Here's How Much Barron Trump's Private School Really Costs

Ever since leaving the White House in January 2021, Donald Trump has more or less been out of the spotlight — or at least, far more so than he ever was during his presidency. Despite Trump himself spending months denying the 2020 election result and his best efforts to overturn it, his wife, then-First Lady Melania Trump, seemed to understand that their time was up, and was accordingly preparing for a move out of Washington and back into private life. Of course, she did have her only son, Barron, and his education to worry about, as the then-14-year-old was then attending St. Andrew's Episcopal School in Potomac, Maryland, per Town & Country

After finally acknowledging that he would leave the White House, Donald Trump was naturally expected to go back to his favorite winter home, Mar-a-Lago, in Palm Beach, Florida, which he soon did. As a result, Melania immediately started scouting out different private schools for Barron to attend in the Palm Beach area. Eventually, she found one, which Barron has been attending since at least the beginning of the 2021 school year. And, as many may expect, it costs a rather hefty sum. 

Barron Trump attends Oxbridge Academy in Florida

In August 2021, shortly before the beginning of the 2021 school year, it was announced that Barron Trump would start attending the Oxbridge Academy in West Palm Beach, Florida, around 15 minutes away from his father's Mar-a-Lago club/home. The private school currently serves grades 7 through 12, and enrolls only around 520 students, according to their website. In addition, about $5 million annually is invested in financial aid, which serves about 43% of the student population. According to The Sun, tuition — sans aid — is around $34,800 per year. This was nothing compared to the tuition at St. Andrew's, however, for which the Trumps would have paid around $45 to 47 thousand for Barron, depending on the grade. 

However, Oxbridge is no ordinary secondary school. Per The New York Times, perks of being a student include "a physical therapist on staff, chef-prepared lunches, an equestrian club, and a flight simulator." In addition, Oxbridge has a rather controversial history, and even came under some serious public scrutiny before Barron started attending in 2021. 

Oxbridge was founded by a Koch brother

Despite Oxbridge Academy Foundation's status as an elite private school — and the many perks its students get to enjoy — it has certainly seen its fair share of controversy. For one, Oxbridge was founded back in 2011 by one of the lesser-known Koch Brothers — Bill Koch, whose late fraternal twin David and older brother Charles are well-known for inheriting and running their father's massive multinational conglomerate company, Koch Industries. The Koch brothers — as they are well-known — are also known for their heavy political spending throughout their careers, largely toward Republican politicians. This influence has led to them often being regarded as among the most powerful men in American politics, despite not even being politicians themselves. 

Notably, although the Koch brothers famously boycotted funding of Donald Trump's presidential campaigns, Trump did receive about $25,000 from Bill's wife Bridget in 2020, per Forbes

Bill Koch, though not as actively involved in politics or business as his brothers, still inherited a great deal of money from his father's fortune and Koch Industries shares, and even founded the Oxbow Group, an energy development holding company also based in West Palm Beach. According to The New York Times, Bill founded Oxbridge with a $75 million investment, as he had a "dream" of founding a private high school which could accommodate high-achieving students of all socioeconomic backgrounds. However, Koch had much to sort out when it came to realizing that dream. 

Oxbridge has seen a number of scandals

In 2016, The New York Times reported that the Oxbridge Academy Foundation was undergoing some serious changes in light of some troubling revelations coming to light. Most notably, the school was alleged to be engaging in kickbacks, grade-changing on behalf of the students, excessive spending (the school's debate team would spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on travel, for instance, and the football coach had a salary of around $200,000), and violation of certain sports rules and regulations. 

In addition, several female employees reported instances of sexual harassment against Robert Parsons, the head of school, who had been suspended from his previous job in 2009 for allegedly operating a "'slush fund' to pay for tailgate parties." Bill Koch responded that he could not find any evidence of "super sexual harassment" from Parsons, but nonetheless fired him, and declined to renew a number of other staff members' contracts. 

Since 2016, however, the school has only expanded. In January 2021, Oxbridge announced they would be expanding from grades 9 through 12 to 7 through 12, per The Palm Beach Post. "The intuition has been that there's something very special going on here and it can serve a wider range of students," Ralph Maurer, the new head of school who replaced Parsons, said at the time. "We focus a lot on the culture of kindness here ... Character education, values, responsibility, citizenship." Barron Trump is expected to graduate from Oxbridge in 2024.