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Poll: Is school tuition in Lakewood too high?

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There are 56 Comments to "Poll: Is school tuition in Lakewood too high?"

  • Need reform says:

    Schools need to be regulated. Otherwise they’ll do what they want and how they want.

  • Pop says:

    Obviously it’s too high. What choice to school though. We should make the State help us pay for it!

    • Mr. Rabbi says:

      In ny its way hire I pay over 8k a year!

    • BuckMartinII says:

      The State already does help pay for transportation, special education at SCHI and the SCC, textbooks, special needs classification and evaluation, related services, compensatory and supplemental services, technology, security and nursing. In total about $2,000 per nonpublic student. A good amount more comes from our local property taxes.

      • JustWondering says:

        Hey Buck,

        You are being a little disingenuous. While the State does cover Special Ed and Busing for some students, and maybe on average $2k per student, that is very different than paying $2k per student.

        There are less than 200 out of 30,000 students in SCHI. Due to the intensive care needed, the expenses of SCHI students are very high which skews the numbers. Many students, who are not eligible for mandated busing, don’t receive funding for that either.

        There are many students who receive NO Funding from the state, other than some text books, which is very minimal

  • Entitlement society says:

    @need reform

    The best way to regulate and keep a school in check is to allow for free market competition and not to allow a few bought and paid for elected officials to regulate them.

  • Tough says:

    Thank you for asking! It is a little disconcerting that many (most) schools are privately run with no boards! The owners do as they wish with no input from a board. Parents often have NOONE TO TALK TO.

  • Toby says:

    Nobody is lining their pockets with tuition money so no it’s not too high….

  • Hello says:

    That’s a very subjective question. Depends who you’re asking and what you are comparing it to.

  • Hg says:

    Almost all (if not all) Frum schools in the tri state area are more than double the tuition in Lakewood.

  • Busy Mom says:

    Too high for what? To high meaning the schools dont need that much and theyre getting surplus? Im sure there is no surplus. Too high for parents to shell out? Most definitely. Especially as the family increases in size. It becomes unattainable.

  • Ananomom says:

    Tuition (as in any product) consists of many factors. For example,building maintenance, mortgage, office staff, cost of actual teaching and general overhead expenses. Some things are not negotiable like actual cost to teach. However, others are variables and can be better managed. Some schools build magnificent buildings, much of it donated. However, maintenance on this extravagance is significantly higher than standard (therefore, high building fund, aside from tuition…). If schools would be careful with the money of the tzibbur and focus on teaching (which they also do!) and not make extravagant buildings, I believe parents would trust the school with the price the school says is the cost to educate. When that cost includes extravagance, some who can not afford and don’t personally live in extravagance, will then complain. For my children’s schools, I chose schools that built solid schools with simplicity and will gladly pay what I can afford without questioning the schools calculations (and would pay more if I can). I believe this poll is not accurate. Those that have money and understand the itemized list of expenses will pay the cost. Those that don’t have money sometimes find the cost of bread too expensive also! The priorities of the parents will determine the answer especially since Lakewood private schools are way cheaper than Jewish day schools tuition.

  • CE says:

    Pathetic that this question is even being asked, the average school in Lakewood needs to raise 500k-1mm annually just to cover their budget. And on a side note, the average school has maybe 50% of their parent body paying full tuitions. Look at the numbers in schools out of town and you’ll realize how good the schools we have are to their parent body. NY tuitions are just about double.

  • bob says:

    @Tough
    I think the price of food is way too high the problem is that there are no boards in the supermarkets so the owners can do what they want.

    • Wrong says:

      The fact that food cost is high is due to production. Stores cant do much about that. However, the intense competition keeps prices mostly in check. Schools have no such competition thus boards are needed.

      • bob says:

        @wrong
        Do you have any idea what it cost to run a school?
        Maybe you should educate yourself a little before you make such insane comments.

