More parents have considered changing the school of their child in the last 12 months, than those polled in 2017, according to the latest findings in the ongoing WSA School Survey. However parents are considerably more settled today than in 2013, the first year of our survey.
According to the survey 35% have, over the last 12 months, considered changing schools, up from 31% last year, but down sharply from 45% in 2015 and an incredible 53% in 2013.
While we are tempted to argue that as more choice comes online so parents are persuaded to look around, the numbers say something else.
Year on year since 2013 there has been ever more choice, and yet less parents have considered changing schools. Moreover, if we look at the stats for individual curricula, parents of UK based schools, where there is more choice, show less inclination to move than, for example parents going to Indian or US based schools where there are considerably fewer new schools coming online, and far less choice.
The key to lower student churn seems to be a very simple link to quality and sense of value. Where parents perceive education to be high quality and/or good value, so there is less propensity to consider alternatives.
The sharply declining propensity to look elsewhere is therefore a sign of the increasing quality and satisfaction level of parents overall. You can see this if you check the Parent Opinion tabs of the most well regarded schools academically and in terms of perceived value.
What the survey does not seem to capture however, is a small but growing number of parents that, according to the schools themselves, move their children around depending upon founders discounts and offers. Whilst we are sure that this is happening, for the mainstream at least cost is not as important as overall quality. Schools in it for the long term should clearly focus here.
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