Education Licences

School Event Licence

Updated 10 February 2021

The School Event Licence allows schools to make both visual and audio recordings of musical works and sound recordings:

for non-commercial, educational and commemorative purposes. Schools have entered into an interim agreement with APRA AMCOS and ARIA to extend the term of the School Event Licence until 31 December 2021 and vary some of the rights granted under it.  Where we refer to the School Event Licence in these guidelines we are referring to that licence as amended by the interim agreement.

If you want information about performing musical works at school, see the guidelines on the APRA Licence.

What is a school event for the purposes of the School Event Licence?

School event means an event organised or authorised by the school, including:

      • concerts, events or functions held at the school, eg presentation nights, drama or music performances, assemblies (whether or not parents and the school community are invited)
      • concerts, events or functions connected with the school at a different venue (whether or not parents and the school community are invited)
      • sports days, where musical works are performed and/or sound recordings are played
      • school fêtes and fairs, where musical works are performed live and/or sound recordings are played.

The following are not regarded as school events, for the purpose of the School Event Licence:

The live performance of musical works by professional musicians and at eisteddfods (other than the Rock Eisteddfod) are covered by the APRA Licence, while the use of sound recordings by professional musicians and at eisteddfods is not.

Which schools are covered by this Licence?

All government and most Catholic and independent schools, are covered by the School Event Licence. You can check whether you are covered by the School Event Licence by contacting your school authority.

The School Event Licence allows schools to:

Make recordings

Schools are permitted to make recordings, which contain musical works and sound recordings, in any format:

      • to play at a school event (eg making a soundtrack to play at a dance recital)
      • of a school event at which musical works and/or sound recordings are played (eg making a recording of a graduation ceremony)
      • for inclusion in an electronic presentation (eg classroom PowerPoint slides, or in presentations at assemblies or functions)
      • to play in class for educational purposes (eg to play music recordings relevant to material being studied)
      • to use as part of a course of instruction (eg when teaching how to make or use sound recordings in music or multimedia classes).

Schools are also permitted to synchronise musical works and sound recordings with recordings made of a school event (eg add a musical soundtrack to a video recording of a school assembly, presentation night or sports day).

The school community is also permitted to make recordings of school events at which musical works are performed live or sound recordings are played (eg parents and friends can make a recording of a presentation night at which the school band played). Note however, they are only able to use these recordings for their private and domestic use (ie they are not permitted to upload onto social media platforms such as Facebook, YouTube etc).

Live streaming a school event

Schools can live stream their school event, where a musical work is performed live (eg a live performance by a school band or orchestra) and/or a sound recording is played, in real time from the school website, a social media platform (eg Facebook Live, YouTube) or a video conferencing platform (eg Zoom).

It should be noted, however, that if you are live streaming a performance where a musical work or sound recording is being played on a social media platform, it is possible that the live stream may be blocked or muted. For what to do if this happens, see ‘Blocking or muting school event(s) on social media’ below.

Recording a school event

Schools can make a recording of a school event at which a musical work or sound recording is performed or played. However, remember to label the recording in the following way:

‘This recording has been made under a licence from AMCOS and ARIA for educational purposes only’.

You must also display the following details of each musical work captured in the recording:

      • the title
      • the composer/arranger
      • the artist and recording company (if you are using a backing track).

For example, you could have this information flash up in the final credits.

What can I do with the recording of our school event?

Schools can do the following with recordings of their school event(s) at which musical works or sound recordings are performed or played:

      • upload the recording to the school website
      • make a physical copy of the recording (eg copy it on to a USB) and distribute it (for a no cost or on a cost-recovery basis) to members of the school community (ie parents/carers/guardians and students)
      • upload the recording to a password protected school server, intranet, or DTE and make this available to parents and students (eg if parents are unable to attend an assembly or graduation day, the school could send them a link to the recording on the school’s password protected intranet and allow them to download a copy for their private use)
      • upload the recording to an educational app that is being used by the school to communicate with members of the school community (ie Schoolbag, Seesaw, Compass and SZapp, but excluding apps like Snapchat and TikTok)
      • email/message a copy to members of the school community (eg students and parents/carers/guardians)
      • share a digital or physical copy of the recording of school events with schools that participated in the event (eg competitions and festivals) at which the recording was made (eg competitions and festivals).

Uploading a recording to social media

Schools can rely on licences that APRA AMCOS and record labels have with social media platforms to upload recordings of their school events to the school’s official social media page on social media platforms such as Facebook and YouTube. Note that where a musical work or sound recording is being performed or played at the school event, the post may still be blocked or muted – see ‘Blocking or muting school event(s) on social media’ below.

Incorporating recorded music into another work

Schools can incorporate a sound recording or a recording of a performance of a musical work (ie a recording of a school orchestra performing a piece of classical music) into another, unrelated work, such as a video or a PowerPoint presentation. The school can do the following with this new recording:

      • upload the recording to the school website, password protected intranet or password protected DTE
      • email and/or message the recording to students and parents (the school community)
      • upload the recording to an educational app that is being used by the school to communicate with members of the school community (ie Schoolbag, Seesaw, Compass and SZapp, but excluding apps like Snapchat and TikTok).

Note, the school cannot upload this work to social media.

Sell recordings

Schools are permitted to sell or supply recordings of a school event to:

      • members of the school community for their private and domestic use, for free or for a fee charged solely to recover costs of staging the school event
      • students, for their own private and domestic uses, at no charge or for no more than the direct cost of making the copy
      • other schools covered by the School Event Licence, for their own educational purposes, at no charge or for no more than the direct cost of making the copy.

Any recordings the school sells or supplies must:

      • not include advertising or promotional material
      • be labelled as follows:

‘This recording has been made under a licence from AMCOS and ARIA for educational purposes only’

and display the following details of each musical work captured in the recording:

      • the title
      • the composer/arranger
      • if dubbed from a commercial recording, the artist and record company.

What the School Event Licence does not cover

This licence does not permit you to:

Blocking or muting school events on social media 

Music recording companies (ie record labels) and some music publishers use software to identify potentially infringing content on social media platforms, such as Facebook. When a school live streams a performance where a musical work or sound recording is being played, or uploads a musical work or sound recording, this software may alert Facebook or other social media platforms to mute the recording or send a takedown notice to the school. If you are concerned about a live stream or recording being muted or your school being issued with a take-down notice, contact the National Copyright Unit. Alternatively, you may want to consider uploading the recording to your school website or password protected digital teaching environment.