Start Your Own School!


The Agile Learning Center approach is being received extremely well by educators, parents, and social innovators seeking a powerful education alternative. Because of this, the number of ALCs has been more than doubling each year.

To keep up with the demand for training and support in starting new ALCs, we’ve created an ALC Starter Kit.  Most of this kit is free, but there are additional supporting legal documents, technical how-to-guides, web tools and direct support available to members who join the ALC network.

An ALC can take many forms, from small homeschooling collectives, summer camps, or after-school programs to fully operational schools. Our kit is designed to save you time, money, energy and heartbreak no matter which type of ALC you’re starting.

Checkout our Network Home page for more information about ALCs.

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Not sure? Take a look inside…


Table of Contents

Organization & Admin

  1. Building a Founding Team
  2. Gathering Advisors, Partners, Supporters and Participants
  3. Running your Planning Meetings & Governance
  4. Becoming a Legal Entity
  5. Compliance with State Requirements
  6. Financial Planning
  7. Location, Location, Location!
  8. Enrolling Students
  9. Financial Management & Administration
  10. Employment: Hiring, Contracting & Firing People
  11. Volunteers

Communication & Promotion

  1. Tips for Getting the Conversation Started
  2. ALC Educational Model – An Agile Tree
  3. School Name, Brand & Message
  4. Establishing Communications Infrastructure
  5. Infrastructure for Local Community
  6. Infrastructure for Online Community
  7. Marketing Campaigns & Outreach
  8. Upgrading your Communications / Messaging 2.0

Facilitation & Daily Operation

  1. Operational Framework
  2. Basic Roles and Responsibilities of Groups and Individuals
  3. Being an Agile Learning Facilitator (ALF)
  4. A Week In Facilitation: An ALFing Narrative


Samples From the Starter Kit

Building a Founding Team

(pg 1)

You should find and build your team of co-founders as quickly as possible. As long as you’re holding this alone, it’s subject to the limitations of any personal project. The Agile Learning Center really becomes a vibrant reality when is is a team of people holding the vision, doing the work together, and speaking to their friends, family and network about it.

Sample Organizational Chart

(pg 10)
Org Chart from the Starter Kit

501(c)3 Tax Exempt Status

(pg 12)

Schools as educational organizations generally qualify for 501c3 tax exempt status with the IRS, which makes donations tax deductible for the donors and may qualify you for grants or other types of funding reserved for 501c3 organizations.
However, the application is complex (almost 30 pages) and can take months of back-and-forth correspondence to get approved. This is probably not a good use of time and energy since approval may be retroactively applied to 2 years of contributions.

Admissions Process

(pg 21)

It is important to have an admissions process that provides a clear path for people to follow and clear status for you to manage so that people who actually want to come to your school don’t get lost in a complex process. A sample process might look like: Prospect — You receive someone’s information either because they contacted you or were referred to you. Invite them to engage…

Visual Brand Identity

(pg 37)

Having some visual/memorable way to present your name and/or logo is important for brand recognition. It’s more about an emotional connection to people who encounter your brand. An image, font, and layout creates a kind of emotional experience. That experience is what sticks and has them remember it upon multiple exposures to it…

Operational Framework

(pg 51)

Every school or educational program operates within a structure or framework. This is a summary of the ALC framework and exploration of the role of an Agile Learning Facilitator (ALF). You are encouraged to adapt and modify all of these structures, tools and practices to fit your community. These are the leaves on the Agile Tree which change with seasons or evolving needs…


Sounds interesting, but I have a question or two.