$ Charging black belt students $

Balrog

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How is that calculated, as a percentage of standard fees?
Legacy is $257 a month. Every class they teach, I'll credit them $50. If they teach 2 classes a week, at the end of the 3rd week, they're in the black. In addition, if they set up a private lesson, they get 80% of the fee. It's not a lot, but it's an incentive.
 

Gerry Seymour

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Legacy is $257 a month. Every class they teach, I'll credit them $50. If they teach 2 classes a week, at the end of the 3rd week, they're in the black. In addition, if they set up a private lesson, they get 80% of the fee. It's not a lot, but it's an incentive.
Okay, so a single class is about 1/5 of the total monthly fee. I like that. Maybe someday I'll be in position to make use of it, myself. You mention a "Legacy" fee - that sounds like you have a different (lower?) fee for long-term students. If you don't mind, could you explain how you charge? If it's too far off-topic, you can PM me.
 

Balrog

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We follow this structure:

Basic - new students. Taekwondo only. Program lasts 6 months, is not renewable. I call it a "stick the toe in the water" program. 177/month

Black Belt Club - Taekwondo plus weapons training and advanced self defense. 36 month program, not renewable, intended to take the student to 1st Degree Black Belt. 257/month for a one year contract duration, 217/month for 36 month contract.

Leadership - 36 month program, renewable. Intended to take the student to 3rd Degree. Includes everything in BBC plus instruction in leadership skills and presentation. 297/month for one year contract, 257 for 36 months.

Legacy - our instructor training program. Includes everything in leadership plus teaching the student how to teach Songahm Taekwondo. Same rates as Leadership.
 

CB Jones

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Holy cow.....that makes me feel better about the $90 a month I pay for my son.
 

Tony Dismukes

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I'm assuming Balrog's fee structure at least partly reflects the operating expenses from being located in a big city. Makes me grateful for the lower cost of living where I am.

My gym charges $100/month for unlimited classes (usually 7 days per week, but I think we're down to 6 days at the moment). Anyone who teaches at least 1 class per week trains free, but is not otherwise reimbursed (except for occasional free gear). Private lesson fees go entirely to the instructor.
 

Rough Rider

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We follow this structure:

Basic - new students. Taekwondo only. Program lasts 6 months, is not renewable. I call it a "stick the toe in the water" program. 177/month

Black Belt Club - Taekwondo plus weapons training and advanced self defense. 36 month program, not renewable, intended to take the student to 1st Degree Black Belt. 257/month for a one year contract duration, 217/month for 36 month contract.

Leadership - 36 month program, renewable. Intended to take the student to 3rd Degree. Includes everything in BBC plus instruction in leadership skills and presentation. 297/month for one year contract, 257 for 36 months.

Legacy - our instructor training program. Includes everything in leadership plus teaching the student how to teach Songahm Taekwondo. Same rates as Leadership.

So, if a black-belt student wants to continue training, but does not want to be an instructor, what do they do? Look for another school?
 

ravenofthewood

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The school I teach at charges our black belts the same as colour belts, with payment on a monthly basis. Many students are on pre-authorized debit, but we do not have contracts. Any past black belt or adult student is welcome to drop in for a class or two for free.

The school charges $105 a month, and that has not gone up in the 10+ years I've trained there. That fee gains the students unlimited training (within belt level restrictions) at any or all of our four locations, which are collectively open six days a week. As an instructor, I receive my training free, as well as a generous monthly salary.
 

dvcochran

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but im not talking about somewhere new. im talking about somewhere that you constantly trained at for say 10 years. but now you are doing a different style like say BJJ. and you want to keep up with your training at your old school so you want to pop in once a month, not take 2 or 3 classes a week.
The problem with your model is someone who only shows up once/month then when they have their "time" in for the next belt level they automatically think they are due. Not implying this is you; I have just seen it before. A committed MA will either understand a big part of being a BB is teaching. It is tough for instructors to trust someone they only see 6-12 times a year so I would say look at it from all angles and I think you will see it differently.
 
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hoshin1600

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The problem with your model is someone who only shows up once/month then when they have their "time" in for the next belt level they automatically think they are due. Not implying this is you; I have just seen it before. A committed MA will either understand a big part of being a BB is teaching. It is tough for instructors to trust someone they only see 6-12 times a year so I would say look at it from all angles and I think you will see it differently.
This is a good point and something to keep in mind.
My thinking was that the person was training else where and working for rank in another system but would want to maintain their skill in the first art. But yes you bring up a valid concern.
 

Gerry Seymour

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The problem with your model is someone who only shows up once/month then when they have their "time" in for the next belt level they automatically think they are due. Not implying this is you; I have just seen it before. A committed MA will either understand a big part of being a BB is teaching. It is tough for instructors to trust someone they only see 6-12 times a year so I would say look at it from all angles and I think you will see it differently.
Teaching is not a part of being a B.B. in all systems. Some systems dont let folks teach until higher ranks, and others separate instructor training from rank.
 

_Simon_

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Hmmm interesting thread! Yeah that's the thing, not everyone can be an effective teacher, and I don't think that just because someone attained BB that they're qualified to teach. Some absolutely thrive and can really effectively teach, others are incredible martial artists with amazing ability, but lack the ability to impart that via verbal communication (but maybe can still act as a role model and teach nonverbally). Teaching (effective teaching that is) requires not just knowledge/skill, but a great deal of interpersonal communication skills, empathy, ability to pick up individual differences and explain in a way that the individual would understand, not to mention other attributes like patience, humility (not claiming one knows everything and being honest when you don't have the answer, and not making it up), respect etc.

