Earlier this month, the Board held its monthly meeting. The agenda included the announcement that we have received our provisional charter from the state of New York for a Kindergarten through 8th grade school. This is exciting news and one of the necessary steps the school must take in order to grow a grades program.
We are also happy to report that our lease has been renewed at least through June 2014. In the months ahead we will continue our search for a space that will accommodate our growth and also work to secure a longer lease on our current space.
The most important piece of business was the Board’s preliminary financial review of the 2013-14 school year and decision regarding tuition. Our significant tuition increase for the 2012-13 academic year has helped give us a firmer financial footing and allowed us to meet the needs of more families through our tuition assistance program. We remain committed to limiting annual tuition increases to 3-5% per year.
After careful consideration the Board approved a 5% tuition increase for the 5-Day Programs, which was the minimum necessary to ensure break-even financial operations for next year. Incremental tuition will be used to cover the increasing cost of tuition assistance, expenses related to faculty and staff , as well as expected increases to other operating expenses, such as rent and the cost of employee health insurance. After careful review the Board voted for a 2% tuition increase for the 3-Day Nursery and Bridge programs. The tuition of these two programs has become proportionally much more expensive for parents than the 5-Day Program. The Board recognizes that any increase can pose a financial burden to families, and also acknowledges that tuition levels at the New Amsterdam School continue to be significantly less than those at other area independent schools. The Board affirmed its continued commitment to providing a strong program of need-based assistance, with awards representing approximately 8% of gross tuition revenue.