Originally Posted by ready2knit
I agree with those who stated above that you should ask PRIOR to taking the class if you need to purchase materials there. I worked in a LYS and most are small business owners who are trying to make a living just like everyone else. The amount of help provided in most classes far outweighs the cost being charged to students. So in the end, the profit is made by the purchase of materials.
Hope none of this comes off too strong, but having worked in a LYS I have an understanding for skyrocketing rents, minimum yarn orders, and trying to provid quality customer service piled on top of trying to make a living.
I work part-time and teach in a LYS and ready2knit has hit the nail on the head so accurately. I just wanted to add a few points.
1) Remember that the cost of the class is paying for the knowledge/expertise of the skill you are seeking from the person teaching. In other words, the fee is for the instructor not necessarily the store. Keep in mind that the instructor at some time had to master the skills they are teaching you which takes time and their time is therefore worth money. Also, the instructor likely had to put gas in the vehicle to get to the class to teach you or had to hire a babysitter or any other multitude of possible expenses which you do not necessarily see.
2) The store may or may not benefit financially from the actual class fees depending on the teacher/owner agreement. If the store does get financial benefit, keep in mind that it costs the store owner to provide hydro so you can see what you are learning as well as heat at this time of the year (both of which if the store is not normally open during class time can be additional costs to the owner). So, any profit to the store is often made through the sale of supplies for the class. Generally, stores will offer students discounts on supplies.
LYS owners generally love to knit and want to share this love with others. As ready2knt so eloquently said, LYS are only trying to earn a living just like everyone else.