Source: Text & Texture
Rabbi Eliyahu D. Teitz, Associate Head of School of the Jewish Educational Center (JEC) in Elizabeth, NJ, in a post in Text & Texture, vividly describes some of the issues faced by day schools which prevent them from providing a quality Jewish – general education at considerably lower costs. He outlines some of the elements that are involved in the cost vs. quality dilemma.
Rabbi Teitz contends that teacher compensation needs to be reasonable yet competitive with other alternatives available to teachers. He highlights the difficult choice between quality and cost that comes from lowering teacher to student ratios suggesting that filling empty seats in classes may be a better financial solution. He also discusses the necessity of the “extras” that many schools now provide—special education, computer resources, outings and tours, etc., noting that many day schools offer such extras in order to attract students to the school, who might otherwise choose to attend other schools that have more appealing "extras".
He also discusses the need for a larger administrative staff to provide personal attention to the large student bodies and the need to provide full time jobs to attract professional educators as well as the need for larger guidance staffs to deal with the challenges presented by a permissive surrounding social environment.