Friday, 30 August 2013

How much does private school cost?

Understanding the actual total cost of private school is often grossly underestimated by parents.

School fees now average over £14,000 per annum (2013) however there are large regional differences.

The mistake many people make is not accounting for two factors, one of these is inflation and the other is time, or rather how time allows inflation to dramatically increase the initial cost of private school.

In my post on school fees inflation I give the latest figures on what is happening to the cost of private school.

The impact of inflation is dramatic, excluding inflation it will easily cost £250,000 to send a child starting in September 2013 to private school. It is really important to understand the likely total figure rather than just the next terms fees.

EDEN School Fees Planning provide a free tailored school fees projection using your school of choice and actual ages of your children. This is the best way for you to take the first step in understanding whether school fees are affordable for you long term.

If you would like a school fees schedule, simply give your details to EDEN using this link

In addition to inflation there are other things to consider:


Uniform at private schools runs to much more than a tie and blazer. Talking to parents, most suggest the uniform costs easily run into £100s each year and for some even £1,000s.

School trips,

Foreign excursions are a frequent fixture of private school trips. Rugby tours to South Africa, Choir tours to America for example. Whilst of course school trips are not mandatory, the majority of parents don't want their children to miss out on the opportunities afforded to their children.

The school bus

Whilst many children are driven to school each day and some schools even include the cost of the school bus in with the fees, it can be an additional termly cost


As with the school bus, school meals are often an additional cost.

Music / sport

Music is another area in which private school often stands apart from state school. It is actively encouraged as with sport and other extra curricular activities as a way of giving children a very rounded education beyond pure academia. The bottom line of course is that should children partake in music lessons these will come at an additional cost.

There is of course another angle here in which some children become extremely talented at music or sport etc resulting in them being awarded a grant or bursary. I have seen a family receive a 50% discount based on the musical ability of their children.

Clearly this is not the norm however promoting and encouraging talents in young children could make them very attractive to prospective senior schools.

Technology (Laptops,tablet computers) 

An increasing number of schools are using iPads to aid in teaching. Possibly subsidised, if a child needs it then it has to paid for.

I appreciate these costs individually may not amount to much however when added together could easily amount to the equivalence of been an additional terms fees! That's like paying 4 terms fees a year rather than 3, something I know most parents would rather avoid.