The retention rate in schools, as the name suggests, is the percentage of students enrolling in an educational institution in two consecutive academic years and those who have left the course mid-way/after a year. A fall in the retention rate in schools is quite an alarming situation for any such establishment. Let us take the example schools here. If the number of students that do not continue in the same school for the second year increases, the retention rate drops and this is not a good sign.
There are many reasons why students drop-out of school. There could be financial problems, social problems, health issues, and even academic difficulty, to name a few. Though some of these are beyond the purview of anyone, there are a few that can be addressed by the school management effectively. Things such as academic difficulties and fee structures are problems that can be managed on a student-to-student basis.
Most of the schools of today have adapted to school management software that makes it easier for them to deal with varied processes in running a school. From admissions to tests and transportation, every aspect becomes less of a challenge with the help of a cloud-based school management system. Therefore, it becomes easier for them to spend time on improving their retention rate and ensure that students are willing to enrol in their school for the upcoming academic sessions as well.
In the following lines, let us discuss the online admission ERP system of the said software and how it is effective in increasing the retention of students.
Advantages of an online admission portal
In addition to making the whole admission process simpler, here is how this module can help the school in retaining their students:
  • Information - Unlike the hardcopy admission forms where the students need to fill generalized information, the online admission ERP system can be customized as per the school’s requirement. As a part of this, they can check data such as how many times a student has changed schools in the past and the reasons for the same. Equipped with this information, on the online admission software, schools can start working more and better with such students.
  • Online fee collection system - A part of the admissions process is fee collection. As mentioned earlier, there are a few children who are forced to leave school owing to financial problems. Though The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009 ensures that no child is forced to stay at home owing to the fees, it is a fact that there are only a handful seats available under the Act in each institution. In order to help others, schools can create a fee structure for students who belong to economically disadvantaged backgrounds.
    Online admission software will enable the admin staff to identify students who have performed well in the past and wish to continue their education if they are given certain leverages in the fees. Instead of searching for this information in papers, this system will save time as well as effort.
  • Higher Edu ERP Software - This module addresses the academic difficulty part. Most of the students who drop out are from the higher classes. Owing to the pressure of performing well and competing with others, it becomes daunting for some children to continue studying in a particular school and they wish to change institutions as a means to explain their weak performance. However, with the help of this particular module, those students who are faring badly in assignments/tests can be identified and counselled by professionals, so that their issues are addressed in the right time and manner.
    Let us consider the physical admission forms (papered ones). The sheer number of such forms that are received at the said time is huge. It becomes almost impossible to identify a trend wherein a student is changing schools often. With the online admission software, it becomes easier for the school’s administrators to look for information about the students’ respective performances as well as frequent changes. This will give them a fair number of students that need to be addressed and they can start the counselling sessions at the beginning of the school year, post the admission process.
How does this affect the retention rate?

If these are identified at the start of the session, there will be enough time to work on students who are unable to perform well owing to pressure. With regular counselling sessions, students improve their overall performance in academics, and the retention rate is increased as a consequence. The idea is to create an environment where children can learn at their own pace and do not succumb to peer pressure and from that of their respective teachers/parents.

In order to reduce the number of students from leaving the school, effective online admission ERP systems are the need of the hour. A customized form can help in obtaining the most relevant information from students and identifying those that change schools frequently. If they can be worked upon with the right guidance and support, there is enough time available to address the relevant issues since they are recognised well in advance.