This summer the UK will run out of school places. It won’t be a huge shortfall but by 2017/18 it will have grown to 200,000 places.
The reason that the UK is running out of school places is simple: the population is rising faster than the number of new places is growing.
This population rise comes primarily from the rising birth rate, and thus it is primary schools that are being affected first, and we can see that they will continue to be pressured for at least another five years.
As for the secondary schools, they are now starting to feel the pinch, but won’t run out of places for another couple of years.
So what does this mean for school funding?
School funding is closely related to the number of children in a school, and so the government is able to say that it has continued to increase the funding of schools through automatically increasing funding as numbers rise. Most commentators, however, seem to argue that funding is not increasing sufficiently because at a certain point schools need more classrooms, more facilities - in fact more everything.
This is an issue that won’t go away. The Local Government Association has estimated that in the next ten years, there will be an additional 900,000 pupils and students in England’s schools and this could cost £12 billion.
This gives schools an interesting choice - although the income per pupil or student is frozen, they have additional money because of the extra pupils and students, and they can choose how to spend it. Do they spend it on teachers, resources, buildings or something else? And if they feel they don’t have enough money overall, how do they make efficiency savings?
The simplest answer for schools is to allow teachers to leave through natural wastage and not replace them with teachers, but with interactive learning systems. There is talk of teaching two-session days - some children attend in the morning, some in the afternoon. This is how it has gone in some parts of the USA.
Given these changes advertising has to be ever more creative. One simply can’t assume any more that every school is going to buy books and have a teacher in front of the class.
If you want to talk about ways forward in terms of advertising to schools in this rapidly changing world please do call Schools.co.uk on 01604 880 927 or email Stephen@schools.co.uk
If you are looking to promote via email we have got a complete guide to emailing schools showing all the ins and out. The details are here - and if you are looking for details of email lists, click here.