How to Open a CBSE Board School


Starting a school is a significant and large-scale business venture. Every school has its own curriculum that is affiliated to one of the education boards. The CBSE (Central Board of Secondary Education) is one of the oldest, well-known, and well-established boards in the Indian education system.

The CBSE has set certain norms that need to be followed by schools that apply for affiliation. Once you set up a CBSE-affiliated curriculum for your school, you get the benefits of a self-financing board that puts in a lot of efforts to develop and manage a consistent curriculum throughout all the schools.

The procedure to open a new CBSE school in India with the affiliation of the CBSE board requires dedicated efforts and perfection in the procedures that are listed for the affiliation. Along with the basic pre-requisites like infrastructure, site, furniture, and other related elements, you also need to adhere to compliances like licenses, approvals, and acceptances from education authorities as well as other CBSE school-opening requirements in India.

Following are some of the points that will help you understand how to open a CBSE board school in India:

  • Eligibility :A defined set of schools like those run by autonomous organizations, private and unaided Government schools, schools run by public sector undertakings, and institutions run by government departments are eligible to apply for affiliation. The details can be found on the CBSE website.
  • Capital :Like every business, a school requires capital for erecting infrastructure and completing the procedures for set up. These requirements start right from procuring a land via ownership or on lease to setting up the structure, classrooms, laboratories, equipments, staff recruitment, and several other components. You can arrange the investments through loans but you need to be prepared for the minimal requirements, to begin with.
  • Registration of Society or Trust :The school that you set up may have the support of a Government Organization or an NGO. In case of private unaided schools, they need to be established by a society that is registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860, of the Government of India; by Acts of the State Governments as educational, charitable or religious societies having non-proprietary character; or by Trusts. The land that is purchased or bought on lease needs to be transacted in the name of the society.
  • Land and Construction :The land needs to be purchased based on precise requirements and needs.

How to Open an ICSE Board School


The Indian School Certificate Examination (ISCE) is the council that was established with the guidance and support of the University of Cambridge (Local Examinations Syndicate) and the Inter-State boards. ICSE schools are spread across all the commonwealth countries. The ICSE curriculum has a strong focus on English but also focuses on Art and Science. Today, the ICSE is one of the toughest yet most respected curriculums in India.

If you wish to open an ICSE school, you need to understand the requirements to open an ICSE school in India. Running an ICSE school requires you to set up a trust or a society. The process also involves obtaining licenses and approvals at various stages and – last but not the least – giving due justice to the implementation of the curriculum. It is important to note that the ICSE grants permanent as well as provisional affiliation to schools subject to certain terms and conditions. You can also take help from consultants for setting up schools in India.

The procedure to open new ICSE School in India is summarized in the points listed below. You need to complete the following process to acquire the affiliation from the ICSE council:

How an Ideal School should be


The School, its physical features, and its mission should have a lifetime impact.

The priority ought to be to unlock each child’s potential to the fullest. The school should provide children with a wide range of opportunities and the stimulus they need to excel academically as well as in sports and arts.

Pupils should be encouraged to develop their leadership skills with integrity and honesty. The school should strive to impart the best education in the country. The school should also embrace the concept of true education; explore new learning frameworks for the 21st century, and expand the connection between the institution, technology, and parents. The rich experiences of schooling should gift students a rewarding life in adulthood.

Moreover, the school should have a happy atmosphere and should allow students to grow and develop academically, socially, and personally into responsible, caring, and confident young people. Walking through the gates of the school, they should embark on a journey that is exciting, challenging, and rewarding in a warm and family environment.

Manage a New School

Manage a New School


On Start of the School, the focus is on enrolling students, achieving the learning outcomes and effective operations within budget. This can be cumbersome, when management is unable to dedicate the desired time to manage operations, market the school wisely, source skills and materials on time. We have had the privilege of building, managing schools and delivering the learning outcomes.

Services provided during the planning and establishment stage will continue to cover campus development and expansion, the onsite coordinator or a school head will assist in day to day school operations. The Coordinator is backed by a pool of resources from our offices, senior staff from our home office to ensure smooth School operations.

