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Businesses advised to invest in foreign education – should they also be looking closer to home?

The discrepancy between education in the developed and developing world is staggering; according to UNESCO around 57 million children never even start primary school in developing countries.
A new campaign by the organisation seeks to address this balance by encouraging businesses from wealthier countries to commit more resources.

“Big businesses should make a commitment to give at least 20% of philanthropic spending to education projects…by 2020”
(Source: UNESCO, “Businesses urged to donate more to Global Education”, BBC News, March 2014)

Many education professionals in the UK will agree that making basic education an equal opportunity to all regardless of their location, is very important for the wellbeing of all children as well as the health of the global economy.

But it can be difficult to see such news that encourages charitable investment abroad; when many schools closer to home are also struggling with funding challenges. A lack of modern resources to support a good level of learning is one of the main concerns across the UK.

There is the hope that the £350 million cash injection for UK’s schools in 2015-16 can help in some ways; but there are already criticisms that this money will become tied up in pension adjustments and staffing pressures.

“…Cost pressures on schools are growing severe and we are staring at more redundancies without increases in funding. The simultaneous announcement of additional employer pension contributions only adds to the pressure.”
(Source: National Association of Head Teachers general secretary Russell Hobby in “Schools’ cash boosted in funding shake up” BBC News, March 2014)

In addition to this, the government’s Schools Minister David Laws, announced that funding is not going to be calculated per pupil across all authorities.

“Given the importance to schools of stability and certainty in these difficult economic times, we have decided not to set out a multi-year process of converging all local authorities towards a single funding formula.”
(Source: “Schools’ cash boosted in funding shake up” BBC News, March 2014)

Which means that local authority areas will still receive different amounts of cash per pupil – not the equality some were hoping for.

Whilst the government insists that this is a “first huge step…to delivering fairer national funding” (Source: “Schools’ cash boosted in funding shake up” BBC News, March 2014), Association of Teacher and Lecturers director of economic strategy and negotiation, Martin Freedman, criticised the move as not being quick enough…

“This government has been in power for four years, yet has done nothing to ensure funding for schools is made fairer….nothing is going to happen until after the general election.”
(Source: “Schools’ cash boosted in funding shake up” BBC News, March 2014)

In this climate, schools might be considering holding off from making any purchases – and adopting a wait and see approach until the £350 million cash boost kicks in.

But it remains unclear as to whether these plans will really help to fix the problems within UK education, and holding off on spend could further widen the standards gap.

One way to raise the level of education in UK establishments is by investing in better ICT equipment to support modern learning practice. A complete replacement of ICT resources can run to many thousands of pounds yet many local authorities and schools/colleges just haven’t got the spending power to make this a reality.

Instead of waiting it out (and hoping for some more money, come 2015) why not consider looking into leasing instead?

Leasing will:

  • Save you money and free up funding to spend on other requirements
  • Allow you to update your equipment on a more frequent basis
  • Give your students a better advantage in their working life through the use of improved ICT
  • Provide your teachers with the tools necessary for modern learning

It’s time to think smart about your budgets so that you can plan in cost savings down the line; so whatever happens with school funding, at home and abroad – all your bases are covered. One of the best way to do this is to consider leasing.

For more information on how ICT leasing can provide a more equal footing:

>>Download “Asset leasing – ICT in focus”>>

Inside you will learn:

• The current status of ICT in schools
• Why leasing is the best choice
• The benefits of leasing for stakeholders

Maxxia - straightforward asset finance

2020-04-19T08:51:31+00:00May 3rd, 2014|Categories: Education|