Spanish business idea of the day

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COVID-19 in Spain continues to really test us, the parents.  With schools currently closed since March, parents have been forced to act as stand-in teachers and caregivers. We also still must carry our own workload, and with such uncertainty in the air, we are looking for alternatives. It is the perfect storm from which so many business ideas are born. 

Why not launch a Micro School in Spain!

Also called Nanoschool, micro-school and Pandemic Pod, (brilliant name!) The micro-school is an increasingly popular idea in the UK, and it can work in Spain too.

We now know that online learning to beat Coronavirus isn’t the answer we hoped it would be. 

Children need an adult, teacher or parent to guide them through their educational experience. The younger the child, the more this is true. We’ve tried Coding online, Chess online, art online, quizzes online and more with mixed results. 

With the recent news that schools may not fully open in Spain in September after all,  the added burden on already stressed parents is going to continue. It is also a burden on the economy- you either work or you stay at home and mind the kids, doing both is tough.

Get ready for unconventional graduation days in Spain!

What is a micro-school business idea in Spain?

Micro schools can take place in a home, a commercial space, a park, or probably any place where children can safely come together in a small group. 

Like any regular school, micro-schools typically have a teacher to organize the day and guide the learning process.

  • A micro-school is similar to any in-home child care program.
    Micro-schooling is essentially the reinvention of the one-room schoolhouse like the old days. (ask the grandparents) In these pods, class size is smaller, like 4-10 students and there are mixed-age groupings.
  • By nature of their size, these schools can offer a lot more variety for families and students. Some integrate technology, art, blended learning, sports, project-based learning, or outdoor learning.

Why should business people start a micro-school in Spain?

  • In my opinion, to get involved, you need to be a parent. Either you become the “Teacher” or you hire one, but I think we’d trust a school more in our situation if we knew one of the company owners was a parent too. You get it if you’re a parent! Personally, I’m not one for titles- If you can teach, do it! 
  • You see a need in your community. Schools are likely to not fully reopen in September and parents will need additional support.
  • There is a market for this service as parents need help in continuing their child’s education. This is doubled for us non-Spanish parents who may struggle with the Spanish curriculum. 
  • Online learning just does not work for all age groups or subjects- it is fine to supplement education, but can’t replace face to face learning. We think there will be a fully online version of the school curriculum available from mid-September so children are not obliged to go to the classroom. 
  • Children need the option for socialising.
  • You may be looking for an opportunity? If you are like most of us, business is bad in the real estate sector and more or maybe you’ve lost your job due to Covid-19 closures. Starting a micro-school in Spain may allow you to continue learning and spending some hours with your own children at the same time.
Learning is not always done in the classroom.

Next steps to opening your business in Spain in the kid’s sector. 

Put a business plan together. All going well, how many students can you handle? How much outside support do you need? How much can you charge? Do you need to do any work to your house first? 

Get legal. Spanish solutions can help you set up your business structure. Will you be self-employed (autonomo), an SL, CB or other option. 

Insurance. We are not insurance brokers but we can introduce you to Donna in Right Move insurance. You need to make sure you are not going to be in trouble if the neighbour’s kid falls in your garden and breaks her arm! 

Check the market. Put an ad together and run a  few Facebook ads. Ask the other parents in your school would they use your “school” either instead of classroom learning or as a supplement. Yannelsis can help you with a small FB ad campaign to see what demand is like. 

Talk to the schools/townhall- Will they allow you to take over the school experience or will you have to do it as an after school activity? Personally, I think the teachers are thrilled at the idea of having a lower attendance rate for the foreseeable future. 

Curriculum. You can get so far with children by just helping them through the Spanish curriculum which we think will be fully available online soon. Adding a few activities like art, football skills, judo or whatever will immediately attract these teachers. 

What about buying a Franchise or even a master franchise for all of Spain?

There are some great franchise options available for this sector. We promoted Helen Doron to our ex-pats clients looking to open a business in Spain in the past but that is more school room learning. Other franchises that we read a lot about are: 

  • MATHNASIUM LEARNING CENTERS
  • KUMON METHOD LEARNING
  • TUTOR DOCTOR
  • SCHOOL OF ROCK
  • SYLVAN LEARNING

I’m not sure how much or how little they already do in Spain but it’s worth checking them out. You’ll find them all online. If you need any help in setting up your new business in Spain; business plans, accounting, Spanish tax advice, legal advice, practical commercial assistance, we’d love to help. 

There are so many opportunities now due to Covid in Spain- you know the old political advice- Never waste a good crisis!

Ian 

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