How Much Does a High School Cost?

High schools or secondary schools usually include ninth to twelfth grades.

The enrollment varies from a few hundred to a few thousand students per school.

Public school isn’t entirely free, there may be fees for activities like music or sports, which could be included in the student fees at a private school.

Average Costs

Public high schools do not charge tuition but they can charge fees ranging from $5 to $200 or more per item for supplies, textbooks, physical education, yearbook, clubs, participating in sports or other activities, and technology.

Total yearly fees can be lower than $100 or they can be higher than $700.

For example, the Plainfield Community Consolidated School District 202 in Illinois for 2021-22 charges $130 for competitive sports (Badminton, Baseball, Basketball, Bowling, Competitive Cheer: Winter, Competitive Dance: Winter, Cross Country, Football, Golf, Lacrosse, Soccer, Softball, Swimming, Tennis, Track, Volleyball, Wrestling), $25 for non-competitive sports, $60 for Special Olympics (Track & Basketball), $10 for WILCO Transportation Fee, $100 for Parking, $45 for Senior Graduation Fee, $1.80 for Breakfast, $2.85 for Lunch, $25 for Mathletes, $45 for Choir, $110 for Band, $25 for Scholastic Bowl, $25 for Chess Team, $25 for Fall Play, $65 for Speech Team, and $40 for Spring Musical.

Alternative Academy Fee for High School Text Book is $170.

High School Resident Fee is about $190 and High School Non-Resident Fee is about $290.

Private High School Tuition can vary between $6,000 and $35,000 per year.

Various factors such as school focus, the ratio of teacher to pupil, and the reputation and location of the school affect the costs.

Religious-based schools are usually less expensive than non-sectarian schools.

According to the National Catholic Education Association, an average high school parish tuition is estimated to be $9,622.

Also, you may pay:

  • $14,600 regular tuition fee (inclusive of all fees, i.e. technology, retreats, athletics, performing arts, etc.) in the St. Monica Catholic High School. International tuition is $19,000.
  • $8,000 for active members of a Roman Catholic in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles,
  • $8,900 standard tuition in The Lutheran High School in Parker, CO, and $8,180 for members of an associated congregation.

The National Association of Independent Schools members charges an average median high school tuition fee of $22,745 for day students.

Tuition at the Colorado Springs School is $19,175, $34,268 at the Sidwell Friends School in Washington, DC, and $27,700 at the Detroit Country Day School.

A residential or boarding high school can charge you from $30,000 to $80,000 for one year.

For example, the boarding school at Chapel Hill, Chauncy Hall School in Waltham, MA, costs about $46,000, and Woodside Priory School in Portola Valley, CA costs about $53,925.

Additional Costs

Most schools, both private and public, have a school uniform that students must wear.

Depending on the requirements of the school, prices range from $25 to $500 per outfit.

Annual bus pass cost from $100 to $400 or more, according to the distance.

For low-income students, public schools offer free bus services.

The Northampton Public School in Massachusetts charges $303 annually for one high school bus pass.

On-campus parking is also charged.

Prices range from $50 to $400 each year.

The annual parking fee at South High School in Newton, MA is $360.

Some parents of private school students arrange transportation themselves, ranging from $300 to $2000.

For instance, Ravenscroft in Raleigh, NC has an annual transportation fee of $360 to $1,750 depending on the location of the student.


If you pay tuition fees at once and not in installments, you can save money.

For example, at the Tampa Preparatory School, Florida, the tuition is $19,025 if paid in full, whereas in two installments, it is $19,565.

A large number of schools offer a 5% to 25% sibling discount in the case when multiple students from the same family are studying.

Some states can provide online public high school courses for free or for a nominal fee between $10 and $25.

After all, education is very important for career development.

Therefore, if it is not possible to provide funding for the most expensive private education, there is a much cheaper alternative in private schools.

Jamie Willis
Career Specialist at BecomeopediaHi, my name is Jamie Willis, and I have been helping students find their perfect internships and education paths for the last ten years. It is a passion of mine, and there really is nothing better than seeing students of mine succeed with further studies.

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