Cash-strapped and time-poor schools juggling the demands of teaching with admin, maintenance and recruitment across South Holland have been thrown a lifeline.
Spalding Grammar School has started a new venture which will see it offering professional support to other local schools to enable them to concentrate on their core purpose – teaching.
Spalding Grammar Managed Services (SGMS) will provide services such as recruiting staff, ICT, site management and administrative tasks such as HR and payroll.
Assistant headteacher Shaun Barton, who oversees the new business, said: “SGMS has been created to alleviate some of the more mundane burdens that have been foisted upon very busy leaders at schools, especially with the erosion of more and more central services from the county council.
“SGMS is acutely aware that it is often expensive and labour intensive to perform these functions in-house and we are therefore confident that our range of managed services will allow other schools in the area to outsource the day-to-day management responsibilities.
“Our skill is in education and we know that we do it well – in a cost effective manner.
“It is the desire of SGMS to offer the services to local primary and secondary schools whilst driving standards up but costs down and in the current climate where every education penny counts.
“I am convinced that all schools can benefit from looking at what SGMS has to offer.
Sam Grant, who has been employed as business development manager to lead the project, added: “Some of our more rural village schools are small but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t have the same provisions available to them as bigger ones.
“All children deserve the same start in life!”
One of the first schools to take advantage of SGMS was Ayscoughfee Hall School where the Grammar’s site manager Heath Ripley and his team helped staff in creating a new library by updating and improving the lighting.
Miss Grant added: “Headteacher Clare Ogden was delighted with our friendly, efficient and professional services and think that our managed services provision is a wonderful idea”
SGMS is now looking to recruit teaching staff to place in local schools both in a variety of permanent, temporary, contract and supply roles
Miss Grant added: “The goal is that in time this will dramatically reduce the cost of agency fees for schools whilst offering good rates of pay and a positive experience to teaching and support staff.”
Other areas where SGMS can help include field and playground upkeep, electrical, carpentry and PAT testing, computer networking, website design, maintenance and hosting, careers advice and welfare support.