If you need AfterSchool to be free, it’s free.
But please pay as much as you can!
AfterSchool fees are going up again this year in order to support raising Class Assistant salaries to $15 per hour and to bring back full scholarships for families that need them.
Since starting the AfterSchool program in 2012, we have struggled to find the right fee structure to pay for our dual goals: providing high quality, enriching classes with experienced instructors while making the program available and affordable for any family at EVCS who wants to participate.
In 2015, the costs of continuing AfterSchool@evcs were mounting. New York State denied our request to pay instructors as contractors and required us to pay thousands in back unemployment insurance. Securing a license from the DOH added costs to our liability insurance. And running this small business entirely with volunteer administrators was problematic, so professional fees were added for payroll management, HR services, and registration software. We raised fees slightly and eliminated the full scholarship for low-income families, asking everyone to contribute at least 15% of the full rate.
Eliminating full scholarships has had consequences for some EVCS families who have no means to pay for AfterSchool, and has added to the perception that EVCS is a high-end school not open to everyone in the community. As our school staff and parents have embarked on several diversity initiatives, it has become clear that some prospective families won’t consider EVCS unless our AfterSchool program is free. But without Title 1 subsidies that other schools in the district receive for their after-school programs, we need to find a way to keep AfterSchool from losing money all on our own.
A commitment to inclusion was a founding principle of our AfterSchool program, and this spring the AfterSchool Advisory Committee reaffirmed this commitment to provide a free option for families who need it. For EVCS, for our neighborhood, and for public education in general, how we approach inclusion for AfterSchool is inseparable from the broader conversation around these issues. To that end, we are re-adjusting our fee structure to give families more autonomy in determining their own capacity to pay.
This year, there are five price points for AfterSchool:
Full price: $ 27.50 per class session
It’s up to you to decide how much to pay. Please pay as much as you can.We are relying on most families to pay full price, as you have before. These other payment options are available if you need them. And if you need AfterSchool to be free, it’s free, no questions asked.
PS. AfterSchool class registration will begin Friday at noon. Note that there will be no AfterSchool on the first two full days of school. AfterSchool will begin on Tuesday, September 13.