Grow Your School Budget

 

Teachers, Principals, Staff, School Board Members, and Parents,

class with teacherHave you ever wondered what your school would be able to do if you were able to fill every class to capacity? Are there plans your school has made or projects you want to complete, but you just don’t have the recourses?  As a member of the school board of Family of Christ Christian School in Tampa, FL (we’re about to launch a new, custom site), these are questions that I thought about a lot and I think I’ve found an answer to these questions.

I should start by telling you a little about Family of Christ.  Family of Christ is a great school with great people.  It’s also a growing school.  We started eight years ago with a Kindergarten and have been adding a new grade level every year and even added two grade levels in one year a few years ago.  With that kind of expansion and growth, it meant we had at least an additional 20 students to enroll every year not including the normal come and go of students.  Easier said than done.  Last year we added our final grade level of 8th grade and had our first graduating class.  This year we currently have about 135 students, though that number is growing.

Every school board meeting we would cover the normal topics which included discussing and planning things for the coming months.  One of the problems, however, was that we had a lot of really great ideas, but didn’t always have the budget to implement them.

As with most schools we were limited by our budget.  We would get requests for the school to get a great new math curriculum or have another video projector for teachers to use or we would see things that needed to be done, like painting the hallway or re-mulching the playground, but that budget kept getting in the way.

And then there were the teacher salaries, something in which I had particular interest with my wife teaching third grade.  As one of the school board members put it, “We want to have the best educational environment and the best teachers, but we are paying our teachers less than the public schools pay.  We can’t expect to get or keep the best if we don’t pay them well.”

Fortunately for the school and our students, teachers tend to be a different breed.  They aren’t in it for the money.  Let’s face it, even when teachers are paid well, they aren’t paid well.  Family of Christ has been blessed with great teachers who care more about teaching and sharing Christ with children then making more money; however, that didn’t make it alright to pay them less
…but there’s that budget again.

We were limited by our budget and our budget was limited by how many students we had.

We knew we wanted to have more students.  So, we were occasionally sending out direct mailings to thousands of homes and occasionally getting some advertising in the newspaper.  The problem was that every time we talked about doing one of these marketing efforts it was discussed as an expense; but marketing isn’t supposed to be an expense. The point of marketing is to bring in more revenue.  In the case of a school, you want to bring in more students.

One day it hit me.  Why are we ringing our hands over spending a couple thousand dollars on a marketing campaign when every student was paying about $5500 in tuition and fees?  I asked the board, “How much additional cost is it for us to enroll and teach a new student?”  There are some supplies and additional costs, but like most schools the answer was that it didn’t cost the school much extra to add a student.  In fact the vast majority of that $5500 the student paid was additional revenue for the school that would enable us to either more easily meet our budget or give us the opportunity to do some of those things we’d wanted to do but were unable to do because we didn’t have the money.

So, we realized that we needed to market the school more and better.  It doesn’t matter if we spend $10,000 marketing the school, if we bring in three additional students, we will have more money than when we started.  This was a great opportunity for our school to change the way it thought about marketing from an expense to a way to increase revenue.

I also happened to have another opportunity.  As the Director of Marketing Services with OurChurch.Com, I had the opportunity to develop an effective way to market schools online, something that could not only help the Christian school I was involved with, but also thousands of other private schools.  And that’s what we did.

Yesterday we launched the Top School Search Rankings service.  The Top School Search Rankings service targets online sources, such as search engines, Internet Yellow Pages, School directories, and more to help schools increase their online presence.  With more and more people searching online to find what their looking for, online marketing is a key component to any schools marketing campaign.  It’s designed to help bring more visitors to your school’s website and thus help you bring in more students.  It’s priced so that if just about any private or Christian school gets even one additional student, the service will have paid for itself.

Remember, marketing isn’t an expense; it’s an investment.   It’s a way to increase revenue.

I was talking with our Director of Customer Support, Karl yesterday. His wife teaches at another school in the area.  He mentioned some of the issues his wife’s school was having.  I responded that they should get the Top School Search Rankings service.  He commented that the school was struggling financially and recently had to make some cutbacks, so he didn’t think they would spend the money.

