Starting New School 3rd Question


I've been discussing with my colleagues on how best to price the school. We've come up with some really innovative solutions.

-Charge per session, allowing students to skip sessions that don't interest them or are outside of their business model (FYI, phase 1 of the school is entrepreneurship, phase 2 is vocational.) Something students can afford, since there will be no government assistance available in the beginning.

-Charge standard tuition. 600 per class or so, no skipping sessions.

-Start out teaching a few students for free and grow/charge as demand is met. The issue we've come to with this is that some of my mentors say that students won't take their coursework seriously if they're not paying for it.

I'm interested in your thoughts on these or any extraneous thoughts you may have! Thanks!

Pricing Education

asked Jul 10 '10 at 05:42
Ryan Chatterton
921 points
  • What is your goal wrt a new school? Why should someone go to your school rather than a community college? – James Black 14 years ago

2 Answers


Do you know 20 people who would absolutely attend this school?

If no, that's the first step anyway, right?

If yes, then I would ask them.

answered Jul 11 '10 at 02:28
16,231 points


You can start small with seminars, boot camps, mini courses, etc., but charge something. There's a big difference in what people will tell you they'll pay and what they actually end up spending and where they spend it. It will be expensive and depressing if you offer a full-blown curriculum and because of lack of interest/money, you have to cancel classes.

You're trying to do something different, so you'll probably attract non-traditional students. Be prepared for night, weekend and online class needs. There can't be unlimited flexibility, but you'll have some direction. Since you're not going to offer a degree that is going to have any meaning beyond your students (nothing against what you're doing, but that is going to be reality for a few years), they're going to be more interested in learning specific content. You'll have little leverage to lock them into courses the don't want.

answered Aug 14 '10 at 11:08
Jeff O
6,169 points

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Pricing Education