I charge by term and the ongoing students pay on the last day of the term for the following term. However, I don’t usually charge at the end of the year. I wait until the beginning of the new school year in late January.
I am thinking of charging a non-refundable deposit of $50 by the last day of this year’s term. If they do come back, that $50 goes towards their first term fees. If they do not pay, I do not hold their place nor work around them. But if the do pay, I work the times and organize the term schedule around them.
What do you think? What issues do you think may arise? Do you do this already, and how? What wording do you use to implement this?
I do this every term. I started requiring a $50 deposit before end of term at the end of the year due to our long break over the summer, and due to students who would suddenly cancel the week lessons started. So approximately four weeks before end of term I email saying that non-refundable deposits are due on or before their last lesson, and if no payment is received by the end of term, their place won’t be held for them. Once deposits are paid, they are booked for the next term but the time/day remains the same as what they had. If students don’t come back, they lose their deposit; otherwise it’s deducted from their term fee.
All of my students pay in full by the last Friday of Term 4 if they want to continue the following year. I just tell people I need to know if I can offer their place to another family.
They choose if they want to pay the normal price for the term or the discounted price for the whole year. Most students take the year deal now. I send the offer out at the end of October and give them 7 days to take the year deal. If they want to just pay by the term I require a deposit at that stage and full payment by the end of term 4.
It’s clearly stated in my terms and conditions that payment is non-refundable. However, I would assess each situation at my discretion.
I get a 2-week deposit at the end of term 4 to keep their place. I like to be available for holiday lessons for 2 weeks before the new school year. Only for one or two days though, and different times. I book them in at the end of the year if they know they will be here. I’ve found it eases me gently back into teaching mode without the full schedule.