Thursday 17 January 2019

Majority of private schools hike fees as more parents prepared to pay up

Economic recovery and foreign pupils fuel influx for day and boarding studies

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Katherine Donnelly

Katherine Donnelly

More than two in three private schools have increased their fees this year as growing numbers of parents show a willingness to pay for advantages that money can buy.

Higher fees are driven by rising demand, with enrolments standing at about 25,500.

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Economic recovery has made private education affordable for more families, while the sector is also enrolling more foreign students, partly because of Brexit.

For parents, the benefits may include smaller classes, better facilities and social networking, and while cost is not an issue for many, others make sacrifices to fund it.

While the Government covers the cost of teacher salaries, running to about €90m a year, it doesn't foot the bill for building or day-to-day costs.

There are regular calls for an end to the teacher salary subsidy, but the counter argument is that teachers would have to be paid anyway. Recent figures from the Department of Education suggest bringing private schools into the "free education" scheme would cost the State about €24m.

The situation varies between schools, but the general bounce being enjoyed in the private sector is seen in day pupil fee rises of up to €400-a-year. Some 34 of the 51 day schools raised their charges this year - in most cases by between €100-€200.

Private School Pupil Numbers/Fees

Alexandra College, Dublin 6

Pupils 2015/16: 530

Pupils 2016/17: 565

Pupils 2017/18: 548

DAY FEES: € 7386

Change: € 145

Bandon Grammar School, Co Cork

Pupils 2015/16: 660

Pupils 2016/17: 675

Pupils 2017/18: 673

DAY FEES: € 3365

Change: € 150

Belvedere College S.J, Dublin 1

Pupils 2015/16: 1011

Pupils 2016/17: 1008

Pupils 2017/18: 1004

DAY FEES: € 6000

Change: € 310

Blackrock College, Blackrock

Pupils 2015/16: 1014

Pupils 2016/17: 1021

Pupils 2017/18: 1018

DAY FEES: € 7100

Change: € 200

Castleknock College, Dublin 15

Pupils 2015/16: 644

Pupils 2016/17: 643

Pupils 2017/18: 666

DAY FEES: € 6253

Change: € 223

Catholic University School, Dublin 2

Pupils 2015/16: 469

Pupils 2016/17: 503

Pupils 2017/18: 525

DAY FEES: € 5400

Change: € 200

Christian Brothers College, Monkstown, Co Dublin

Pupils 2015/16: 450

Pupils 2016/17: 472

Pupils 2017/18: 506