  • School Consultants :provide guidance, strategic advisory on the agreed operational goals and milestones for the School.
  • School Management Systems and Procedures :Assist in implementation of operations policies practices, procedures, technology, reporting and communication systems.
  • Academics / Curriculum Support :Continuous guidance from our home office to Management, Principal, Teachers and staff, Teaching-Learning, Curriculum Handholding, Preparation of application forms and technical report for affiliation (CBSE, ICSE, IGCSE, IB), prepare for inspection(s), assist in compliance with requirements leading to affiliation, Skill Development / Teacher Training, Find and recruit the best educators and staff from our pool of 10000+ candidates, Academic audits, Reviews by senior management.
  • Education Spaces Development :Suggest and provide design concepts for renovation/upgrade of existing educational facilities.
  • Branding & Marketing Support :Re-calibrate brand strategy to cater to changing market needs, create marketing plan, Design brand and marketing collaterals for school (digital, outdoor, media, social, etc.), Hosting and maintaining website, Market digitally and Planning betterment & admissions.
  • Procurement :Our procurement team from home office will assist you source materials, supplies and stationery from over 500 vendors from around the world, consolidate and ship best educational materials and supplies.
Establishing a New School

Establishing a New School

The establishment of a new school may take 3 months to 2 years or more based on the type of school. Project team is identified,recruited and placed on site by the promoters, School Consultants work with the promoters, site team, school architects, academicians, rgfedu home office teams and complete necessary activities to ensure that school is completely prepared by the launch date.

While we have found that fast tracking the implementation is possible in certain environments, we have also seen that, unduly accelerated timelines may result in serious compromises and can lower the quality of the outcome. We strongly advise our clients to invest dedicated time and resources at the front-end of any new school project to ensure best results. rgfedu home office team and project team assists school promoters to establish the new school –

  • Statutory Approvals : provide guidance, review necessary documentation for seeking approvals from local authorities, education department, state government and State, CBSE, ICSE, IGCSE and IB boards.
  • School Master Plan & Architecture :site master plan, school architecture and services design.
  • Learning Spaces Design :conceptualize learning spaces designs.
  • Academic / Beyond Academic programs :academic planning, guidance to implement 21st century learning programs.
  • Recruit Teachers & Staff :teaching, non-teaching and administrative.
  • Put in place Policies :procedures & handbooks.
  • Coordinate :skill development & training.
  • Education Resources :Assist in purchase of school supplies & materials like classroom furniture, uniforms, smart boards, education aid, etc..
  • Recommend :use of technology in school.
  • School Transportation :Plan route for school buses, child safety and security policies, transportation operations procedures and train drivers/assistants.
  • School Branding :create vision and positioning strategy, identity design, create website and establish brand campaign to educate, engage and influence parents and students.
  • Marketing school programs :Develop content and design marketing collateral, establish promotion strategy.
  • Implement admissions process :training counsellors, coordinate enrolments.
  • Launch new school :plan launch event and soft launch of school.
Planning a New School

Planning a New School

Over the years, we have found that each situation while starting a school presents unique opportunities and challenges. During the Initial stage, Our International School Consultants will help clients to validate the idea, identify key issues to be addressed, gather information through market survey to understand competition, parent preferences, education programs, positioning, marketing, statutory approvals, boards, perform analysis to determine the key criteria for the school to be successful and arrive at sustainable school concepts along with draft timelines and draft budget.

A detailed School Project Report covering all aspects of the approved school concept, budget is prepared by our school consultants. The report is prepared in close consultation with the promoters to ensure that its final version is a document that promoters and school consultant agree upon. The report covers the following aspects of the new school setup.

New School Setup

New School Setup

New school setup process can be overwhelming even for the most resolute of entrepreneurs. If not managed resourcefully, details of the project can ruin the big plan and unanswered questions can cause confusion.

It is important to appreciate the target market, create a strong foundation for school logistics, facilitate age-appropriate learning programs, provision relevant learning spaces, recruit best teachers and competent staff, establish institutional policies, procedures to track student progress and ensure access to high-quality school technology and supplies. All these organizational goals need to be accomplished within the time frame and budget.

Collaborative Experience

Our school project consultants engage with individuals, entrepreneurs, trusts, and corporates who possess financial resources to start a school in India and operate it. rgfedu experience covers school setups built on various scales, curriculums, no of grades and different boards of affiliation including State, CBSE, ICSE, IGCSE, IB. Our network of partners, school consultants and team, operating in close collaboration, create immense value by reducing implementation time thereby delivering speedy outcomes.

