Catholic Schools

Maryland’s Catholic schools have served the state for two centuries, making them an integral part of its educational landscape.  Today, Catholic schools educate nearly 50,000 students annually.  By doing so, they save the state well over $700 million every year, contributing to the total taxpayer savings of over $1.4 billion dollars provided by all nonpublic schools statewide. 

Catholic schools are also very ethnically, racially and economically diverse.  On average, the Catholic school students in Maryland’s diocese are approximately 39% minority and several schools have a majority student population that are eligible for the federal free and reduced-price meal programs, a common indicator of low-income populations.  Moreover, over 25% of children educated in Catholic schools are non-Catholic, with that figure often around 50% or more in urban areas. 

Schools2014 K-12 Enrollment *
Total Annual Taxpayer Savings


$713 million
Total Nonpublic
96,043$1.4 billion

*Does not include the tens of thousands of children educated in nonpublic prekindergarten programs

Catholic Schools Need Your Help!

Our Catholic and other nonpublic schools are very thankful to our state legislature for the assistance that they provide.  Yearly, the Conference works to defend the two programs which provide assistance to our schools, the Nonpublic Textbook Program, which helps nonpublic school parents with textbook and technology costs, and Nonpublic Aging Schools Program, which assists schools with aging-infrastructure improvements and security measures.  Together, these programs provide nonpublic school students with $9.5 million in assistance.

Despite this assistance, nonpublic school families need help from our state legislature, particularly considering that they save the state over $1.4 billion every year, all while paying the taxes that fund its public schools.  Collectively, the Maryland legislature provides over $6 billion annually toward public education, an amount which is nearly doubled when you account for county contributions.  The Conference applauds this, as it supports full funding for our public schools, as well.  However, the fact of the matter is that when you compare what our neighboring states allocate to nonpublic education, Maryland falls monumentally short. 

Take a look at these statistics:


Nearby State             

Assistance to Nonpublic Schools

New York$ 956 million
New Jersey$ 170 million
Pennsylvania$ 340.4 million

$ 9.5 million

In light of this disparity in school choice programs, one of the best ways that you can support the Church is to lend just a few moments of your time to Catholic school advocacy.  When the time comes for our Catholic voices to be heard within our state legislature, we’ll let you know and make it very easy for you to do so.  Just go to our Catholic Advocacy Network and sign up.


Help urge your legislators to pass a core initiative called the Maryland Education Credit.  It could help make our Catholic schools more affordable and accessible for all students and families.