  • SK says:

    This is an unfair question. Tuition is one of the largest costs to a family so of course everyone wants lower tuition.But at the same time we want our schools to be run well, be in nice condition, as our children spend most of their day there and to be able to give our teachers salaries they deserve. Therefore if reducing tuition will result in cut backs in an area that is ultimately very important to our kids and their teachers, then no, it’s not too high.
    Just a point to ponder, if the school said, we’ll cut tuition by $500/ year but we will add another 5 kids to your already 29 children’s class, is that worth it? or they will limit the projects your kids can do in school, cut down on how many times the classroom is cleaned by the janitor etc? therefore please think before deciding on this question.

  • Leah says:

    I am paying close to 45000. Tuition for 7 children. I know it costs to run a school but as a mother I’m working 45 hours a week with my biggest expense being tuition. I’m usually short at the end of the month. It’s not sustainable for me.

  • Dave says:

    Is this a joke? Tuition in Lakewood is a 1/3 of the cost in NY. That’s right, in NY tuition is 12k – 15k per kid, if you want a break you have to beg, show your tax returns etc…
    Please be happy with what we get and Thank You to all the School owners who provide an invaluable service for us at such reduced costs.

  • rp says:

    I don’t think it’s overpriced. Even though I cannot afford it.

  • No says:

    Lakewood’s school is very cheap. I grew up in tri state area now that’s expensive. What’s the next poll we are going to see? Are the clothing, grocery stores expensive?

  • S says:

    Tuition costs me a fortune.
    But is way less then my family and friends in Baltimore, Passaic and Florida. They are jealous of what I pay.
    Some pay double the amount I do per child starting from kindergarten.
    I don’t believe anyone is getting rich off of schools otherwise everyone would be running to start schools as fast as they start nursing homes.

    I am also a mother working full time with a large family to pay tuition and no luxuries. It’s a priority for me. Better to pay tuition then live in a large home, travel to Florida, ski, or even own an expensive carriage.

  • Anon says:

    Part of the reason out of town schools are so much is because because a lot of people dont pay full tuition. In lkwd they have a flat rate. I understand that when you have a larger family it cost more and it takes a large portion of your money. I dont feel that’s a excuse to say they are charging to much. They have Bill’s to pay also . Its like walking into a car dealership saying I need a van because I have a large family but I can only afford a car.

    • Correct says:

      I agree with your car dealership comparison.
      But what you aren’t right about is that most people don’t pay full tuition! (At least as far as the school I work in- which is a big school)

  • Maybe says:

    Tuition not too high. It’s the amount of children a family has in school that maybe too high.
    Just a thought

  • S says:

    Out of town breaks are still more then full Lakewood tuition. My friend who is s teacher in an oot school with a teacher break still pays more per child then my full tuition.

    If as a community Lakewood can support so many high end stores, homes, and restaurants tuition is not too high.

  • anon says:

    I think girls school tuition is to high, they seem to run more like a business

  • Sam says:

    Just for your information, I’m paying over $30,000 for two children outside Lakewood. Tuition is a huge strain. I would even say some couples aren’t having children because of high tuition.
    At this point, after helping out my married children, I barely give any tzedaka anymore.

  • John says:

    I grew up in Lakewood and was in school over 20 years ago where tuition was between 1k-2k per child. So why has it gone up to average 6k or higher? What has changed over the last 2 decades in the expenses of running a school?

    Fancier buildings? The building maintainence expenses are not enough to triple it to today’s prices.

    What else has changed in the last 2 decades? Same chinuch and teachers etc… Lunches and busing is government paid for….

  • Not sustainable says:

    It is not possible to earn an honest living and pay tuition for some families. They need a break. This is where true philanthropy comes in. Many people are earning millions great for them. But most are struggling.

  • Frank1 says:

    Those getting a break from full tuition will vote its not too high. Those paying full will say it is too high….

  • Zaidy says:

    I don’t know about tuition but the price of children’s clothes S through the roof and and affordable

  • concerned parent says:

    too high for people to afford. Yes. Too high for school expenses, No. Problem is simple people do not earn enough to afford what is being charged. This is being written by a parent who, along with spouse, works 2 jobs, doesn’t get a vacation or chol hamoed , or bain hazmanim off, and still can barely put food on the table at the end of the month. Pay full tuition? With what ? Air?
    3 boys not in yeshiva because no money for tuition or tutors. What should we pay with? Air?

