Undertaking in teaching offers many possibilities: from organizing tailor-made classes to experimenting and putting into practice alternative didactic models. For this reason, and also for the satisfaction of having their own business, many professionals decide to set up their educational project.
Starting to work as a freelance teacher does not require, in principle, large investments. The initial effort is usually focused on promoting yourself and getting students. We present some tips and the main ways in which you can start a business as a teacher.
First Thing: Identify the Market Niche
The most common is to offer training in subjects present in educational plans (such as mathematics, language or foreign languages such as English or French) or artistic disciplines such as musical instruments or painting, for example.
However, more and more students are looking for private lessons in new technologies and disciplines, such as robotics, programming or marketing. Often, the key is specialization.
Whatever the audience, the important thing is to position yourself and specialize. Above all, working to find students: being active on social networks, contacting teacher communities and running promotional campaigns can be a good way to start. The key is in creativity.
The Flexibility of Private Lessons
Most teachers who start working on their own do so by giving private lessons. This modality offers its advantages. For example, flexibility when choosing the time and place of classes (it can be at the teacher’s or student’s home, in a library or in a cafeteria, without going any further). Another option is to provide professional services to an academy or a private center.
By giving private lessons, you are developing an economic activity. Therefore, it is best to register as a freelancer and take into account a series of particularities when billing:
Classes on subjects included in the study plans of any of the educational system’s levels and degrees are exempt from VAT.
The billing regulations indicate that it is not mandatory to issue invoices when private classes are exempt from VAT unless the student requires it.
If you work through an academy or a private center, you must specify VAT. The client must also withhold 15% of the personal income tax and pay it to the Treasury quarterly.
Create an Online Business
Teaching through Skype or other video calling services allows you to get many more clients and be more flexible. One option is to create your own website in which teaching materials and other tools that support learning are also added.
Another is to register on platforms such as Udemy or Coursera, where different courses can be offered. It is an easier way to access a large number of students. However, whether it is through your own website or through platforms, it is essential to work to make yourself known.
The Next Step: Setting up an Academy
It means going further: when teaching is put at the service of a business structure, the activity is no longer considered professional to become business. Setting up an academy means creating a company. Another option is to open a franchise, which implies less risk because there is a brand and advice.
In both cases, the important thing is to know how to meet the students’ expectations with good teachers, adequate infrastructures and a good teaching plan. It is also a good idea to offer classes focused on preparing for official exams. In fact, the key to succeeding as a teacher is often specializing.