The Costs of L.A. Private Elementary School: The First Year



Getting your first enrollment contract can be exciting and daunting. As you may have noticed, tuition isn’t the only cost of private school. Now, I’m not complaining, I’m just saying…its something to think about. The reason I’m not complaining is that I think private school is worth every penny. I really do! Even so, very few of us are immune from the stresses of the family budget and the hefty price tag associated with a good private school education.


Here’s a breakdown of some of the fees you can expect. Tuition is the big expense, but it’s not the only one. This is not based on one school, but our own example of what an L.A. private elementary school might cost.



Tuition:  $24,000 (can be paid in full or using a monthly payment plan which charges interest and requires tuition insurance)


Facility Fee: $750


Class Trip Fee: $200


Parent Association Fee: $75.00


Field Trips: Many field trips are free, but overnight trips can cost several hundred dollars.


Hot Lunch (optional). Many schools offer hot lunch and the cost will depend on the school and how often your child orders hot lunch, but it can cost about $6.00 per day. 


Enrichment Classes (optional): These afterschool classes like cooking, art and sports generally cost about $100 per class. You should note that many kids take more than one enrichment class per session. There can be two or three sessions per year.


Teacher Holiday Gifts/Gift Fund (optional)


School Bus: $2000/year


School Uniforms: $500/year


Aftercare Programs/Extended Care: Many schools offer afterschool enrichment classes and aftercare for parents who work. Every school is different, but the cost of after school care can be substantial and is definitely something you should budget for if you need it.


Spring Break and Summer Camps: Some schools offer their own camps during vacations. If your school has a camp, it’s convenient and a good way for your kid to be with their friends. The costs for school camps start at about $350/week and may include lunch.


The other costs like Annual Giving, school fundraisers, classroom charitable projects and bake sales, moms night out are worthy of a separate post (coming soon).