We very much appreciate Gary Rosenblatt’s attention to the critical issue of tuition affordability for middle-income families (“The Day School Dilemma,” Editor’s column, May 3). At Beit Rabban Day School, we are acutely sensitive to this concern and although we encourage all families to apply for financial aid, we recognize that traditional aid is not always the answer.
We have spent the last year working with the Avi Chai Foundation on a brand-new tuition initiative to complement our financial aid program. The program was inspired by the iCap program piloted by the Solomon Schechter Day School of Boston, which asked middle-income parents to contribute a fixed percentage of their adjusted gross income (they asked 15 percent) per year, regardless of how many children they have in the school. We are working to make a similar option available for our parents, though it will probably differ in significant ways.
The program’s simplicity and transparency would make it easy for parents to decide if the program makes sense for them. These aspects also encourage participation by families who may hesitate to apply for financial aid. This initiative would allow Beit Rabban as a school to assume more of the burden of making our education accessible, while treating each family with the utmost kavod, or respect.
We hope to put our program into effect for the 2014-2015 academic year, and we look forward to joining the entire community to address this issue strategically.
Co-Chair, Beit Rabban Day School Board of Directors
Rabbi Andrew Davids
Head of School, Beit Rabban Day School