Financial blow for independent schools in today's Scottish Budget

Responding to today’s Scottish Budget announcement, Jim Burberry, partner at RSM in Scotland said:

‘In today’s Scottish Budget announcement the finance secretary, Derek Mackay, accepted the remaining recommendation made in the recent Barclay Review of non-domestic rates, and will remove the charity relief eligibility for independent schools from 2020/2021, excluding special schools.

‘This measure is estimated to bring in an extra £5m revenue per annum to the Scottish government. The actual increased cost to each school will vary depending on their estate but for some schools this could mean a six figure increase to their costs which is a significant funding void to fill. Many schools already operate within thin margins and if additional costs cannot be absorbed schools many will have no choice but to pass on the increase on to the parents.

‘This is not necessarily new news as the Barclays report was published back in August, so the schools have had a chance to consider its recommendations and to prepare themselves and their stakeholders in anticipation of this announcement. The proposed implementation in 2020/2021 gives the schools and their parents, some forewarning to consider their budgets and adjust their cashflow accordingly.’

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