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[Start-it-up] How to Start a Playschool If you are passionate about teaching and hold prior experience in early childhood education, this is the perfect opportunity for you to become an edupreneur

By Shipra Singh

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Playschools are a very popular business idea in the education sector. So if you are passionate about teaching and hold prior experience in early childhood education, this is the perfect opportunity for you to become an edupreneur.

What is a playschool

A pre-school or better known as a playschool mainly caters to children aged between 2 and 4 years. As the name suggests, playschools offer a mix of learning and playing to very young children and help them develop social skills and learning-capabilities.

How to get started

You can either start your own playschool or take franchise of a popular playschool brand, like Kidzee, EuroKids or Bachpan etc. Opening a franchise doesn't require much planning as the parent company will set the guidelines for setting up and running the school. However, it comes with higher costs. Whereas if you want to start your own pre-school, you will need to manage everything yourself, from marketing to branding to designing your own curriculum. But, don't fret as setting up a playschool is not that cumbersome as it may sound.

So to start, identify a location for your pre-school. You will need around 1,000 sq ft area for a school that can accommodate up to 60 children. We suggest that you locate your school in a residential area because parents prefer sending their kids to playschools in near vicinity.

Now let us understand the permissions and guidelines for starting a pre-school business. Once you have decided the location, you must get a no objection certificate (NOC) from the society for running the playschool. For staffing, early childhood guidelines mandate one teacher or a trained professional for every 20 students. One important thing to note here is that if you want to teach in your own school, you will need a B.Ed degree or a diploma in pre-school teaching programme or an equivalent degree for the same.

Next let us move on to the investment required for setting-up the school.

Investment Required

You will require an initial investment for setting up your business, while other costs will be ongoing operating expenses. For setting up, furnishing and decorations will require you to shell out Rs 60,000-70,000. Setting up the play area with toys and other play equipments can cost you up toRs 1 lakh, whereas educational materials and learning tools in classes will be INR 25-30,000.

As for operational costs, rent of your play school will be between INR 30,000-35,000. Electricity and water bills can amount to about INR 20,000 per month. The major chunk of your operating costs will be on staffing, which will be around INR 80,000 for 3 teachers and 2 assistants. Of course, if you teach yourself, you can save on this cost to a great extent. Also, you may not have to hire more than one teacher in the beginning until your student count exceeds 20.

Next, you will spend INR 12,000-15,000 on marketing every month until you get enough students onboard, that can easily take up to 6-8 months.

Like we said earlier, starting a play school yourself works out cheaper compared to starting a franchise. Most popular playschool brands ask for a one-time investment of Rs 12 to 13 lakh, which is much higher than the costs we have just

Revenue

Your source of revenue will be the fees charged to students, which will depend on the kind of services you provide. For a regular playschool that offers learning activities and a play area, monthly fees per student can range from INR 2,000-2,200. If you want to provide day care services and meals, you can charge upwards of INR 3,500 per student. Along with the monthly tuition fee, students will also pay a one-time admission fee that can range between INR 15,000-20,000 per student.

So after you have 60 regular students attending your school, you can easily book a profit of 30-35% on the total revenue.

Like any other business, the first year can be slow in terms of profit generation. That said, pre-school business is also one of the few recession proof business ideas as no parent will ever compromise on their kid's education. So once your business takes no matter what, your business will always flourish.

Shipra Singh

Entrepreneur Staff

Freelance Journalist

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