The Allabout Library ™
The purpose of the Allabout Library ™ is to be a single source of information to tell you Allabout School fees. We have tried to be comprehensive yet understandable. We can't offer you specific financial advice, but we can teach you the basics, so that you can make your own, informed decisions about how to put your children through private education.
Schools generally quote termly education fees. Boarding schools will publish separate fee schedules that cover whether boarding options are available (generally either weekly or termly boarding). Both fee schedules will include meals; so that's lunch for day pupils and all three meals for boarders.
A normal basic school "fee" is the cost of education and lunch. It will exclude any additional costs such as boarding supplements or Extras. Fees regularly vary according to the age of your child, as they take on progressively longer days, with reception costing more than nursery classes, sixth form costing more than reception, and so on. There is no VAT on education but you will pay VAT on extras (see below).
The Allabout Modeller ™ shows fees on an annual basis and suggests savings amounts on a monthly basis. In our experience most parents take the termly fees quoted to them and multiply them by three to determine how much it will cost them a year, then divide it back by twelve to see what this is per month. We have adopted exactly this methodology in presenting information to you.
Most schools offer a range of optional additional services that are incurred throughout the term and added to the bill for the following term. The extras portion of a bill is often more surprising than the basic fees. Optional and non-optional extras will include books, stationery, school trips, extracurricular sporting or musical lessons and additional tuition. Foreign trips can of course be very expensive. Extras can easily add up to an additional £600 a year, or £200 a term, or even more, so be prepared.
When do they change?
All private schools are free to set their own fees and to change them, as they feel appropriate. The vast majority of schools review the fees annually, with any increases usually coming in at the start of each new academic year (September). Parents are usually advised of the new fees at the end of the preceding term. You might find some schools increase their fees in step with the calendar year (January) and for those of you who subscribe to The Allabout Modeller ™, you'll see that we have tried to make this clear.