Do I need any specific credentials or training to found a school?
The short answer is no. Although credentials are helpful in attracting families, especially a college degree, just about anyone who loves mentoring kids can be an effective learning coach. As far as subject expertise, the Internet and eLearning tools provide an incredible array of resources for educating children in areas both inside and outside your expertise, just as a million+ home schooling parents are doing.
What support will Microschool Revolution provide to me?
First and foremost, we will support you by looking for a funder who is looking to start a school that matches your vision. We’ll introduce you and facilitate the the loan process if you both decide you’re a good match. We’ll also pair you with a new school coach who will talk you through making a business plan and financial projections, nailing down a location, setting up payroll, and any other questions that pop up. Finally, we’ll help you implement our tuition payment system, which will automate the loan repayment process.
What are the key decisions I need to make to become a founder?
- What age range do you want to work with?
- Do you want to specialize in any subject or special needs area? What differentiates you from other learning coaches?
- Do you want to work alone or in collaboration with others? You may want to start alone and add others as you grow. In some cases you may be able to find parents that volunteer to help out.
- Where do you want to operate your coached schooling practice? While operating out of your home is a great place to start, you might prefer to relocate to another facility soon. You may consider renting an affordable Sunday School classroom space at a local church, or some libraries, YMCAs, or similar community centers may have appropriate spaces.
- What technology platform do you want to use for eLearning? We highly recommend Chromebooks, which are affordable and easily manageable.
- What do you want to charge for your services? You are completely free to set whatever price you like, but our hope at Coached Schooling is to provide families with full-time options at $350/month and below. You may want to charge an additional fee for Chromebooks.
What are the traits of a good learning coach?
A good learning coach is nurturing, encouraging, inspiring, patient, and supportive, but also holds high standards and pushes students to be increasingly self-directed and self-managed. Good learning coaches guide their students to learn persistence through frustration and failure rather than “rescuing” them at the first signs of difficulty.
Instead of feeding them answers, good coaches encourage students to figure out how they can find the answers themselves, whether online, in books, or from fellow students. Great coaches help students explore and discover their passionate calling in the world.
Who is backing this?
The loans you find through Microschool Revolution come from many different people and organizations. Most of our funders are investors or philanthropists with a particular interest in improving our education system. Both individuals and organizations can fund schools.
What kind of interaction should I expect from Microschool Revolution? From the funder? With other founders?
The first step is to discuss your vision for your school with the staff at Microschool Revolution. Once we have a good understanding of the type of school you’re interested in founding, we’ll match you with a funder whose vision is compatible with yours. You’ll work out the terms of the loan with the investor, and Microschool Revolution will help facilitate that process. The details of your interaction with your funder will be determined at that point.
Next, it’s time to get your school up and running! Microschool Revolution will match you with a business coach with experience in starting schools. You’ll hear from your business coach about once a week as needed to get your school running; the frequency of your interaction may be more or less than once a week during various phases of your start-up process. You’ll also be invited to join the Microschool Revolution community of founders, where you can discuss your struggles and share your breakthroughs with others on a similar journey.
How do I increase my chances of getting selected?
Usually, funders want to invest in people who are passionate about their idea and have already taken some steps toward the goal. Put some time into building a vision and making a business plan. Talk with families in your community to see if there’s interest. Start scouting out a location for your school. Basically, start working on the school now, even before you’re matched with a funder.
How do I apply for a loan?
Every journey starts with a single step! Just drop us a line and let us know you’re interested. We’ll get right back to you and walk you through the next steps.
How long will it take me to repay the loan?
We calculate the loan repayment amounts based on a percentage of the tuition you charge, so the time it takes depends on how much tuition revenue your school is generating. We expect most schools to pay off the loan in 7-10 years.
What happens if I quit or can’t pay back the loan?
Starting a school is a big responsibility – both to the families in your school as well as to the funders who have invested money in your school. We expect that you’d be ready to carry that responsibility before accepting the loan. That said, life does happen. If it does, here are some options.
Before you accept the loan, you’ll create a legal entity that represents the school. The loan will be made to that company, not to you personally. If you need to step down, you can bring on another owner of the school, and that person would take on the responsibility of repaying the loan. If you are unable to keep the doors of your school open for whatever reason and the school closes before repaying the loan, the loan would be in default. At that point in time, the funders would go through the appropriate legal channels to claim remaining assets of the school and regain as much of the outstanding loan as possible. Of course, we would hope that you would reach out to us for help before reaching that point, and we’ll do what we can to help you keep your school open!