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School Payment Systems

Published

It’s time to fix those payment niggles 

As the world rapidly moves towards becoming a cashless society, many sectors including the education sector, are looking at ways to advance their school payment systems and digitise payment transactions in order to greatly improve efficiency, effectiveness and convenience.

With 81% 16-24yrs, as well as 8 out of 10 adults under 55 and 7 out of 10 adults over 55 using contactless payments in 2019 alone, it’s never been more vital that education institutions offer students and parents convenient, fast, flexible and secure school payment systems to complete transactions from anywhere and at any time.

The advantages of having cashless schools: 

  • Saving time

Online payment solutions for schools mean that for many establishments the time spent on counting takings, trips to the banks and administrative tasks is a small fraction of what it would be when taking cash.

  • No room for human error

Well thought out school payment systems leave little room for human error, reporting can be linked to internal databases and accounts.

  • Ease for parents 

Educational payments made online don’t just save the school time but also the parents, making it easy for everyone involved.

  • Live prompts 

Cashless payment systems for schools have the ability to prompt for payments, with text or emails.

Online School Payment Systems: greater convenience, greater flexibility

An online payment system for schools and Universities such as an online payment gateway helps to capture and transfer payment information between both parents, students and education institutions in a safe and secure way. 

During the transaction process, sensitive information is encrypted and the payment method is verified to ensure there’s available funds to complete a transaction. This then gives parents and students the confidence to complete their payments, knowing their data is protected. 

Online payment systems for schools enable parents to pay for things such as uniforms, trips, school dinners, deposits etc at a time that is convenient whilst also allowing institutions to streamline administration times, reduce cash handling costs and remove human error. 

We also partner like Solutions for Accounting to enable Education establishments to use FeeMaster to raise as many bills as required, for any group of students, as well as automate charges for recurring payments without having to manually process it each time. This increases efficiency in complex educational institutions where 100’s or 1000’s of students may need to pay various bills of different kinds. Additionally, there are no constraints on billing, preparing or distributing invoices, and there are no constraints on what the invoice is for.

POS Systems: helping you operate smoothly

A point of sale (POS) system is a payment system for schools & universities who want to accept and collect payments from parents and students in a fast and secure way on the premises. For example, whether you have a school supplies shop, caffetteria or uniform shop, you’ll need a payment terminal in order to accept debit and credit cards, contactless payments or cash. 

The nature of the institution will determine the type of POS system required. Popular pos systems can include countertop card machines, which allow staff, such as receptionists, shop or catering staff to serve from a single location, and portable card machines, which lets you take the payment to students at their table or outside. 

POS systems allow you to: 

  • Serve customers faster 

  • Accept a range of debit/credit cards

  • Create a cashless school/campus for increased safety

  • Manage stock count

  • Cut down on queues

  • Streamline business operations

  • Generate detailed sales reports, manages inventory, and simplifies end-of-day accounting

ePOS Systems for Schools & Universities: giving you an end-to-end solution

Technology plays a major role in education administration. In primary and secondary schools as well as Universities, ePOS systems are the preferred way to help manage and improve efficiency of things like school meals, school trips

But educational ePOS systems don’t just accept payments, they are also an inventory management system and a means of identifying a student and linking purchases to a personal account.

Depending on the needs of a school, college or university an ePOS system can do more than just the typical point-of-sale (POS) systems.

An educational electronic point of sale system (or ePOS system) mostly operates online and stores information securely in a cloud. ePOS hardware typically consists of a touch screen ipad or computer,  a cash drawer, and a card reader and are designed to handle any spillages or splashes if they are situated in catering environments.

Benefits of ePOS systems to schools, colleges and universities 

  • Promote healthy eating by implementing a rewards/points scheme.

  • Detailed sales history means you can drill down by customers to see what they are purchasing. 

  • Visitors and temporary staff can be assigned a temporary account.

  • Provide an overdraft facility to allow any student who has run out of money to eat while enabling collection later.

  • Free meal usage reporting for LEA.

  • 'Wallets' mean it can be used for payment of other items such as school trips, sports activities and events.

Benefits to pupils

  • A cashless environment reduces the risk of bullying and also resolves any stigma held between free and paid meal pupils. 

  • Pupils can sign on safely using cards, name, and number and if they forget their card photo ID can be used to verify their identity.

  • Balances are stored centrally, not on the card, so money cannot be lost. 

  • There can also be warnings and restrictions per account for certain products e.g. allergies.

Benefits to the caterer

  • Service is fast and efficient throughout for students and staff. The system has a very simple intuitive user interface so staff require minimal training.

  • Stock control, accurate price control and analysis reporting.

Benefits To Parents

  • Parents can top up their child's account with internet, cheque or cash payment options and no longer have to find dinner money change each day or week. 

  • They can monitor what their children spend their money on, and lunch money can only be spent at school with limits set per break or day.

  • 'Wallets' mean parents can control and pay for other items such as school trips, sports activities and events.

Fraud Protection: keeping student information safe

 

Fraud prevention is something we take extremely seriously here at Opayo and recognise the importance of keeping student’s payment data safe. Our payment gateway is able to identify fraudulent activity thanks to our range of fraud prevention solutions which have end-to-end encryption and are PCI DSS compliant as standard. 

These aim to protect both students and education institutions

For more information on our advanced tools, take a look at our page on fraud prevention & security here.