That's what an acquaintance told me a cyber-charter school will charge for a phonics program if his child is not enrolled in full-time kindergarten. The full-time kindergarten is free, I mean taxpayer-funded, this being a charter school. But if he does not want to enroll his child in kindergarten but just get the phonics program, it's 500 big ones.
We probably spent less than $100 on materials to teach our kids to read. Would have been less if I'd not been so enthralled by curriculum and made a few buying mistakes.
One child taught herself, mostly. She heard the blow-back from me teaching her brother, caught on and never looked back. I could have spent $20 on Explode the Code workbooks and called it good.
The other learned to read once we gave up on phonics, which he still doesn't get. Now he's a good reader, but he can't spell. We're remediating phonics now, with some new materials, but still nowhere near $500 or even $200. If we have to seek professional help the bill will likely go higher. But he is not in kindy and at that point he'd be diagnosed with a learning disability.
Most kids are probably somewhere in between my 2 kids, I'd guess.
I don't know what that $500 buys, exactly.