St Edwards College

St Edwards College

St Edwards College, located in Liverpool, is a coeducational catholic school, with a reputation of one of the best schools in the North West. It is heavily oversubscribed each year.  It was previously an Independent School and had fee paying pupils. In 2011, the structure of the school changed to that of an Academy.

When the school changed to an Academy funding was altered accordingly which put immense pressure on internal budgets. Savings had to be made. Since the cleaning provision has been sub-contracted the cost of service has reduced by £75k per annum.


When the school changed to an Academy funding was altered accordingly which put immense pressure on internal budgets. This resulted in a need to reduce costs within both the catering and cleaning budgets, without being detrimental to the standards of service being delivered.


Litmus was briefed to re-negotiate the catering contract, as it was currently in the middle of a long term contract, and tender the cleaning and housekeeping services (this was an in-house service).


Mike Neales, the Litmus Partnership, said: “It was imperative following our engagement that financial savings were made from both within the catering contract and also from the cost of cleaning the college. It was also critical that the standards didn’t fall within either service as an outcome of the discussions being had and in-roads being made in saving costs.

“We started by reviewing current budgets and actual costs, so we understood what the school was spending and equally where savings could be made. We also reviewed the service provision and operations, to ensure standards could be maintained throughout.”


The cleaning provision is sub-contracted to a third party provider and the cost of service has reduced from circa £250k per annum to £175k, generating a saving of £75k per annum. Standards haven’t fallen and staffing hours and rotas are now in place to meet the demands of a modern day academy working for 195 days per annum.

The existing catering contractor remains in place and the contract has been extended in lieu of additional inward investment used to introduce the sixth form’s own catering and coffee outlet. Catering now operates at a zero cost provision with all free issues, free school meals and hospitality being provided at net food cost with no gross margin being applied.

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“The change in funding when the school became an Academy had a significant impact on the internal budgets, and changes had to happen in order for the school to be able to continue providing the catering and cleaning services at a high quality standard. We were pleased with the savings made and the inward investment achieved.”

Mike Neales, the Litmus Partnership