A LEADING education lawyer this week warned Church of England
and other academies to ensure that academy accountants did not
include their trust-owned sites as financial assets in the annual
Howard Dellar, head of the education department at Lee Bolton
Monier-Williams, legal advisers to the National Society, said that
schools and academies occupying trust land did so simply because
the trustees allowed them to do so on a day-by-day basis: "Schools
and academies cannot use trustee land as security for loans, or as
a means of seeming to balance their accounts, or to avoid trading
while technically insolvent."
Trustees should formally challenge any accounts that purported
to include the value of the site as an asset of the academy, Mr
Dellar warned. "This . . . prevents anyone claiming they have
allowed their site to be treated as someone else's asset. As this
is the season when accounts are presented to annual general
meetings, trustees need to be alert."