The Business Office handles billing and financial aid applications at our school. Tuition is set by the Board of Trustees by the end of January of each year for the coming school year, and varies by program.
Tuition information is available by contacting our Director of Admissions. We offer a variety of payment plans for your convenience.
Our school administers an in-house financial aid program, and accepts vouchers through local community action agencies as well as subsidies for active military personnel and veterans. Please contact the Business Office if you are intending to use one of these vouchers or subsidies to pay for tuition. Information on applying for financial aid follows below.— Kathy Murri, Business Manager
At MSN, over 30% of our families receive some kind of financial assistance. This total includes those who receive grants from our in-house program and through the voucher program.
In-House Financial Aid Program
The school administers an in-house financial aid program. To apply, families submit an application to TADS. The applications should be completed by February 1 for first-round consideration, although applications received after that date will be considered as long as funds are available. Applications can only be completed online at the TADS website; if this presents a problem, please contact our Business Manager, Kathy Murri. Click here to contact Kathy. As part of the application process, you will also need to upload your most recent tax return to the TADS website. TADS analyzes your financial information, develops a recommendation of how much you can afford to contribute toward tuition, and sends this to the school (remember to designate MSN as a report recipient). The following links will take you to a worksheet which will guide you in gathering the information needed for the financial aid application, and to the actual application.
Shortly after the deadline, the Financial Aid Committee begins meeting to consider applications. (The Financial Aid Committee is comprised of the Head of School, Business Manager, a board member and a staff member. The board member and staff member do not know the identities of the applicants.) Awards are based on the overall need that year and the resources available. For optimal consideration, please submit your application to TADS by February 1 so we can consider it in the first round. We do accept applications after that date, but our pool of remaining funds may be limited. Once awards are made, parents are notified and new contracts are issued reflecting the financial aid awards.
The Montessori School of Northampton accepts vouchers for all three years of the Children’s House program. Vouchers are issued by community agencies such as New England Farm Workers’ Council. Your eligibility for a voucher is determined by the agency that supplies the funding. If you are eligible for funding, the agency will establish a daily parent fee that represents your portion of the tuition. The voucher program will subsidize an additional tuition amount, for which we will bill them directly. These two together do not add up to full tuition, so MSN underwrites the rest of the tuition for students receiving these subsidies. Because the subsidy provided by MSN comes out of the financial aid budget, we limit the number of vouchers we accept in any given year.
If you are applying for admission and expect to pay your tuition with funding from the voucher program, please notify us immediately so we can determine the availability of matching funds from our financial aid budget.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Should I apply for financial aid?
A: If finances will be a factor in your enrollment decision, we encourage you to apply for financial aid. However, please be aware that grants vary in size and are dependent on the school’s resources, the number of applicants and the analysis of your financial aid application. Grants for more than 50% of the tuition are limited. If the amount of aid you would need exceeds 50% of the tuition, please contact the Business Manager directly before completing your application for financial aid.
Q: If I tell you my family’s income, can you tell me if I will be eligible?
A: Unfortunately, no. When you complete the application for financial aid, TADS analyzes your income, assets, debts, family obligations, etc., in determining their estimate of your family’s contribution toward tuition. It is a complex calculation based on many factors. In addition, our in-house Financial Aid Committee also considers the amount of funding available that year, the number of applicants, and your own estimate of your contribution when making an award.
Q. What is the average financial aid award at MSN?
A: The average financial aid awards last year were $4,912 at the Children’s House level and $6,811 at the Elementary level. Although some awards were higher and some lower than those averages, please be aware that we do not grant awards for full tuition.
Q: How and when will I know if I receive an award?
A: The Financial Aid Committee will begin meeting weekly soon after the first round deadline (February 1) in order to begin considering applications. In order for your application to be considered in the first round, please apply as early as possible. Once the committee considers your application, you will be notified by letter, which will be accompanied by an amended contract if an award is made.
Q: If I receive an award, do I still have to pay the full rate for the auxiliary programs?
A: If you enroll your child in Early Bird or After School for the full year, your fees for those programs will be prorated at a rate consistent with your financial aid award. (Your rate of discount will be included in the award letter.) Fees for drop-in Early Bird/After School time, conference care, mini-sessions, and summer programs are not prorated.
Q: If I receive an award this year, do I have to reapply next year?
A: Yes, you need to reapply every year you wish to be considered for aid. However, returning families may anticipate receiving similar levels of financial aid from year to year if neither the family’s nor the school’s financial circumstances change significantly.
“We cannot create observers by saying “observe,” but by giving them the power and the means for this observation and these means are procured through education of the senses”
–Dr. Maria Montessori