Cost-of-living crisis: how to manage the impact on your school

Find practical steps to help you balance your school’s budget and support your community through this financially challenging time.

Last reviewed on 31 July 2023
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School types: All · School phases: All
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  1. What not to skimp on
  2. Start by scrutinising your spending procedures
  3. Review your current spending in these areas 
  4. Review your existing subscriptions
  5. Tailor your support to your school community
  6. Maximise fun for minimal funds
  7. See if you can 'poverty proof' your school day

The cost-of-living crisis will have a different impact on every school. You may be in a position where you can use reserves to ride it out for now, but you’ll likely need to make changes sooner or later. Use this guide to help you get started. 

Please note that the inclusion of commercial products doesn’t constitute an endorsement from The Key. 

What not to skimp on

It can be tempting to cut corners at every possible turn during this crisis. However, you should prioritise the following areas when making tricky spending decisions, so you can continue to do right by your school community. 

Families are already facing a steep rise in costs at the moment. Don’t increase the price of school dinners in response to the crisis unless it’s absolutely necessary. You’ll find other ways to save money on catering in this article (see the