Chairman's Blog - 19th May 2014

Is it just me or is this year rushing by at an alarming pace? It doesn’t seem very long ago that I wrote my last blog, but I was dismayed to realise that it was actually eight weeks. Hopefully, colleagues at maintained schools will now have their budgets sorted (although I have no doubt that you’ve all made limited funds stretch almost to breaking point), and are back to ‘business as usual’. How many times do we look forward to getting through an extremely busy and trying period, only to discover that it’s replaced by something of equal urgency and importance? I think it’s fair to say that none of us signed up for a quiet life!

With this thought in mind, we are hoping to have a workshop at a future conference on coping with stress – or rather, not getting stressed in the first place. We will keep you informed of developments.

As I write, we are still getting feedback from delegates and sponsors on our May conference, which has so far been very positive. Topics included HR Updates, Month End Procedures, Lean Processing, Pupil Premium Tracking and Energy Management. The day finished with ‘What’s Keeping SBMs Awake at Night’ from Val Andrew, ASCL’s School Business Management Specialist, whose empathy and knowledge of the profession enable her to convey ideas and information effectively. Val has asked me to pass on her email address to you ( and wants to be kept in touch with issues affecting SBMs in our area.

Finally, I will just remind you all about our forthcoming events. Firstly, the Summer Ball will be held on Friday 13 June, and is booking up very rapidly; secondly, our next conference will be held on Friday 17 October, when Vic Goddard (Educating Essex) will be our main speaker. Please put the conference in your diary and get your free tickets for the Summer Ball while we still have some available.

I hope to see you soon, but in case I don’t, have a lovely summer!