Bellevue Place Education Trust was established in 2012 by two founding organisations – Bellevue Education and Place Group – who both have considerable expertise within the state and independent education sector. The Department for Education approved the proposal to establish Bellevue Place Education Trust as a Multi-Academy Trust to provide much needed new primary school places across London and the south east.
Bellevue Place Education Trust has benefited significantly from the commitment of time and resources provided by the two founding organisations. As a start-up Trust, there was no existing infrastructure or personnel. Eight years since being established, Bellevue Place Education Trust has grown to become a strong school operator establishing seven and converting an eighth successful primary school. The two organisations continue to share their combined expertise with the Trust and its schools.
Bellevue Education and Place Group are deemed to be related parties to Bellevue Place Education Trust as set out in the Academies Financial Handbook, and therefore act in accordance with the Department for Education’s guidance in this respect.
What is a Related Party Transaction?
A review of related party transactions in academies, published in November 2014, provides a helpful overview to how Related Party Transactions should be identified, managed and reporting.
- Related parties arise where one party has control or influence over the other, or where the parties are subject to common control. Accounting standards require transactions between related parties to be disclosed in company financial statements as related party transactions.
- Such transactions are permitted under company law, charity law and under the Academies Financial Handbook, provided that open and transparent procurement procedures have been followed, and any potential conflicts of interest are adequately and appropriately managed.
- Due to the nature of academy trusts’ operations and the fact that many academy trustees are drawn from local public and private sector organisations, it is unsurprising that some related party transactions occur.
BPET’s Commitment to Open and Transparent Transactions
Bellevue Place Education Trust welcomes the transparency of the Related Party Transaction review and the guidance this offers. With a commitment to provide transparency, in addition to the requirement of the Academies Financial Handbook, the Trust also commits to:
- Publishing a real-time list of Related Party Transactions
- Providing an overview of any current contracts
This additional transparency is offered, as public information about the contracts is made available through our Audited Annual Accounts.
Overview of Related Party Transactions with Bellevue Place Education Trust
Bellevue Place Education Trust works alongside our partner organisations to bring the expertise and skills for the benefit of the schools within the Trust and support the delivery of its vision. The organisations that support the Trust, with an outline of the current contracts in 2019/20, are:
Schools’ Buying Club (SBC) is an education procurement advisory business, providing tender management services to ensure that schools receive best value for money from their contracts, including outsourced services and utilities.
SBC manages compliant tenders on behalf of the Trust for high spend contracts, along with ongoing contract management to ensure suppliers continue to provide high quality services. SBC does not charge a fee for this support, instead charging the supplier through a commission rebate model.
Overview of Support to the Trust
In order to be fully transparent and compliant, the Trust went to the market for education procurement support in order to maximise BPET’s aggregated back office purchasing power and receive best value. Bellevue Place Education Trust used an independent procurement consultant in accordance with its financial regulations and awarded SBC with the contract. In entering into the transaction the Trust has complied fully with the requirements of the Academies Financial Handbook and services provided by SBC are provided ‘at cost’.
SBC has been compliantly procured by the Trust to be the procurement provider for large scale contracts across the Trust. This supports the Trust to focus on areas where the group of schools can jointly procure services, using the purchasing power of the group to gain best value for money. These are in areas like outsourced catering.
SBC’s charging model means that the schools or Trust do not incur a direct fee for the procurement and contract management services – the successful supplier is charged between 0.75% and 5% of the contract fee.
In 2018/19, SBC are supporting BPET through the tendering of our ICT contractor to support schools with their ICT purchasing, installation and network assistance throughout the year.
In 2019/20 SBC will be retendering the BPET Catering contract for all schools to begin in September 2020.
Last updated January 2020