So I told him, “When schools (or businesses) are struggling to meet their budget and cover expenses, that’s usually the time they need to market their school the most.  You can try to balance the budget by cutting back expenses, or you can balance the budget by bringing in more students and thus increasing your income.  Which is more helpful in the long run?  Which has less of a negative impact on the school and its staff?  Which will help your school grow?”

If your school is struggling to meet its budget or if the school is doing just fine but would like to grow even more, I invite you to try the Top School Search Rankings service.  Parents are searching the Internet for schools for their children; the Top School Search Rankings service can help those parents find your school.

You can learn more about the Top School Search Rankings service and watch a short informational video about the service at:

http://marketing.ourchurch.com/marketing-school-marketing-services.php

Have you or your school had trouble meeting enrollment?  What has your school done to address that?  Please add your comments and stories.

Kurt Steinbrueck is the Director of Marketing Services with OurChurch.Com. He also serves on the leadership of Family of Christ Lutheran Church in Tampa, FL. You can find him on Google+ as .

3 Responses to “Grow Your School Budget”

  1. Kurt,

    I have been reading your newsletters for years. After reading the lastest newsletter about the schools and their budgets I think I have something that will help schools and churches get a boost from their communities. I would like to send you something to look over. Is this is the form I would to send you information direct?

  2. PASTOR T.CH.BABU
    the god heavenly gospel ministries

    please upport to our BURDEN TO FULLFILL http://www.ourchurch.com/member/t/tghg

    E mail: tghgministries@yahoo.com

    pastor.Babu
    India

  3. THE GOD HEAVENLY GOSPEL MINISTRIES
    CHILDREN SPONSORSHIP LAL&CH

    LITTEL ANGELS LOVE AND CARE HOME
    Child Sponsorship

    Please print this form, fill it out and return it to
    THE GOD HEAVENLY GOSPEL MINISTRIES SERVICE SOCIET
    PASTOR.T.CHINA BABU
    BONDA PALLI , CHEEPURUPALLI[S.O]
    VIZIANANGARAM 535128
    ANDHRA PRADESH ,INDIA
    tghgministries@yahoo.com
    +00919989505580
    +00919440691823
    We prefer a:
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    Child Sponsorship is a pledge to support a child at Faith Home. A sponsorship is $20 per month. sponsorships to provide the essentials of shelter, food, clothing, medical care, teachers’ salaries, school expenses and to pay the staff of Faith Home who directly care for the children.

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    Your Sponsorship will be assigned to a child and you will be sent a photo and information about this child from time to time. When the child is able they may communicate with you also. We ask you to support your child with regular prayer as well as with your finances.

    Please mark all of your gifts for “Child Sponsorship”

    IF THY COULD STAND WITH US WE CAN DO OUR BEST IN CHRIST FOR HIS GLORY AMEN.

    TGHG Ministries India

    THE GOD HEAVENLY GOSPEL MINISTRIES S.S

    My respected Co ministries
    Pastor.t.china babu President of the god heavenly gospel ministries.
    OUR CHURCH PLANNING TO EASTABLISH BELOW PROJECTS in the near future in Christ to help and accomplish the will of God the lord jesus christ if thy could stand with us we are ready do establish the will and our vision in christ amen.:

    1.Little Angels Love n Care HOME _______________________

    VISION: 1.

    To provide better life, education, shelter and food for poor and Orphan children. 2. To motivate them to live for CHRIST

    2.BIBLE CORRESPONDENCE COURSE please views our pastors of unity and faith in Christ ______________________________

    VISION: 1.
    To provide the basic BIBLE education for every Christian leadership traing. 2. To create God’s fruitful Harvester in God’s Work of ever Christian

    .

    http://www.ourchurch.com/member/t/tghg
    http://www.ourchurch.com/member/u/Unity-Faith

    My beloved could thy pray:

    PLEASE MOSTLY PRAY FOR MY CHURCH BUILDING WE STARTED ON OUR PLACE WE NEED NEAR $: 85,000 for the church properties and for the church building……..

