Changes to the Budget Forecast Returns – are you ready?

  • 14th June 2021

We have reached that time of the year when our academy clients prepare to submit their annual budget forecast return outturn (BFRO). The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) has updated its guidance for academies submitting their BFR following changes to this years’ submissions.

There will only be one single BFR online form this year as the DfE has decided to combine both the BFRO and BFR3Y. This will require the trusts three-year forecast to be included.

The form goes live on 22 June. The deadline for submissions is 27 July.

The single form will require input of:

  • All BFRO data as usual with the exception of the debtors and creditors section
  • All BFR3Y data
  • Your academy trust’s 3-year forecast

An excel workbook has been prepared to assist for the return. It mirrors the online form’s questions so will help you to get your data prepared ready. You can access it here.

Your budget forecast return online submission uses the IDAMS registration services. You must be registered and set up to use the service before you can access it. Guidance on how to do this can be found here.

The BFRO form collects financial outturn information as at the end of March each year, so it is important to have accurate management accounts prepared to this date. If you use the ESFA’s standard chart of accounts, this will help with the mapping and completion of the return.

New academy BFRs

Please note that the DfE have ceased the collection of the in-year BFR financial return. New academy trusts and established trusts with new academies should include their new academies in the single BFR form this year.

If you do have any questions about the new academies budget forecast returns or you would like support with the completion, please do contact us.


Read more on: Academies

Written by: Carrie Jensen

All data and figures referred to in our news section are correct at the date of publishing and should not be relied upon as still current.