In the US, education has historically been a powerful equalizer with the potential to boost a person’s career-long earning potential as well as that of their children. But with the highest income disparity reported by the US Census Bureau in its 50-year history and the cost of education continuing to rise, the threat to socioeconomic mobility looms large. Schools across the country are exploring ways to help students address the issue of affordability.
Stoneleigh-Burnham School (SBS), a private girls’ boarding and day school serving grades 7-12 in Greenfield, Massachusetts, is one such school starting to implement tuition solutions for a broader spectrum of income levels. Starting with the 2020-21 school year, SBS is undertaking a tuition reset that will see an over 35 percent reduction in tuition costs for their day school program, which primarily serves families from the surrounding communities.
Through the day school tuition reset, the school aims to strengthen its commitment to fostering a diverse community of students from all backgrounds, with an emphasis on college preparation in an international environment. SBS attracts students from over 15 states and more than a dozen countries, and was the first girls’ school in New England to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) Program. SBS hopes that making the day school tuition more affordable for families will keep their educational program in reach for the community that has been home to the school for 150 years.