When you first consider entering the field of education, you likely imagined being a school teacher or perhaps an administrator, as the principal or superintendent. More often than not, your first instinct wasn’t to start your own school from scratch! Nevertheless, founding and running a school is a genuine possibility. By letting your passions shine through, you can change lives, from toddlers to teens. From the lessons you teach to the people who lead them, there are a few critical aspects to keep in mind when running a school.

Prioritize age-appropriate education.


As an educator, you already know that children have different needs as they learn and grow. In many cases, you’ll want to use these variations to craft an ideal curriculum, enhancing a toddler’s fine motor skills while introducing preteens to geometry. Some of the best options for making this happen, though, will be tools and resources that can be used by students of all ages, whether they’re taking the first steps in learning or moving on to the next step of mastering a subject. For example, magnetic blocks offer a durable educational kit that will enrapture young children from the age of three while keeping the attention of older students, too. Unfortunately, when you’re opening the doors to your school for the first time, you’ll likely have limited funding. Nevertheless, taking advantage of these magnet toys and other multi-use materials is a fun way to keep kids learning on a budget.

Incorporate extracurriculars.


You wouldn’t do your best work career-wise if you never took time to rest, and the same is true of your students. By adding sports and other activities to your school schedule, you’ll help the enrolled children practice other vital skills and become more well-rounded individuals in the process. This, too, doesn’t have to be an expensive goal. Consult a running track repair guide to makeover an outdated sports space (and prepare for PE in the process!) and focus on student organizations and clubs that require minimal investments.

Build a trustworthy team.


If you‘ve gone through the effort of creating a school from scratch, it’s safe to assume you genuinely care about your newfound students. It’s just as important that the other staff members you bring on feel the same way. From your fellow teachers and administrators to custodians and other staff, pay close attention to every candidate looking to work with your school. Your reputation as an educational institution isn’t the only thing on the line—young lives and their future successes are, too.

Remember your passion


As you start your school and continue to run it, you’ll quickly learn that there’s a whole lot of hard work involved. No one could blame you for feeling less enthusiastic over time. If you do start to struggle with stress and frustration, take some time to remember the reasons you started this project or the “why” behind starting your school. Presumably, you have a strong passion for education and genuinely want to make a difference in your students’ lives. In the most challenging moments, calling those feelings to mind can motivate you to keep moving forward.

Building a school isn’t like a child’s building blocks—it’s far more work, and there’s a lot more at stake. It’s also not the first career path that comes to mind when you envision your life as an educator. Nevertheless, the effort and unconventionality of this decision don’t mean that the project is any less rewarding. On the contrary, with the right resources and staff, you can nurture your love of teaching while you foster a love of learning, changing lives along the way.