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Innovative business model helps schools address the crisis of staff absences


A unique staff absence and cover scheme for schools has been recognised for its exceptional cost-effective service by the Department for Education (DfE).

The endorsement, which is the first of its kind, means that Education Mutual is listed as a recommended partner in the DfEs ‘Deals for Schools’ website and brochure.

The not-for-profit organisation have been on the DfE’s radar since being established by education professionals in 2018 and the department have been monitoring the company’s progress.

Nick Hurn OBE, the Chairman of Education Mutual, said:

“To be the first and only staff absence provider to be invited to become a recommended partner by the DfE has given the whole team at Education Mutual immense pride.

“This is a superb accolade and recognition of our company’s unrelenting focus on ensuring that we provide the highest quality cover and service for staff absence (insurance) protection for all schools and academies.

“We never take our members for granted so a big thank you to all of the many hundreds of schools and school leaders who have placed their faith in our company over the past two years.

“From our inception the DfE has fully supported the ethical and honest approach of our work.” 

The last year has seen exponential growth for Education Mutual who secured an astonishing 3,400 % increase in market share. Only a year ago, they had 20 schools on their books but they now boast over 700 – and the numbers are rising weekly.

More and more schools are joining the mutual revolution as they realise the saving potential that the company’s unique model offers.

Education Mutual’s ‘by schools, for schools’ approach has been lauded for its holistic stance – particularly in the importance it places on teacher wellbeing.

Budget cuts have put enormous pressure on state educators with one in four teachers now working over 59 hours a week.

Schools are struggling to juggle budget cuts with their responsibility for staff wellbeing and over the last five years, more than 30,000 teachers have quit the industry with the majority blaming budget cuts, increased workloads, and mounting pressure.

The DfE are aware of the strain teachers are under and recognise that Education Mutual’s innovative business model helps schools address the crisis on two levels.

As a mutual, any funds not claimed over the insurance period are ploughed back into the education pot, rather than claimed as profits by the private companies which are run for profit.

This cost-effective model has helped educators save thousands of taxpayers’ money and as a result, the organisation is gaining customers at the expense of more traditional private insurance providers like Towergate and The Schools Advisory Service.

Mr. Hurn added: “We never take our members for granted so a big thank you to all of the many hundreds of schools and school leaders who have placed their faith in our company over the past two years.

“Your support has helped us grow rapidly in a short space of time to become one of the country’s leading staff absence providers in an incredibly competitive market.”

Some schools, who have switched providers, have already made savings in excess of £5000 in just over a year and the average school saves more than a £1,000.

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