Schools to benefit from central funding for copyright licences

21st December 2012

Schools are set to benefit after the Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) and the Department for Education (DfE) sign a three-year deal on the copyright licensing for schools.  

From April 2013, the Department will manage a national CLA Schools Licence for all state maintained schools in England.

In addition, the deal will include a new Schools Printed Music Licence from the Music Publishers Association to cover copying of printed sheet music. 

The move could save schools up to £6 million in total that can instead be spent on frontline school services. 

Schools Minister David Laws said: 

“We are committed to reducing costs and red tape for schools. This new licence will free up schools’ time and help make sure they can spend more money on the frontline instead of back office administrative costs.” 

This announcement follows the Government’s recommendations in the Hargreaves Review to simplify the licensing process for copyright users in the digital age.  

Jo Warner-Howard, CLA’s Head of Education, said:  

“Schools were telling us that they wanted us to make licensing simpler and easier and we listened to them. The fact that CLA and DfE were able to work together to achieve this shows it is possible to find positive solutions to difficult problems in challenging times.” 

Currently the administration of the CLA Schools Licence is managed by local authorities.

With an increasing number of schools converting to academy status with their own policy and budget, this has become problematic for those involved. New academies in particular have been faced with the cost and administration of managing licences and other services previously dealt with by the local authorities. 

The change will relieve local authorities and academies of the responsibility for administration of licensing. It will save around £1.6 million in 2013-14, but as more schools become academies the saving are expected to reach around £6 million.

CLA will continue to have direct contact with the schools sector to increase awareness and understanding about the use of copyright material.

For further information on this story, please contact Paul Rollins  020 7400 3140 


To read more about the new agreement and the CLA Schools Licence see our Schools micro-site.

The agreement applies to all state maintained schools – local authority maintained schools, academies, and other types of schools such as Pupil Referral Units and special schools - in England only.

The central arrangement covers the 'CLA Schools Licence' and the 'Schools Printed Music Licence' only and does not apply to any other copyright licences, such as the Educational Recording Agency (ERA) licence.


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