  • Amil Zola says:

    These schools are all businesses. Some have lovely facilities, well trained instructors and others are rife with fire and building code violations and fail to pay their teachers on time. The most obvious solution it to overtake the local public school system. There are already Jews sitting on the BOE. Naturally religious instruction won’t be possible within normal hours but can be delivered on an after hours basis. Curriculums can be rewritten to reflect Jewish values (which BTW are shared by many other religions). It merely takes the will of the people.

  • Ploni says:

    People think tuition is cheap in our town. If you have such large classes what happens is the kids fall through the cracks and they need tutoring. Add that to the price of your tuition and see how cheap it really is. Additionally, if you don’t get the child the tutoring they need, you end up paying in many other ways.

    As a way for helping the community with all the expenses, it would help if askanim would lobby the government that private tuition costs should not be included when factoring in eligibility for programs and people will have more available monies to pay the tuition….

  • Anonymous says:

    Yes,it is too high. The reason being that Lakewood employers don’t pay their employees a decent salary. It is lower compared to other cities, but the salaries for workers in those cities are higher than those in Lakewood. You have to look at the full picture. My husband and I have both worked at more than one job and have gone to numerous job interviews. Nobody wants to pay their workers a decent salary. They would rather employ someone young than hire someone with experience. My husband and I have been told by numerous prospective employers that they appreciate my experience but aren’t willing to pay for it. They would rather train in a post-seminary girl or a young boy. If employers would pay their employees more, not so many people would need tuition breaks, Tomechi Shabbos, Ahavas Tzedakah, etc…

  • say, what ?? says:

    Too high ?? NO Way !! If anything it’s too low. What the Rebbeim and teachers are getting paid is a Bizayon HaTorah and we all know it. And I wanna publicly thank the insanely dedicated Rebbes and Teachers of our schools who are the undisputed heroes of our society. However As R’ Ozeri famously said at the Convention a few years ago – if we want to attract and retain talent in the schools we need to raise the salaries.
    But we’re not so we’re not.

  • idea says:

    Move to South Bend. Tuition is ZERO because the state provides vouchers. Houses are 100k

  • Thoughtful says:

    Rebbeim and teachers are definitely underpaid, (though most schools offer free tuition for staff children). I feel the price we pay is definitely fair, and hoping the main priority of schools is paying teachers a decent salary to continue their avodah without regretting their chosen proffesion.
    If someone would have 1 child, they would lovingly pay whatever tuition costs, possibly even give extra tzedakah for their child’s education!
    The thing is many of us have BH large families, and that’s when tuition bills becomes a real struggle. I think if schools would be able to help those families out by giving cheaper flat rates on additional siblings it would take a big strain off families who would appreciate the favor and possibly pay up on time.. I feel like there’s an attitude lo aleinu out there where if you’re complaining about costs of tuition, clothing, etc..then-stop having kids! Sad what we have come to.. corrupted mesorah and Yiddish Torah values. Torahdike chikdren are live sifrei Torah. Unlimited potential, and a mitzvah yet!
    The struggle in large families is real, it’s out there, and we as an am need to help find solutions.
    P.s. Do the polls accomplish anything? Who sees them?

  • yiddle says:

    Education is universally recognized as vital to the success of any society. It is therefore considered an entitlement to every child. in every modern civilization, public education is not only offered free of charge thru high school, but children are required to attend school. How much more vital is a Yeshiva education to every Yiddishe child. In tandem with the Chinuch received at home, a Yeshiva imparts the Torah, Middos, and Yiraas Shomayim that will enable the growth of the future generations of Bnei Torah and Erliche Yidden.

    I was therefor shocked and disheartened to hear that a Mosad here in Lakewood sent out an addendum along with the standard sibling application stating in the strongest terms (in all “BOLD” lettering) that the Mosad reserves the right not to accept the sibling if the previous tuition balances have not been paid in full. While other Mosdos resort to the time honored method of shaming the children and parents by not giving the child his/her report card or by not sending them the upcoming year’s welcoming packet in an attempt to collect tuition, this Mosad has taken things to a new low by insinuating that there are children who are not entitled to a Yeshiva education.