DAY FEES: € 4630

Change: € 250

Christian Brothers College, Co Cork

Pupils 2015/16: 903

Pupils 2016/17: 914

Pupils 2017/18: 903

DAY FEES: € 4150

Change: € 100

Cistercian College, Co Tipperary

Pupils 2015/16: 173

Pupils 2016/17: 172

Pupils 2017/18: 185

DAY FEES: € 5500

Change: € 0

Clongowes Wood College, Co Kildare

Pupils 2015/16: 434

Pupils 2016/17: 445

Pupils 2017/18: 433

DAY FEES: Boarding only

Change: € 0

Drogheda Grammar School

Pupils 2015/16: 303

Pupils 2016/17: 320

Pupils 2017/18: 351

DAY FEES: € 3780

Change: € 90

Dundalk Grammar School

Pupils 2015/16: 560

Pupils 2016/17: 573

Pupils 2017/18: 567

DAY FEES: € 3528

Change: € 69

Glenstal Abbey School, Co Limerick

Pupils 2015/16: 246

Pupils 2016/17: 254

Pupils 2017/18: 249

DAY BORDER: € 11550

Change: € 0

Gonzaga College, Ranelagh

Pupils 2015/16: 552

Pupils 2016/17: 550

Pupils 2017/18: 552

DAY FEES: € 6290

Change: € 165

Holy Child Secondary School, Killiney

Pupils 2015/16: 368

Pupils 2016/17: 347

Pupils 2017/18: 341

DAY FEES: € 6100

Change: € 150

John Scottus Secondary School, Rathmichael

Pupils 2015/16: 125

Pupils 2016/17: 127

Pupils 2017/18: 120

DAY FEES: € 5550

Change: € 0

Loreto Abbey Secondary School, Co Dublin

Pupils 2015/16: 627

Pupils 2016/17: 622

Pupils 2017/18: 639

DAY FEES: € 4170

Change: € 120

Loreto College, St Stephen's Green, Dublin 2

Pupils 2015/16: 573

Pupils 2016/17: 576

Pupils 2017/18: 563

DAY FEES: € 4400

Change: € 180

Loreto College Foxrock, Dublin 18

Pupils 2015/16: 561

Pupils 2016/17: 552

Pupils 2017/18: 525

DAY FEES: € 4225

Change: € 150

Loreto High School , Beaufort, Dublin 14

Pupils 2015/16: 637

Pupils 2016/17: 628

Pupils 2017/18: 652

DAY FEES: € 4080

Change: € 180

Midleton College, Co Cork

Pupils 2015/16: 417

Pupils 2016/17: 409

Pupils 2017/18: 419

DAY FEES: € 4800

Change: € 0

Monaghan Collegiate School

Pupils 2015/16: 256

Pupils 2016/17: 266

Pupils 2017/18: 281

DAY FEES: € 3070

Change: € 0

Mount Anville Secondary School, Dublin 14

Pupils 2015/16: 662

Pupils 2016/17: 675

Pupils 2017/18: 677

DAY FEES: € 5800

Change: € 200

Mount Sackville Secondary School, Dublin 20

Pupils 2015/16: 654

Pupils 2016/17: 680

Pupils 2017/18: 661

DAY FEES: € 4500

Change: € 0

Newbridge College, Co Kildare

Pupils 2015/16: 882

Pupils 2016/17: 882

Pupils 2017/18: 892

DAY FEES: € 4400

Change: € 175

Notre Dame Secondary School, Dublin 14

Pupils 2015/16: 128

Pupils 2016/17: 64

Pupils 2017/18: 27

DAY FEES: CLOSING JUNE 2019

Change:

Presentation Brothers College, Cork

Pupils 2015/16: 705

Pupils 2016/17: 718

Pupils 2017/18: 717

DAY FEES: € 3900

Change: € 400

Rathdown School, Glenageary

Pupils 2015/16: 275

Pupils 2016/17: 301

Pupils 2017/18: 257

DAY FEES: € 6995

Change: € 45

Rockbrook Park School, Rathfarnham

Pupils 2015/16: 172

Pupils 2016/17: 167

Pupils 2017/18: 169

DAY FEES: € 4080

Change: € 0

Rockwell College, Co Tipperary

Pupils 2015/16: 477

Pupils 2016/17: 500

Pupils 2017/18: 497

DAY FEES: € 4650

Change: € 200

Rosemont School, Sandyford

Pupils 2015/16: 143

Pupils 2016/17: 150

Pupils 2017/18: 169

DAY FEES: € 4800

Change: € 0

Royal School Cavan

Pupils 2015/16: 229

Pupils 2016/17: 218

Pupils 2017/18: 240

DAY FEES: € 2800

Change: € 200

Sandford Park School, Ranelagh

Pupils 2015/16: 319

Pupils 2016/17: 349

Pupils 2017/18: 372

DAY FEES: € 7150

Change: € 0

Scoil Mhuire, Cork city

Pupils 2015/16: 389

Pupils 2016/17: 391

Pupils 2017/18: 414

DAY FEES: € 3600

Change: € 0

Sligo Grammar School

Pupils 2015/16: 452

Pupils 2016/17: 424

Pupils 2017/18: 427

DAY FEES: € 3180

Change: € 0

St Andrew's College, Blackrock

Pupils 2015/16: 986

Pupils 2016/17: 996

Pupils 2017/18: 988

DAY FEES: € 6855

Change: € 135

St Columba's College, Dublin 16

Pupils 2015/16: 288

Pupils 2016/17: 307

Pupils 2017/18: 325

DAY FEES: € 8241

Change: € 241

St Conleth's College, Ballsbridge

Pupils 2015/16: 238

Pupils 2016/17: 269

Pupils 2017/18: 278

DAY FEES: € 5500

Change: € 0

St Gerard's School, Bray

Pupils 2015/16: 537

Pupils 2016/17: 545

Pupils 2017/18: 549

DAY FEES: € 7339

Change: € 210

St Joseph of Cluny Secondary, Killiney

Pupils 2015/16: 318

Pupils 2016/17: 309

Pupils 2017/18: 244

DAY FEES: € 4750

Change: € 100

St Killian's Deutsche Schule, Clonskeagh

Pupils 2015/16: 372

Pupils 2016/17: 396

Pupils 2017/18: 392

DAY FEES: € 5150

Change: € 200

St Mary's College, Dublin 6

Pupils 2015/16: 442

Pupils 2016/17: 438

Pupils 2017/18: 434

DAY FEES: € 6175

Change: € 0

St Michael's College, Dublin 4

Pupils 2015/16: 636

Pupils 2016/17: 641

Pupils 2017/18: 655

DAY FEES: € 5717

Change: € 137

Stratford College, Rathgar

Pupils 2015/16: 120

Pupils 2016/17: 143

Pupils 2017/18: 154

DAY FEES: € 4150

Change: € -10

Sutton Park School, Dublin 13

Pupils 2015/16: 317

Pupils 2016/17: 345

Pupils 2017/18: 359

DAY FEES: € 7900

Change: € 0

Terenure College, Dublin 6w

Pupils 2015/16: 690

Pupils 2016/17: 682

Pupils 2017/18: 695

DAY FEES: € 5200

Change: € 100

The High School, Rathgar

Pupils 2015/16: 691

Pupils 2016/17: 706

Pupils 2017/18: 717

DAY FEES: € 6100

Change: € 200

The King's Hospital, Dublin 20

Pupils 2015/16: 719

Pupils 2016/17: 727

Pupils 2017/18: 716

DAY FEES: € 7190

Change: € 140

The Teresian School, Donnybrook

Pupils 2015/16: 205

Pupils 2016/17: 196

Pupils 2017/18: 181

DAY FEES: € 5460

Change: € 100

Villiers Secondary School, Limerick

Pupils 2015/16: 587

Pupils 2016/17: 566

Pupils 2017/18: 562

DAY FEES: € 3950

Change: € 230

Wesley College, Dublin 16

Pupils 2015/16: 930

Pupils 2016/17: 907

Pupils 2017/18: 914

DAY FEES: € 6370

Change: € 120

While increases of the order €100-€200 may appear modest in the overall context, they double last year's typical rise.

About half of private schools charge in the region of €3,000-€5,000 a year.

Schools in the Church of Ireland sector, many serving rural communities whose families are not well-off, tend to have the lowest charges.

The most expensive day school is the €8,241 St Columba's College in south Dublin, which attracts many pupils from outside Ireland.

This year saw the first increase in its day fees since it dropped rates from €12,426 to €8,000 in 2016, to bring it closer into line with local competition where post-austerity recovery in fee levels was sluggish. Apart from day fees, many schools also have day boarder rates which cover meals, activities and after school study up to 8-9pm.

Fortunes

South Dublin has a big concentration of private schools and improving family fortunes has seen an almost across the board increase in fee levels this year. The market in south Dublin has been shaken up by the arrival of a so-called grind school, The Dublin Academy of Education. The €7,495-a-year Stillorgan-based academy opened in September with a full house of 200 full-time fifth- and sixth-year students.

While it may eat into traditional catchments for local establishments, with pupil numbers at second-level on the rise generally, there may be enough to go around.

