Los Angeles High School Affordability Initiative
January 24th, 2013
In 2008, families throughout the country had extreme pressure brought to bear on financial decision-making. For many Jewish families, this included the difficult choice of determining if they could afford to enroll their teenager in a Jewish high school. To help provide greater access to affordable Jewish high school education, the Jewish Federation Council of Greater Los Angeles, in collaboration with Builders of Jewish Education (BJE), worked with the Foundation to launch the Los Angeles High School Affordability Initiative (LAHSAI).
Five high schools are participating in the Initiative – Milken Community High School, New Community Jewish High School, Shalhevet High School, Yula Boys High School, and Yula Girls High School. The LAHSAI is a demonstration model that not only is designed to stabilize and to incrementally increase the enrollment of students from middle income families attending these five high schools, but to build the capacity in the schools to support day school education through endowment development. The schools together are responsible for raising more than $17 million towards their own endowment funds (the Simha and Sara Lainer Day School Endowment Fund is providing a $4.25 million in additional endowment matching funds).
Since the grant’s inception, 245 students have utilized the tuition assistance for all four years of high school. In particular, the New Community Jewish High School (NCJHS) is achieving remarkable results: 52 students have been served by the grant; 18 of whom were from public or private non-Jewish schools. And, 22 NCJHS students have graduated as a result of receiving these subsidies. The BJE honored NCJHS for already exceeding their endowment fundraising target that was set for the end 2014.
Jewish Day Schools and high schools are proven settings for developing strong Jewish identities and shaping Jewish journeys. The Initiative’s implementation shows promise as a model for day school for middle income families and for successfully raising endowment funds.
Jewish Federation Council of Greater Los Angeles in collaboration with Builders of Jewish Education
Up to $12,700,000 over 6 years, 2008-2014