Making monthly payments vs pro-rate

kempo-vjj

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My wife has a problem with the amount that were paying per month when there are cancellations of class. I'll start with the original price for 3 students (my two kids and myself), $165. I asked on joining the class if sensei could except $125. He said yes. So its 3 days a week 2 hrs per class. Better than the TKD class my kids were going to at $110 , 2 hrs a week. I figure 7 cancellations per year due to Holidays. There are about 5 other times there has been cancellations other than that. I'll make it a round 90% of the time we have class. Not bad to me. Thing is the Gymnastics and tkd class they were in would always have makeup days. In our current class they do not. It's a small school of about 7, and the instructors also have full time jobs. I do not want to make waves by asking my instructor for prorate, but the wife is on my back. So I told her I'd ask what others do and the norm. FYI also instructor has said with the small class he doesnt even make rent for the room at the gym.help!
 

Gemini

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First, I'll say that when it's all about the money, you should look for something else to do. Money can never be a successful motivater for anything, much less martial arts. Second, you mnetioned that the instructor has already given you a break of $40 a month. What did you give him in return for the $40 break? Now on top you want to prorate?

Not to sound harsh, but if it my school and you even asked, I'd respond by saying you joined the wrong school.
 

arnisador

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A few cancellations are to be expected. Since you know it's a part-time thing and they don't have backup staff if someone is ill or has an unavoidable conflict, I'd accept canceled classes in the once a month range, on average. Much more and I'd start to ask myself some questions about whether I'd want to stay there or no.

This problem will solve itself in the long run when there are advanced students who can fill in for the isntructor.

Do you have a contract with him? If so, does it allow for schedule changes? If not, I'd say it doesn't sound to me like this is in violation of your understanding with him, nor with martial arts conventions for a small, not-for-profit school. I'd let it slide, but make comments on occasion like "Gee, we were sorry to see no class on Wednesday! We really look forward to class!" to remindthe instructor of the importance of holding classes as scheduled.

Overall, the price seems reasonable.
 

The Kai

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Find a nice McDojang that always has a knowledge 15 year old instructor to run your classes (unless he has a orthodontist apointment, then the 13 year old senior will take over.
 

Flying Crane

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$125 for three people, three days a week, 2 hours at a time? I'd say you have a pretty good price going there. I'd suggest you not worry about the occasional cancelled class. I only wish things were so inexpensive here in San Francisco...
 

Jade Tigress

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Gemini said:
First, I'll say that when it's all about the money, you should look for something else to do. Money can never be a successful motivater for anything, much less martial arts. Second, you mnetioned that the instructor has already given you a break of $40 a month. What did you give him in return for the $40 break? Now on top you want to prorate?

Not to sound harsh, but if it my school and you even asked, I'd respond by saying you joined the wrong school.

What he said. I couldn't agree more.
 

Ray

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I think I can help you...move to Creston, Iowa. I teach kenpo. Two lessons per week, $90/month for the 3 of you. I'll teach you on any holiday, but I won't do Sundays.
 

Andrew Green

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Most likely your current rate already reflects the number of classes you are going to have, charging a different amount every month based on # of classes and cancellations would be a nightmare.

Do you also want prorated to a higher monthly fee on months with more classes then usual?

Plus, as stated, you are already getting a $40 / month discount.

If it is a small school, chance are the instructors make no money at all from teaching, they may even be contributing to the rent out of their own pocket.
 
