School Minibus Myth #2

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t always need to have a minibus licence to drive a school minibus. Here’s why…

A school minibus can be driven by any member of staff who holds a standard car driving licence, providing that the gross weight of the vehicle is below 3500kg, the driver is at least 21 years old and isn’t being remunerated for driving the minibus.

To see if you meet the requirements to drive a minibus on a regular car driving licence, you can have a look at the ROSPA leaflet: Minibus safety, under the section entitled “Entitlement to Drive a minibus”.

If it turns out that you can drive a minibus on a regular car driving licence, it is now likely that you can increase your pupils’ opportunities and experiences for LotC because you no longer need to rely on the appointed school minibus driver to be available.

But there is a problem. Although you no longer need to worry about the appointed minibus driver’s availability, you’ll need to ensure that the minibus itself is available – especially because (I can imagine) you are going to share this myth-busting email with your colleagues.

Indeed, the only option here is to acquire an additional minibus – but buying a new school minibus is expensive, to the point of being unaffordable.

Fortunately, a growing number of schools are discovering that by sharing an additional minibus with another school in the same cluster, trust, or council, buying a new school minibus becomes an option.

Better still, if you lease a minibus with Benchmark, there is the added benefit of improved cashflow (as you pay a set fee each month) and it often works out to be much cheaper than buying a minibus outright (especially if one considers the re-sale value).

Furthermore, a full maintenance programme is included, so no matter the outcome of the vehicle’s services and MOTs, the cost of repairs won’t affect the lease price.

If you haven’t leased a minibus or thought about sharing one, please do give me a call on 01753 859944 and I can talk you through how it all works.

But if you want to take a look at who we are and what we do before you call, you’ll find more information about leasing at www.minibusleasing.co.uk.

 

What is the single most effective way of reducing your school’s overall expenditure on school trips (without making cuts to school trips)?

A study which was carried out in America revealed that that a massive 82% of pupils could recall information that they had learnt on a school trip a year later – proving the extent to which learning outside the classroom is beneficial to pupils’ academic attainment.

The problem, however, is that offering lots of learning outside the classroom experiences to your pupils can be expensive to the point of being unaffordable, not least due to the transport that is needed to get pupils from A to B.

Fortunately, there is a solution – a growing number of secondary schools are finding that by leasing a school minibus (meaning that there is no initial large payment required – just a monthly lease fee) rather than purchasing a minibus outright, costs are significantly reduced.

Better still, by leasing a school minibus with Benchmark, any repairs, servicing and the like are included in the arrangement with the costs conveniently built into the lease price.

Moreover, a growing number of secondary schools are also finding that by sharing their minibus with a nearby school that is in the same cluster, trust or council as they are, the transport costs are halved, and thus, their overall expenditure on school outings is reduced.

If you haven’t leased a minibus or thought about sharing one, please do give me a call on 01753 859944 and I can talk you through how it all works.

But if you want to take a look at who we are and what we do before you call, you’ll find more information about leasing at www.minibusleasing.co.uk.

Three things to consider before acquiring a new school minibus (and how Benchmark Leasing can help)

Before acquiring a new (additional) school minibus, there are three things that you will need to consider, these are:

1) The size of the minibus available. Smaller minibuses are cheaper, but they restrict the use of the bus for certain groups. On the flipside, larger minibuses are sometimes more of a liability for town centre parking.

How can Benchmark Leasing help? With a lease option rather than a purchase you can consider a shorter term commitment so that you can be comfortable you have the right minibus for your needs.

2) Contract hire or Purchase. Leasing a minibus can often work out cheaper than buying a minibus outright (especially if one takes into account the re-sale value of a school bus at the end of its working life), or indeed, hiring a coach each time.

How can Benchmark Leasing help? We have devised a number of minibus leasing arrangements to meet the specific and varied needs of schools. To see our top five school leasing arrangements, which we have evolved through feedback, primarily from school managers, click here.

3) Safety and Wellbeing. Schools are centres of learning and teaching and often don’t include anyone who has the time to oversee the condition of the minibus, checking everything from the tyres to the safety belts and ensure that it is serviced as needed.

How can Benchmark Leasing help? Should you wish, Benchmark Leasing can include regular safety inspections in the initial agreement to take the pressure off the school. Furthermore, we can ensure that the minibus is always available for whenever you need it.

For more information about leasing a minibus with Benchmark Leasing you can go to our website, call us on 01753 859944 or email minibus@benchmarkleasing.co.uk.

Benchmark Leasing Ltd
11 High Street
Eton
Berkshire
SL4 6AS

www.minibusleasing.co.uk/school-minibus.php

minibus@benchmarkleasing.co.uk

Tel: 01753 859944

What is the single most effective way of reducing your school’s overall expenditure on school trips (without making cuts to school trips)?

