Need-Based Financial Aid Program
In keeping with Quaker tenets, Sidwell Friends School seeks a student body that represents varied economic backgrounds. In 2012-2013, 23 percent of our students will receive approximately $6,100,000 of financial aid support with an average aid award of $21,938, which covers nearly two-thirds of the average tuition cost. Once a student has been admitted to Sidwell Friends School, aid is determined and renewed annually on the basis of demonstrated financial need without regard to gender, race, religion, or national and ethnic origin.
The financial aid program at Sidwell Friends School is guided by our belief that parents have an obligation to pay the educational expenses of their children to the extent that they are able. The purpose of the financial aid program is to fill the gap between the actual cost of a year’s tuition and what a family can realistically be expected to pay toward this cost.
How Need is Determined
As is common with most independent schools, financial aid awards are decided by the School’s Committee on Financial Aid. Sidwell Friends School uses School & Student Services by NAIS (SSS) to process our financial aid applications. If you are applying to another School that requires completion of a financial aid application other than with SSS, you will need to submit applications to both service providers. Financial aid will not be evaluated by Sidwell Friends based on an application submitted to a provider other than SSS. Parents requesting financial aid are required to complete a Parents' Financial Statement (PFS) and aid awards are based on the standardized calculations derived by the School & Student Services using data from the PFS. The methodology used to determine the parental contribution considers many items, including assets, liabilities, age of parents, family size and the number of students in tuition-charging schools. As the Committee looks at financial aid applications, it differentiates between necessary expenses and money spent for lifestyle choices. With respect to the latter, beyond a certain point, we will not provide aid to offset "lifestyle" expenditures that could have been directed to education. The parental contribution calculated by the School might differ from the SSS calculation. The Committee will, for example, consider the potential for income to be earned by a non-working parent who does not have small children at home.
For Current Sidwell Friends Families
Parents' Financial Statement should be submitted from the SSS website by January 7, 2013. In order to finalize financial aid awards, which are granted in mid-February, parents must provide a copy of their 2012 Federal tax return by April 15, 2013. For faster processing, upload a digital copy of Federal tax return including schedules and W-2s at the SSS website or mail a hard copy to School & Student Services By NAIS, P.O. Box 449, Randolph, MA 02368-0449. Tax returns are no longer collected in the SFS Office of Admissions and Financial Aid.
Should I Apply for Financial Aid?
We realize that a Sidwell Friends School education, while an excellent investment in your child’s future, represents an expense that is well beyond the reach of most families. There is no preset income level that qualifies a family for financial aid. We encourage families to complete the financial aid process if they feel that the full cost is more than they can afford.
Timetable for Applying for Financial Aid For Applicants to Sidwell Friends School
- January 7, 2013 – Financial aid information will be emailed explaining the financial aid process if you checked the box on Part I to receive financial aid information.
- February 1, 2013 – Deadline to submit Parents’ Financial Statement to School & Student Services By NAIS (SSS). We prefer you complete the PFS online from the SSS website. Our school code is 7366.
- February 15, 2013 – Deadline to submit a copy of 2012 Federal tax return including schedules and W-2s to SSS. For faster processing, upload a digital copy of Federal tax return including schedules and W-2s at the SSS website or mail a hard copy to School & Student Services By NAIS, P.O. Box 449, Randolph, MA 02368-0449.
- March 1, 2013 – If the above deadlines have been met, and we are able to offer your child admission, financial aid award information will be included in your child's accept packet.
The admissions process at Sidwell Friends School is need blind. We do not consider a family’s financial circumstances when making admissions decisions.