Marketing to education in the 2022-23 academic year: Find out what’s happening in schools
To help you optimise your marketing strategy, I’ve summed up what’s happening in education in the 2022-23 academic year.
From official government updates to key insights from our 2022 Schools Surveys, I’ve pulled together everything you need to know for the year ahead.
You’ll be able to use this information to create topical and engaging marketing campaigns that build trust and boost your brand awareness. Ready to take a look? Let’s go.
Schools are still feeling the impact of the pandemic according to a recent government research report. And many teachers observed how the pandemic had negatively impacted their students’ academic progress. There are a number of ways in which schools are continuing to tackle these challenges such as:
- The government has estimated that nearly 1.8 million courses have been started as part of The National Tutoring Programme, within around 80% of schools. The programme is designed to help students catch up on missed learning and accelerate their academic progress.
- The programme offers schools 3 different routes for subsidised tuition: Academic Mentors (these are new staff members who join a school to provide intensive support), Tuition Partners (these are tutors from external tutoring organisations), School-Led Tutoring (this is where schools can use existing staff to offer tutoring).
- The tutoring is available for students most in need of academic support and is provided either through one-to-one sessions or in small groups.
- Students and teachers can access free online learning materials and courses through organisations and services such as Oak National Academy, the National Careers Service, STEM Learning, the Advanced Mathematics Support Programme and more.
- The National Tutoring Programme also offers specialist support for students with SEND to help them catch up on missed learning.
- Many special schools have started to bring back trips and activities e.g. visiting the local community to help develop key life skills and increase independence.
Biggest challenges facing schools in the 2022-23 academic year
Of the head teachers we chatted to in our 2022 Schools Surveys, the consensus was that rising costs were the biggest challenge they expect to face this year.
How can you help? If you’re offering schools free products e.g. free learning resources, I recommend emphasising this in your content and campaigns. Make it clear that there are no costs involved. If it’s a product or service you’re promoting, I recommend running discounts and offers on them if you can, or offering schools an incentive e.g. bonus schemes for registering.
Top Tip: Including offers in your marketing campaigns can double your engagement rates, so definitely include them if you can.
According to our 2022 Schools Surveys, 35% of education staff identified staff shortages as one of the biggest challenges they expect to face in the 2022-23 academic year.
The pandemic interrupted teachers’ career progression, so many schools are now seeing staffing changes as well as shortages, with lots of education staff progressing into new roles.
The government’s report highlighted how education staff have been experiencing increased workloads because of these staffing shortages. So if your products or services can help teachers and senior leaders to save time and more effectively manage their workloads, make sure to reach out!
Overall, attendance rates were higher for the majority of schools in the summer term compared with the spring term. And despite some schools continuing to experience higher absence rates than before the pandemic, we expect the 2022-23 academic year to see an improvement in attendance.
According to our 2022 Schools Surveys, 53% of teachers said pupil and staff mental health was the biggest challenge they expect to face in the new academic year.
Lots of schools reported higher levels of exam anxiety amongst students in the 2022 summer term, with many feeling underprepared having not sat their GCSEs and A Levels.
How schools are tackling this:
- Staff well-being initiatives have been set up in some schools to help support teachers’ mental health.
- According to our Future of Marketing to Education Report, 70% of schools have put plans in place to support mental health as a result of the pandemic. These plans may include developing a whole school approach to mental health and wellbeing and appointing senior mental health leads.
How can you help? If your products or services support pupil and staff wellbeing, reach out to let schools know how you can help.
And think outside the box! Your products and services might not directly relate to mental health but could still help to improve student wellbeing. Whether you’re promoting workshops for students to help combat exam stress or mental health courses for education staff, run a campaign to let schools know how you can support them
Areas expected to grow
Earlier this year, the government announced plans for all schools to be in or in the process of joining a multi-academy trust (MAT) by 2030.
These plans will continue in the 2022-23 academic year, with the government prioritising certain areas with the lowest pupil performance and attainment (known as Education Investment Areas).
Inside Insight: As schools begin to join multi-academy trusts, there’ll be plenty of new marketing opportunities available. Academy schools manage their own suppliers and are free from local authority control so they have more autonomy over how they spend their budgets.
As of 8th September 2022, there were 9,219 academies in England, and 484 schools were in the process of becoming academy schools. Anecdotal evidence suggests the vast majority of schools have now started the process of becoming an academy or joining a multi-academy trust.
So now’s a great time to start building relationships with them and getting your brand to the top of teachers’ minds.
Technology continues to be a growing area in education, with lots of schools keen to continue using digital devices for online learning.
According to our 2022 Schools Surveys, 51% of education staff said they plan to continue using some of the digital devices introduced during the pandemic for virtual parents’ evenings, and 37% said they will continue to set online work and homework.
Did you know? In 2021, there was a 16% increase in spending on ICT resources in schools likely due to the role of technology and online teaching during the pandemic. We expect this increase to continue into the 2022-23 academic year.
At the COP26 summit last year, the Education Secretary announced new measures to help schools reduce their carbon footprint and become more energy efficient.
By 2023, the government aims to have a world-leading science curriculum in place that will help teachers to deliver climate change education and teach children about nature and their impact on the wider world.
As part of the government’s Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy, students will be able to study a new Natural History GCSE by 2025.
Carbon literacy training will be provided for sustainability leads in nurseries, schools and colleges by 2025.
New ultra-low carbon education buildings are set to be developed and all new schools built will be
net-zero in operation.
The government’s new ‘National Education Nature Park’ encourages students and staff to view all education establishments as part of 1 park where they can contribute to increasing biodiversity, creating greener spaces and protecting the planet. There will also be a Climate Leaders Award to recognise students’ efforts and achievements in looking after their local environment.
How can you help? If you can help schools reduce their carbon footprint, become more environmentally aware and make progress towards their net-zero targets, now is the perfect time to let them know.
Schools visits, trips and enrichment opportunities
The report from the government highlighted how school visits and day trips are back on the agenda for a lot of schools e.g. to museums and theatres and even residential trips.
The majority of schools have also reintroduced curriculum enrichment activities like sports clubs and after-school groups.
Key Insight: With the rising cost of living, schools will be more inclined to book experiences that are cost-effective and offer great value for money. If you provide school trips or deliver sessions in schools e.g. talks and workshops, we recommend running offers to maximise your bookings and help schools justify the costs. If you’re unable to offer discounts, why not throw in something for free? For example, free learning resources, digital guides, posters or perhaps an extended session.
Top Tip: Tell teachers how your products and services can support the school curriculum.
Did you know? When we asked teachers and decision makers which industry they like to hear from most, 46% said school trips. So whether you offer theatre trips or days out at the zoo, be sure to reach out to schools with an email or postal marketing campaign!
School finances and spending insights
The new financial year for academy schools started on the 1st September. They have new budgets to spend on classroom resources, teaching materials, new building facilities and anything they might need.
Our 2022 Schools Surveys revealed that only 28% of schools still have spending plans on hold as a result of the pandemic. This is a significant decrease from the 75% recorded in our 2021 Surveys. This drop shows that schools are now moving forwards with their spending plans. They’ll be busy booking trips, planning projects and investing in services, so make sure to make your brand visible!
The autumn term (August to December) is a popular time for school spending as it’s the start of the new academic year when education staff have new spending plans to put in place. Make the most of this stretch by running a series of marketing campaigns to schools.
The government has made a significant amount of additional funding available for schools to help them recover from the impact of the pandemic and support education development.
Find out what new funding is available for schools in the 2022-23 academic year in our government funding guide.
The new UK Prime Minister, Liz Truss, has appointed Kit Malthouse to her cabinet as Education Secretary.
We’ll keep an eye on any new announcements and keep you updated on any important developments.
Let’s plan your 2022-23 marketing
Now that you’re up to date with what’s happening in schools this year, let’s dive into your marketing strategy. Our team of creative geniuses can’t wait to connect you with our extensive education database of over 560,000 teachers and decision makers.
Ready to get generating leads?
Get in touch today on 01257 460036 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to plan your multi-channel marketing campaigns for the 2022-23 academic year.
All the information provided has been sourced from the Buzz Education 2022 Schools Surveys, Buzz Education Future of Marketing to Education Report 2021, Buzz Education School Spending 2022-23, official government information: www.gov.uk/ and https://schoolsweek.co.uk/.