Public Policy Position on Educational Access and Affordability

The National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) believes that:

  • The strength of the American educational system is in its diversity of educational choices.
  • Parents should be able to choose from a broad selection of affordable educational opportunities, regardless of family income.
  • Mission-driven schools enable families to choose the school that most closely meets the needs of each child.

Educational Access and Affordability Legislative Initiatives

NAIS supports policies that:

  • Make it possible for all families to choose the right schools for their children.
  • Promote K-12 education tax benefits for parents.
  • Allow greater parental choice in education, as long as those programs preserve the autonomy of independent schools as outlined in NAIS’s Public Policy Position on Institutional Independence.

Perspectives on Educational Access and Affordability

  • NAIS schools adopt a nondiscrimination statement applicable to the administration of all programs and policies, in full compliance with local, state, and federal laws. For most schools, the law is the floor, not the ceiling, for establishing diverse, inclusive, safe, and welcoming communities for all students, staff, and families.
  • An independent school education can be made more financially accessible by providing parents with a scholarship or tax credit that can be applied to the cost of tuition.
  • Tax credits for contributions to scholarship organizations encourage philanthropy and provide a means for businesses and individuals to support educational options for all families in their community.

Who We Are

The National Association of Independent Schools provides services to more than 1,800 schools and associations of schools in the United States and abroad, including more than 1,500 nonprofit, independent private K-12 schools in the U.S. that are self-determining in mission and program and are governed by independent boards.

For more information, please contact Jefferson Burnett at or (202) 973-9714.