2020-2021 Tuition Policy
As always, I, Fr. Ken, our leadership teams, and the school board remain united in our shared commitment to maintaining both the quality and affordability of an SJF education. You’ll see this highlighted throughout the strategic plan, specifically the many ways we envision dealing with these often-conflicting goals over the next 3-5 years. The reality we find ourselves in, however, is that our current tuition structure does not cover the base costs of educating our children, let alone the many improvements we want to make going forward. Based on enrollment and cost projections, we estimate our operating budget will be in a significant deficit without any changes. In that light, we have set tuition for the 2020-21 school year per the table below. Similar to last year, it reflects an increase of $150 per student. This should make up approximately half of our projected deficit. We plan to make up the rest through various fundraising initiatives, continued creative application for third party grant funds, and the seeking of select operating efficiencies.
Full-time Tuition 2019-20 2020-21 % Disc. Per Fam. $ Change % Change
1st Student $ 5,165 $ 5,315 n/a $ 5,315 $ 150 2.9%
2nd Student 3,420 3,570 33% 8,885 300 3.5%
3rd Student 2,665 2,815 47% 11,700 450 4.0%
4th Student 1,450 1,600 70% 13,300 600 4.7%
5th+ Students 150 100% 13,300 450 3.5%
3 Day Full-Day $ 3,099 $ 3,200 40% n/a $ 101 3.3%
5 Day Part-Day 2,416 2,675 50% n/a 259 10.7%
3 Day Part-Day 1,556 1,600 70% n/a 44 2.8%
We are also making changes to our “Book Day” fee schedule to more directly tie fees to related expenses and to have the average SJF family see a decrease in total non-tuition fees. These changes are shown below. You will see the biggest change is we are eliminating the fundraising fee due on Book Day and are introducing a requirement to “earn” a certain amount of MANNA credit for the school before the end of the academic year. MANNA is our single largest school-specific fundraiser, and participation in it has severely dropped in recent years to the point where less than 35% of our current school families regularly use it. We’re hoping that introducing a requirement to earn credit for the school through MANNA will be a positive boost for both our budget and yours. For every $1 you earn for the school, you also earn $1.50 credit toward your tuition bill, so this requirement will also have the side effect of helping offset some, if not all or more, of the headline tuition increases introduced above.
Book Day Fees 2019-20 2020-21
Base Registration / Admin $ 25 $ 50 Family
Books & Supplies 220 200 Student
Technology 100 125 Student
Lunchroom 20 25 Student
Archdiocesan Assessment 25 50 Student
Fundraising 175 -
FSA Membership - 50 Family **In lieu of room parent collection
Manna Earnings Requirement - 300 Family **Details / example to follow
Please know we don’t make any of these decisions regarding tuition and fee changes lightly. It is not lost on me that this letter and these changes come at what is an especially challenging time for us all in so many ways. I know that includes financial challenges for some of our families, so we have done our best to appropriately balance our various educational objectives and financial needs without putting an undue or unexpected burden on you. Tuition and fee schedules are always set after much consultation and comparison of our offering with the school board, our neighboring schools, and the parish business manager. For 2020-21, on a combined basis, we sought to limit any increase in SJF’s total cost to under 3%. While not exactly the same for everyone because of the multi-student discount and the different fee bases, for our average 2-student family, next year’s total cost increase will be approximately 2.3%, and that is before any offsets from potential increased Manna tuition credits.