Concept to Launch’ Assistance for Starting a School in India

We have considerable experience navigating all the distinct steps involved in setting up a new school including drafting school project feasibility report as well as a detailed project report. Our school consultants understand the intricacy of details and level of planning required to launch a new school. Hence we have developed skills and cultivated resources to create access to right talent, plan school facilities, draft master plan, decide upon suitable architecture and design for schools building and interiors, establish curriculum, create policies to ultimately deliver a world-class educational experience.

To proceed with an initial idea all the way to opening a new school requires thorough preparation, comprehensive planning, commitment and dedicated resources. Our educational consultants provide the necessary guidance, strategic advisory on all aspects concerning the new school which includes, but is not limited to, school architecture & design, curriculum/academic program, training, fees structuring, policies, procedures, brand promotion, marketing, maximizing admissions, school supplies & materials, statutory compliance, affiliation, budgeting, and finance.

  • Market Survey
  • Feasibility Report / Assessment
  • Sustainable school concepts
  • Collaboration with national and International Experts and Organization
  • School Support, Improvement and Management Services.
  • Detailed project report
  • Strategic financial planning
  • Organization / Governance Structure

RGF 360

How to Start School and get IGCSE affiliation?

To become an IGCSE school in India, a school has to first establish itself conventionally. It has to be run by a Trust /Society / Section 8 company. Such Trust/Society/Company has to be a non-proprietary organization. There must be a School Managing Committee set up by the Trust/Society. For details visit our previous blog post How to Start a Private School in India?

How to Start an ICSE Affiliated School in India?

Starting an ICSE school in India implies getting a school affiliated to the Central Council of Indian School Certificate Examination (CISCE) or the ICSE board. To get affiliated with the council a school in India must be operational and must have the state board recognition. The school running a CBSE curriculum can also apply for ICSE affiliation. Opening a school with a vision towards CISCE affiliation must keep medium of instruction as English exclusively.

How to Start a CBSE School Anywhere in India?

There could have hardly been a better time to start/open a CBSE school in India and get CBSE affiliation. We say so because we are witnessing a change of orientation of the board – the 2018 reforms in CBSE Affiliation Bye-Laws, which are by all accounts progressive. The curtailment of paperwork, credence to state-verified documents and attestations by CBSE board and vice – versa has simplified the process of CBSE affiliation.


1. Why is market study or feasibility report for school required ?

In most cases, new school start-up enthusiasts jump to construction stage of the new school building without assessing school project feasibility, planning budget, not considering any statutory requirements. The decision to jump stages is purely based on individual perception, a lot of money would have gone into the new school setup and operations – It may take several years to understand if the approach is delivering the desired results or not.

To avoid ambiguity, endless run time issues and to ensure you are making the right investment, we suggest a data driven approach to determine a sustainable school concept or school project feasibility. Some questions you need to have valid answers for before you begin or make any investment –

  1. Is there a need for school in proposed location?
  2. What is your target market and how are you positioning your school?
  3. What are the risks involved in the proposed school project?
  4. Under what conditions will be proposed school be successful?
  5. How much does it cost to setup a school and run it?
  6. How long does it take to setup a school?
2. Should I obtain a Detailed Project Report (DPR) before I start a school?

DPR is a comprehensive school development plan prepared in consultation with the school promoters, an important start up guide for those who wish to start a new school. Further it acts as an implementation guide for promoters and can be used obtain loans for the proposed school project. DPR addresses all major issues concerning the project, namely –

  1. Vision & philosophy
  2. Organization structure
  3. Academic & beyond academic programs
  4. Staffing & Skill development
  5. Master plan & interiors
  6. Branding & positioning
  7. Statutory & legal issues
  8. Financial feasibility covering 15 years cash flows.
  9. Market pricing
  10. Admissions
  11. Documentation for staff and students
  12. Technology infrastructure
  13. Project schedule
3. Which Curriculum / Board / Syllabus options should I consider for the new school setup?

