We are finishing up our series on Setting up a homeschool Co-op by ending with the nitty gritty of registering for classes and other necessary paperwork. While your group is unique in your needs and culture, most groups will need to have some kind of process for registration as well as a system for keeping track of the different situations that arise. Hopefully by the end of this series you will be well on your way to a successful co-op.
If you are just getting started with us, start back on the first part of this series: Setting up a homeschool co-op.
If you need help setting up your semester go back to this post.
So you have your schedule set for the semester, your teachers are excited about their classes and you are ready to move on to the next step.
Class Descriptions and Fees
If there is something I have learned over the last 6 years is that- the more information the better! Parents want to know exactly what is expected of them and how much it’s going to cost. As we prep for the semester’s classes we use a spreadsheet for teachers to fill in their information. Then that information is transferred over to our website.
How are class fee’s determined?
In order to join our co-op our parents pay a registration fee of $20 a student. That fee helps cover the cost of our insurance, admin supplies, and cleaning supplies. Our families also pay a $10 web fee, which covers the cost of our registration program.
In addition to those fees each class has their own fees.
In order to determine what each class fee will be, we ask all our teachers to start with the number of students that they estimate will take their class. Then decide on what supplies they will need for a successful class and divide the cost of those supplies among the number of students. I always recommend adding an extra $5-$10 dollars to the overall estimate to cover things like copies and maybe a class party.
At our co-op, parents pay for class fees up front, and teachers get that money before each semester. With each check distributed we issue a receipt log. Teachers are responsible for keeping up with each purchase and logging it on the receipt form. Receipts and leftover monies are collected at the end of each semester. All leftover monies are placed in an benevolence fund for families that need financial help with classes.
Find this receipt form as well as others by grabbing it here:
Your group may not need any extra fees but when you are trying to discourage certain behaviors you may decide to implement extra fees for things like: Adding/dropping a class, Late registration, changing classes, extra children (we allow members to bring children that they may be babysitting under the age of 5)
What to use for registration?
If you are a small group you can easily get away with using a google spreadsheet and/or google survey to have people choose their classes. We have even used paper copies where we had each class listed out by grade level and each family filled it out by circling their top class choice and numbering their 2nd and 3rd choices.
If you are a bigger group you will definitely want to check out a program like Love My Groups or Homeschool Life I promise you it will make your life so much easier and it will make your group feel more professional. We started with Love My Groups, their customer service is great, they are a family owned company and will work with you. They didn’t quite have everything we needed so after a few years we moved on to Homeschool Life, but Love My Groups might be a more affordable program for those getting started.
How do you Plan Registration?
At our co-op we have two semesters where we register for classes. We try to have new enrichment classes each semester for our students and although our core classes are usually year long classes we ask our members to register for them each semester.
Our registration each year happens in June and November. This means that we begin planning for the next semester in April and September. If you need help setting up your semester go back to this post.
Most co-ops have some sort of priority registration for their members. This is just a small way to say thank you to all the admins and teachers who put in the work!
Consider how your priority registration should work, in our group it works as follows:
- Members with good attendance (Our attendance policy is outlined in our handbook)
- New Members
Other Necessary Paperwork…
Now that you have your registration process down, you may be looking for extra help with procedures and paperwork. I have compiled all of the documents that we use in one place for you. You can grab these and join my Homeschool Leader Newsletter by signing up here:
I would love to help answer any questions you have about starting a co-op. Shoot me an email or leave a comment and let me help you get started.
In Case You Missed The Rest Of Series!
Part 6: Registration and other Necessary Paperwork