Education Consulting: Is it for You?

Read about the wide variety of opportunities for earning extra money that your educational expertise can net!
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Updated on: January 24, 2001
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How do consultants find clients?

Educational consulting isn't for everyone, but it might be for you. If you're interested in this opportunity, you're probably wondering how to get started. What have others done to break into the business?

  • Many begin as tutors. Establish a web of clients by offering simple tutoring skills, such as organizing homework schedules or providing instruction.
  • Most consultants are found by word of mouth. Once you begin working with families, word of your success will spread.
  • Many consultants work full time and open their own businesses. Look up a consultant in your local area and schedule an appointment to learn about his or her business.
  • Many families begin looking for a consultant on the Internet. Design a simple home page to advertise your skills.
  • Consider placing an advertisement in your local yellow pages.
  • Many consultants become members of organizations or hubs that bring consultants together, give advice on how to market their skills, host trainings and workshops, and provide direct contact with clients.

Praise for educational consultants

  • Consultants can suggest options parents never knew existed.
  • Consultants who tutor can offer nonjudgmental, third-party advice that often removes some of the pressure that builds up between parents and their children.
  • The IECA points out that consultants are often a "calming influence" during stressful academic or emotional difficulties.
  • Schools appreciate consultants who lend a helping hand in researching solutions for students in difficult situations. Some consultants keep close contact with the student's teacher.
  • Many consultants work pro bono or for a reduced fee for families in need.

Criticism for educational consultants

  • Consultants put students who can afford their services at an unfair advantage.
  • School counselors and teachers are sometimes frustrated and confused that families seek help outside of the administration.
  • Sometimes teachers notice improvements in students' work that solely reflect the adult's efforts rather than those of the students.

Jennifer Liss is a writer and grants researcher in San Francisco. She has experience facilitating support, artistic, and literary groups for children of all ages. Currently, she is developing a collection of short stories.

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