Message to ISBL members and network


ISBL is delighted to be part of the consortium that has been appointed to deliver the Department for Education’s Schools’ Buying Hub South West pilot. Together with our lead partner Schools’ Buying Club, we will be helping 900 pilot schools to make savings by effective and collaborative purchasing. A simultaneous pilot will also take place in the North West region. We will be providing advice in respect to our Professional Standards for Procurement – procuring goods and services on a value-for-money basis to support education delivery within the context of regulatory frameworks and legislation.

We would like to encourage schools and trusts across the South West, and North West, to express interest in taking part in the year-long pilot which is planned to commence in February 2018, by completing an application at and where you can find out more about the Department’s Schools’ Buying Strategy.

The Schools’ Buying Strategy is intended to support schools’ to save over £1 billion a year by 2019-20 on their non-staff spend. It aims to help all schools improve how they buy goods and services – allowing them to maximise the resources they can invest in high quality education for their pupils and supporting them in managing cost pressures.

The Schools’ Buying Hubs will provide pilot schools with the following key services:

  • Expert advice and guidance on procurement and purchasing
  • Help with complex contracts, particularly services such as catering, cleaning and premises
  • Promotion of local collaboration and aggregation, where there is an opportunity to reduce costs on areas such as learning resources, ICT learning resources and administrative supplies
  • Market intelligence
  • Contract management support

We will share progress of the mobilisation of the Schools’ Buying Hub pilots in January, and detail how pilot schools and trusts can access advice and guidance through dedicated voice, web and online channels.

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