A study which was carried out in America revealed that that a massive 82% of pupils could recall information that they had learnt on a school trip a year later – proving the extent to which learning outside the classroom is beneficial to pupils’ academic attainment.

The only problem is, however, that offering lots of learning outside the classroom experiences to your pupils can be expensive to the point of being unaffordable, not least due to the transport that is needed to get pupils from A to B.

Fortunately, there is a solution – a growing number of primary schools are finding that by leasing a school minibus (meaning that there is no initial large payment required – just a monthly lease fee) rather than purchasing a minibus outright, costs are significantly reduced.

Better still, by leasing a school minibus with Benchmark, any repairs, servicing and the like are included in the arrangement with the costs conveniently built into the lease price.

Moreover, a growing number of primary schools are also finding that by sharing their minibus with a nearby school that is in the same cluster, trust or council as they are, the transport costs are halved, and thus, their overall expenditure on school outings is reduced.

If you haven’t leased a minibus or thought about sharing one, please do give me a call on 01753 859944 and I can talk you through how it all works.

But if you want to take a look at who we are and what we do before you call, you’ll find more information about leasing at www.minibusleasing.co.uk.

For many schools the cost of a minibus seems prohibitive but two developments have cut the price dramatically.

It is rare to find a school that wouldn’t accept the offer of a minibus if it was there, available for them.  But they don’t buy one, because of the cost.

However, two recent developments have ensured that more and more schools are now able to have minibus transport that they previously felt was out of their reach.

But – and this is the key fact – these two new approaches have to be seen together; on their own they look like interesting notions – but not a solution.

The two approaches are a) to lease the minibus on a set monthly fee which includes all servicing, maintenance and repair costs, and b) to share its use with a nearby school that is in the same cluster, trust or council as they are, so that each school has the bus for an agreed amount of time.

What’s more, many schools do then add a third element of their own to the equation – since they know how much the minibus will cost each month they do sometimes ask the PTA or other support group to make a contribution to that cost each month.

Now that is often very much welcomed since it means that the parents making the contribution to the minibus account know that is it their children who are benefitting, rather than the children in future years (as happens when the fund raising goes on for several years before a bus can be bought).

Sharing a leased minibus also has the benefit of ensuring that everyone is always driving a bus that is well maintained – since it is the leasing company that works on maintaining the bus in tip top condition.

If you haven’t leased a minibus or thought about sharing one, please do give me a call on 01753 859944 and I can talk you through how it all works.

But if you want to take a look at who we are and what we do before you call, you’ll find more information about leasing at www.minibusleasing.co.uk.

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When obtaining a new school minibus, which option is not only the most cost-effective, but also the best value for money?

Purchasing a school minibus outright is not cost-effective, good value for money, or (for some schools) an affordable option – not least because of the rapid rate at which the vehicle depreciates.

Which is why a growing number of schools are opting to lease a school minibus as opposed to buying one (or two) outright.

Leasing is an arrangement which makes it possible for schools to fund the minibus through a small payment each month and enjoy the convenience of knowing that the vehicle’s MOTs, servicing and repairs are included in that payment

Furthermore, where trips are paid for by contributions from parents and the PTA, it is possible to allocate a part of those payments towards the cost of the minibus – reducing the amount that the school itself needs to pay out on a monthly basis.

For more information about leasing a minibus with Benchmark Leasing and to see our range of brand new minibuses, you can visit our website, call us on 01753 859944 or email minibus@benchmarkleasing.co.uk..

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The steady population rise in secondary schools is proving to be something of a barrier to schools being able to offer rich and plentiful LOtC.

What is the solution?

Following the analysis of official figures by BBC News, which suggest that the number of children starting primary school exceeds the number of spaces in secondary schools, secondary schools will need to make a further 16,284 vacancies available by 2023.

But not only does this population rise present a conundrum for learning inside the classroom, it also presents a conundrum for schools when it comes to offering their students learning experiences which occur outside of the classroom.

Indeed, with just one minibus, school trips for students will be far and few between, and some may not get the opportunity to venture out of the school grounds at all in their five years at secondary school. Making the purchase of a second minibus a must.

But there is no denying that the purchase of a new school minibus is expensive, which is why Benchmark offers the option for schools to lease a minibus – an arrangement by which schools are able to fund the minibus through a small payment each month (which has the added benefit of improved budgeting and cash flow forecasting).

Furthermore, leasing a minibus with Benchmark can often work out cheaper than buying a minibus outright (especially if one takes into account the re-sale value of a school bus at the end of its working life), or indeed, hiring a coach each time.

