Tuition fees for non-resident students will be going up for the 2020/21 school year.
The school board approved the decision at a meeting Feb. 13.
Annual tuition fees for non-resident elementary students will be increasing $900, from $14,000 to $14,900 per year.
For secondary students, that fee is set to jump $1,400.
“These are international student fees, and we aren’t projecting any changes in enrolment,” said Irena Pochop, with the school district.
Pochop explained that the district reviews its fees on an annual basis to ensure they remain competitive in the market.
“The increases reflect the value of the program we are offering and we don’t expect that they will negatively impact enrolment in the program,” she said.
There are approximately 600 non-resident students in the school district. The International Education Department program is delivered through all secondary schools, most elementary schools, Continuing Education and Connected Learning Community.
Students come from 25 countries and student recruitment is done by recruiters world-wide.
Marketing is done at international fairs, through sister-school agreements, Memorandum of Understandings, foreign recruiter training sessions and direct demonstration lessons to students.
In the last two years, International Education has sent several SD42 vice-principals on recruiting assignments to Korea and China.
In 2016/17, the International Education program generated $8 million in revenue for the district, with an estimated net contribution of the program after expenses of $2.5 million.
Pochop says it is too early to say how much revenue will be created due to the increases because they won’t be implemented until the 2020 school year.
SD42 offers academic programs to 480 high school international students and 120 elementary international students.
Academic programs in the schools range from three months to full year.
SD42 International Education also provides a number of non-academic, cultural programs that are managed by the assistant manager of marketing and recruitment.
International Education also offers a homestay program, in which the department recruits families from Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows to open their homes to non-resident students.
Fees for this program will be increasing, as well. The homestay registration or placement fee will be increasing from $200 to $300 and the homestay fee will be increasing from $9,000 to $9,500.
There are approximately 705 families in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows offering their homes to both elementary and secondary students.
Four full-time homestay coordinators work in secondary schools one day per week, offering direct service to students to help with their adjustment to home and school life in Canada and to problem solve any issues that may arise.