Start / Open a School in India and getting a CBSE Affiliation

Starting a CBSE SCHOOL in India

school can be started from Kindergarten to Class XII or to any of the classes in between. School in India has to function as a “NOT FOR PROFIT”, only a not for profit Society / Trust or a Section 8 company. I have written a separate post on the formation of the Trust & Society. Click Here to read about it

What are the returns from a School and how much does it cost to build and run a school?

The minimum land requirement by CBSE is 1.5 Acres but there is a host of factors which can play a part in this requirement such as Type of City, Population, Location of the land, Type of Property etc.

For more information you can read this post here. Click Here 

Cost of building a School

A school normally requires construction in phases (Here I am taking about a Budget CBSE School meant for a 1000 students)

  • Phase 1: 20,000  sq ft to 25,000  sq ft construction – Year 1
  • Phase 2: 12,000  sq ft- 15,000 sq ft – year 3
  • Phase 3: 6,000  sq ft – 10,000 sq ft – Year 4

You multiply these numbers with Rs 16,00 per sq feet and this will give you a ballpark costing of construction plus furniture and fund requirements. Over and above this you can spend on Marketing, Landscaping, Sports Facilities etc. That is completely dependent on the promoter’s vision.

Affiliation

A School has to have affiliation from the State Board. It doesn’t matter if it is eventually affiliated to CBSE / ICSE or IB Board. Education is a state subject, hence the can have any affiliation but State BoardAffiliation / Permission is mandatory.

Franchise

Starting any Brand Franchise: There are lot of franchise (Brands) to choose from like Brighton International School, DPS, Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan, Everonn, Manipal, Shamrock, Mayo College, Kangaroo Kids etc.

All these have a proper corporate office where there are teams involved with the expansion of the chain. Their website is the way one can get in touch with them. Typically they charge a Security Deposit (to be fixed for a stipulated period) a Licence Fee (chargeable every year) and a Revenue share per student. None of this is fixed and may depend from organization to organization. They will help you in setting elementary process and curriculum right.

Starting the School (Essential Steps)

Form a Trust/Society/ Section 8 Company

As per the government’s norms, the administrative power of the school should be vested in a Not-for-profit society or trust. Every state has a an office of Registrar where a society can be registered.This is the address of the few of the offices across different states; for more you can read here 
Similarly one can start a school by forming a Section 8 company. For more on this, you can read my post here 
Register the Plot of Land

The Land on which the school will be built has to be either leased out or should be in the name of the society or the trust. The documents should be certified by the local land registration office.For a CBSE school inside the city limits the minimum area should be One Acre and outside the city limits should be 1.5 Acres. 

Kindly remember the Land should all be at One Place and in One Piece.

I get maximum amount of queries regarding the size of the land especially from Metros. CBSE has recently amended the bye laws regarding the requirement of land. Kindly go through the circular. It specifically states the land required for starting a school in Metros should be greater than 1600 Sq Meter (about 0.4 acres) for Pre Primary to Class X, and about an acre for Classes upto Class XII. For rest of India the rule has stayed the same as described above. I have written a separate post on this topic, here is the link

Get an approval from the local Education Office Once the building and the staff is ready, open admissions. Simultaneously go to the local education office in most cases DEO (District Education Office) and register by paying the fee. Post inspection of the school premises and after taking relevant information they will provide the society/trust with required certification. The school will first take-off after the permission from the state board. This is essential, there has been a ruling by the court on this aspect.

GETTING AN AFFILIATION FROM STATE BOARD IS MANDATORY FOR GETTING CONSIDERED FOR CBSE AFFILIATION 

HOW TO GET CBSE AFFILIATION

In India the three most common boards/curriculum are CBSE, ICSE and the various respective State boards. Now a days a lot of new schools are adopting for the IB board. All the boards except state boards do not allow any school to use their curriculum or brand name at the time of school’s inception. A school can apply to CBSE or ICSE board only after a year of school’s inception. In the case of IB its 3 years. There are various set of guidelines which are available online. To begin with the maximum you can start is till Class VIII. The set of guidelines can also help you in detailing out the size of classrooms and of the school building.

