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Nidan Melbourne
KF Sempai
KF Sempai

Joined: 21 Aug 2013
Posts: 2042
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Styles: Goju-Ryu, BJJ, Balintawak Arnis

PostPosted: Tue Apr 11, 2017 1:36 am    Post subject: Starting a School Reply with quote

Hi All,

So I've finally taken the plunge and started my own school. Currently it is more mobile than fixated at one address, as i feel like this has an advantage at the present time (so Students can have more flexibility of when they train and where).

What I am wanting to know is how have you created your own Database consisting of Student Records? have you gone the route of Excel or paying for a program like Martialytics?
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DWx
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 17 Jan 2007
Posts: 5700
Location: UK
Styles: Tae Kwon Do & Yang family Tai Chi

PostPosted: Tue Apr 11, 2017 9:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congrats on opening your own school

The route you go with depends on what type of information you want to record, how you want to be able to access it, and how many students you have.

At our school we do have special software in place to record student details and log class attendance, but you have to pay for this type of programme and I would say it probably isn't worth the expense until you have 100+ students as it can be expensive, especially for a new school. There are of course some nice analytical features in these programmes, but I'm sure you could replicate this or do more in Excel.

Excel would also allow you to record, export and analyse everything; but only if you enter this information manually. Software like Martialytics will limit you in what type of information it accepts. On the flipside it would make some tasks a lot easier as other systems like automated billing are already integrated.

Then with regards to access, is it necessary for you to access this information via mobile or on the move? If the software has a mobile app or cloud service this is obviously a benefit over having to update a local copy of Excel.
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 12576
Location: Owasso, OK
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Tue Apr 11, 2017 1:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, congrats on starting your own school!!

I'm both old school and new school, as is our Hombu.

Both use ledger books that have students name, address and phone numbers, date joined, earned ranks, testing cycle dates and scores, and so on and so forth.

We then transfer all of that info, and then some, onto each students Hard Card. This Hard Card bears several seals for authenticity/validation!!

Then, these are all transferred onto a Microsoft Excel program, and backed-up daily.

Then, all of that info is Archived, including copies of rank/titles/positions into a pdf file.

All of this is under lock and key, and very few are authorized to access any of these, and nothing is ever allowed to leave the premises ever!! Anyone entering this room is never alone, and no copying is permitted without proper authorization from the proper departments. No apps are ever allowed in this/these regards because they [mobile apps] can be hacked.

Seals are held in an even more secured room that only 2 of the Hombu's hierarchy, Kaicho and Kancho, are allowed access into that room, and either are accompanied into those rooms by the Hombu's Executive Secretary. Both rooms at the Hombu are alarmed at all times with camera's in and out of those rooms.

Time consuming? Yeah!! But it's worth it across the board, and I'd/we'd have it no other way!!



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jaypo
Purple Belt
Purple Belt

Joined: 26 Apr 2012
Posts: 520

Styles: Shotokan, Shorin Ryu

PostPosted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 2:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We've done both. We were using Martialartsadmin.com and switched to Perfectmind, but we weren't getting any return on our investment. I now use Excel. It allows me to set everything up the way I want to, and it's a lot easier to use.
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tallgeese
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 04 May 2008
Posts: 6668
Location: McHenry County, IL
Styles: Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Bujin Bugei Jutsu, Gokei Ryu Kempo Jutsu, MMA, Shootfighting, boxing, kickboxing, JKD, Pekiti Tersia Kali

PostPosted: Thu Apr 13, 2017 7:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congrats! You will love it. Despite the massive amounts of work you just signed up for.

We run Zen Planner. I agree, it predetermines the information you have at your disposal and this can be limiting; but it tracks attendance, is integrated with our auto pay options (which is a life saver), and allows us to build events and registrations that we can link to social media and our website which makes it easier to collet money for, and determine attendance at, these events.

It will cost you more than Excel, and there's some fiddle factor involved with running it. But to my mind it's worth it for ease of management.
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Nidan Melbourne
KF Sempai
KF Sempai

Joined: 21 Aug 2013
Posts: 2042
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Styles: Goju-Ryu, BJJ, Balintawak Arnis

PostPosted: Thu Apr 13, 2017 11:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks all for the information provided so far. It will really help me with compiling all the info required
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JR 137
KF Sempai
KF Sempai

Joined: 10 May 2015
Posts: 1464
Location: In the dojo
Styles: Seido Juku

PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2017 6:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congratulations and the best of luck to you with this big step!

I don't have anything to contribute on the computer stuff, sorry.
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MatsuShinshii
Green Belt
Green Belt

Joined: 15 Aug 2016
Posts: 460
Location: Kentucky
Styles: Matsumura Shorin Ryu Rokudan 1979 to Present, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo, Judo

PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2017 2:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Starting a School Reply with quote

Nidan Melbourne wrote:
Hi All,

So I've finally taken the plunge and started my own school. Currently it is more mobile than fixated at one address, as i feel like this has an advantage at the present time (so Students can have more flexibility of when they train and where).

What I am wanting to know is how have you created your own Database consisting of Student Records? have you gone the route of Excel or paying for a program like Martialytics?


For the longest time we have been very out of date in our record keeping. We used a log book, master and copy certificates.

The student receives the master, the copy would be filed at the hombu and all of the important information would be logged in the log book. The master certificate would be placed under the row in the log book and the copy above the row and all three would be stamped. This is how it has been done for as long as I can remember.

Recently (4 years ago) we transitioned to using excel to keep our records and using an electronic stamp. Our whole certificates are done on the computer now. Each one of the CI's have received electronic certificates that they can print out. They still have to right in the cert. number and write in the students name but the grades from Hachikyu to Ikkyu are already on the certifications.

Some like this as it seems to be very convenient and others like me think they look cheap.

However I do like the excel log book as any CI can look back at any promotion or look up a name and grade if a student moves and joins your school.

As far as any other record keeping (forms, consent letters, etc.) they are scanned in and sent electronically to the Hombu which is a heck of a lot easier than the old snail mail method when you need to make multiple copies in case it's lost by our great postal service.

I'm sure there are much better and more professional ways to do this but this is as electronically advanced as we have gotten.
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MatsuShinshii
Green Belt
Green Belt

Joined: 15 Aug 2016
Posts: 460
Location: Kentucky
Styles: Matsumura Shorin Ryu Rokudan 1979 to Present, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo, Judo

PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2017 2:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just proof read my post and realized that some may not know what I'm talking about.

Master = the certificate that is awarded to the student.

Copy = an identical certificate to the master (no it is not copied in a copier) that is kept at the Hombu. If the student looses their certificate we can issue this one. It is also handy if the student moves and joins another organization and the new instructor wants proof of rank. In which case it is scanned or copied and sent to them.

This is pretty old school in methodology but it has worked for us and still does for all Yudansha and Kodansha grading's as we still use this method for them. We all agreed organization wide that we would not produce a Dan certificate that could be issued without the Hombu's consent. And since every student travels to the Hombu for Dan testing it makes perfect sense to keep it this way. We have an electronic log book for Dan grading's as well, albeit redundancy.
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Patrick
KF Administrator

Joined: 01 May 2001
Posts: 26259
Location: Kitty Hawk, North Carolina

PostPosted: Sat Apr 15, 2017 4:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congrats Liam! :thumbsup:
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