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Financially sustainable schools

From Traditional to Transformative Education

Financially Sustainable Schools for Entrepreneurs are designed to overcome the problems of under-funding, economic exclusion and poor quality, irrelevant education which afflict so many traditional schools in developing countries. So how do they achieve this?

Financially Sustainable Schools generate their own income from a diversified group of small-scale, on-campus enterprises

Because Financially Sustainable Schools have their own sources of income, they are not dependent on unpredictable government subsidies, charitable donations or school fees. With more stable, or even increasing revenues and a culture of using available resources efficiently, Financially Sustainable Schools can afford better facilities, attract better teachers and provide students with a better education.

Financially Sustainable Schools approach education from a different view – ‘Solutions to Problems Facing the Small Producer’

Financially Sustainable Schools focus on teaching students to diversify their production, apply appropriate low-cost technology and make efficient use of the resources already available. At the same time, they teach students to analyze market demand, base production decisions on consumer demand, look for attractive market niches where their products can fetch higher prices, and to produce goods and services with as much ‘’value-added’ as possible.

Financially Sustainable Schools use a more effective educational methodology

The schools’ teaching methodology uses ‘Learning By Doing and Earning’ as a framework for providing an experiential child-centred education.

The curriculum is based on six educational pillars:

  1. Learning to Be
  2. Learning to Live Together
  3. Learning to Know
  4. Learning to Do
  5. Learning to Lead
  6. Learning to Earn
Financially Sustainable Schools focus on helping students develop the technical, analytical and personal competencies they will need in the workplace. The schools achieve this by integrating the teaching of traditional high school subjects with the running of their small-scale, on campus enterprises and using the ‘Learning by Doing and Earning’ methodology.
 
Financially Sustainable Schools’ combine local curricula with business training and a hands-on teaching approach

Financially Sustainable Schools do much more than just offer a mainstream curriculum. The subjects taught are designed to ensure that students acquire the specific competencies that it takes to run profitable small enterprises in their community and the specific skills demanded by employers in the local market.

Financially Sustainable Schools provide a different school culture and learning environment

Financially Sustainable Schools are on a permanent quest for economic self-sufficiency. This means that schools have to control costs carefully. It also means that they have to be attentive to local market conditions, developing new products for new market niches, and switching out of other products when they become less profitable. The quest for self-sufficiency obliges teachers and administrators to maintain a practical, entrepreneurial and innovative approach to their work.

The Financially Sustainable School model allows schools to offer both quality and affordability

What makes our model so innovative and sets it apart from other approaches to technical / vocational training is that we have found a way to combine quality with affordability.

We ensure the quality and relevance of our education program by giving students the opportunity to learn practical and entrepreneurial skills as they help run the school’s commercially viable, on-campus enterprises. By learning to run competitive enterprises – from production to marketing to record keeping – students acquire useful, marketable skills. At the same time, the schools ensure the affordability of this education to the poor by generating enough income to cover all of its operating costs.

To find out more about our model of Financially Sustainable Schools for Entrepreneurs, please download for free our ‘School in a Box’ Handbook that was designed as a ‘one-stop shop’ for anyone interested in establishing his or her own Financially Sustainable School. 

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