The Importance of School Fee Collection
The conundrum that some private schools face is in determining what the schools focus should be. Should they primarily focus on being a "provider of education services," or, should they focus on operating as a "business" first?
Many schools may view one to be as equally as important as the other - a balanced approach is very sensible. In today's world I'd suggest that the question that private schools need to ask themselves is "What focus will assist to ensure the schools survival?" The answer to this question seems crystal clear - the school's focus must primarily be on operating as a business first.
Schools can only survive if parents and guardians pay their school fees, so it is extremely important for schools to adopt many 'business like' policies and processes such as the engagement of external debt collection agencies to assist in the collection of overdue fees. And this can still be done in a way that continues to reflect a schools principles and beliefs/ethos.
Identifying cases of genuine financial hardship aside, the adoption and implementation of sound debt collection policies and guidelines in regards to overdue school fees is critical to the school in:
- Respecting those families who do pay their fees
- Keeping education costs down
- Continuing to provide students with a high quality education
- Maintaining and expanding facilities
- Ensuring that the welfare of the their own staff, and their families, is protected
- Ensuring that their school gates remain open for current and future students