Sayre School’s affordability options exist to assist parents in meeting the cost of an independent school education for their children who would otherwise not be able to attend the school.
The affordability options provide a variety of payment options and support to families who demonstrate financial need. Sayre recognizes that an independent school education is a major investment and one that often stretches a family’s resources. Approximately 25% of our students annually receive need-based financial aid. All applications are held in strict confidence to protect the privacy of our families.
The Financial Assistance Process
The affordability procedures are a separate process from admission. A decision to provide assistance is made based solely on the family’s demonstrated financial need. Need is defined as the difference between the family’s resources and the student’s educational expenses. All families who desire financial assistance must complete an online application and provide supporting documentation yearly regardless of whether the student is new, returning, or a previous recipient of financial assistance. Returning families who received assistance the previous year must complete a new Parent Financial Statement (PFS) each year. This online process can begin as early as November 1, and parents are encouraged to apply as early as possible.
Sayre School uses the standardized needs assessment method developed by School and Student Services (SSS) on behalf of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS). The applications are processed first by SSS and then by Sayre. A family’s eligibility is based on discretionary income, or that amount of money available after a living allowance has been deducted from the family’s income, expenses, assets, and liabilities. The following information is used to help calculate the discretionary income:
- Income, taxable and nontaxable
- Net worth
- Assets (savings, stocks, home equity, real estate, etc., which might be used to pay tuition)
- Number of dependents
- Number of children attending private schools or in college and the costs thereof
- Expenses (living costs, taxes, medical and dental costs not covered by insurance, personal indebtedness, child support, legal debts, nursing home costs, etc.)
After families complete the online PFS, the information is evaluated by SSS and a Report of Parental Contribution (RPC), which suggests what the parental contribution should be, is sent to Sayre School. The Sayre Financial Aid Committee evaluates all the relevant documents following guidelines outlined by the school and SSS and will then designate a financial award, which the family will receive in the form of a letter. Sayre School will need the family’s federal tax information as soon as it is available in order to confirm the validity of the information provided by the family on the Parent Financial Statement.
Parents Never Married or Who Are Divorced or Separated
Financial aid at Sayre is calculated on need, not on a willingness or unwillingness to pay. It is the policy of Sayre School, as recommended by the National Association of Independent Schools and School and Student Services, that divorced, separated parents, or never married parents retain the obligation to contribute to the education of their children whether or not there is a legal agreement between them or a court order to do so. In some cases divorce decrees stipulate the exact amount each parent must contribute toward educational costs. Because Sayre was not represented when the decree was made, we need not honor the divorce decree guidelines. Instead, we require both parents to contribute as much as the calculations show they can afford.
The Financial Aid Committee will make an award only after considering the financial resources of both parents. If one parent is uninvolved in the child’s life and has been for some time, the family must provide a written statement to this effect from a lawyer, member of the clergy, or a third party who is aware of the situation in a professional capacity.
Each parent must complete the full application process. If either parent remarries, the financial information of the stepparent must be included in application materials for financial assistance. We will take into account obligations of the parent and stepparent to their other children as we process this financial information. If the stepparent’s income is not provided, the financial assistance application will be considered incomplete.
How to Apply for Assistance
- Go to the SSS website at http://sss.nais.org to create a parent login to submit the online PFS. If you have applied for aid online through SSS before, you can use your previous login information. Sayre School’s code is 7162. SSS charges a fee of $37 to process the application.
- Please visit sss.nais.org/Parents for links to helpful information about completing the SSS application.
- Returning and prospective families may submit financial assistance applications for the 2013-14 school year beginning November 1, but not later than February 1, 2013 to be included in the first rond of award decisions.
All available assistance at Sayre School is awarded without regard to race, color, nationality, gender or ethnic origin.
Tuition Payment Plans
Sayre School offers payment options and tuition insurance to all families. For specific questions and information on payment options, please refer to the Sayre School Financial Bulletin.
- 10% deposit; 60% in July; 30% in November
- 10% deposit; the balance paid in 9 monthly payments beginning July 1
Sayre recommends a plan that allows parents to purchase tuition insurance. If for any reason a student withdraws from Sayre during the course of the academic year, both the parents and the school would be assured the continuation of contractually agreed to tuition payments.