Many options are available; you may consider any one or combination of these familiar options –

  1. State Board: State Government Recognized Board
  2. CBSE: Central Board of Secondary Education
  3. CBSE-I: CBSE-International
  4. ICSE: Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE)
  5. IB: International Baccalaureate
  6. IGCSE: International General Certificate of Secondary Education / Cambridge University
  7. Early Learning Schools & Child Care Centers; custom concepts based on the Theory of Multiple Intelligences, Reggio Emilia, Waldorf (Steiner), Montessori and early year foundation stages (EYFS).
4.How much does it cost to start a new school?

There is no single answer to this question, Cost of setting up a school is dependent on several factors, listing few factors –

  • Target market
  • Capacity planned
  • Value of land (varies by location and size)
  • Cost of infrastructure design and build
  • Facilities you wish to offer
  • Academic and beyond academic programs you wish to offer
  • Cost of educational supplies, staffing and other services
  • How do you plan to brand and position your school in the target market
5.How much land is required to start a new school?

Minimum requirement is 500 – 8000 Square meters. However land required depends on specific location you wish to open the proposed school, facilities you propose to provide to students, state board and other affiliations (CBSE, ICSE, etc) you are planning to seek for your new school.

6.How much does it cost to construct a school building and interiors?

Approximately Rs. 1000 – Rs. 3000 a square feet, varies by location and quality of construction.

7.What is the typical operational break-even period for a school project?

Depends on the pace at which you are able to establish brand awareness and enroll students. For a moderately financed venture, the operational break even should be within 1 – 5 years from the launch date.

Sometimes operational break-even may not happen as predicted, you still need to support operations and maintain the brand position. It is suggested that you plan the necessary cash flows well in advance.

8.What is the typical break-even period for a school project?

This is highly dependent on the capital invested and the overall success of the school. In a normal case, the break even should be within 5 – 10 years from the launch date (not considering gains thru land value appreciation/depreciation)

9.What are the typical resources required to run a school?

Principal, coordinators, Teachers, Lab Assistants, Maids, Administrator, Accounts Staff, Gardner’s, Nurse, Drivers, etc.

10.What is the suggested student teacher ratio, size of rooms, labs and other facilities?

You should meet the pre-requisite criteria indicated by the state board and other boards (CBSE, ICSE, IB, etc) you are planning to seek affiliation from.

We recommend planning these based on the academics and beyond academic programs, your school would offer, nature of learning environment you wish you provide to students.

11.What facilities should I provide in my new school?

Age appropriate facilities are necessary for all-round child development. There is no end to the facilities and amenities you can provide. Figure out what is adding to the cost and not adding to the enrolments and make sure they are used to optimum. Some of them include:

  1. Technology enabled classrooms
  2. Language Labs
  3. Science Labs
  4. Maths Labs
  5. Music Room
  6. Dance Hall
  7. Art & Craft studio
  8. Indoor / Outdoor sports facilities
  9. Transport
  10. Multipurpose Halls
12.How much do you charge for new school setup services?

Over the years, we have found that each new school project presents unique challenges and opportunities. Deliverables for each new school setup are also unique.

Fee is calculated based on the nature of the project, tenure, specific deliverables and effort involved. We offer flexible charging models for the convenience of people aspiring to open new schools –

  1. Per consulting day (6 hrs)
  2. Task-based fee
  3. Percentage of the estimated project cost (excluding land value)
  4. A quarterly fixed fee for the project duration
  5. Revenue share
  6. Profit share
  7. or a combination one or more models described above

You may visit our office to discuss project requirements with our school consultants, finalize scope of work and understand the fee applicable.

13.Does RGF provide services to clients across India?

YES, Team RGF is equipped to deliver services to prospective clients across India. RGF team has experience in delivering services globally. Language, State are not any barriers for new school setup. Collaborations are a vital part of what we do.

14.Do I need any affiliation before I start a school?

No. you can start a school by getting necessary permissions from the state education department. After the school is opened you can apply for affiliation which requires information about your school operation. For learning everything about starting a school look at our blog post How to start a school in India?

16. Can I open a school in a rented building and apply for CBSE affiliation?

Yes, the school running in a building held on lease for at least 30 years can get CBSE affiliation, it should is located on a part of land which is also owned by the Trust/Society or the school or held on lease for at least 30 years and the area of the land must be 2 acres including the building and the playground. The minimum land area may vary with the region of location of the school. For school’s affiliation to the CBSE clear directions have been given regarding the school property in CBSE affiliation bye laws Chapter II Norms of Affiliation.

