School business is a very important business, in the olden times it was only the male children that were mostly sent to school. This was so because parents believed that the female children will be married out leaving behind the males. It was only a few parents who knew the importance of Education that sent their girls to school.
These days the story has changed every parent now knows what Education stands for that’s why there is a rush in sending children to school. In my time it was until you are six years old before you can start attending school or you can round your hand across your head. But not so anymore, as children from all ages are now being sent to school…hmmm! that’s nice.
This is also the reason why you are seeing schools everywhere. It will continue this way because babies are given birth to every day in large numbers and coupled with the fact that growth is continuum.
I am one person that will continue to support the opening of more schools because of the value education is adding to the society. Aside that more schools will result in competitions which will give rise to quality and of course competition steers growth. Competition has also pushed parents to send their wards to schools since ‘nobody wan carry last nah’.
Private schools keep increasing because public schools cannot handle the population of intending students, it is also said that some public schools do not handle their students the way private schools does (private schools are said to deliver quality) this has left most parents with the choice of taking their wards to private schools.
WHAT TO LOOK OUT FOR
In this post I will be dwelling on how to open a Nursery/Primary School although you can also use these guidelines in starting a Secondary School or University.
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To start a school you need commitment, skills, finance etc. The following questions should guide you:
- Why open a new school when there are many of them already?
- What do you want to achieve by opening a school and how will you be able to convince Guardians to register in your school?
- What help will your school render to a child?
- How will you cope with competition and what will you do better than the already established ones?
THINGS TO PUT INTO CONSIDERATIONS BEFORE STARTING SCHOOL BUSINESS
- You must have educational background such as; NCE, B.SC or a PHD. If you don’t have any of these, you can employ someone who has and well experienced in running the affairs of a school to do it for you while you make the move in acquiring the necessary certificates. Or you partner with someone (since you have the capital) that has the background certificate and passionate about school but doesn’t have the means to start school business.
- Create a neat, serene and conducive environment.
- Put necessary things in place such as, chairs, tables, whiteboard, markers, classroom decorations, TV etc.
- Provide facilities such as electricity, water supply and toilet.
- Register with CAC, this will sustain you until you register for licence from educational bodys’, there are many other benefits of registering with CAC.
HOW MUCH CAPITAL IS NEEDED TO START A SCHOOL?
There are two ways to start; you can start it as a purpose driven school or as a small starter.
AS A PURPOSE DRIVEN SCHOOL:
If you are starting a purpose driven school, you must have good money at hand for that. Most of the people who start this kind of school do it as business. You will need more than 10million to start.
These are some of the things you will need for a purpose driven school;
- Outdoor game equipments
- Fan and A.C
- Boards, chalk, tables, rulers, geographic/sport materials, chairs
- Qualified teachers from different fields, a nurse, security, minders etc
- A well designed environment such as sporting field (football, basketball etc.), neatly structured building with administrative offices, a clinic, security post, all fenced round.
- Sign boards
- Tailor to sew and mend uniforms
- A sizeable library with good books
- A land/building properties; definitely you wouldn’t want to put all the aforementioned necessities in somebody’s property.
SCHOOL BUSINESS AS A SMALL STARTER:
This brings us to the question; can someone start a school without money? The answer is yes, this is how to go about it:
Start by organising a weekend/holiday lessons, this kind of starting can only be successful with people who have passion but without money to start. People likes free things so to get enough children to teach, tell their parents in your neighbourhood, family, church or any place of your worship etc. Gather materials from standard schools and use them to teach the children.
You can make it free or collect a fee which is less to nothing. As the number keeps increasing with a tremendous improvement of the children or when they start showing outstanding performance you can then charge them or increase the fee. Before you know it, parents will be the ones to be telling or hastening you to start a school and will even support you both financially and materially.
Start from crèche or pre-nursery and employ additional hands that you can be able to pay. As pupil graduates from the pre-nursery class they will automatically form the nursery/primary classes. It will gradually grow from there until it becomes a big school.