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kempo-vjj

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first just to make sure, my wife is pushing for me to ask about prorate. I am fine with the $ amount per month and an occasional missed class. I love both the style and the instructors. There is a brown belt in class who when he can fills in when no one can make it. My wife has threatened to go over my head with this. I feel it may hurt my relationship my instructor. I tell her your making me want to quit over embarrising me. She has this preconceived idea of how things should be and becomes a little hard headed over it. I couldnt call other dojos in town and ask this question, so I was like hey martialtalk forum. So far I think from the posts I've got some good backing to my argument. And yes the hours per week is great compared to others I have looked at.
 

terryl965

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kempo-vjj said:
first just to make sure, my wife is pushing for me to ask about prorate. I am fine with the $ amount per month and an occasional missed class. I love both the style and the instructors. There is a brown belt in class who when he can fills in when no one can make it. My wife has threatened to go over my head with this. I feel it may hurt my relationship my instructor. I tell her your making me want to quit over embarrising me. She has this preconceived idea of how things should be and becomes a little hard headed over it. I couldnt call other dojos in town and ask this question, so I was like hey martialtalk forum. So far I think from the posts I've got some good backing to my argument. And yes the hours per week is great compared to others I have looked at.

Well no offense here but since your wife does not take classes she has no idael the value you are getting for that price. I would suggest to her some of the thing she spend money on, maybe like the gym and when the instructor leave or is sick the gym does not give her a peorated price for the month. Just ask her to be nice and let you and your childern train together for that low rate.
Terry
 

Jade Tigress

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kempo-vjj said:
first just to make sure, my wife is pushing for me to ask about prorate. I am fine with the $ amount per month and an occasional missed class. I love both the style and the instructors. There is a brown belt in class who when he can fills in when no one can make it. My wife has threatened to go over my head with this. I feel it may hurt my relationship my instructor. I tell her your making me want to quit over embarrising me. She has this preconceived idea of how things should be and becomes a little hard headed over it. I couldnt call other dojos in town and ask this question, so I was like hey martialtalk forum. So far I think from the posts I've got some good backing to my argument. And yes the hours per week is great compared to others I have looked at.
Why don't you just show her this thread so she can get a better understanding of why you should not ask for a prorate. It sounds like you really enjoy your training and your fees are quite reasonable.

Our classes are supposed to be 1 hour long but we typically run 1 1/2 hours long and on the very rare occasion may need to end slightly early, no one says anything about it, and if our Sifu needs to leave early we usually finish with an assistant instructor (one of the brown belts in class).

My sifu told us a story about a student at a sister school who would point out to the minute the time he had left in private lessons. The instructor at that school took note and never quit a minute too soon. However, when the hour was up that was it. Lesson time was over. Doesn't matter if they were in the middle of a technique or not. When the student complained about quitting before they were done the instructor just said the hour's up. If that student would have kept his mouth shut he would have ended up with much more instruction in the long run than by counting every minute of class.

I hope your wife can understand you are not being ripped off. This is a different ball of wax.
 

Phoenix44

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I agree with the others. Firstly, the tuition is very reasonable. Secondly, he's given you a discount. Thirdly, the occasional canceled class seems fair. Stuff happens.

I also hope you can calmly and rationally explain to your wife why you are not asking the instructor to prorate your tuition, and why she should not intervene. Because if you can't do that, I'm afraid you may have more problems than just the tuition.
 

arnisador

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terryl965 said:
Well no offense here but since your wife does not take classes she has no idael the value you are getting for that price.

Exactly! It sounds to me like his wife is a smart consumer who expects to get the family's money worth when family resources are spent. If you went to a restaurant and ordered a large milkshake but got a medium one, would you complain if you were charged for a large? My wife would get it straightened out...which I consider good stewardship of our resources.

I think his wife has her head on straight. But, she may not understand the cultural issues here. When my daughter's ballet class is canceled, they schedule--and expect her to attend--a make-up. I see this as a 'cultural' issue; his wife doesn't understand the martial arts culture and is treating this as any other consumer transaction. At Sears, if they short you on your change then you should complain. If you buy a book of 10 movie passes and the theatre only lets you see 9 movies, you should complain. But this is a different circumstance. He needs to explain that to her--that she's applying a good and useful form of reasoning to a situation where it doesn't quite apply. I understand the question to be, How can I explain why the martial arts are not like ballet to my non-martial artist wife?