The most difficult part in getting an affiliation is NOC, the CBSE waived this rule in the interim but now it is back. The new circular is out (Dec 2016). I have written a separate post on it, click on the link here

This entire process of affiliation is a very transparent process and in case one is ready to do the paperwork, you really don’t require any touts or middle man. CBSE provides school with a list of bye laws to be kept in mind while applying for CBSE Affiliation. The entire manual can be downloaded from the CBSE’s official website. Here is the website – CBSE e-Affiliation Website and the link to download the  Bye-Laws – Affiliation Bye Laws

Following are the steps to get a school affiliated from CBSE.

CBSE Affiliation School

Start School in India and get CBSE Affiliation

These is the list of documents and requirements laid down by the board.

Step 1 – Register

Register your school Online – CBSE Official Website

You have to get a bank draft made and get the following documents made before you submit application online;

Bank Draft requirement as on 27-11-2014

Affiliation Fee in respect of Independent Schools
Approval of middle class syllabus: (Up to Class VIII)
Independent schools within the country Rs.25,000/-
Overseas Independent Schools Rs.40,000/-
Fresh Provisional Affiliation for Secondary Classes (Up to Class X)
Independent schools within the country Rs.75,000/-
Rs.50,000/- (If already affiliated upto Middle Class)
Overseas Independent Schools Rs.1,25,000/-
Rs.75,000/- (If already affiliated upto Middle Class)

 a. Land Certificate from Concerned Authority (As per Appendix VI) ( Proforma )

b. Copy of Registration letter of the Trust/Society Managing Committee

c. Affidavit of Non-Proprietary Character of Society. – The format for this affidavit is not prescribed by CBSE. One has to mention the name of the members of the society and the chairman has to take an oath saying none of them are related (Blood-line wise) to each other (for more read FAQs at the end of the post). In case some are related same needs to be mentioned in the affidavit. This has to get stamped a first degree magistrate or equal. These documents need to get scanned for online submission. Fill in all the information required, same can be done in piecemeal. Once you are satisfied with all the details. Submit your application. A rough format is attached here, please consult your lawyer before using the same Non Proprietary Format. Download the format of Non-Proprietary Affidavit format from here.

d. No Objection Certificate: For a brief period of time this certificate was revoked by the CBSE but in December 2016, it has again made the entry. I have detailed it in  a separate post here. Click Here  

e. Earlier you have to make a demand draft as Affiliation Fee which was supposed to be sent to the board with all the above documents, now it can be done at the HDFC Bank. School are required to remit prescribed fee through a system generated e-challan at any branches of HDFCBank or through NEFT /RTGSthrough branches of any nationalized /scheduled Banks. The Affiliation Fee keeps on changing from year to year.  Here is where you can access the details on the current fee – Affiliation Fee. After taking printout of confirmation page of online application form, the same duly signed by the Principal and Manager of the school along with enclosures and CBSE copy of fee payment challan shall be sent to the Board.

Here is the list of documents you have to upload

f. You also have to furnish some basic information with regards to your school to CBSE. This happens in the form of an ONLINE FORM. Here is sample of the of the FORM.

For Schools already affiliated with CBSE looking to apply to EXTENSION OF PROVISIONAL AFFILIATION shall submit the  scanned copies.

  • A Scanned copy of Reserve Fund maintained as per norms.
  • A Scanned copy of EPF code No. allotted by the EPF department.
  • A Scanned copy of Affidavit to the effect that the school is not sponsoring candidates for Board’s Examination of any other School/Branch,which is not affiliated to the Board.

STEP 2 – Send Documents by Post

Send your Bank Draft and all photocopies of the documents which you scanned and submitted to the CBSE office in Delhi. Address: Secretary, Central Board Of Secondary Education, 2,Community Centre,Shiksha Kendra, CBSE Headquarters,Preet Vihar,Delhi-110062.

