Good Practice Library

Policy templates, guidance and factsheets for schools

The aim of the library is to develop, share and promote good practice whilst providing practical assistance to schools. 

The ISBL Good Practice Library is organised according to our Professional Standards disciplines. If you feel you would like further training or to undertake a qualification in these disciplines, take a look at our qualifications and training pages. 

This Good Practice Library started life in 2013 as a shared initiative between ISBL and the Education Funding and Skills Agency (ESFA). Following the DfE move to house all material on from 2019, this site is now being developed and maintained by ISBL in partnership with ISBL Fellows


Sharing your resources and feedback

If you have any documents that you feel are relevant to school business good practice, or any feedback relating to the ISBL Good Practice Library, please email

We also have a suite of health and safety factsheets which cover all areas of your school.

Our toolkit for school business professionals provides tools and advice for your everyday use.

Leading Support Services

Whistleblowing Policy (August 2019) download document
Gifts and Hospitality Policy (August 2019) download document
Data Protection Policy (NEW from August 2019) download document
Equality Policy (August 2019) download document
Governors Visits (August 2019) download document
Health and Safety Policy (NEW from August 2019) download document
Privacy Notice (Data Protection Policy Appendix 1a) (August 2019) download document
Privacy Notice for Staff (Data Protection Policy Appendix 1b) (August 2019) download document
Subject Access Request Form (Data Protection Policy Appendix 2) (August 2019) download document
Staff Data Breach Form (Data Protection Policy Appendix 3) (August 2019) download document
Staff Agreement (Data Protection Policy Appendix 4) (August 2019) download document
DPIA Guidance and Form (Data Protection Policy Appendix 5) (August 2019) download document
School Records Retention Schedule (Data Protection Policy Appendix 6) (August 2019) download document
MAT business continuity template download document


Academies should also consult the DfE's Academies Financial Handbook (2020). Our Professional Standards are also cited in the AFH (page 17). 

Model Cashflow Forecast (Reviewed Summer 2016) download document
Financial regulations manual inc. financial procedures (uploaded Summer 2016) download document
LA School Finance Policy template (NEW from August 2019) download document
Business Continuity Plan (August 2019) download document
Delegated Authority Template (August 2019) download document
Capital and Revenue Reserves Policy (August 2019) download document
Anti-Fraud and Corruption Policy (August 2019) download document
Due Diligence (MATs) (August 2019) download document
Internal Control (August 2019) download document
Accounting Policies (August 2019) download document
Consultancy Policy (August 2019) download document
Investment Policy (August 2019) download document
Governor Allowances Policy (August 2019) download document
Risk Management Policy (August 2019) download document
Risk Management Strategy (August 2019) download document


The Department for Education publishes guidance on Buying for SchoolsThis is non-statutory guidance for schools about buying practices and how to achieve better value for money. It also explains your obligations in relation to the basic rules of procurement when spending public money.

School Contracts and SLA Tracker (NEW from August 2019) download document
Procurement and Tendering Policy (August 2019) download document


The DfE also has a Good Estates Management tool page, which includes Top 10 estate checks for boards, required skills and knowledge which cites our Professional Standards (infrastructure), and tips to reduce energy and water use

Vehicles Policy (August 2019) download document
Write-Off and Asset Disposal Policy (August 2019) download document
Good Estates Management - organisational self-assessment tool (housed with DfE permission) download document
Strategic Estates Management process map (housed with DfE permission) download document

Human Resources

Conducting an Effective Appraisal (2019 version) download document
Hints and Tips for Managing Conflict (2019 version) download document
Managing the Workforce factsheet (2019 version) download document


Engaging Parents and Stakeholders Effectively (February 2016) download document

ISBL Professional Clerking Programme

 During 2018 ISBL worked with CIPFA and CST to design and develop the ISBL Professional Clerking Programme which consisted of 9 module workbooks.  This programme was delivered to clerks, through a series of face-to-face sessions and private study, and came to an end in December 2020. Participants have ranged from new to longstanding clerks working in settings ranging from small local authority (LA) schools to large multi-academy trusts (MATs). Thirteen cohorts and 179 participants later, ISBL’s programme has seen 95% of those who responded to a survey in May 2020 said their skills and/or knowledge has improved.

 Due to this excellent feedback from participants, ISBL has decided to make the workbooks available for all school business professionals (SBPs) and clerks.  

The original programme provided funding by the DfE for participants to attend group training sessions and provided mentoring and feedback. This funding has come to an end and so we cannot offer mentoring or feedback. We are aware that the programme and materials have not been updated in 2021 but ISBL is confident that this these workbooks will be useful to the sector and the DfE has agreed that they can be made public. 

Handout sample minutes download document
Handout sample minutes download document
Features of effective governance handout download document
Key policy areas handout download document
Impact assessment download document
Self review action plan download document
Self review letter to Head and Chair download document
Workbook 1 Implications of clerking download document
Workbook 2 Clerking in a MAT download document
Workbook 3 Information provider download document
Workbook 3 Information provider download document
Workbook 3 Information provider download document
Managing relationships download document
Workbook 4 Risk compliance download document
Workbook 5 Conflicts of interest download document