Starting an English School in Japan
by Jason Smith
I`m starting an English school in Japan and have a few questions to ask you Kevin, writes, Jason Smith, of the USA.Q: I am starting an Eikaiwa and I have heard a cancellation policy is necessary. What type of cancellation policy do you use in your schools?
If you are asking about taking a break for a month or so:
We use a similar policy to what a lot of the cram schools (jukus) use here, which is you have to cancel by the 20th of the previous month (in order to cancel for the next month).
If you mean just cancelling one lesson. Of course they can do so, and they can do it by Email or phone, and they can do a make up lesson in another class anytime, as long as there is space.Q: We would also like to know about scheduling systems. I have heard of some systems where students can book on-line. Which ones do you use or recommend? We are a very small school with about 20-30 students at the moment.
I don`t use a scheduling system like Nova or some schools use. Sometimes simple is best - a phone call or Email. Why not keep it simple? Maybe I am old fashioned that way, but what`s wrong with an Email or a phone call? For older students, I would imagine it is easier than a system they need to learn.
We all love our iPhones and new doo dads, but some busy people like simplicity. I could be wrong, but that is how I feel.Q: We would like to provide quality lessons for a reasonable price. What is a reasonable price for a fixed time 50 minute lesson for adults? Children?
Tough question, very subjective. Is the teacher native? For lessons with a native teacher-
For adults we do the following:
午前 ６０分／週１回 ７２００円
午後 ５０分／週１回 ６１００円
夜 ６０分／週１回 ９4００円
I charge 9400 Yen/hour for adults, and that is a group lesson that can have a maximum of 8 students.
For children we charge:
２歳児～６歳児 ３０分／週１回 ５３００円
小学生クラス ５０分／週１回 ７６００円
中学生クラス ６０分／週１回 ９０００円
No entrance fee.
If I start another school I may change that. One school I know of in Tokyo charges 100,000 Yen as an entrance fee, but that seems very high, though that is a kind of international kindergarten and people are paying it!!!
I hope this answers your questions.