Keep checking your application progress online, CBSE gives you facility for the same. You can call and check, most of the time nobody picks up so try getting most of the update online.

STEP 3 – Wait for the Letter from the CBSE

CBSE will send a letter mentioning the officials who have been deputed to come and inspect the school. Without wasting any time, get in touch with them and arrange for them to come. Mostly one of them would be a Central School (Kendriya Vidyalay) Principal and the other one an experienced hand from any aided or un-aided school.

STEP 4 – Prepare a file

Following is the list of documents one should have for CBSE affiliation File –

Details of Annexures

  1. Society Details
  2. Constitution of the Society & Society Bye-Laws
  3. Registration Certificate of the society
  4. Affidavit of Non-Proprietary Character & relationship among members (Proforma
  5. School Management Committee List (To know more about this read my post)
  6. Statement of Income & Expenditure Audited Account –
  7. Balance Sheet of last two to three years
  8. Bank Certificate – Mentioning this – in case you have take some project loan from a certain bank.
  9. Staff Particulars
  10. Service Agreement with Employees
  11. Principal Particulars – Professional Resume
  12. Staff Salary Statement – Salary should be paid through Electronic Clearing Service (ECS)
  13. Letter to the bank regarding Staff Salary remittance
  14. Copy of the A/C payee cheque meant for staff salary
  15. Reserve Fund (This is a draft which one has to make as laid down in the bye-laws)
  16. Infrastructure Details
  17. Land Records Certificate of Land (Appendix VI) ( Proforma)
  18. Supporting Documents by Tehsildar & Patwari – This in case the school is out of Municipality bounds
  19. Approved Map and Building Layout – from the relevant Town and COuntry Planning Authority.
  20. School Building Room Particulars School Building – List of all the rooms along with the size and details.
  21. School Building and Facilities Photographs
  22. Physical Health Education & Recreation Facility Details
  23. Laboratory Details
  24. Library Facilities & Details
  25. Librarian Details – CV / Resume of the Librarian
  26. State Govt Related Documents
  27. State Board Affiliation Certificate & NOC from the state (Intimation will do, for more info read here)
  28. Student Details
  29. Student’s Details Record of Internal Assessment (Class Wise)
  30. Fees Structure (Kindly refer to this circular from CBSE while finalising the FEE structure )
  31. School Time Table
  32. School Prospectus
  33. Certificate of Fire Safety & Sanitary Conditions
  34. Provision of Medical Check Up
  35. Undertaking by Manager regarding the admissions only up till Class VIII – This basically says the school is not admitting students in classes for which they do not have permission.
  36. Details of Training Modules conducted for teachers
  37. Building Safety Certificate
  38. Drinking Water Test Certificate
  39. Transport Fitness Certificate
  40. School Conveyance facility Details – If School is providing conveyance to students
  41. Optional – This is in case you want to make a stronger case
    1. CBSE Online Submitted Application
    2. Copy of the submitted bank draft
    3. Letter of inspection from CBSE
    4. Financial Projections
    5. Land Documents – Photocopy
    6. Admission Announcements

Step 5 – Get ready for Inspection

Inspection – Inspectors/Officials will have a form with them where they will jot down all the information about your school. (Be very specific about Salary structures and its distribution, Land Records – these two things get special attention. Once they are done they are responsible for sending your file to the board.

Step 6 – Keep Checking your Status online

Once they leave keep checking with them, whether they have sent the file or not. Once the file is submitted, online status would reflect the same. In about 45 ~ 60 days of submission of the file and favourable reviews from the officials the school will get CBSE affiliation.  

