Ever-tightening budgets have become a given for district administrators. This means that every year, administrators and educators are faced with the challenge of finding new ways to keep costs down while maintaining a productive, enriching educational environment for their students and staff. Here are 3 potential ways to reduce education costs for your district, without compromising the quality of your schools:
With all the affordable technology that’s available to educators these days, many schools are finding new and innovative ways to create rewarding educational experiences on a budget. One of these innovations is the virtual field trip. Combining engaging videos with video conferences and interactive digital content, educators have found that they can effectively recreate the field trip experience right in the classroom, without having to shell out the extra money for bussing, scheduling and hiring additional personnel that’s required in a traditional offsite field trip. This doesn’t mean that schools and districts would want to eliminate field trips altogether—there is great educational value to be found in actually getting students out into the real world—but if schools supplemented a few of their offsite trips with virtual field trips each term, they could see some valuable savings in their annual budgets.
With the amount of waste involved in outdated paper-based document management, it’s amazing that more districts have not already turned to ECM (enterprise content management) systems to clean up their workflow and eliminate redundant processes and costly mistakes.
Going paperless is an easy way to help keep costs down while streamlining processes and making your schools and district run more effectively. Paper documents are messy, cumbersome and inefficient, and result in redundancy, high storage costs, more mistakes and slower responsiveness. A solution like Content360° from Harvest Technology Group can quickly simplify the way districts manage everything from student records, to invoice payment, to employee applications, and everything in-between. And while implementation can come with some up-front costs, if used effectively, a paperless system will pay for itself and save your district a ton of money in the long run.
Cut Energy Costs
After personnel costs, energy usage has become the largest item in the average school budget. Finding ways to bring down electricity costs is key to saving money for your district. The good news is there are a large variety of small, easy ways to cut down on energy costs. Switching to energy-efficient lightbulbs, updating old equipment, and educating students and staff on simple behavioral changes can help conserve energy. Even the smallest changes, over time, can mean huge savings for your budget.
The keys to staying on budget are to plan carefully and to innovate where possible. There are a number of exciting, state-of-the-art ways to streamline your district, and what works for some schools might not be the best option for others. But, if you remember to keep your students at the forefront of your mind while finding new ways to reduce education costs, your district will always move in the right direction.