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Sample Photo Day Schedule

Working with schools of all shapes and sizes over the years, I've noticed that some schedules tend to work better than others.  Please see below for a sample photo day schedule that I recommend we use as a template for your school's needs.  This is easily adjustable to accommodate any special requests!
 

 

 

 

Sample Schedules

Sample Large School/Daycare Schedule

For daycares and schools that have more than two classes (~30 children) needing to be photographed per day.

 

8 AM - Photo day begins for early arrivals

9-9:30 AM - Solo photos for part-time students not in attendance / regular students as space permits. 

9:30 AM - 10:15 AM - Group photos

10:15 AM - Solo photos continue until done

Sample Small School/Preschool Schedule

For preschools with later start times and that have smaller populations (<30 children) needing to be photographed per day.

9 AM - Photo day begins

9-9:30 AM - Solo photos for part-time students not in attendance / regular students as space permits.

9:30 AM - Group photos

9:45 AM - Solo photos continue until done

I will work in conjunction with you to plan the schedule.  While I am generally quite flexible with it - my system allows for me to work with students in any order they come to photo day (including working with students from multiple classes at the same time), it is worth noting that I generally work with ~20-30 children per hour.  

The scheduling policies I maintain across my schools are:

1) We have a window of time early in the day for part-time students not in attendance on that day.  All part-time students should plan to be photographed within that window, or at the very least, as close to it as possible.  We may not be able to accommodate part-time students later in the day if our day moves through quicker than anticipated.
 

2)  If we are offering class photos and your school has more than one class per day, that we provide parents with a specific time for class photos.  I generally recommend that we schedule class photos around 9:30 - 10 AM, since this seems to be an ideal time for maximum attendance rates...but also before children get messy or tired!  Please ensure that your classes are full when we start the photos, since we cannot offer multiple rounds of group photos to accommodate late arrivals.

 

Along these lines, please let parents know to arrive 10-15 minutes before their actual scheduled class photo time.  In other words, if our class photos are starting at 9 AM, please ask parents to arrive at 8:45 AM for the photos.  This is done to ensure that we're being fair to all of the students - I'm a mom as well, and recognize how hard it can be to be on time with little ones!  The 15 minutes acts as a buffer for us - if a student hasn't arrived by the actual time of their group photo, it is not fair to the other 20 children to keep the entire class waiting.  
 

3) We do not disclose a photo day "end time" to parents.  This gives us the flexibility to work as smoothly as possible and to end as early - or as late - as the children/school need.

Within these parameters, I'm happy to offer as much flexibility is needed to you - you know your snack times, nap times, etc - as well as things that arise - a class having a rough day, illness, etc.  I am very happy to bounce around the students however is needed.  If half of your junior kindergarten is ready during a time slot we'd loosely allotted to the toddlers and the toddler class is suddenly having a rough go, let's focus on getting your JK kids photographed!

What about children coming in exclusively for photo day?

All photo days operate from the start time until photographs are finished; the schedule we plan in advance is a rough guideline subject to change.  As such, it is important that all students coming solely for photo day should plan to arrive for the start of the photo session, and certainly no later than the halfway point of photos.  Please let families know that the photographer will remain on the premises until all children in attendance are photographed, and that to guarantee their child is photographed, he/she must be in attendance at the start of photo day.

 

I work with each school to set a rough start and end time; however, please note that the end time is both internal (not to be broadly shared) and fluid.  Because I'm a one-woman show who works as efficiently and seamlessly as I can, we may not need the extra time I build into photo day.  If we finish early, we may not be able to accommodate later arrivals.  


In other words, if we are planning a shoot from 9 - 11 AM, please ask all part-time families to come for photos between 9-9:30 AM; that we may not be able to accommodate arrivals after this time.  
 

If your school is starting with group photos each day, please let parents know to arrive 10-15 minutes before their actual scheduled class photo time.  In other words, if our class photos are starting at 9 AM, please ask parents to arrive at 8:45 AM for the photos.  This is done to ensure that we're being fair to all of the students - I'm a mom as well, and recognize how hard it can be to be on time with little ones!  The 15 minutes acts as a buffer for us - if a student hasn't arrived by the actual time of their group photo, it is not fair to the other 20 children to keep the entire class waiting.  

Emergencies aside, we will not offer retakes of class photos for late arrivals.

How many hours do we need?

As we plan the schedule, let's plan on ~20-30 children per hour.  Class photos are generally around 5 minutes each assuming that the class is set up and ready for the photos.  For schools that request staff headshots, I can usually work with 2-3 staff per minute - and am happy to slot them in throughout the day.

Working efficiently and flexibly allows us to photograph the entire school as smoothly as possible.  When we've photographed all students in attendance, it will be time for me to pack up.  This is why I request that all part-time students coming in just for photo day come in during the first half of photo day.  It's simply not feasible for me to wait two hours for one family who has decided they'd like to get photos during the last 5 minutes of our scheduled time.

I generally recommend we cap photo day at around 70 children per day.  In a pinch, yes, we can do more.  ~70 children per day ensures I can offer adequate time to each child and also finish our photo session in a timely fashion.

How do you schedule younger (infant/toddler) versus older classes?

If your school has infant/toddler as well as older classes - and thus needs multiple days of my services - I recommend that we work with the younger classes on the first day and the older classes on later day(s).  With younger children often needing more time to warm up, this gives us the flexibility to offer make-up sessions on the later days for children who had an incredibly difficult time the first go-around.  (Make-up sessions are offered on a case-by-case basis based on the photographer/staff feedback.)

Do you offer make-up photo dates?

Every year, I offer regular in-studio make-up photo dates for children who were unable to attend the school's regularly scheduled photo date.  These sessions are held roughly once a month in my Ladner studio, and are also open to siblings, friends and members of the community.  There is no session fee for these sessions, and I offer identical purchasing options to what is offered during my regular school sessions.  (Prints/digitals/packages - prints drop-ship to the family's shipping address.)

In order for me to keep my costs as low as possible and my services complimentary to my school partners, I do not offer in-school make-up sessions.  For schools that require make-ups done on-site, be it for solo or group photos, I offer these services for a nominal fee of $250 per visit charged to the school; all purchase options are available to families at the same prices as our regular photo days together.  When possible, I very much encourage schools to ensure that we have as close to full attendance as possible on photo day...or to invite your absent students to join me in studio for a make-up date there!

How can I contact you?

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out.  First and foremost, I'm a mom as well.  I'm happy to answer any questions that you may have.

 604.330.3933 | kirsten@klchildphotography.com.

The parents of the children whose photos are contained within have granted me explicit permission to use their photos as sample images.

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