VICTORIA College and JCG have announced an increase to fees, citing the growing rate of inflation and ongoing pay negotiations between teaching unions and the government.
Following discussions with the Children, Young People, Education and Skills Department, an 8% fee increase is due to take effect at both schools in September.
In a letter to parents, Richard Stevens – who chairs the board of governors of Victoria College and Victoria College Preparatory School – said it was ‘impossible’ to discuss the fee increases without referencing the rising cost of living.
‘The Retail Price Index in Jersey hit a high of 12.7% in December 2022 and experts are predicting that this will remain at a high level for the current calendar year. This not only has an impact on household budgets but also the budget of the college, with costs increasing to maintain our buildings and grounds,’ he added, noting that 85% of the school’s expenditure went on the cost of teaching and support staff.
He also pointed out that teaching unions were still negotiating a pay award.
‘We are therefore trying to manage what is an uncertain situation and which carries with it a potentially significant impact on budget. We do know, however, that pay awards will not see less than a 7.9% increase, and we have budgeted accordingly,’ he said.
Louise Read, the chair of JCG’s board of governors, said that the school had worked hard to ensure the fee increase was the lowest possible ‘in a time of high inflation’ while continuing to invest in facilities and opportunities for students.
‘[A total of] 80% of our costs are staffing and the pay award this year is at least 7.9%. Other costs have seen higher inflation rises, with Jersey’s December RPI sitting at 12.7%,’ she added.
‘Our policy as governors is to ensure that the excellent education and opportunities for students at JCG and JCP remains exceptionally good value.
‘As stated earlier, we are very aware of the significant cost increases facing parents as a result of high inflation. While we are not exempt from these increases, we have tried to keep our fee increase as low as possible.’