Advocates for day school education frequently report that “affordability” is their biggest hurdle in speaking with prospective day school parents. With research suggesting that affordability is less of a hindering factor than commonly suspected among a large potential day school market, these resources are collected to help put the concept of affordability in perspective and to identify initiatives and trends in ways that communities are making it easier for families to choose day school education for the children.
Often missing from the discussion of affordability is the question of value and excellence. What is the value of a quality Jewish day school education in the open market? A recent writer on affordability in the independent school world coined the “PAVS” matrix:
- Prestige: the public perception of the quality of the school.
- Affordability: the perception of the price of enrollment after any tuition reduction such as financial aid.
- Value: the perception of what a family receives for what it is paying.
- Sacrifice: the degree to which a family is willing to prioritize paying for education and possibly forego certain other things.
“The combination of perceived prestige and affordability will determine how much a family, having been convinced of a school’s value, is willing to sacrifice to send a child there.” — Mark Mitchell, “The Affordability Dilemma” in Marketing Independent Schools in the 21st Century, NAIS 2001
PEJE Series in Affordability: