The system allows all payments to be made online e.g. trips, uniforms but the significant cost saving for SBC, especially in light of Universal Free School Meals (UFSM), was focussed on the time savings from administering Primary school meals more efficiently. A key priority for the project was to ensure and improve access for vulnerable parents and carers and the rollout was designed to test the outcomes for schools in areas of higher deprivation, more rural areas, small schools and those with high meal uptake to identify issues early in the process.
In October 2014 Scottish Borders Council began a 6 month pilot of ParentPay’s online payment system in 3 schools. This was ahead of the Improvement Service’s approval of Parent Pay as the nominated Scotland-wide supplier and was the first pilot of ParentPay’s system in Scotland. Since then the system has been successfully rolled out across 65% of our schools with the remainder set to come online on 18th April 2016.
- The identified objectives of the pilot were as follows:
- Improve customer experience by allowing parents to order and make payments for all school-related items online
- Reduce cash and cheque handling in schools
- Reduce admin time spent on meals and trips in schools
- Increase catering revenue.