Again, they are just what I reckon effective teaching would be, not saying that one can't learn from anyone unless they have all these! But I just dont think everything's personality type and makeup is going to be a 'teacher' type. I've seen many, many, many blackbelts that just should not under any circumstance be in a teaching role...

But back to topic hehe, would make sense that they receive free training if they teach, but then it's hard to define the line between teaching and just being helpful and assisting... so I have no answer hehe
 

Tony Dismukes

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The problem with your model is someone who only shows up once/month then when they have their "time" in for the next belt level they automatically think they are due.

Make it clear that belt promotions are based on ability rather than time and the problem goes away.
 

Gerry Seymour

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The problem with your model is someone who only shows up once/month then when they have their "time" in for the next belt level they automatically think they are due. Not implying this is you; I have just seen it before. A committed MA will either understand a big part of being a BB is teaching. It is tough for instructors to trust someone they only see 6-12 times a year so I would say look at it from all angles and I think you will see it differently.
It wouldn't be too difficult to clarify for students how promotions work, and that regular attendance is necessary (but not sufficient) for promotion.
 

Gerry Seymour

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Something to toss into the crock pot of thoughts on this thread...

Many schools have fees that increase rather dramatically as the student progresses (more dramatically than Balrog's, for instance). There are different models of this. Some are similar to what Balrog posted - just a gradual ramp-up over time. Some add fees for advanced classes, etc. My model is currently the opposite: newer students are charged more. These represent two different approaches (and I'm not sure either is "right" or "wrong").

Fees that increase (through whatever structure) as a student's rank increases (so per-student increases, not regular fee increases for the entire school) are based on a perceived value model. Students perceive higher value for advanced classes, higher rank, etc., so it's fair to charge more (and they're willing to pay more, in general).

I currently charge on a time-and-effort model. New students take more time and effort to teach, in general. I can turn my back on a 2-year student and let them work for a while. A brand new student needs attention from someone (which, in my case, means me) almost constantly. If I give them a punch to work on, I need to come back in a minute to make sure they're doing it at least approximately right.

So, my approach has been to keep fees constant once a student starts. Whatever fee they start at, is (theoretically) their fee for life. If I need to increase fees, the increase applies only to new students walking in. I might find I need to balance that with some testing fees at higher ranks (where tests take a good deal of time and attention from me), but the cost-per-year would still be lower for a long-term student than a brand new one. I'm not sure how that would work in a large school - it might take more effort than it's worth.
 
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hoshin1600

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So, my approach has been to keep fees constant once a student starts. Whatever fee they start at, is (theoretically) their fee for life.
i really like this. you have mentioned it before and i am going to implement this at some point.
 

Dirty Dog

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Something to toss into the crock pot of thoughts on this thread...

Many schools have fees that increase rather dramatically as the student progresses (more dramatically than Balrog's, for instance). There are different models of this. Some are similar to what Balrog posted - just a gradual ramp-up over time. Some add fees for advanced classes, etc. My model is currently the opposite: newer students are charged more. These represent two different approaches (and I'm not sure either is "right" or "wrong").

Fees that increase (through whatever structure) as a student's rank increases (so per-student increases, not regular fee increases for the entire school) are based on a perceived value model. Students perceive higher value for advanced classes, higher rank, etc., so it's fair to charge more (and they're willing to pay more, in general).

I currently charge on a time-and-effort model. New students take more time and effort to teach, in general. I can turn my back on a 2-year student and let them work for a while. A brand new student needs attention from someone (which, in my case, means me) almost constantly. If I give them a punch to work on, I need to come back in a minute to make sure they're doing it at least approximately right.

So, my approach has been to keep fees constant once a student starts. Whatever fee they start at, is (theoretically) their fee for life. If I need to increase fees, the increase applies only to new students walking in. I might find I need to balance that with some testing fees at higher ranks (where tests take a good deal of time and attention from me), but the cost-per-year would still be lower for a long-term student than a brand new one. I'm not sure how that would work in a large school - it might take more effort than it's worth.

Sounds complicated to me. Our model is simple. The Y charges $40 a month for members, $60 for non-members.
The joy of not being a commercial venture. :)
We do have test fees, and they do increase with rank because (as you pointed out) tests for higher ranks require more work, and for higher Dan ranks will require us to bring in Masters from other areas (at our expense, of course).
 

Balrog

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So, if a black-belt student wants to continue training, but does not want to be an instructor, what do they do? Look for another school?
No, they continue on in the leadership program. They can test up to 3rd Degree. After that, ATA requires them to be in instructor training. It's the concept that rank carries responsibility.
 

Balrog

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The problem with your model is someone who only shows up once/month then when they have their "time" in for the next belt level they automatically think they are due. Not implying this is you; I have just seen it before. A committed MA will either understand a big part of being a BB is teaching. It is tough for instructors to trust someone they only see 6-12 times a year so I would say look at it from all angles and I think you will see it differently.
Students are told from day one that their promotions are performance based. First off, they have to get my permission to test and if I don't think they are ready, they don't. Second, they have to bring their 'A' game to the testing. They might have shined throughout the testing cycle, but if they have a bad hair day, or just mail it in, on testing day, they get a no-change.

It's amazing how much a no-change serves as a motivator. I've had my share personally, and in the 23+ years that I have owned this school, I have had exactly one person quit because of a no-change.
 

Gerry Seymour

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i really like this. you have mentioned it before and i am going to implement this at some point.
I try to view this objectively, and I'm still not convinced of its viability for a large program. For a small program, it's not too hard to work with. With the right software, it should be workable even with a large group. I keep hoping I'll run into someone who can give their experience from that perspective.
 
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