Catholic education


Hello. I am very happy to be with other Catholics here.
I am just wondering if the Church has a position on each child’s ability to receive Catholic education in a Catholic school. Is this up to individual parishes or is there a guide they must follow?


I don’t think so .I would love to have had an education in a catholic school but couldn’t pass the entrance exam for kindegarten . .As an adult I would like to go to catholic college but they have priced themselves out of my range.


This is something that my wife and I have discussed much lately. We are recently married and are hoping to have children very soon.

We would love to send our children to our parish’s school. However, we are not sure that we can afford it. At best we might be able to afford to send one child. But that does not seem fair to our other potential children.

In addition, any money that we spend on Catholic education would completely erode any money that we might have hoped to spend on their college education some day.

What is to be done?


Can. 796** §1 Among the means of advancing education, Christ’s faithful are to consider schools as of great importance, since they are the principal means of helping parents to fulfill their role in education.
Can. 798 Parents
are to send their children to those schools which will provide for their catholic education. If they cannot do this, they are bound to ensure the proper catholic education of their children outside the school.
2 Christ*'s faithful *are to *promote catholic schools, doing everything possible to help in establishing and maintaining them. *

Please do not rule out a catholic education for your children.

Support your parish and parish school-

Establish an endowment fund [if your parish does not already have one] that provides school financial support and scholarships

Buy the script and bake sale cookies
Attend the school auction or other fund raising event -

Sponsor a fund raiser, seek corporate donations and sponsorships

Adopt a school student - offer to pay their tuition :thumbsup: Get five others to join you and share the cost

Remember - they maybe the future priest for your parish, a deacon, nun, religious brother or catholic school teacher. They may become the Doctor who cares for you in your old age! The utility worker that serves your home, the restuarant owner for a favorite night out … perhaps even the POTUS - the possibilities are endless :wink:


This is part of the reason that we homeschool. We use a Catholic homeschooling program which is recognized by the Arlington Archdiocese, Seton. There are many good Catholic programs out there. I can fully enroll with 3 kids for less than it would cost us to send 1 of them to the local Catholic grade school. With a little one at home also, I don’t want to go to work fulltime just to send the kids to Catholic school and have to put the little one in daycare.


I have 3 kids in a catholic elemetary school. I thought prices were high until I went to the dentist and they wanted $11,500 to work on my teeth that don’t even hurt. I paid $6000 for braces for my daughter which was about equal to sending all 3 kids to a catholic school for a year.

As I get older, I’m getting a different perspective on the value of a dollar.


Whatever you do, don’t discount sending your kids to a Catholic school based on price alone. Talk to the school, talk to your priest, find out if they have financial aid or a scholarship program. Also, look into whether your state has a voucher program. We sent our son to Catholic school starting with his preschool day care, much to the chagrin of my in-laws who insisted we were wasting our money. Our public schools were not an option. We struggled for years but did whatever it took to keep him in our parish school. When it was time for him to enter high school we were all set to send him to public school because we were certain that we couldn’t afford it, especially knowing that our daughters were nearing school age. I had never considered financial aid until my sister called the school and asked them about it. With a single income and three kids, we definitely qualified, and while we didn’t get a lot, we got enough that we were able to send him. When the girls entered school, we were blessed to be able to qualify for the vouchers. We do what we can now to give extra to the Church & school whenever we can, volunteer whenever possible, and once the kids are done with school will give whatever we can afford to the adopt-a-student program. Even with the help we’ve received, it’s been a struggle at times, but in the end it’s certainly worth it.


It seems that an reoccurring issue here is affordability of the Catholic education.

My husband and I are also wrestling with these issues as well. We recently moved to Massachusetts and have one school aged child, one new kindergartener and a preschooler. I was shocked to find out the the tuition here is about $5000 per child per year not including uniforms, supplies, mandatory fund raising -will cost us another $300, transportation, activities fees and extracurricular fees. For my family the tuition alone next year would be $15000 per year. And we are supposed to be saving for college, too.

Catholic schools have long been the gold standard (at least in places like Philadelphia and Boston), and I have been fortunate to receive a Catholic grade school education, but I think now it is cost-prohibitive. My mother was a single mother raising 4 kids and put us all through Catholic grade school. She made sacrifices to do this and I am thankful.

However, when I did the math, I calculate the percentage of tuition (4 kids in the 1980’s) in the local Catholic school against her income. With 4 kids all attending school at the rate of tuition that at that time, she spent 3% on of her gross income. (She was a police officer, so she wasn’t a high paid executive).

Now I examine our comparison: 3 children in our local Catholic school at today’s price as a percentage of our income. (key income difference…married couple of two professionals, one working full time and one working part time.) Our tuition bill would make up about 14.5% of our annual gross income. It is no longer about making sacrifices. To be able to afford our $15000 tuition bill, we can’t just give up a vacation or put off buying a car this year or next.

Clearly a lot of these Catholic schools have outpaced themselves with the tuition increases. Even with this biased evaluation (4 kids versus 3 and a a single police officer’s salary versus 2 working professionals), one should easily be able to see what is happening to our Catholic education system.

Interestingly, as the tuition becomes less affordable to families, the student enrollment goes down. When the enrollment goes down, the tuition goes up for the remaining families. When the tuition goes up for the remaining families, more families cannot afford it and withdraw from school. It is a vicious cycle and I do not see the archdiocese really addressing this issue. I know that there is financial aid, but seriously, how could those of us subject to the federal Alternative Minimum Tax every year qualify for financial aid!!!

Why are the archdiocese not trying to save our schools? Sometimes I wonder is the local parishes are more concerned about affording the air conditioning for the church than the unavailability of a Catholic education for it’s youngest members.


Hi and GOD bless…I feel this way- if you can afford Catholic education, go for it! Better for your children, if you can’t try to get them involved in after school church programs like Bible study etc…

I went to private school during my elementary and jr high years, it was great but for hs parent’s could no longer afford it…

Good luck and hope you have a great day!


That’s really unfair. Over here in Britain, Catholic schools are free but I think they receive state subsidy. I know in many countries Catholic schools are private and I think in France and Spain you pay a fee although it’s relatively low. You might be able to get some help with paying fees although I don’t know where you live.

There are some private (fee-paying) Catholic schools in Britain but very few and they’re for the upper class. There’s a monastery near my in-laws called Ampleforth that is a boarding school run by monks and was on tv. and they charge an absolute bomb. Over £25,000 a year for boarders ($41,000) and £15,000 ($24,650) for day pupils. That’s my closest fee-paying Catholic school.


I send my kids to Catholic school, and I can barely afford it but I do not like what I am seeing at public school…I want my kids to have God on their minds during the day…In public school, you can’t even mention His name…There is privately funded help called Tomorrow’s Hope, just for Catholic school kids…look it up on the web…God Bless:)


I went to public school through tenth grade. I spent eleventh and twelfth grade in a Catholic school in part, because I wanted to graduate from a private school, and also because that public high school was too big for me. I had never dreamed of attending a Catholic college, but I obtained a partial academic scholarship to a Catholic college out of state, in Montana.


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