Great news for cash strapped schools… The Department for Education has signed up the Financing & Leasing Association (FLA) to establish a leasing framework for schools. The FLA represent the leasing industry. It will create a suite of documents that will help schools and colleges to understand leasing arrangements, and what questions they should ask before signing up.
It is intended to help schools continue to invest in technology as capital funding plummets. By leasing equipment, rather than buying it, schools can instead pay for their ICT from their revenue budgets rather than capital budgets. Some schools are set to lose more than 90% of their capital budgets. Leasing will allow Schools to maximise their investment in ICT through the use of their recurring budgets. Schhools must remain leading edge and many cannot afford Apple Macs.
HardSoft welcome these Government actions as Schools previously have been caught in technically illegal financial contracts. A school currently cannot enter a Finance Lease and can only enter an Operating Lease. Schools cannot borrow money. New rules should mean more flexibility.
HardSoft have been offering leasing to schools for over 25 years and all current agreements conform to existing legislation and believe that greater transparency from the Government will allow schools to embrace leasing . Many ICT Coordinators are currently almost fearful of signing contracts that they fear may be deemed illegal. Currently two schools are in litigation over such matters !