'Keep computers on all day and cut back on email' – seven ways for schools to save money

12th May 2016 at 11:15
A new report says simple steps could cut costs by 20 percent

Schools could cut their administration costs by as much as 20 percent by making relatively small changes such as improving time management and staff training, according to a new report.

The National Association of School Business Management, which represents school business managers in the United Kingdom, says institutions could save money by reducing the amount of time teachers spent in meetings and cutting back on "unnecessary email traffic".

Other measures outlined in yesterday's report include advice that carries across the pond to schools in the US. 

Ways to save time and money

  • Make finance everyone’s business
    "Challenge staff to drive out all waste and to implement improvements that will make their working life easier and more rewarding"
  • Cut back on advertising
    "Consider carefully the value of advertising the school in the local press, particularly if the school is oversubscribed"
  • Cut back on meetings
    "It is very common for meetings to be both time-consuming and ineffective, driving further meetings to address unresolved issues. It takes a concerted effort to break out of this cycle. Rethink how time is used. Don't keep going to meetings every week to discuss things. Focus on what you want to achieve and devise actions to let you achieve those goals"
  • Cut back on email
    "Email is a pervasive thief of everyone's time. Many poor practices have developed over time which make the problem worse, eg, 'cc all'. Excessive emails potentially obscure important emails, as well as take time that could be used more effectively elsewhere"
  • Check your timetable
    "See how well the allocation of teaching time via timetabling matches teaching demand. Is there an excess or shortage of teaching capacity? If there is an excess, how effectively is this spare time utilized?"
  • Minimize teaching time spent on non-teaching tasks
    "Limit teaching staff to defining the requirement and task the admin team with [administrative tasks like purchasing]"
  • Leave school computers on all day
    "Avoid wasted lesson time waiting for computers to boot up."


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