State schools missing out on extra money by not asking alumni for donations


State schools are missing out on a £100 cash bonanza because they aren't asking former pupils to make donations to their schools, says a report out today.

A survey by the charity Future First, which promotes alumni networks in state schools and the Institute of Development Professionals in Education shows only two per cent of state school graduates have ever been asked for a financial donation to their secondary school.

The figure compares with 26 per cent of private school graduates

Yet further questioning revealed that the percentage of pupils willing to donate to their former schools was roughly equal for both sectors at 30 per cent.

Alex Shapland-Howes, managing director of Future First, said the results of the poll, carried out by YouGov, showed there were “significant untapped sums” available to state schools. An analysis shows this could be as much as £30,000 a year per school.

“The problem is that very few state alumni have been asked to give back to their old schools before,” Mr Shapland-Howes added. “Now we’re asking.”

One school which has already asked is Robert Clack, a comprehensive in Dagenham, Essex, which serves one of the most deprived areas in the UK. It now has 600 members on its alumni network - contributing £4,000 to pay for students to travel to university open days and attend obligatory aptitude tests for university law and medicine courses.