    PLEASE KEEP THY GOODNESS WITH PRAYER
    YES I BELIEVE THY HEART THE LORD WILL ACCOMPLISH MY WILL FOR HIS GLORY ONLY AMEN.

    YES WE NEED TO BUILD A CHURCH NOW WE WORSHIPING IN ONE SHED PLEASE SHAR MY HEART MY BELOVED MY RESPECTED ONE COULD THY PLEASE GIVE ME THY HEART AND SHARE MY HEART WITH THY CO MINISTRIES
    WE ARE PRAYING FOR THY MINISTRIES AND WE HAVE the heart to PRAY
    ************************************************************
    yes my beloved and respected keep thy PRAYERS FOR THE
    CHURCH BUILDING {BIBLE CHAPEL}

    KEEP IN PRAY FOR THOSE PASTORS IN TGHG MINISTRIES
    KEEP IN PRAY FOR THOSE CHILDRENS IN OUR HOME
    KEEP IN PRAY FOR THE NEEDS OF OUR CHURCH
    KEEP IN PRAY FOR THE SCHOOL BUS
    KEEP IN PRAY FOR PRESIDENT OF TGHG MINISTRIES TO BRING THE GLORY OF GOD {PASTOR.T.CHINNA BABU}
    WITH OUR BEST OF HEART WE ARE HERE TO HEAR THY WORDS IN CHRIST FOR CHRIST AMEN
    AND TGHG MINISTRIES.

    TGHG ministries are a non-profit making Christian organization working with aim of Christian evangelism, Welfare of christinity, Erradication of poverty. It is registered with Indian society’s registration Act XXI 1860.

    THY BELOVED AND LOVED ONE IN CHRIST
    PASTOR.T.CHINNA BABU
    TGHG MINISTRIES

    THE GOD HEAVENLY GOSPEL MINISTRIES
    TGHG MINISTRIES HEART Pray For Church Properies

    HEART OF TGHG MINISTRIES Pray for Church Properties

    WE PREACH THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST TO UNREACHED PLACES IN OUR INDIA , ANDRA PRADESH COULS THY STAND WITH US SO WE CAN DO OUR BEST IN CHRIST AMEN.
    iam so thanks for thy all in Christ and to thy all great
    burden we are every grateful to thy all heart in the lord really we so
    thanks for thy heart in Christ amen. sir i have one small words

    i mean we need to buy church building land only ,

    yes sir if we buy 100 sents of land

    it cost nearly Rs: 29,00000 { $ : 67441.8604 }

    this is for 100 sents ,sir please do thy all will as soon as possible we are so PRAYING FOR THIS LAND PLEASE SHARE WITH ALL OF RHY BELOVED ONES IN THY COUNTRY WE ARE TOO PRAYING FOR THIS CHURCH PROPERTIES I know thy heart IN CHRIST AMEN , .we need one church building i thing thy could understand my heart of burden in christ for christ thy BELOVED ONE IN THE LORD in the lord amen.

    This land is so good to put build church and for other activities too and this is so NEED FOR US TO BUILD CHURCH AMEN ,yes i believe the lord has plane for this land to get glory from us amen .
    thanks for thy all prayers in christ amen. nd amen please do thy all in christ with heart in christ amen.PLEASE SEND THIS PRAYER REQUEST TOO FOR YOUR CHURCH BELIEVERS AND THY ALL FRIENDS

    THE GOD HEAVENLY GOSPEL MINISTRIES

    CONTACT me in Christ

    THE GOD HEAVENLY GOSPEL MINISTRIES

    THE GOD HEAVENLY GOSPEL MINISTRIES
    SURVICE SOCIETY

    BONDA PALLI, CHEEPURU PALLI {S.O}
    VIZIANGARAM 535128.
    ANDHRA PRADESH .SOUTRH IDIA
    Ph : + 0091 9440691823
    + 0091 9247606010
    Emails : tghgministries@yahoo.com
    thegodheavenlygospelministriesss@yahoo.co.in