Statistics show that children from middle-income households spend 6,000 more hours in after-school and summer learning activities than their peers from low-income households by the time they reach sixth grade. At EDMO we believe that ALL children should have access to our programs regardless of their family’s ability to pay.
Inequity in accessing out of school time learning opportunities is not new. Prior to Covid, the summer was seen as the most vulnerable time for children from low income families, commonly referred to as, “Summer Learning Loss.” However, COVID has profoundly exacerbated the already present disparities between youth from low-income households and their middle and high income peers impacting every single aspect of their learning journey, not just during the summer.
At EDMO, we are actively working to dismantle the financial barriers that prevent systemically oppressed communities from accessing our programs in the following ways:
Having a robust Financial Aid program is integral to our equity efforts. In 2021, we are intentionally allocating 5% of our revenue and 100% of your donations to our Sliding Scale Financial Aid Program.
We have applied our “Honor System” model to our current Sliding Scale Financial Aid system. Families who need aid fill out a quick request form. Based on the total number of people in their household, their total annual household income and their county of residence, they instantly receive a code for 20%-90% off our regular price. Financial aid is distributed every month on a "first come, first served" basis and families can request aid every month.
Why the Honor System?
EDMO’s financial aid policies have evolved as our understanding of equitable practices have expanded over the years. Most recently, when Covid hit and we were faced with re-imagining our entire business model, we took a look at our financial aid system and realized that we could do better. At our fee-based in-person sites, families had to wait for applications to open, provide a long list of supplemental information and then wait for their application to be approved, an incredibly time consuming and delayed process. The spots they had to choose from were then pre-selected and limited. We realized that though this is how most camps operate, we no longer wanted to take part in this outdated and inequitable model.
To disrupt the old way and shift the power dynamic, we launched a totally different approach to financial aid, Honor System Pricing. Yes, you read it correctly, a financial aid policy built on the honor system! Honor System pricing allowed families to receive instant financial assistance. We removed the hurdles of forms and wait time. We posted a 50% Off and 80% off code and trusted that those of you who needed it would use it, those of you who could pay full price would.
To learn how you can receive aid, please visit the Financial Aid page.
A key element of our equity is strategy is to partner with schools, districts and nonprofit organizations to bring EDMO to a variety of different communities. Schools and districts often apply their ASES and 21st Century funding to bring EDMO after school and summer programs for little or no cost to families. For more information on our partners, please visit Our Partners page.