About Phonographic Performance Limited (PPL) for Schools

CEFM are the collection agents within the UK schools sector for the Phonographic Performance Limited (PPL). In turn, the PPL administers the performance right on behalf of the record companies, performers and musicians.

A PPL Licence is required for the non-curricular use of copyrighted music in schools.

PPL has recently reached an agreement with the Department for Education (DfE) where from 1st April 2015, the DfE will purchase a PPL public performance licence. This licence will cover the non-curricular use of PPL repertoire for public performance in all English schools, including local authority maintained schools, academies and other types of schools such as pupil referral units and special schools.

The schools covered by the agreement will no longer need to purchase a PPL licence via CEFM, as they did in previous years, as this will be paid for directly by the DfE.

All English non state funded schools and all schools in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland will need to continue to purchase their PPL licences via CEFM as they have done in previous years.

If you have any queries about this or any aspect of PPL licensing in your school please contact CEFM on 01494 836 233 or ppl@cefm.co.uk.

PRS for Music works in a similar way on behalf of music composers, songwriters and publishers. CEFM are also the collection agents within the UK schools sector for PRS for Music.

Please note that for the use of pre-recorded music (tapes, records or CD’s) a PRS for Music licence is required in addition to a Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL) licence.

Any infringement of PPL copyright will be pursued by PPL and could lead to civil proceedings.

By law (Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988), a PPL licence is required whenever copyrighted music is used in schools in a non-curricular manner. We have highlighted below some common types of school music use where a PPL licence is required:

  • Discos/end of term parties.
  • Telephone systems music on hold.
  • Playing a radio/tape/CD player.
  • School fetes (where music is being played).
  • Jukebox.
  • Dance/aerobics classes for students and staff only.