must pay 10% on all these projects as capital projects.  If we do not receive sufficient contributions, this means money must be taken out of the budget and the money available for the children’s education will be reduced. Since Covid-19, this has been the case and school has had to use the budget to provide the 10%.  This has placed considerable stress on an already stringent budget.

What things are needed at the moment?

The boiler and the fire alarm are two areas where urgent replacement is required to ensure school can continue to open both safely and without interruption. Our 10% contribution to this is just under £20,000.   The condition of both of these items means that we have needed to commit to starting both these projects over the next three months. 

Why can’t the Local Authority or the Diocese pay for this work? Why do the Governors not look at sources of alternate funding?

As Salesbury is a Voluntary Aided School the Governing Body is legally liable to make a 10% contribution towards necessary works. The obligation comes from the school’s status. Governors do seek additional funding opportunities where possible however this can be challenging, again, owing to the status of the school.  

Does the Fund subsidise anything else?

No. Voluntary contributions are set aside for school maintenance and improvement.

Does the Fund support any school club?

No – clubs are required to be self-financing.

Why do the Governors ask for £15 a year?

If every family paid the suggested contribution of £15 per child per year (£30 for families where more than two children attend) it would mean that we would have £4000 to put towards our anticipated costs which currently equate to £67.79 per child.

What happens if parents don’t pay?

Donations are appreciated but they are entirely voluntary - there is no obligation to pay. The Governors do hope that parents can see that their generosity is crucial if a healthy balance in the Fund is to be maintained.

What if parents can’t pay?

The Governors are all too aware of current pressures on income for families. Any donation, however small, is welcomed but if you are unable to pay, we understand. All gifts are confidentially handled. Unfortunately, however, if there are not enough contributions the school will be unable to go ahead with many of its plans. Parents already contribute money through FOSS events. FOSS raises funds during the year from various sources, (eg discos, a quiz, a Summer Fair, Christmas Fair etc.) but the Governors’ Fund is quite separate. Whilst FOSS can (and often does) make generous contributions for some improvement projects, they are not responsible for key maintenance works and we hope that FOSS can continue to provide those extras enjoyed by the children each day such as the library, music systems and their current project of renovating the adventure playground.. Even if FOSS donates to a project, the Governing Body is still legally liable to make a 10% contribution to funding. Without this, the projects cannot go ahead even if funding is secured from other sources.

How many contributions were received last year?

Unfortunately, contributions were received from very few families in the school and this figure has been steadily declining over time. This is beginning to have a significant impact on the financial support available for the school. The Governing Body will be very grateful for any contribution, whether larger, smaller or equal to the £15 per year suggested. Please see the accompanying letter about ways to contribute. We are now able to claim back tax from the Government on all gifts from UK taxpayers, increasing the value of your contribution at no cost to yourself – please do also fill in the Gift Aid declaration.