Private Schools and Antitrust Laws

Dr. Ari Betof is the president and owner of Organizational Sustainability Consulting. An advisor to senior professionals in education and the nonprofit sector, Dr. Ari Betof provides consultancy services on governance and operations issues, such as his recent work with NJAIS on antitrust laws.

Antitrust laws apply to educational nonprofits just as they apply to businesses but with some exceptions. Recently, there has been a renewed focus on antitrust law violations in education, especially regarding independent schools and private colleges. These investigations focus on agreements between institutions to fix tuition prices, boycott competitors or suppliers, divvy up markets, or share data outside the allowed framework.

However, this heightened attention should not scare colleges, universities, and independent schools into isolation. Engagement among educational institutions, when done correctly and within the law, builds synergy and can boost performance that is good for students as customers and the educational institutions.

Antitrust laws, therefore, should not be used to prevent or punish appropriate engagement. A healthy balance that fosters free-market competition and allows value-added collaborations should be encouraged.

This can be achieved by training trustees and staff members on antitrust laws. In particular, the training should explain which interactions are proper and which are not.

Published by aribetof

Ari Betof is a senior leader and management consultant with 15+ years of experience building sustainable organizations and maximizing revenue growth. He leverages a combination of expertise in organizational stewardship and transferable skills such as principal gift fundraising, quantitative analysis, and strategic planning to drive mission-aligned, high-impact change. Ari is an agile, savvy, and emotionally intelligent partner who achieves results, builds trusting relationships, develops others, and creates scalable systems. He thrives in high-pressure, complex environments while bringing together diverse sets of stakeholders. Core competencies include: • Building high performing teams • Leadership development • Executive coaching • Organizational effectiveness • Change management • Strategic planning and implementation • Business development • Fundraising • Quantitative analysis

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