I keep getting a lot of queries on this particular post. Here are some answers I am posting for everyone’s benefit;

If you are looking to get a copy of the template of documents or Original Scans listed above , same can be procured for Rs 10,000. If interested please write to me at abhiney@brightoninternational.in

I also have a consultancy arm which helps entrepreneurs and schools start up establish and run schools of high quality. You can send me a mail by filling the form below

Hi, if you are looking for a Consultant to help you start a School or with any issue like Affiliations, Project Finance, School Management, Project Feasibility Studies, Project Report, Contact Abhiney Singh by filling the form below or calling or through WhatsApp on +91 70002 40006

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FAQsExplanations
Do I have to procure affiliation and then start the school?NO You can only apply for affiliation once you have started the institute. The affiliation asks for a lot of information regarding the students' strength teachers etc which can only be filled once you start the school.
My society comprises of members of my family, what do I do to make it of "Non Proprietary" nature? Off all the members in a society majority i.e more than 50% cannot be related by blood. Also while declaring the members of the society in the affidavit the Chairman will have to declare the relationship among the members who all are related by blood line.
I am running a school in a rented building. Can I apply for affiliation? The law clearly states that the school should have Proof regarding possession of 2 acres of land (pg 60 of bye laws). Hence the school can run in a rented building but the land on which the building is built should be owned or leased to the society. Society can lease the land to a company which can then construct the building and can charge the society a rent on its investments.
Do I have to take State Board Affiliation to start a School, Can I directly apply to CBSEYes you have to procure State Board Affiliation post that only you can go for CBSE Affiliation.
Is this the entire list of documents? I believe this is the list in case they need more information you can always ask for more time.
Salary drawn by Teachers at my institute is not at par with State Norms or Central Government NormsDon't worry about it. Salary is a subjective topic and can vary from city to city within the same state. It all depends upon the cost of living in that particular area. Don't worry about low salaries. You just have to be fair in showing that what you have specified in the offer letter is what is going in the bank account and the same is getting signed by the employee.
Land original documents are with the Bank as collateral Get a photocopy attested by the bank that this is a true copy of the documents pledged with them. Get the bank manager sign on the photocopy.
Approximately what is the time between submission and inspection and how much time is spent by the inspection Team on the campusIt takes about 3-4 months from submission to inspection and the team spends about 5 to 6 hours (Arrange for them to have meals either in the school or a place nearby).
What is the investment required to open a schoolThis query invites a subjective response but a thumb rule for starters / planners. 2 Acres of land at the market price plus cost of construction at about 1200 Rs a square feet.
Non-Proprietary Affidavit. What do I do when some members are related to each other?This is a very general trend across societies though advisable is very few members should be related to each other (blood relatives). Even if people are related to each other the Chairman/Head of the trust society should declare the same while submitting the Non-Proprietary affidavit that 'x' person is related to 'y' person through by 'z' relationship.
Do I know somebody who can take BRIBE in CBSE or outside and get you an affiliationThe Answer is "HELL NO".
I need your help. I am looking for a consultant who could help me start a school or to get a CBSE AffiliationYes I am available for paid consultation. You can write to me on abhiney@brightoninternational.in

Abhiney Singh

Abhiney Singh

Managing Director at Brighton International School
I run a school called Brighton International School (www.brightoninternational.in).
I am also now a partner with a School consulting company which helps budding educators or investors start school or gain access to help related to school. The help could be in the form of Turnkey School Consultation, Detailed Project report, Project Finance, Business Plan consulting, Recruitment planning, Infrastructure consultation, Affiliation Consultation, Teacher’s Training, Academic and Curriculum Planning. I now have a decade of work experience. I strongly believe in improving every day and I have tremendous respect for people who pursue their dreams with undying passion and enthusiasm.
I have worked in Mumbai for about 6 years as a Marketing-Media professional which has helped me in shaping what I am today. I am Chemical Engineer with an MBA in Marketing.
You can know more about me at www.linkedin.com/in/abhineysingh

You can mail me on abhiney@brightoninternational.in or call me on +91 70002 40006. This number is also on watsapp.
Abhiney Singh
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