Further still, a full maintenance programme is included, so no matter the outcome of the vehicle’s services and MOTs, the cost of repairs won’t affect the lease price.

For more information about leasing a minibus with Benchmark Leasing you can go to our website, call us on 01753 859944 or email minibus@benchmarkleasing.co.uk

Benchmark Leasing Ltd
11 High Street
Eton
Berkshire
SL4 6AS

www.minibusleasing.co.uk/school-minibus.php

minibus@benchmarkleasing.co.uk

Tel: 01753 859944

As a School Business Manager, how can you support the students at your school in deciding which career path to pursue?

School trips, or learning-outside-the-classroom, can be highly beneficial to secondary school students when it comes to deciding which career they would like to pursue.

Why? Because school trips enable students to experience activities and events that they don’t have the opportunity to experience in the classroom, thus giving them a better understanding of where in society they (could) fit in.

But for this, school transport needs to be available whenever and wherever the opportunity arises for a school trip or learning-outside-the-classroom experience – which is where you (the School Business Manager) and Benchmark Leasing come in.

Benchmark Leasing specialises in leasing minibuses to schools and, as part of the leasing arrangement, we will also take care of the maintenance of the vehicle and thus assume responsibility for keeping it fully operational at all times.

A minibus which is leased is simply paid for on a monthly basis through a small monthly deduction from the school’s income. Thus schools are finding that it is possible to fund a minibus without taking anything from the school’s capital account.

In some schools the PTA is willing to make a monthly contribution, particularly if it means that their children will have more opportunities to undertake Learning Outside the Classroom.

To find out more about leasing a school minibus with us, please do call 01753 859944 or click here to see what we can offer.

And if you know that your colleagues are frequently searching for school trip or learning-outside-the-classroom ideas, please direct them to our Facebook & Twitter pages where they will find what lots of exciting ideas.

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When your pupils are looking for inspiration…

What more can you do to help your pupils with their creative writing?

Writing in an unfamiliar environment is something that nearly all successful writers do as it can provide them with the inspiration to think and write more creatively than before. Thus, when your pupils are tasked to write creatively, it can be a good idea to take the lesson elsewhere.

Whether it’s a short story or a poem, by taking your pupils to a park, busy street, reservoir or anywhere else which isn’t considered as commonplace, your pupils will be inspired by their surroundings and thus (in terms of creativity) their writing will be improved.

Of course, to do this you will need some kind of transport (unless your school is fortunate enough to be located within walking distance of such an environment), which is where Benchmark Minibus Leasing can help.

Leasing a minibus with Benchmark can often work out cheaper than buying a minibus outright (especially if one takes into account the re-sale value of a school bus at the end of its working life), or indeed hiring a coach each time.

It is an arrangement which makes it possible for schools to fund the minibus through a small payment each month, which has the added benefit of improved budgeting and cash flow.

What’s more, a full maintenance programme is included, so no matter the outcome of the vehicle’s services and MOTs, the cost of repairs won’t affect the lease price.

For more information about leasing a minibus with Benchmark Leasing you can go to our website, call us on 01753 859944 or email minibus@benchmarkleasing.co.uk

Benchmark Leasing Ltd
11 High Street
Eton
Berkshire
SL4 6AS

www.minibusleasing.co.uk/school-minibus.php

minibus@benchmarkleasing.co.uk

Tel: 01753 859944

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To share is to have

  For many schools the cost of a minibus seems prohibitive but two developments have cut the price dramatically.

It is rare to find a school that wouldn’t accept the offer of a minibus if it was there, available for them.  But they don’t buy one, because of the cost.

However, two recent developments have ensured that more and more schools are now able to have minibus transport that they previously felt was out of their reach.

But – and this is the key fact – these two new approaches have to be seen together; on their own they look like interesting notions – but not a solution.

The two approaches are a) to lease the minibus on a set monthly fee which includes all servicing, maintenance and repair costs, and b) to share its use with a nearby school that is in the same cluster, trust or council as they are, so that each school has the bus for an agreed amount of time.

What’s more, many schools do then add a third element of their own to the equation – since they know how much the minibus will cost each month they do sometimes ask the PTA or other support group to make a contribution to that cost each month.

Now that is often very much welcomed since it means that the parents making the contribution to the minibus account know that is it their children who are benefitting, rather than the children in future years (as happens when the fund raising goes on for several years before a bus can be bought).

Sharing a leased minibus also has the benefit of ensuring that everyone is always driving a bus that is well maintained – since it is the leasing company that works on maintaining the bus in tip top condition.

If you haven’t leased a minibus or thought about sharing one, please do give me a call on 01753 859944 and I can talk you through how it all works.

But if you want to take a look at who we are and what we do before you call, you’ll find more information about leasing at www.minibusleasing.co.uk.

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