I know a lady who started this way in my neighbourhood she has long expanded and still doing well. In our very eyes guardians were withdrawing their wards from other schools to her school. As it stands today she has so many people in her list that she is paying salaries.
HOW LUCRATIVE IS SCHOOL BUSINESS?
If you are starting a school business as a get quick venture, I am sorry to disappoint you, it won’t work that way. You will be frustrated and stressed out, it would be better you never started at all. It is only people who opened purpose driven schools in a strategic location that will make it faster than others that started small. Before you can start making profit from school it will take about 5-6 years.
To put it in one sentence, to start a school business you need to be patient, diligent and humble. The money you make in the first few years have to be put back in capital expenditure and in paying of salaries in other to grow the school.
HOW TO GET PUPILS
This is where the real challenge lies because many parents will not want to put their wards into your care except you have built trust first. All the same getting pupils will depend on two factors:
- Location: the location has to be accessible, the road leading to the school should be motorable for parents who are mobile to carry their wards down. Not in a remote place so that fear won’t prevent parents from bringing their children.
- Relationships: a good relationship with the people in your neighbourhood will make you to get kids fast.
- Price: the price should be affordable
- Show high level of professionalism and standards in other to convince parents.
- Offer quality service
- Build strong academic structure to a level higher than usual
- Print flyers and distribute them around
THE TYPE OF STAFFS’ TO EMPLOY
Employ B.SC, HND and more of NCE for teaching and administrative positions. The minder and security can be persons with school certificates. The nurse has to be someone who is well qualified for the position with a certificate from the school of nursing.
HOW MUCH SALARY SCHOOL I PAY?
It depends, as a beginner from a humble beginning you have to pay that which you can afford so you don’t go bankrupt while increasing the salary as the school keeps growing.
For a purpose driven school there should be a fixed amount that is standard in relation to what same schools are paying. You should pay accordingly if you have a staff quarter for your workers, you have to put that into considerations.
In essence paying staff salaries depends on individuals, the population of the students and the school fees charged. For the lady in my neighbourhood she is paying her staffs’ #10,000 and charges #5,000 as fee. You can do better than that, know this the first salary paid to staffs’ is actually a commitment (sacrifice).
HOW TO GET FUNDS TO START A SCHOOL BUSINESS
As a beginner it is not advisable to get loan from a bank or any other financial institutions to start a school business. Except you have other additional means of paying back the money to the bank as at when due. If you get a loan from bank as a beginner you will crash out of the business because of the burden you will be placing on yourself.
It is advisable to get a loan only if you want to expand the school. Starting of any business is not easy so also starting a school isn’t easy. For you to get money for a start, seek for help from your family members, friends and well wishers, if the people around you cannot trust you with their money likewise bank won’t trust you with theirs.
HOW TO MAKE YOUR SCHOOL OUTSTANDING
Define your academic standards before starting and maintain or raise it. Most schools follow Montessori pattern of education, while others adopt Indian style. Most proprietors believe that India kind of education is an extension of child’s quality learning from the kindergarten level which will mold the child to a successful career.
Use about 2-3 uniforms to be won in different days. Some states like Akwa Ibom State Government are the ones that determine the textbooks to be used in schools. But where there is nothing like that just check the ones the best school around are using and use same. Although some schools hide their curriculum but from their students you will know their settings.
GET GOVERNMENT APPROVAL
Before you get Government approval the school should be in your own land. Nursery or Pre-school registration can be done by Ministry of education (primary education board), ministry of women affairs or social welfare. You can start a school before getting the licence but ensure CAC to avoid embarrassment.
Getting registered is not expensive but you must follow the recommended specifications which are very simple. It might take 2-3 years before finally being approved.
School business is lucrative when appropriately costed, with a good number of pupils coupled with good management. Find out how much other schools in your area with your kind of standard are collecting and collect the same amount or bring it down a little to attract guardians first.
Form parents teachers association (PTA) quickly, they are the ones who will help in building the school.
You can now start a school business that will deliver premium for a better tomorrow.
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