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Education domain Fee module redesign

Hi Community,
ERPNext Team is working on redesigning the Fee module for the Education domain. After this, the Fee module will be linked with the Accounts module of ERPNext. All your ideas and suggestions are most welcome. If you are Education domain user and you have some feature in your mind, this is the perfect time to tell us. You can also comment your ideas regarding accounting standards in the educational institutes.
Please feel free to comment here or can add your comment on the given GitHub thread

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Another but probably already added is that the student does not need a parent / guardian if older than 18…

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Payment management is crucial… Imagine a school of thousands of student. Every month needs to collect each student fees.

Each student / guardian needs to be connected with customer… Or as new receivable party type…

One payment entry for one student is really not ideal for thousands of payments

What I can think is within one payment entry form… User can upload bank payment information (csv) then automatically match with each receivable party balance…

Something like batch payment processing tool to upload bank statement then create payment entry for each student guardian??

In student/guardian master, we can register bank account info… So we can match it with bank statement…

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I think revenue recognition is very important in a school (and a subscription) kind of setting. There are regulatory requirements, there are school policies and there are accounting requirements.

Let’s say a school collects fees annually in advance.

Accounting regulations say, when can you recognize revenue for these advance payments. So, you may need to recognize revenue monthly. So let’s say you have ₹20k as the annual fees. And let’s say it is a 10 month term or academic year. So, when the payment is received on behalf of the student, the payment must sit in an advance account. And depending on the revenue recognition period (which must be a financial controller configurable field) - monthly, quarterly, semiannually , annually or a trigger (recognize revenue for the period X-Y now) these amounts should move from the balance sheet (current liability) to the income account.

So a batch job that runs in the background that moves the appropriate amounts from the liability account to the income account based on the period or the trigger may be required.

A clear report at the student as to how much balance and in what account (student A has cleared dues for the academic year, out of which ₹12k is in the advance account and ₹8k is in the income account) is necessary to ensure that the school administration can quickly calculate how much money needs to be refunded, if any at all, in case of mid-year exits from the school.

An additional complexity is that Parents/Guardians pay at various times. Some pay early, some pay on the due date and some pay late. So maintaining the due list so that the school administration can generate overdue lists and followup is very important.

Discounts: The thing I have heard is that schools do complex fee structures - RTE, full price students, and discounts of every nature and kind. So, ERPNext should maintain a record of the discount structure. Only authorized people should be able to manipulate the discount field.

Due dates & installments: I believe that schools, depending on parent’s abilities provide varied installments and due dates. Tracking and reporting this is important.

Cash Payments: Many schools accept payment in cash. So, proper tracking of cash is very important till the time it gets deposited into the school’s bank account. Cash gets deposited once a day or once in few days.

Other charges: Technically, many schools outsource books, uniforms, transportation to vendors, but still want to track payments, dues, dues dates, etc.

I guess I’ve missed a few other points, but these are the big ones I guess.

Thanks

Jay

Sorry, I cannot summarize this document, but its a good idea to read it before you do the complete redesign:

This document talks about accounting guidelines for educational institutions.

http://mhrd.gov.in/sites/upload_files/mhrd/files/Report_IASEI.pdf

One thing is that most educational institutions receive a lot of grants, donations, etc. Tracking/Reporting such funds is something that we should pay attention to.

Thanks

Jay

We have cases where fee payments are done monthly …

How to have the Fee structure for Monthly fees and not creating the same Program many times?

Hi,
There can make a monthly fee structure and can generate fee using that fee structure. For repetitive fee generation, we are also building a tool which can generate the fee for a particular program or group (Something like of payroll type)

Actually, Fee records can be sent to the parent/guardian for the payment request, but it will be always generated against the Student.

Hi Community,
The newly updated Fee design is as described below:

  1. First of all, we have created the accounts head “Academic Receivable” as receivable type account and “Academic Fee” as income type account

  2. Then we can set these accounts as default receivable account and default income account.

  3. Then we will create the Fee Structure which contains the fee breakup and accounting details before any fee collection.
    http://imgur.com/a/CBszO

  4. After creating the Fee Structure, we can start with the Fee creation. This will include the following steps.
    i. Create and submit the fee records for a student. After submitting this record, a GL entries will be created in the backend, one against Academic Receivable (Debit) and another against the Academic Fee(Credit) considering student as a party.
    ii. You can create the payment request from the fee record itself simply by clicking on the make Payment Request.
    iii. Payment Entry can be done against the fee records.
    The following link contains a GIF of the given workflow.
    http://imgur.com/a/9V1XS

Apart from this, there is also a FEE SCHEDULE tool which can be used to create multiple fee records based on program, batch and student group.
All your suggestions and feedbacks are highly appreciated.

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How about batch-payment tool? So user can make payment settlement in batch-processing? i.e. importing bank document standard then the system automatically create and submit all payments against multiple fee records?

Schools with hundreds or thousand of students surely would need this…making payment entry one by one every month per student is ‘headache’…

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There will be a tool for creating the Fees batch. As far as standard bank document is considered, I think we don’t have any generic standard bank document. Every bank will have its own standard.
When I am trying to understand the fee payment process in the institutions, I came across a general practice. If the fee is submitted in the bank account via a Challan or in the institution’s bank account, then the bank gives a 3-way splitter challan (contains 3 copies one for the bank, one for student and one for institutions). After submitting the fee in the bank, students also have to submit that institution’s copy in the accounts department. Now at this time, the accounting department can make a payment entry using that copy.

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I think this is out of dated practice…now mostly in our country, schools create virtual account in bank, so each student will have one bank virtual account. Every month student parent just need to make bank transfer to this virtual bank account. And then school finance dept can download this bank statement from bank to verify it one by one…that is the real problem with thousands of records every month…This is what they are actually doing…

It would be very helpful if school can just import ‘csv’ then system automatically match it with each virtual account per student fee master…and submit payment batches accordingly…

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May be, but here this is a standard practice. The main problem that seems to me is that how the bank provides the data. Do different banks have their different standards? Do they provide data in csv or xlsx or pdf?
If this is generic enough then we can consider making some tool for bulk processing the data from the bank to the ERP, but for that also, we need some sample data from the bank in some generic format. If you could provide some sample files, it will be helpful.

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Let’s assume xlsx for now Manas. Most banks give you both xlsx and pdf options. So first cut xlsx, we can’t go wrong.

Thanks

Jay

There are a whole bunch of semi-urban schools in India where the parents may not even have a bank account, so I guess @jof2jc is bang in the center of a large city in India or in a country where the penetration of internet banking is high.

A POS module for collecting fees in cash or cheque may be a good add-on.

Great progress guys.

Thanks

Jay

Do you have any mockups of this part? I think this and the discount structure is very important to get right, so that schools can get reports at their fingertips and can follow up for payments the correct amounts at the correct schedules.

Hi,
The FEE SCHEDULE is as given below. I haven’t added discount and late fee provision yet, will be working on them soon.

Have a separate DocType for discounts. And a separate DocType for payment schedule is my advice.

Thanks

Jay

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This is the practice I’ve seen in[quote=“JayRam, post:19, topic:25973”]
Have a separate DocType for discounts. And a separate DocType for payment schedule is my advice.
[/quote]

This is the practice I’ve seen in other open-source school software