The median price of first grade has gone up by 48 percent over 10 years, and parents at three schools are waiting to find out whether they will be joining the $40,000-a-year club.

Two days ago when I was driving on the Grand Central Parkway, I exited by Utopia Parkway and ended up taking streets with names I had never seen before.  I headed in a southerly direction till I reached Hillside Avenue.  As I drove toward Hillside Avenue I noticed  schools were releasing their children.

Since I wasn’t sure which way to turn on Hillside Avenue I did what I normally do not do, a left turn when lost.  I had called my sister to let her know that I would be delayed since the highway was clogged up completely.  It normally takes me about 25-30 minutes to drive safely to Uniondale.  That day was going to be different.

I remembered that on Hillside Ave there was a AAA office, but I wasn’t sure in which direction it was until I saw a street number.  I was heading in the correct direction after all.  I had turned left to go eastbound but I wasn’t sure where Hillside Avenue would eventually take me.

After stopping in the AAA office, I was able to ascertain by looking at the maps while sitting in the parking lot, that if I continued going south I would reach Jamaica Avenue.  There I could continue until reaching Hempstead Ave and then on to Front Street.  Those were the plans but sometimes my impatience has me on the wrong lane.  I missed the turn into Hempstead Avenue and to correct the mistake,  I made a right turn on Covert Avenue to reach Hempstead Avenue.

The route I took went past many schools.  I was astounded at the number of  children being released from school.  I’m not sure if the schools I went past that day were public or private, but the number of children being released was an eye opener.  I don’t know how bad the economy is but from the look of the number of children walking home I can only deduce that these children were born when times were better.  There is hope on my part that this is the generation that will have to fix the mistakes of my generation.

Those parents who wish to send their children to Horace Mann, Dalton, Spence, Packer Collegiate or any of the other fine private schools will now have to dig deeper to send their offspring to what they perceive is a better education and a better chance for success.

“They are outrageous,” said Dana Haddad, a private admissions consultant, referring to tuitions.  “People don’t want to put a price tag on their children’s future, so they are willing to pay more than many of them can afford.”

“Parents are just expecting more and more of independent schools,” said David B. Harman, the headmaster at Poly Prep. “Trying to meet that demand, expectation, is expensive.”

So expectation is expensive!  How about education?  Should it be that expensive to buy future success?

Here’s a school whose mission and beliefs are as follows.

 Our Mission

At CHS, we will provide an excellent educational experience for each student. 

Our Beliefs

  • Students have value as unique individuals who possess a capacity to learn and a desire to be successful. CHS teachers are dynamic, knowledgeable, and innovative instructors.