Licences grant permissions for you to use software, services or resources and are provided by an owner, a supplier or a ‘collecting society’.

 Licences can be commercial or free of any charges. We come across licences all the time in school and usually we accept that they allow education use and if the school has bought them that they are just for use in schools and that these resources shouldn't be copied for use outside your own school or used for 'non-education' or 'commercial' purposes.

 Unfortunately, the details of the terms and conditions for different resources differ in exactly what they permit and what they don't. In particular what one resource means by 'education use' may be quite different to what another resource means by the same phrase; it may mean simply 'personal' use or more commonly for classroom use and sharing within the school. Increasingly licences for education use are being extended so resources can be used through VLE and at home for school work, though these extended uses may incur additional charges for the school. In nearly all cases materials should not be used 'commercially'. 

 More on licences and 'education use' ... 


 Blanket Licences are those that most UK schools subscribe to, to permit the copying of small sections of books, recording broadcast programmes and playing pre-recorded music in schools. The main blanket licences used in most schools are made available through 'collecting societies': CLA (copying and scanning books), ERA (recording broadcast programmes); NLA (copying newspapers); PPL and PRS, usually obtained through CEFM, (playing pre-recorded music).  There are other licences that are usually obtained on a one-off basis for school events such as musicals, podcasts, fiolm societies and carol concerts.

 More on blanket licences and collecting societies for schools ... 


 Commercial licences are those that schools purchase or subscribe to for software, resources and learning programmmes which usually restrict their use to 'education use' - often meaning 'in school' and 'school work' only.  


 Open licences, such as Creative Commons and GNU, are those that make work freely available to share under certain conditions such as acknowledging the author or creator. Open Licences also include special licences such as the UK's Open Government Licence or OGL 

 More about Open Licences ...  

 Quickstart  Introduction to Creative Commons 


 Websites such as 'Wikipedia' and those run by museums, galleries, libraries and archives have terms and conditions setting out how their resources can be used. 

 Read the Wikipedia case study ...


 Information about the licences available in your school should be easily available from the Management Team.