Copyright & Reporting

CCLI (Christian Copyright Licensing Limited)

What are CCLI licences for?

Songs may be sung in assembly without a licence or any charges. However, the reproduction of the lyrics or musical scores for use in an assembly or church requires a licence. Permission is required to produce song sheets, copy sheet music, or project song words for pupils to sing and perform.

Many schools are required by law to hold a daily act of collective worship. The Schools Printed Music Licence (SPML) currently provided by the CLA (Copyright Licensing Agency) does not cover the use of songs in assemblies and during times of collective worship, and an alternative source of permission is required to use songs for this purpose.

nullCCLI (Christian Copyright Licensing Limited) licences provide that permission on behalf of many of the publishers whose songs are commonly used in assemblies, easing the cost and administrative burden of copyright on schools, while making sure that songwriters and copyright holders are fairly paid for the use of their work in this context. 

What can a CCLI license allow my school, church, or organisation to do?

Reproduce song lyrics

  • Project song lyrics
  • Download and share lyrics and music
  • Photocopy or scan music and lyrics
  • Record assemblies and services including the music
  • Make custom musical arrangements where no authorised version exists

For UK schools, you may need a CWCL and a CWMRL licence.

For churches, you may need a CCL and MRL licence.

A CWCL licence also gives you permission to display song lyrics and music from Sing Up’s whiteboard player on a whiteboard or other screen. Simply remember to log the song titles when you report to CCLI.

More information about licences for schools can be found on CCLI’s website.

How can Sing Up help me report to CCLI?

It’s vital that you report the songs you reproduce or copy under these licences using CCLI’s online reporting tool. CCLI’s reporting support page and printable help guide will help you get started and make reporting as simple and quick as possible.

Firstly you will need to obtain your Collective Worship Copyright License, which is free for all state-funded school. You can download your license from the CCLI website - you will need your school's Unique Reference Number (URN) to do this. Schools outside of England, or non-maintained schools, should contact the CCLI directly to obtain your license.

Once you’ve got your licence you need to report which songs you’ve used and how often you’ve used them. You can download a handy report from your ‘My Library’ area to help you complete details on your CCLI reports.

Sing Up will help you keep track of the Song Bank songs your school, church, or organisation used during a CCLI reporting period. Within your My Library area, you can download a report of the songs you used on the Sing Up website within the Autumn/Winter or Spring/Summer CCLI reporting period.

Your song usage reports will list the songs you streamed or downloaded. The reports will also include a song if you looked at a song’s whiteboard or scores. 

PLEASE NOTE: The song usage reports will not be a comprehensive source for your CCLI reporting and only function as a reference. You will still need to keep track of how many times a song was used and in which setting. 

The Spring/Summer song usage report is always available between 1st April and 30th September. The Autumn/Winter song usage report is always available between 1st October and 31st March. You will only be able to download a song usage report for the currently applicable period. CCLI recommend ongoing reporting to log song usage using their online tool, instead of waiting until the end of a 6-month reporting period. Thus, you may download a Sing Up report any time and as many times you need, it will always give you an up-to-date list of songs you used from the start of the reporting period.

To identify Sing Up’s songs within the CCLI database, you can use the CCLI ID. This CCLI ID is provided on song usage reports, or can be found on the song page within About.

Useful Links

You may find some of these other links useful in navigating various issues around copyright and licences for schools and music. All these sites have useful FAQ sections on a variety of topics.

Christian Copyright Licensing Limited
CCLI has an extremely helpful FAQs section on their website, which covers general topics, as well as specific information regarding their licences and how to report song usage.

Copyright and Schools
Useful site with lots of information on all sorts of issues relating to copyright and schools in England

Copyright Licensing Agency
The Copyright Licensing Agency – various licences and lots of information on copyright, including specifically for the education sector. Includes information on the Schools Printed Music Licence, and an interesting blog for schools.