My wife usually takes my daughter to ballet as she dances too. I take my son to martial arts with me. We've commented on this difference before. These are vaguely analagous activities with different ethics on this issue. She's always assumed I knew what I was doing in choosing and staying at a martial arts school--but we both expect our money's worth. It's a question of whether that's measured per class or by the total experience.

Not directed at terryl965: I think some of the replies here are unduly judgmental.
 

Ceicei

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Arnisador, you've hit it on the head with your comments. My sons take martial arts with me and my daughters take gymnastics (the older daughter is also in martial arts). Both types of activities are offered at the same facility, but as you've mentioned, there are distinct training culture differences.

Kempo-vjj, I suppose if explaining to your wife the cultural difference is a problem, then perhaps explaining the various price ranges of martial arts may show her that your family is getting a very, very good deal for your training. If she realizes that the price is excellent for where you train, then perhaps that will help ease her mind financially.

- Ceicei
 

terryl965

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arnisador said:
Exactly! It sounds to me like his wife is a smart consumer who expects to get the family's money worth when family resources are spent. If you went to a restaurant and ordered a large milkshake but got a medium one, would you complain if you were charged for a large? My wife would get it straightened out...which I consider good stewardship of our resources.

I think his wife has her head on straight. But, she may not understand the cultural issues here. When my daughter's ballet class is canceled, they schedule--and expect her to attend--a make-up. I see this as a 'cultural' issue; his wife doesn't understand the martial arts culture and is treating this as any other consumer transaction. At Sears, if they short you on your change then you should complain. If you buy a book of 10 movie passes and the theatre only lets you see 9 movies, you should complain. But this is a different circumstance. He needs to explain that to her--that she's applying a good and useful form of reasoning to a situation where it doesn't quite apply. I understand the question to be, How can I explain why the martial arts are not like ballet to my non-martial artist wife?

My wife usually takes my daughter to ballet as she dances too. I take my son to martial arts with me. We've commented on this difference before. These are vaguely analagous activities with different ethics on this issue. She's always assumed I knew what I was doing in choosing and staying at a martial arts school--but we both expect our money's worth. It's a question of whether that's measured per class or by the total experience.

Not directed at terryl965: I think some of the replies here are unduly judgmental.

Oh yea pick on the marry guy why don't you and I mean me. (Just Kidding)
Terry
 

MJS

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kempo-vjj said:
My wife has a problem with the amount that were paying per month when there are cancellations of class. I'll start with the original price for 3 students (my two kids and myself), $165. I asked on joining the class if sensei could except $125. He said yes. So its 3 days a week 2 hrs per class. Better than the TKD class my kids were going to at $110 , 2 hrs a week. I figure 7 cancellations per year due to Holidays. There are about 5 other times there has been cancellations other than that. I'll make it a round 90% of the time we have class. Not bad to me. Thing is the Gymnastics and tkd class they were in would always have makeup days. In our current class they do not. It's a small school of about 7, and the instructors also have full time jobs. I do not want to make waves by asking my instructor for prorate, but the wife is on my back. So I told her I'd ask what others do and the norm. FYI also instructor has said with the small class he doesnt even make rent for the room at the gym.help!

The majority of schools that you will come across do not offer any return of money when it comes to holidays, cancellations, etc. If we use a university as an example: The student pays "X" amount of money for each semester. Now, if the Prof. cancels a class, the student does not feel like going, etc. its basically a loss to the student. I've never come across a school that refunded any money due to the school closing for bad weather, vactions, etc.

Sounds to me like you have a good deal at the school you're at.

Mike
 
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kempo-vjj

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thanks for all your help. I will let her read my post. I did explain I, not her researched the schools in the area and this is a good deal. Arnisador your right, not everything works at the same for different situations. When she does the research I told to come and talk to me. Yes she is a Very good consumer, and finances almost always plays a part. Even the hard headedness is good at times, when it plays into my favor, which rarely does, but thats another thread.
 

arnisador

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Good luck making your case! It sounds like she means well but doesn't appreciate the differences here.
 
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