There are more than 3,000 private schools in Pennsylvania with incredible diversity in education philosophy, religious affiliation, size, location, and cost. Private schools offer exactly the type of education that many Pennsylvanians want—and are willing to pay for. Paying for private school can be tough, so the state has tax credit scholarship programs like EITC and OSTC that help make private education accessible to all interested families, regardless of income level.

Average tuition: $11,813

Although private schooling comes with a price tag, a great education that fits your child well isn’t necessarily out of reach. Many schools offer financial aid and other structures that could help private schools fit your budget. And the price of parochial school tuition is often much lower than the average. Pennsylvania’s EITC and OSTC tax credit scholarships have helped many lower-income families afford private school tuition.

One-third are religious

If you are hoping to find an educational institution that aligns with your values and beliefs, you’re in luck—Pennsylvania has hundreds of schools from dozens of religious traditions. Finding the best-aligned option in your area has never been easier.

Disproportionately serving minority students

Private schools provide a unique opportunity to ensure learning equity for Pennsylvania’s minority groups. Although only 18 percent of Pennsylvanians are of minority background, 25 percent of private school enrollees are. That’s because of their special emphasis on diversity and serving vulnerable populations.

There are approximately 3,000 accredited private or nonpublic schools in Pennsylvania. Licensed private schools are regulated by the State Board of Private Academic Schools and must abide by many of the same requirements facing public schools. Parochial schools—those sponsored by a religious institution—are not required to be licensed.