WHAT IS THE MEANING OF “TUITION ASSISTANCE” AND HOW IS IT DETERMINED?
Need is the difference between school tuition and your family’s ability to pay the educational expenses. The Parent Financial Statement (PFS) gives an objective picture of how much you can afford to contribute toward education. The Tuition Assistance Committee reviews the estimated family contribution provided by School and Student Services (SSS) and makes adjustments based on the family’s current federal tax returns. A cost of living adjustment (COLA) is also applied to reflect the higher cost of living in California. The Tuition Assistance Committee weighs the resulting financial need against available funds. Keep in mind that applying for assistance does not guarantee eligibility, and being eligible does not guarantee that funds will be available.
CAN YOU GIVE ME A BALLPARK ESTIMATE OF WHAT MY FAMILY’S AWARD WILL BE?
No. Given the many variables that affect an award decision, it is impossible to accurately predict a family’s contribution without reviewing all of the paperwork. Grants can range from about 5% to 75% of need.
DOES APPLYING FOR TUITION ASSISTANCE JEOPARDIZE THE ADMISSION DECISION?
No. York School accepts students on the basis of personal and academic merit. When reviewed by the Admission Committee, student files contain no information about tuition assistance. After admission decisions are made, the Tuition Assistance Committee works to provide funds to as many students as possible.
WHY DOES THE SSS FAMILY REPORT HAVE A DIFFERENT EXPECTED CONTRIBUTION THAN THE SCHOOL?
Because the Tuition Assistance Committee recalculates all assistance applications to correct errors and apply York’s policies, the family contribution may differ from the one contained in the SSS Family Report and from figures determined by other schools. For example, York will apply a cost of living (COLA) factor, will impute income for a parent able to but not currently working (unless they care for pre-school, disabled, or elderly family members), and will disallow losses attributable to second homes, investment properties, hobby businesses, and certain types of depreciation. On the other hand, York may allow certain expenses that are disallowed in the SSS calculation. If you feel that your financial circumstances are not adequately reflected in the PFS, you are encouraged to submit more detailed information and meet with the Tuition Assistance Coordinator.
ARE MERIT SCHOLARSHIPS AWARDED?
All tuition assistance at York School is based on demonstrated financial need, not on academic, athletic, artistic, or other merit.
IF A FAMILY QUALIFIES FOR ASSISTANCE, WILL THE ENTIRE FINANCIAL NEED BE MET?
The amount of tuition a family is expected to pay is determined by both financial need and the availability of York School funds. Parents are expected to contribute according to their means; all families are expected to pay a portion of tuition—there are no full tuition grants.
WHEN WILL I BE NOTIFIED ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT MY CHILD WILL RECEIVE TUITION ASSISTANCE? IF ACCEPTED, IS MY CHILD GUARANTEED FINANCIAL SUPPORT?
The Admission notification date is March 10. Tuition assistance awards for new students will be mailed as soon after that date as possible. Despite the strong commitment to our tuition assistance program and to enrolling an economically diverse student body, it is likely that the number of accepted applicants who qualify for assistance will be greater than York is able to support. Therefore, some students who have been admitted to the school could be placed in the tuition assistance waiting pool. It is not unusual for additional funding to become available during the spring and summer, and that funding is directed to those in the waiting pool.
WILL MY INFORMATION BE KEPT CONFIDENTIAL?
Yes. York School adheres to a strict policy of confidentiality with regard to all admission, personal, and financial information. The School expects families to keep all information about tuition assistance awards confidential as well.
IS TUITION ASSISTANCE AVAILABLE FOR INTERNATIONAL TUITION?
Because international financial documentation comes from different economic systems, it is difficult to determine an appropriate grant for international students. We can only consider assistance applications from families who file US tax forms to the IRS. Both parents must file US tax forms to be eligible for tuition assistance.
DOES MY FAMILY NEED TO REAPPLY FOR TUITION ASSISTANCE EACH YEAR?
Yes. Renewal of the award is based on continued financial need, so completed PFS forms and tax returns must be submitted in a timely fashion each year.
AFTER WE REVIEW THE TUITION ASSISTANCE OFFER, IS THERE AN APPEAL PROCESS IF WE FIND WE STILL CANNOT PAY TUITION?
Yes. In some cases, additional information helps to clarify the financial picture and can lead to an increased award. In other cases, the additional information does not result in a change. Many find it helpful to meet with the Tuition Assistance Coordinator to discuss their particular situation.
IF MY FAMILY DOESN’T RECEIVE AN AWARD THE FIRST YEAR, SHOULD WE APPLY AGAIN?
While every attempt is made to meet financial needs, requests for assistance frequently exceed available funding. Priority is given to returning students with demonstrated financial need; if you have need, but funds were not available, please consider applying again. If you were denied assistance because you did not qualify, please reapply if your financial situation changes.
ARE THERE COSTS IN ADDITION TO TUITION?
Textbook costs vary by grade and the type of courses being taken. New books typically cost $400-$500 per year and may be purchased through our online bookstore, Amazon, or other booksellers. Book lists for the coming year and summer reading (with ISBN numbers) are available at the end of each school year.
York also has a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policy that requires all students to bring an internet enabled device—computer, netbook, etc.—to school each day. The Business Office can assist families in ordering equipment at reasonable rates. Please speak with the Admission team for more details.