Friday, June 17, 2011

Time to Change

I've been busy updating my new studio website and making a few new changes to my policy letter. I've really enjoyed following Anne's blog. A while back she wrote an entry called "A Make-up Policy That Almost Works." Enforcing my make-up policy has been challenging for me this past year. I'm such a softy! I cave most of the time and schedule make-ups on Saturday or tack another student on at the end of a regular teaching day. This usually means that my husband is on baby-duty a little bit longer and his schedule is always being compromised. After reading this entry and then researching what other teachers do, I decided to make a couple changes.
  • Semester/Tuition Billing:  I've always charged by the lesson/per month. For example, if the month has 5 Monday's, then I adjust the invoice accordingly. This doesn't always work well when you are constantly adjusting for holidays, school holidays, and winter and spring break. This is frustrating for everyone's budget! I really hope this new billing will work better for me and my families. So far, the feedback from my parents has been positive.  
  • Missed Lessons:  After I read Anne's blog entry about her make-up lesson policy, I decided to give it a try. I created a Studio Calendar page on my website that lists all my students' lesson times. If they cancel, then I update the calendar to open their scheduled time up for another student to use. I also decided to open up a few days here and there as "make-up days" to fall back on. I've tried so many different ways of handling make-up lessons, so I really hope this is the cure or at least a positive remedy.  Last year, I implemented a "swap list," allowing students to trade with other students when conflicts arise. I only had a couple families utilize it, and I still ended up scheduling make-up lessons.  
I really hope these new changes work well for my studio!  I'll keep you updated.