As many families across the UK continue to struggle with the rising costs of food, schools have become a vital pillar of support for those eligible for Free School Meals. Yet for schools, tackling food poverty can be a complex challenge - so how do you ensure you’re providing the right support for those most vulnerable?
How do you ensure the security of catering data? It’s a critical issue - for many schools, the collection of highly sensitive biometric data to spend up lunchtime queues has become a mainstay. Yet, doing so presents a significant risk, and the fallout could be severe. So how does your school or trust ensure children’s sensitive data is protected?
Some pupils who are entitled to free school meals aren't spending the money they are allocated by the Government. How do you identify these pupils and what can you do to get them engaged? Communication is key but reaching them can be difficult. We explore some ideas to consider.
We’re delighted to be launching the latest additions to our Till service - meet the Supported, Maintained and Fully Managed Service packages, providing your school the tailored support it needs.
Across the UK, schools have a responsibility to reduce their carbon emissions. To achieve this, schools need to focus on high impact areas such as catering. In this article, we examine the key environmental issues in school catering, such as food waste and the impact of technology, and explore how schools can overcome these challenges and significantly cut their carbon emissions.
We are thrilled to announce our new partnership with GroupCall's Xporter.
Lunchtime during the school day is often an underappreciated, yet valuable time of the day. Yet many pupils are seeing the time they are allocated for lunch shrinking - with many spending the majority of their time in the lunch queue. In this article, we take a look at how schools can reduce queue times, and improve the quality of their pupils’ lunch period.
Managing the finances of multiple schools used to mean a lot of waiting and a lot of chasing: waiting for data to be inputted and chasing school staff to process the data. With synchronised information, though, the days of waiting and chasing are over.
From manual processes to issues with collaboration and integration, managing your financial processes across a large trust can be an uphill battle. In our latest blog, we shared our top 5 tips to help your school or trust prepare for a financial audit - without the heavy admin burden
Last year, IFS’s annual education spending report revealed a drop in spending as a percentage of national income. Today, new analysis suggests that schools are now facing a decrease in per-pupil funding - despite the pressures that the current cost-of-living crisis poses. As a result, many schools are now faced with the challenge of finding extra income to alleviate the pressure. The big question is, how does your school achieve this?
Once regarded as a purely functional aspect of the school day, the provision of school food has become a significant focus point in recent years as the importance of a healthy diet among school children becomes more widely appreciated. Yet, while the UK has made great strides in improving access to quality, healthy school meals, there is still plenty of work left to do. In our latest article, we take a look at the latest developments in school food, and how the latest policies from the government are putting school food back on the agenda.
In the last 12 months, the MIS market has fluctuated dramatically, as the data management needs of educational institutions grows more complex. This is causing ripples that have reached right across education technology. So where do you start?
In this article, we take a look at the MIS market shift, and how we are responding to this to make sure our customers remain at the forefront of student information management.
From personal records to financial management, the amount of data collected on a daily basis can be staggering. While this presents schools and trusts with plenty of analytic opportunities, it also introduces a number of challenges. The question is, how do you overcome these issues and slay the data dragon?
In 2019, The Guardian reported that children in the UK were missing out on more than £65 million of unspent free school meals. This is not only a huge financial deficit that undermines a school's financial stability, but also a major problem for underprivileged children.
Managing school payments is no mean feat, one that is further compounded by a heavy reliance on manual processes, such as spreadsheets. And, with recent research finding 90% of spreadsheets contain ‘serious’ errors, it’s never been more important to embrace the opportunities presented by digital tools.
Finding ways of reaching more of your students with school meals has numerous benefits - not only for school, but for your students too. The question many schools are now asking themselves is, how do we increase the uptake of school meals?
Cashless payments aren’t new, but new technologies and the impact of the pandemic mean they’re more prominent than ever before. And this trend doesn’t look like it’s slowing down. It’s no surprise then, that many schools are making the move to cashless - but how do you make sure you get it right?
Effective school management often means looking after multiple sites, but if your digital systems aren’t up to scratch, you could be overcommitting precious time and resources. In this article, we explore the challenges of getting your school management systems right and, most importantly, how you can overcome these to make sure you’re future-proofing your operations.
