These guidelines are presented in key areas related to financial management and operations. Each area begins with a purpose statement to outline its relevance to school operations. The guidelines are followed by a list of evidences of achievement. Due to the wide range of missions, sizes, and resources of independent schools, evidence of achievement is divided into three categories: minimum compliance, effective practice and best practice. If a practice is vital to independent school business operations, it will be noted as fundamental. Additionally, red flags are included, and are intended to identify areas of concern that the school should address. Finally, a checklist has also been included to assist schools that wish to conduct their own selfassessment related to all of the guidelines. Understanding how and why a school approaches its finances and operations is a critical aspect of assessing what is needed to support an evolving school delivering a 21st century education. We hope these guidelines provide a framework for thoughtful analysis and discussion.