So you want to start a preschool, but it’s the middle of the year… Learn the three best times to start your preschool, and when NOT to start your preschool classes.
NOTE: While the times listed below are typically only applicable for local preschools, it’s important to note that you can start your online preschool any time of the year.
1. The BEST Time Of Year To Start Your Preschool – August!
The beginning of the school year is the best time to start your preschool year. Many school districts start in August nowadays, so everyone seems to be in “back to school mode”. The stores have school supplies on sale. Parents are getting into the new schedule for the new school year. It is just a natural time to start your preschool classes too.
When parents see your flyer advertising a preschool that starts around the same time as their school age children start classes they will easily sign up as long as your tuition matches their budget and your class times match their schedule. Oh, and as long as you are offering a really cool preschool program!
It works best if your preschool calendar follows the same calendar of your local public school district. So if your local schools start in August, start your preschool year in August, but if they start in September, start your year in September. Starting classes a week before or a week after the public school schedule starts helps families adjust to their new schedules.
2. The 2nd Best Time Of Year To Start Your Preschool
The second best time to start your preschool classes is in January. Why would a parent enroll their child in a class that starts halfway through the school year? There are several reasons.
- They may have simply forgotten to enroll their child in the fall.
- Their child may have recently turned three, so now they are old enough for your classes.
- Their child may have completed potty training in the last few months.
- They may not have had the financial means when your fall classes started.
- They may not have the financial means for a 10 month preschool program, but can afford a five month program
January is a good time to start a new class at a slightly higher tuition rate than your fall tuition rate. Be sure to add some extra value to your preschool classes to justify the rate increase. And keep the rates for the fall classes the same until the following school year.
Maybe all the preschools were full by the time a parent tried to register their child for fall classes. Maybe their child wasn’t ready for preschool a few months earlier, but they are now. Maybe the parents forgot to enroll their child for fall classes. Or maybe a parent suddenly realized, “Oh my gosh! My kiddo is going to be starting kindergarten in the fall and they aren’t ready yet!”
Start your January class on the first Monday in January, after the New Year. This will give these students five months of preschool instruction before the end of the school year.
3. The 3rd Best Time To Start Your Preschool
Summer Camp is a great time to start your preschool. Offering an 8 week summer camp is a good way to get your feet under you before you start your full school year program. Typically, your summer camp classes will be smaller than your regular school year enrollment numbers. Running a summer camp allows you to start slowly and ease into your preschool year.
Another benefit of offering a summer camp program is when parents contact you to enroll their child for your fall classes you can offer your summer camp as a Kindergarten Boot Camp or Kindergarten Quick Start and ask if they would like their child to get a two month head start on their preschool experience.
There are some best times of the year to start your preschool, do you know when they are? This post will help you figure it out.
When To Start Registration For Your Preschool Classes
Start registering children for your Fall classes in January. Will parents still bring their child to a class they signed up for eight months ago? Yes, they will. Occasionally there will be families who moved away, lost their job, had a baby, or cannot attend for some other reason.
When you send out your Meet & Greet packets in June or July and get your responses back you will be able to find out if students will not be able to join you. They will have already paid a nonrefundable registration fee, so if it’s at all possible their child will be in class when you start in August or September.
The best time to start your preschool depends on the market you are trying to reach, but you will find success starting either when the regular school district schedule starts, or in January.
When NOT To Start Your Preschool
There are times it is better to avoid when starting your preschool. November and December are the holiday season and people are usually not thinking about preschool. March and April are also not ideal because it would basically be only a 2 month school year.