Starting a private school can be not only time-consuming, but a challenging process. When thinking about starting a private school there are many key steps you will want to adhere to in order to keep the process manageable and seamless.
Private schools have many layered elements that can make the task of creating one from scratch daunting. Some of these include high academic standards, teacher-student ratios, extracurriculars such as art, music, PE, computers, discipline protocol, safety concerns, community partnerships, and accreditation just to name a few. Additionally, a private school is a business so you also have to decide if your school will for-profit or non-profit.
The following steps will help guide you in starting a private school.
This is a beginning step to start the process of starting a private school. Ask yourself the following questions to see what direction your private school will move.
School statements are a very important part of the process as they help you define your vision to your staff, parents, community and students. It is imperative that you not only focus on a mission statement, but define what all of your school statements are. Remember, these statements are reviewed every school year and can be changed or modified as your school grows.
Your committee or Board of Directors should be selected from different areas of business and not solely focused on education. Chose experts from different realms of business like accounting, legal, business, and education.
A business plan is an essential key in creating any business, including a school. Remember that a school is still a business and a business plan is key in creating a successful business.
Every state has regulations for private schools. Research the educational requirements for your state and make sure to adhere to the regulations of your state.
Develop a budget that will include your income and expenses (commonly known as a P&L or Profit and Loss). This budget will only be a projection so err on the conservative side as unknown expenses tend to always pop up.
Finding a location for a school can be a challenging task. Keep in mind that many states require certain permits to run a school at certain locations. These are typically called Conditional Use Permits (CUP). If you find a location make sure you are allowed to run a school at that site. Adding a CUP to a site location can be time consuming and expensive.
Once you have your business plan, your site location, and budget you can then hire staff for the school year you are planning to open. Typically teachers are hired for a school year and expect a contract so be prepared. Alternatively some private schools hire teachers on an hourly basis, especially the first year, in an effort to keep the budget in tact.
This is an important step and can be tricky as timing is crucial. Schools typically run on traditional school year schedules (August-June), therefore your timing is important.
Congratulations! It’s time to open your school! This is an exciting day! As the founder of private schools, this is one my most cherished days. Enjoy this day!
Although we have just scratched the surface to start a private school, this initial roadmap is a great place to begin. There are so many other things to consider, but starting with these basics will keep you focused and contain the overwhelm that can develop when starting a private school.
Starting a private school is no small feat. If you need assistance with starting or expanding your private school, our services can guide you through the process. Learn more by visiting our website.
Interested in learning more? Check out our blog about the 5 Essential Elements of a New Private School.
We would love to hear from you? Have you started a private school? Do you have feedback we can share with our readers? Let us know.