 

Last September also saw the opening of an international school - Nord Anglia in south county Dublin - with day fees of €23,000-24,000 a year.

ool Sept 2018 _81.jpg
Nord Anglia International School Photo: Kyran O'Brien

When fully open, the school will have capacity for 800 three-18 year olds, and is offering the globally-recognised International Baccalaureate (IB) programme, rather than the Leaving Certificate. Most of Nord Anglia's pupils are expected to be from families of international executives to moving Ireland and ex-pat families relocating home.

Ireland is also becoming a destination for international students arriving without their families, whose parents want them to have an English language second-level education.

Many are enrolling in private schools, particularly in the boarding sector, although elsewhere students may live with host families.

While not an entirely new trend, Brexit has given it a boost, particularly with families from Nigeria, Korea, Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan.

Emma Godsil of the Godsil Education consultancy said a few years ago, people at international student recruitment fairs "might not have known Ireland, now they are requesting to speak to us".

She said while some families want boarding schools, the consultancy also places students in day schools and with host families, and offer a guardianship service, which involves looking after a student's broader needs. From between 10-20 international students three years ago, they now have about 100 under their wing.

Boarding School Fees

Alexandra College, Dublin 6

FIVE DAY: € 17552

SEVEN DAY: € 18614

Bandon Grammar School, Co Cork

FIVE DAY: € 8475

SEVEN DAY: € 11050

Blackrock College, Co Dublin

FIVE DAY: N/A

SEVEN DAY: € 19450

Cistercian College, Co Tipperary

FIVE DAY: € 14300

SEVEN DAY: € 15300

Clongowes Wood College, Co Kildare

FIVE DAY: N/A

SEVEN DAY: € 19890

Colaiste Ide, Co Kerry

FIVE DAY: N/A

SEVEN DAY: € 6950

* No tuition fee for day pupils

Dundalk Grammar School

FIVE DAY: € 7983

SEVEN DAY: N/A

Glenstal Abbey School, Co Limerick

FIVE DAY: N/A

SEVEN DAY: € 19300

Kilkenny College

FIVE DAY: € 8850

SEVEN DAY: N/A

* No tuition fee for day pupils

Midleton College, Co Cork

FIVE DAY: € 9600

SEVEN DAY: € 11800

Newtown School, Waterford

FIVE DAY: N/A

SEVEN DAY: € 10250

* No tuition fee for day pupils

Presentation Secondary School, Co Tipperary

FIVE DAY: € 7000

SEVEN DAY: N/A

* No tuition fee for day pupils

Rathdown School, Co Dublin

FIVE DAY: N/A

SEVEN DAY: € 19275

Rockwell College, Co Tipperary

FIVE DAY: € 12500

SEVEN DAY: € 13500

Royal and Prior School, Co Donegal

FIVE DAY: € 6100

SEVEN DAY: N/A

* No tuition fee for day pupils

Royal School Cavan

FIVE DAY: € 8200

SEVEN DAY: N/A

Sligo Grammar School

FIVE DAY: N/A

SEVEN DAY: € 8950

St Columba's College, Dublin 16

FIVE DAY: N/A

SEVEN DAY: € 23481

The Kings Hospital, Dublin 20

FIVE DAY: € 14890

SEVEN DAY: € 16795

Ursuline Secondary School, Co Tipperary

FIVE DAY: € 8100

SEVEN DAY: N/A

* No tuition fee for day pupils

Villiers Secondary School, Co Limerick

FIVE DAY: N/A

SEVEN DAY: € 9200

Wesley College, Dublin16

FIVE DAY: € 14170

SEVEN DAY: € 15320

Wilson's Hospital School, Co Westmeath

FIVE DAY: € 8000

SEVEN DAY: € 8998

* No tuition fee for day pupils

Read more:

Boarding schools: 'Parents give the opportunity but you won't find a fifth year who doesn't want to be here'

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