Such schools have more autonomy than voluntary controlled schools, which are entirely funded by the state. In most cases the foundation or trust owns the buildings. In some circumstances local authorities can help the governing body in buying a site, or can provide a site or building free of charge.
In contrast to other types of maintained school, only 90% of the capital costs of a voluntary aided school are met by the state. The foundation contributes the remaining 10% of the capital costs, and many VA faith schools belong to diocesan maintenance schemes or other types of funding programme to help them to manage those costs. They are not allowed to charge fees to students, although parents are usually encouraged to pay a voluntary contribution towards the schools' maintenance funds.
The foundation appoints a majority of the school governors. The governing body runs the school, employs the staff and decides the school's admission arrangements, subject to the national Schools Admissions Code. Specific exemptions from Section 85 of the Equality Act 2010 enables VA faith schools to use faith criteria in prioritising pupils for admission to the schools.