How can I open up my own English kindergarten?

by Ally
(Tokyo)

Good evening. My name is Ally and I am looking to open up my own small private English kindergarten, so I was wondering if you could answer a few questions for me to help me get started.


1. What kind of business licenses/teaching licenses/credentials do I need to possess in order to open my own school?

2. I would like to rent a house, teach groups of young children in bedroom turned classrooms. I would also include daycare. Do you think that's possible? Do I need special permission from the city and/or neighborhood? (I understand sound might be a problem, I'm looking at soundproofing the walls.)

3. How much do you think my start-up budget should be?

4. If I offer childcare with my English school what are the necessary procedures to register it as a legitimate daycare?

Maybe I should include a little more about me. I've recently graduated from college and this is my second year teaching at a private English preschool in Japan. I will start going to Temple University for my M.A. in Tesol while continuing to work at my current place of employment and plan to open my own school soon after I graduate. I expect it to open it within the next 5 years. The type of English school I would like to open is an English kindergarten.

Of course I don't expect you to know all the answers, but any input would be extremely helpful. Thanks in advance!

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Sep 03, 2015
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My thoughts on Opening an English Kindergarten in Japan NEW
by: Kevin Burns

1. What kind of business licenses/teaching licenses/credentials do I need to possess in order to open my own school?

None that I am aware of. At least in my city there are none. I bought fire extinguishers on my own. No one ever asked me to get them to protect my school and my students.

That said, that is one of the beauties of Japan. It is a great country to open your own business in, and it is a shame that more people and especially more non-Japanese, don`t do it.

There are opportunities for people who can think outside the box!


2. I would like to rent a house, teach groups of young children in bedroom turned classrooms. I would also include daycare. Do you think that's possible?


Yes. But due to some recent crimes, daycare centres are getting scrutinized more. Some children have died recently while in the care of babysitters. So while starting an English school is pretty easy, as soon as you want to take care of children as in a daycare, it may be tougher.

But one of the things that came out in the crime news, as that it is largely unregulated. Which concerns me very much.


Do I need special permission from the city and/or neighborhood? (I understand sound might be a problem, I'm looking at soundproofing the walls.)


I don`t know, sorry! I would think your landlord and the neighbours are your main concern, but my area is English schools and university teaching.



3. How much do you think my start-up budget should be?

Another tough question! As little as possible.
When you start a business I would try to keep your overhead low. Live in your place of work.
You may be talking 2-3 million yen but I bet you could start it for much, much less.


4. If I offer childcare with my English school what are the necessary procedures to register it as a legitimate daycare?

I would contact the ministry in charge of child welfare. I don`t know.

Maybe I should include a little more about me. I've recently graduated from college and this is my second year teaching at a private English preschool in Japan. I will start going to Temple University for my M.A. in Tesol while continuing to work at my current place of employment and plan to open my own school soon after I graduate. I expect it to open it within the next 5 years. The type of English school I would like to open is an English kindergarten.

This will be great. Do it soon! The boom is on now, until the Tokyo Olympics. Don`t wait too long! Read about others who have done the same thing as you. Politely ask them how they have done it.


There is a man in Tokyo who has done this. He is not very nice and is rather arrogant. So if he can do it. I bet a lot of people can.


I think the key is being professional and appearing trustworthy. You have to keep the children very safe, and you have to teach them very well.


Others, what do you think about this?

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