    While it is understood that a Yeshiva cannot function without proper funding, Roshei Mosdos must also understand that they are not CEO’s of a business. They are entrusted with the sacred task of being Mechanech our future Doros and must therefore act accordingly. Instead of sending out these shameful letters to parents (some of whom are parents were the father is learning in Kollel or are involved in Chinuch and have large families and are struggling to pay bills) they should instead meet with the parents that cannot afford the and work out a plan on a case by case basis, thereby ensuring that these parents’ (many of whom are people who we teach our children to emulate) dignity is maintained.

  • Anon says:

    If you say tuition is too high the schools cry that they can’t cover their budget. I have an idea – don’t build the most maginficant beautiful school building and charge less tuition and give higher salaries to rabbeim and teachers! There’s no excuse to spend millions of dollar on a building. Maintenance on those buildings are through the roof as well! Build a nice plain building.

  • Admin says:

    NO!
    Tuition is way too low.. schools (at least most of them) ARE NOT A BUSINESS. Just sit down in any school buisness office for a day and you’ll see how they struggle to find funds to pay the electric bills, payroll, other vendors etc. yet at the same time their dedicated staff work very hard to always make sure every penny is spent with a cheshbon. Searching for cheaper vendors or a more cost efficient way to keep the school running. I personally think it is insulting to school “owners” and administrators when people talk in such a cheap and degrading way about them!! They deserve our support and courage!!

  • Tuition crisis says:

    I think the tuition crisis is not so much that the tuition is particularly high. Compare it to our of town places and many tuitions for frum schools are double or triple the Lakewood schools.

    The crisis boils down to that salaries for the most part here in Lakewood are less.

    Families that arent earning a a liveable salary are choking to make ends meet.

    Families that are making better than that are still choking because at the end of the day being frum demands costs more than the average secular life before luxuries are even brought into equation. Add more than 2 kids and it comes back to eat you alive.

    Families that are earning a somewhat respectable income are being charge full tuitions, higher taxes, insurance amounts that are beyond normal, and often factoring luxury into that as well adding to the stress.

    Another Tuition crisis issue is that since the schools need money to run and pay their expenses they often rely on the families with both working parents…. and assume only learning parents cant pay the full tuition. A school teied to charge me full tuition without even reviewing my financial situation which was almost non-existant. Their reason was that my husband was working… they didnt know that he was barely making money and neither was I.

    So for many of us… yeah tuition is way too high and we live on miracles, even if compared to other communities it is low.

    The system needs dire help because some of us just cant pull through anymore.

  • Esther says:

    While I do not have any children that are school age yet and I can’t make a judgement on tuition, I will say that after searching for a decent job in the Lakewood schools, I was offered an embarrassing salary for my experience and degrees that was a third of what I made in my previous out of town job. I was told by several people that this is the typical Lakewood salary and I should be happy with it. There is no way to even pay for my kids playgroups on this salary. It is rediculous, especially when the cost of kids clothing and food is so high. In the end I chose to work in the public school system where my salary, benefits, and pension reflects my experience and education.
    Please stop embarrassing our dedicated teachers and rebbeim and give them a salary they deserve. Don’t make them become beggers and don’t make them have to make the difficult choice that I made to keep my family afloat.

  • JustWondering says:

    Unless you are willing to open a school, this is a tough subject to comment on, but there are a couple of things that do sometimes makes me wonder.

    1) The way that tuition is set and tuition breaks are handed out seem very arbitrary. It seems some schools, not all, set higher tuition’s, with the expectation that many parents will request, and receive breaks. What this does is shift the burden to those parents who do not request tuition breaks. In many cases, you end up with parents who live a more lavish lifestyle receiving tuition breaks, whereas other families, who live very tight, are stuck paying the higher tuition (which was inflated to cover the “tuition breaks” of the other parents. So in some cases, you end up with those who are less affluent subsidizing those who live a higher lifestyle.

    2) As other mentioned, the school buildings in many cases are far more extravagant than they need to be, in many cases, there are upgrades to the buildings which are not necessary, and in many cases, not even very noticeable.

    While many buildings receive donations, most schools still carry substantial mortgages on their buildings

  • Concerned parent says:

    How about we demand full transparency of finances before we pay tuition. Lets see what the REAL costs are.