With cuts to education affecting providers throughout the UK, now more than ever schools can’t afford to miss out on any additional income. But, if your school isn’t claiming Gift Aid, that’s exactly what you’re doing.
Climate change is a growing issue, and with young people pushing for change, schools and trusts can no longer ignore the part they play. SaaS solutions offer a cost-effective way to reduce your carbon footprint while offering other benefits too. Read on to find out more.
How schools verify pupils’ eligibility for free school meals is closely tied to technology. The use of fingerprint biometrics has grown in popularity, but is it the best option? Where there are concerns around security, privacy and ethics - not to mention hygiene and cleanliness - the QR code offers an efficient, reliable and safe alternative.
Free school meals should benefit disadvantaged families, but they can cause administrative problems for schools, even threatening to leave them out of pocket when it comes to Pupil Premium funding. How can schools overcome the challenge of tracking free school meal eligibility?
Staying out of the kitchen isn’t an option for local authorities and MATs managing multiple income streams, including catering. But if it starts getting too hot for comfort, how can these bodies improve their bookkeeping to bring a better sense of order to their finances?
Natasha’s Law comes into effect later this year and it is expected to have a big impact on how schools use caterers and catering services going forward. From October 2021, schools will need to ensure all their pre-packed for direct sale (PPDS) food provides a full ingredients list and allergen labelling. This presents fresh catering management challenges. Are you ready?
Gift Aid is is a simple and effective way for you to maximise the funds you raise through donations, to the tune of an additional 25%. Are you missing out, and how can you make claiming Gift Aid easy?
Tali Notifications is Tali’s integration with the GOV.UK Notify service. It’s a quick, easy and secure way for schools to stay in touch with the school community, keeping them up to date, and sharing vital information and school updates.
Income generation is crucial for schools but to ensure its effectiveness, schools must have flexible methods for taking payments, while keeping their eye on the bigger budgetary picture.
Where schools and multi-academy trusts are automating their financial management systems, they also need to consider how they synchronise their data, if they want to maximise the efficiencies of digitalisation and reduce the scope for error. Synchronisation builds confidence in data and supports good management accounting for MATs.
Free school meals exist to help children and families to overcome food poverty, but to do this effectively it requires good financial management and point of sale procedures - including keeping track of pupils’ unspent FSM allowances.
Extra income streams can offer fresh financial resources for schools that are willing to combine enterprise with engagement, reaching out to their local communities. But it’s important that schools equip themselves properly to take these payments and manage their money.
If your catering system and payment methods aren’t up to date with the rest of your school’s financial administration, you could be paying more than you need and be vulnerable to errors and inefficiencies.
Multi-academy trusts have to carry out accurate and comprehensive financial reporting, which can become a heavy administrative burden that is both inefficient and prone to error. If current methods aren’t working well, is there an easier and better alternative?
On the face of it, many schools are models of coordinated activity. But behind the scenes, their financial administration is a hotchpotch of incompatible systems and practices. Better integration is the key to efficiency. Read on to discover how this works in practice.
The spreadsheet continues to play a central role in school financial management, but it’s an outdated format that comes with risks. Spreadsheets are vulnerable to human error, breaches in security and privacy, and take time to manage. Read about an efficient and secure alternative.
In recent years, biometrics such as fingerprint scanners have become a staple in the school lunch hall, and there are a number of reasons that have driven this adoption. Today, as fingerprint scanners give way to facial recognition, the big question is, how safe are these systems really?
Claiming Gift Aid can add thousands to your school budget. Find out how a simple change and buy-in from parents can put money that’s rightfully yours within reach.
Improve the safety of your staff, put an end to time-consuming trips to the bank, and give parents a frictionless, convenient payment option by going contactless with Tali and SumUp.
£600 million in Gift Aid goes unclaimed every year. Don't miss out; discover how to claim your share.
By claiming Gift Aid, your school can increase the value of the donations you receive by 25%. That could equate to hundreds, maybe even thousands, of pounds, providing a significant boost to your school’s budget.
Discover Tali; a new product that makes it easier for academies and PTAs to account for voluntary donations, and receive their share of more £600m in Gift Aid that goes unclaimed each year.
Take the first step on your journey to having a seamlessly integrated finance and payment management system.
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Discover everything you need to know about claiming GIft Aid for your organisation with this free ebook.
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