Academies will continue to receive pay and pensions grants until August 2020 because they are funded on an academic year basis. The DfE recognises that the coming spending review won’t decide academies’ funding levels for those five months; they are decided by reference to the final year of the current spending review period which ends March 2020.
Maintained schools’ budgets for 2020/21 will be fully determined by the next spending review. We don’t yet know whether the spending review timing will be such that the pay and pensions grants can be baselined into the national funding formula for 2020/21. Therefore, the DfE will announce arrangements for maintained schools in the financial year 2020/21, and arrangements for academies in the academic year 2020/21 and beyond, as soon as it can. At the time of writing, we do not know any details of the timing for the spending review, only that it will be sometime this year.
Whatever those arrangements are, we can expect that the DfE will be working to ensure that maintained schools and academies get equal treatment in respect of these grants/cost pressures.
We are working with DfE and ESFA colleagues and will update our information paper, Academies: Three-year budget forecast return, before the end of May.