  • Mike says:

    @Amil Zola be very careful with your wording,”let’s take over the BOE”.Loyal only to your own cause.

  • Anon says:

    I am shocked by the question. All this does is rile people up and they spew all kinds of comments, often with inaccurate information.
    I am not affiliated with any particular schools, but I do know how the inner workings look.
    Is it a challenge to pay tuition for a few children, and even more so for a big family? Yes. Can it be challenging even if you make a nice salary? Yes. That doesn’t mean that all the schools are corrupt and they owe you something. Most schools are struggling as well. Most teachers AND admiinistrative staff are underpaid as well. And tuition is absolutely well below majority of other locations. The ease in which everyone jabs at yenem (not only in regard to schools) is scary.

  • Truth says:

    It’s a silly question. The tuition needs to come as close to covering the expenses of the school as possible. We want our teachers to be compensated, we want busing, we want well-stocked classrooms, etc. It being out of someone’s budget doesn’t mean it’s “too high”. Most schools have people spending 80 hours a week fundraising so they can keep the electricity on.
    Tuition eats up a large part of my budget but I am grateful that I have children to pay tuition for, that I am a frum Jew not sending my kids to public school, and that my children are in wonderful schools.

    Nobody said that being frum is easy. It is a sacrifice and we sacrifice a lot of money in hopes that are children are being educated properly to live their lives as frum Jews as well (of course the school is partnering with the parents and mostly with Hashem in doing this). I am sick of all this talk of crises.

  • AK says:

    Tell me this is a joke. As someone who lives in Brooklyn, we would love to pay Lakewood level tuitions.

  • Avi Gelberman says:

    Yes tuition is way too high. The schools have been steadily raising them year after year and yes the school owners are making out very well. My experience has shown me that the schools in Flatbush are actually cheaper then Lakewood today and are much more compassionate then the school heads in Lakewood who are in it for the money.

  • Avi Gelberman says:

    Having moved to Lakewood from Brooklyn I can tell you that the tuitions in Lakewood are much higher. Plus since there are so many more kids in the Lakewood schools so the school owners are profiting much much more. Anyone who is naive enough to not understand that the school owners are probably posting here to control the narrative should wake up quickly. The vast majority of Lakewood residents are under intense pressure from the unrelenting pressure of the constant tuition raises and demands of the school owners.

  • Bzeyas apecha toichal lechem says:

    This is the way it should be.
    If your getting hud,foodstamps,heap,obama phone etc then you should be entitled to ask for a tuition break. Those working full time with no government subsidies should get the biggest tuition breaks. Fair is fair.

  • concerned parent says:

    there are poor people that were and are being burnt by the system. All the noise in the bove comments will not change the facts, the schools can cry all they want about not being paid enough. Guess what? Some parents cna’t pay because they don’t make enough. The school solution is don’t send to yeshiva. As a parent let me say my response is don’t complain when your kids go off the derech because you hurt people because they are poor.

  • Azoiy says:

    Those families that moved to Lakewood from Brooklyn will usually end up paying higher tuitions than they paid in Brooklyn, because they have to beg to get their children into the Lakewood schools – therefore they are in no position to bargain.
    Tuition’s are way too high for most of our heimishe families – regardless whether it is Lakewood or Brooklyn. Most frum families are struggling. However the schools are also struggling to stay afloat. It costs fortunes to run a decent school.
    The only answer is to either move to states that have state tuition vouchers so there is no tuition necessary, push your politicians to get tuition vouchers (probably will never happen in NY and NJ), or pray that President Trump keeps his campaign promise of making a Federal voucher for non-public students.
    The only other answer is major philanthropy by our gevirim.
    That parents should carry the burden of the tuition costs of all their children, is not sustainable nor possible. And the same is true for the schools.
    The pains of “ikvase d’Mishicha”.

  • Look at the whole picture says:

    For all those that say that out of town / day school tuition is double u should know that their classes are half the size some have as little as 8 kids usually not more then fifteen and they have a lot of extras that lakewood schools don’t they have gym with a gym instructor in a real gym they have computers and art and field trips they have highly qualified teachers not just young twenty yr olds and they have almost as much staff as kids in the school

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