I've met with quite a few Center Directors over the past few weeks and got to hear what they're excited about for the summer.
One headline was "New Programs!" Franchisees were buzzing about the new SylvanSync Advanced Study Skills program that has been designed to address all of the key college readiness skills for students in grades 4 through 12. As SAT and ACT season approaches this never has been more important. As a mom of two boys, I am glad to be finished with that phase...I remember those last-minute searches for #2 pencils!
Another popular topic was SylvanSync Satellites. Now that Sylvan franchisees can penetrate their territory with very low fixed costs, people are on the hunt for the best places to put Sylvan Learning Center satellite locations. The Directors shared stories of their conversations with private schools, community centers, libraries, and other safe spaces where Sylvan tutors can deliver programs conveniently for families. Technology for this didn't exist three years ago...now it's mainstream at Sylvan with over 150 active locations in the past year. Yes, we love tutoring and helping children succeed, but we also love helping our franchisees grow their revenue.
Another hot new topic was SylvanPlay, Sylvan's new educational App platform, available on iOS and Android. Several Director+Moms admitted to playing SylvanPlay Apps at home and raved about the grade-appropriate skills that are aligned with the common core curriculum. On a recent flight I sat next to a mom with a son in the first grade. When he got restless and bored, I gave him my iPad loaded with Critter Cruise, a popular game on SylvanPlay, which was actually just selected as a top app for San Diego Family's Best Travel Games & Apps. He loved it. I also noticed that mom was particularly attentive. When he finished she said, "That was awesome, I am a teacher and am going to tell all of my teachers to download that!" Look out Virginia...Critter Cruise is heading your way!
You know you have great products when educators and the people who work at Sylvan use your products. But that's not new at Sylvan. I'm delighted at the number of Sylvan franchisee children who either attend Sylvan or who grew up learning the business. When I visited New Jersey franchisee, Nancy Velisek, I introduced myself to one of the Directors...and discovered it was Nancy's daughter! This happens frequently at Sylvan; we have dozens of family businesses and many multi-generational franchisees. These Sylvan franchisees have helped Sylvan become the most recognized brand for personalized tutoring in the U.S. When you buy a Sylvan Franchise you also become a member of our Sylvan family...thank you to our entire Sylvan franchisee family!