DickersonBakker Blog

How will Christian Schools Respond to the Mass Exodus of Students from Public Schools?

A recent report in The Christian Post revealed nearly 2 million U.S. students have left the public school system since the pandemic.

That’s huge.

And it also presents a monumental opportunity for private Christian schools across the nation.

The mass exodus from public schools is part of a national trend following COVID-19 school closures when students had to switch to online classes at home — and many parents weren’t happy with what they saw.

“Large class sizes, inadequate staffing, disorganized virtual education, curriculum limitations, and rapidly changing social and moral standards… caused parents to take a new look at Christian schools,” according to a new research study published by DickersonBakker. Download the study here for free.

How will Christian schools respond to this rapidly evolving situation?

Our study shows more parents want their children in private Christian education, but it also reveals many Christian schools aren’t geared up for an influx of new students.

They face a barrage of challenges that include balancing budgets amid soaring costs, making tuition fees affordable, hiring qualified staff, technology needs, and finding enough space in classrooms and crowded campus facilities.

So, what’s the solution?

Our study reveals seven of the top 10 challenges identified by Christian school leaders are related to financial sustainability. And these challenges can be at least partially resolved by increasing annual fundraising.

Getting Past The Sticking Point

Unfortunately, fundraising is a sticking point for many Christian schools. Although a whopping 97% of Christian school leaders say upping their fundraising efforts is vital to the future of their school, Christian schools on the whole are not raising money effectively.


Most Christian school leaders lack training and guidance on the topic — and, according to our study, they’re well aware of their shortcomings. The will is there, but the know-how is lacking. They need expert help to create and execute a coordinated, effective and affordable fundraising plan for their unique school.

Faced with this unprecedented opportunity for growth, this is a challenge that must be overcome. If Christian schools don’t find a way to fix their fundraising shortcomings, many of them will struggle — and some might not survive.

DickersonBakker estimates that Christian schools, on average, invest less than 3% of their annual revenues into fundraising. Compare that with the 13.8% that nonprofit organizations typically invest.

Christian Schools: The Future Is Theirs For The Taking

The upshot is that many Christian schools across the nation are seeing increased interest and enrollment due to the exodus of students from public schools. Many challenges come with that growth — challenges that can be wholly or partially resolved by increasing annual fundraising.

We’re entering a new era for Christian schools in America. The future of our children — and therefore our nation — is in their hands.

How will they respond?

Fundraising doesn’t have to be difficult. You don’t have to go it alone. Invite our team at DickersonBakker to come alongside your school to help you achieve your goals.

We’ve developed two new innovative ways to help you and your school succeed in your fundraising efforts. First, for Christian schools just starting out in fundraising, our Fund Development Kickstarter Solution is specially designed to help you start an effective annual fund development program in just three simple steps.

For Christian schools seeking to make improvements to an existing fundraising program, our Fund Development Accelerator Services will help you make improvements and grow your fundraising effectiveness and outcomes.

Contact us today to learn more about these innovative services uniquely designed for Christian schools like yours.

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