Frequently Asked Questions
Who receives tuition assistance?
Decisions about tuition assistance are determined by availability of funds and enrollment needs. Currently re-enrolling students receive most of the funds; however, a portion of the budget is reserved for new students.
Should we apply for tuition assistance?
Independent school tuition represents a significant investment for any family. There is no specific income level at which a family no longer qualifies for tuition assistance. Although we would like to provide firm guidelines to help you decide whether to apply for assistance, we have found that each family’s combination of circumstances is unique. The most helpful guideline comes from your own knowledge of your family’s finances. A good rule of thumb is, if in doubt, apply.
If we pay full tuition initially, can we apply for tuition assistance in subsequent years?
It is important to understand that our program is budgeted on a multi-year basis according to current participation and planned new enrollment. Therefore, families enrolling at Park without the use of tuition assistance are expected to contribute at full tuition amounts in subsequent years. In the case of a change in family circumstances, families may apply for tuition assistance; however, funding may not be available to meet full demonstrated need. Every effort will be made to support the family’s new financial situation and maintain student enrollment.
Does tuition assistance cover other school expenses?
Tuition assistance awards are calculated based on the full estimated cost of education. This means that typical school expenses like books, technology, and supplies have already been considered when calculating the family’s out-of-pocket costs. However, all families receiving tuition assistance are eligible for assistance with mandatory school trips and up to three optional travel opportunities. Some families may also qualify for supplemental funding that supports fees, books, transportation, and after-school childcare. Please contact the Director of Enrollment Management and Tuition Assistance for more information regarding eligibility requirements.
Will support continue in future years?
If your circumstances do not change significantly, you can expect your percentage of tuition payments to remain about the same from year to year. In allocating our budget, priority for tuition assistance goes to returning students who currently receive grants. Each family’s level of contribution is re-assessed each year to assure that we are meeting current demonstrated need. If a family’s financial profile improves, they may be expected to pay an incrementally greater proportion of tuition. Likewise, if a family experiences a financial setback, their tuition balance may be adjusted to take their new circumstance into consideration.
What about separated, divorced, or never-married parents?
Park considers the income and assets of any adult who plays a significant role in a student’s life. All adults (biological parents, step-parents, guardians, etc.) are required to submit all application material to SSS. Each household should submit a separate SSS application.
If we are applying for admission and my child is offered an enrollment contract, are we guaranteed some level of tuition assistance?
Unfortunately, Park School is not in the position to grant tuition assistance to every deserving candidate. And, because we commit to funding awards that meet full demonstrated need, we do not offer grants that fall short of our commitment to family affordability. When making award decisions, we consider the needs of currently enrolled students, the school’s enrollment goals, and the distribution of funds across grade levels. When demand exceeds our capacity to provide need-based funding, eligible students may be placed in a limited wait pool. In these cases, families will be considered for any additional funding that may become available over the course of the spring.
Does Park award non need-based scholarships or merit awards?
Park School does not offer non-need based tuition assistance awards. For students who are elibible for need based tuition assistance, Park has a number of designated funds that also consider merit.
As a Malone Scholar school, we are fortunate to be able to recognize the talents of a select number of exceptionally gifted and motivated students who demonstrate financial need of 30% or more. The Malone Scholar designation is a need-based tuition assistance award made possible through a $2.5 million endowment grant from the Malone Family Foundation. Applicants considered for this honor must place in the top five percent of their current class and be entering grades 7, 8, 9, or 10 in the fall. Families interested in applying for the Malone Scholar Program must complete the Park School admission application, tuition assistance application, and Malone Scholar application by December 15.
Can we appeal the award if, after we review the tuition assistance offered, we still find we cannot pay tuition?
Yes. We invite families interested in a re-evaluation of their award to submit a written request for an appeal. In some cases, we find that families have not included financial information that would have led to a higher level of support, and we are able to increase the grant. In other cases, the additional information does not result in a change. Many find it worthwhile to meet with the Director of Enrollment Management and Tuition Assistance to discuss their particular situation and the school’s policies and procedures.
How can I get more information?
Your admission interview is the first place to have questions answered. You may also contact Mennette DuBose San-Lee, Director of Enrollment Management and Tuition Assistance, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Parents who currently receive tuition assistance are also available to talk to you about the process and share their perspectives. To speak with a parent currently participating in Park’s Tuition Assistance Program, contact the Admission Office at 410-339-4130.