Advice on Private School Financing and Options

by NYC Firm Schools on March 28, 2009

Creative Commons License photo credit: JOE M500

The Ask Anne Blog is always a great read, and her latest post on affording Private School has some wonderful advice for parents. She takes a hands on approach for parents who are worried about their financial situation and advises them to have a contingency plan in the works, just in case.

But no one can wait until next fall to see what shakes out. So while it’s still March, and there’s a little time before the next school year, do some contingency planning.

Anne provides some good advice for parents to take a look at, even if the look is occasionally takes you out of your comfort zone.

1. If you can, apply for financial aid at the school. Sometimes you have to wait until very late in the year—May or so—before getting an answer for the following school year, so that can’t be your only plan. But do it. It doesn’t mean you’re any less supportive of the school. I know some school environments can add that social pressure. I say, forget that!
2. Barter, defer payment, cut a deal. Also, if you have an imminent situation—you’re not sure you can afford the rest of this year—go now and talk to the school about your financial situation.

Anne is also unafraid to ask parents to consider other options including the possibility of switching to public school.

But if all the bailout ideas don’t work, you’ll need to plan for public school. You may have more choices than you think. If you hate the local public school in your tax district, apply for a variance.
Visit all local public schools within reasonable driving distance from your home, get familiar and comfortable with them. One of the luxuries of being laid off is you have business hours to do research. If you like a school out of your tax district, you can apply with the School Superintendent’s Office to get a variance.

The full blog post from Anne is worth a read for any parent with a child in Private School.

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