15.Can the Trust/Society running school have members of my family?

The Trust/Society running a school cannot have members of a family in a majority (more than 50 per cent). The non –proprietary affidavit of the Trust/Society should have a declaration made by the Chairman about the number of mutually related members. Try that the number of related members be as less as possible in the school governing board or the school management committee also.

16. Can I open a school in a rented building and apply for CBSE affiliation?

Yes, the school running in a building held on lease for at least 30 years can get CBSE affiliation, it should is located on a part of land which is also owned by the Trust/Society or the school or held on lease for at least 30 years and the area of the land must be 2 acres including the building and the playground. The minimum land area may vary with the region of location of the school. For school’s affiliation to the CBSE clear directions have been given regarding the school property in CBSE affiliation bye laws Chapter II Norms of Affiliation.

17. Do I need to have a state board affiliation to start a CBSE/ICSE school?

Yes, State board recognition is necessary for getting affiliated to any board that include CBSE and ICSE. The state education department also needs to issue an NOC stating that it has no objection regarding your school’s affiliation to the CBSE/CISCE. For complete details about getting your school affiliated to CBSE or ICSE refer to our blog posts How to Start a School and get CBSE affiliation? or How to start a school and get ICSE affiliation?

18. Does the salary of teachers and staff has to be exactly equal to the state requirements? What if it is lesser than the state directed amount?

The salaries you pay to the teachers and staff of your school may be lesser than the state requirements but there must be an EPF registration in every case. The variation is granted as the cost of living differs from region to region but there must be transparency in the bank statements and there must be no financial irregularity. Complete financial documentation is a must.

19. What all permissions are needed for starting a new school?

The permissions and related documents that are required for starting a new school in India are—
• The founding documents of the Trust/Society/Company
• The affidavit of the non-proprietary Trust/Society/Company
• Memorandum of Association between the school and the Trust/Society/Company
• Land and School Building Documents
• Ownership documents, Sale deed or Lease Deed
• Change of Land Use certificate for the land for the school building
• Map approved by the Municipal Authority
• Building blueprint
• Building Safety Certificate
• NOC issued by the education department of the state or the ‘Essentiality Certificate’
• State Board Affiliation
• Employees’ EPF and ESIC registration

20. What is land requirement for CBSE schools in cities?

CBSE has signified the land requirements for cities with population more than 25 lacs which is not less than 2 acres which includes the land of the building and the playground and the space to provide physical health education. The land requirement in hilly areas is 1 acre. For details check page 5 and 6 of CBSE Bye laws. You may also find land or building or operational school for sale on the exclusive school real estate portal  School

21. Do I have to appoint new Principal and teachers for my school for getting CBSE affiliation?

If you have an adequately qualified serving Principal for your school you need not appoint new Principal. Same applies in case of teachers. The qualification of teachers and principals is provided in Chapter IX of CBSE affiliation Bye laws. Appropriately qualified school Principal and teachers for schools aspiring for CBSE, ICSE or international Board Affiliation can be hired through online school jobs portal

22. Does CBSE or ICSE recommend any specific suppliers ?

No. School promoters have to run pillar to post, identify vendors, choose the material and procure school supplies and materials.  Alternatively, school promoters can buy all school supplies and materials online from marketplaces like

23. Where can i find land for my school ?

You can find land/building for the school purpose, an operational school for  sale, lease at exclusive school real estate listings portal

24. What Infrastructure is required to start CBSE, ICSE, IGCSE/Cambridge and IB Schools in India?

The land and infrastructure requirements to start CBSE, IGCSE/Cambridge, ICSE and IB Schools in India are defined by the respective boards and vary with nature of accommodation, capacity, terrain, and geography. International organizations dwell upon the dimensions relatively lesser than CBSE or ICSE, nonetheless, they mandate complete learning environment in every respect and can accommodate not only the given number of children but also the pedagogical activities, movements, and interactions. CBSE, ICSE or State board schools can also run international programs by provisioning appropriate infrastructure. Specific requirements have been detailed in the following articles –

  1. How to Start a CBSE School Anywhere in India?
  2. How to Start an ICSE Affiliated School in India?
  3. How to Start School and get IGCSE affiliation?
  4. How to Start an IB School Anywhere In India?



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