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The Department for Education has signed an Agreement with The Educational Recording Agency Limited (ERA) under which the Department will pay licence fees to allow all funded schools in England to have the benefit of the ERA Licence from 1 April 2104.

The Agreement will mean that ERA Licence fees are paid centrally by the Department for Education during each of the three licence years commencing with the implementation of new copyright regulations that are expected to be implemented from 1 April 2014.

Background

In recent years the Government has consulted the education sector over ways in which the statutory underpinning of the ERA Licence might be changed in ways that would allow all the educational uses currently licensed under the separate ERA and ERA Plus Licence to be brought together within a single licensing scheme. The new Regulations (covering changes s 35 and paragraph 6 Schedule 2 CDPA 1988) are expected to be implemented from 1 April 2014.

In anticipation of this, ERA will launch a new single licensing scheme from 1 April 2014. This will provide administrative savings for schools and ensure that all licensed schools are able to make ERA licensed resources available to students when at school or online when undertaking school work at home.

The Department for Education approached ERA to agree terms upon which the fees applicable to the new ERA Licence for all funded schools in England might be paid for centrally, rather than by individual schools or through Local Authorities. The Agreement which now been concluded with the Department for Education provides for ERA Licence fees for funded schools in England to be paid centrally by the Department for each of the three licensing years from 1 April 2014, 1 April 2015 and 1 April 2016. Individual funded schools in England will each be granted a new ERA Licence under the arrangements described below, and will remain responsible for complying with the terms of the ERA Licence.

To help ensure that schools are aware of the scope of their copyright licences, the Government has promoted work to ensure that individual schools are able to source more easily information about the copyright licences which they hold at any one time. ERA has therefore agreed with the Centre for Education and Finance Management (CEFM) that CEFM will hold records of the schools on whose behalf ERA Licence Fees have been paid by the Department for Education, and provide access for each school to the individual details of their ERA Licence terms. In addition, the CEFM will offer a helpline for schools which will support the service currently provided by ERA itself, to answer enquiries about the scope of the ERA Licence and how it supports access to educational recordings and linked resources. ERA will contact schools with information about the helpline and how to access the specific terms of the individual ERA Licence in March.

Licence fees to be paid by the Department for Education for the year from 1 April 2014 have been calculated by applying the tariffs for schools in force at 1 April 2014:

ERA 2014 Tariff: 35p per Primary pupil and 89p per Secondary pupil.

ERA has agreed an abatement against the tariffs with the Department for Education to reflect administrative savings resulting from the central payment arrangements.

Contacts

For further information about the above arrangements, please contact ERA at era@era.org.uk or telephone 020 7837 3222.

Should you wish to confirm the above arrangements with the Department for Education, please contact Ian McVicar at ian.mcvicar@education.gsi.gov.uk