Economics professor Randall Reback discusses factors affecting student enrollment at parochial schools.  An excerpt from the article:

"Randall Reback, a Barnard College economist, says a number of factors could affect student enrollment. The economic downturn, increased choices for parents in public and charter schools and the shift of Catholic families out of traditional inner-city neighborhoods and into the suburbs all play a role.

“Many of the families have been using them as a relatively low-cost version of the private school system,” he says. “The fancy private schools in New York aren’t hurting at all, really it’s the families who pay a few thousand dollars a year who may have to think twice.”"