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What does good learning look like?

Demystifying Financial Aid

Watkinson’s financial aid practices are a direct expression of the school’s values. Watkinson is committed to having a diverse student body in all ways. To achieve this, our practice of awarding financial aid looks different from many other schools.  

FACT: More than 60% of Watkinson families receive some form of financial aid.

This percentage has grown steadily over the last twenty years. Given the financial uncertainty of this moment, heightened by the COVID-19 pandemic, we don’t anticipate the number going down any time soon. Some private schools give a limited number of full scholarships to a select few students. At Watkinson, applicants have a better chance of getting a medium or small award, which makes it possible for many middle-income families to afford a Watkinson education. 

FACT: Watkinson is increasing its commitment to financial aid.

This year, school leadership committed to combining two areas of our fundraising efforts — our annual fund and financial aid fund — to focus on a single campaign for financial aid. We call it the Watkinson.Now. Campaign for Financial Aid. We know this deep institutional commitment, led by our board members (100% of whom have already contributed to the campaign), will buoy both the school and many families during this uncertain time.

FACT: Watkinson is flexible about when we award aid.

Like most schools, we have an admission and financial aid application timeline. It is strongly advised that parents needing aid apply before the first round deadline of February 1 as you will have the best chance of receiving a scholarship.  However, if you miss that deadline, all is not lost.  We try to remain flexible. As funds remain available, particularly to fill classes where enrollment may be lower, we are often able to award some partial financial aid grants throughout the spring and summer. This allows us to fill out grade levels while meeting the needs of families who are eager to enroll but need some financial help in order to do so.

FACT: Watkinson does not award merit scholarships.

In order to achieve the diversity stated in our institutional values, Watkinson does not offer merit scholarships in order to entice full-pay families to choose Watkinson over its competitors. Rather, we are fully committed to awarding scholarships on the basis of need.

Financial aid grants can range in size from $5,000 to a few competitive grants which nearly cover the entire cost of tuition. Our average grant size is $25,000. Whenever possible, we strive to match the difference between the tuition cost and what a family can afford to pay.

QUESTION: Do you know a student who needs the power of a Watkinson education?

Many families are struggling to find a good fit for their children educationally during the pandemic.  If you know a student who is struggling with virtual school or whose interest in their own education has waned during the last year, please invite them to one of our virtual info sessions. Our exceptional educational philosophy will transform the life of a student and just might be more attainable than you think.

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