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Affording Gordon

At Gordon we value socioeconomic diversity and know it is an asset to the school, enhancing academic achievement, amplifying personal growth, and contributing to all aspects of school life.

An independent school education requires a significant financial commitment. All families applying for financial aid at Gordon bear the primary responsibility to pay the tuition and additional costs to the best of their ability. 

Within the limitations of the school’s resources, and to the best of its ability, Gordon actively seeks to build and maintain a school that is socioeconomically diverse. For the 2016-17 school year, Gordon offered over $3 million to families who demonstrated need. Still, the school was not able to meet the full needs of every family. 

If a family is applying for admission and financial aid at Gordon, they need to apply for financial aid at all independent schools where they are applying. Similarly, if they have children attending different independent schools, they should apply for financial aid at all of them.
 
The aid covers tuition. Families who receive aid covering 80% or more of tuition are eligible for support for tutoring, athletics, school pictures and field trips.

Step one: apply

Deadline February 1, 2017

To apply for financial aid, you will need to:
 
1. Complete the Parents Financial Statement (PFS) online at sss.nais.org, for use by School and Student Services (SSS), an independent nonprofit used by hundreds of independent schools (including Gordon) to help calculate financial aid.
 
2. Attach tax information and any other supplemental tax information to your PFS online
  • 2016 tax return and W2 forms are required 
  • 2015 tax return can be attached until 2016 is completed 
  • Complete the Business/Farm Statement (if you own your own business) and attach it to your PFS online

    Once you’ve completed these items above, SSS will generate and send Gordon a Report of Family Contribution (RFC). This is a formal recommended amount that a family can pay based on SSS calculations.

    The deadline for submitting your 2017-18 financial aid application via sss.nais.org is February 1, 2017. You may submit your financial aid application after the deadline, but you will most likely be placed in a financial aid wait pool if you qualify for financial aid.

Step 2: Gordon’s financial aid committee meets

Assessing need and allocating aid

After Gordon receive your RFC from SSS, the financial aid committee meets to:

  • review the report from SSS 
  • review any additional information you submitted 
  • make a decision on allocation of financial aid

How need is assessed

Several factors are taken into account when assessing a financial aid application, including: 

  • family size and age of parents 
  • income and expenses of the family 
  • assets and liabilities of the family 
  • supplemental information about individual financial circumstances

How aid is allocated

The financial aid committee reviews:

  • the RFC created by SSS, based on the application you filled out at sss.nais.org 
  • your PFS, also sent to from SSS 
  • all tax information 
  • any special circumstances you have submitted to Gordon in writing

Using this information, the committee determines which families qualify for financial aid, and to what extent. 

Then, aid is allocated in this order of priority:

  • all returning families who are already receiving aid 
  • all returning families new to aid
  • all new families

When determining how to spend the available financial aid resources, and in what grades, the committee considers what will:

  • strengthen and support Gordon's mission and values 
  • assist with meeting strategic enrollment initiatives 
  • assist with filling enrollment gaps in particular grades
 

Step 3: Receive your financial aid decision

By March 10th, 2017

Financial aid decisions are communicated in writing at the same time as admission decisions, which will be no later than March 10, 2016. Although they are related, admission and financial aid decisions are two separate decisions.

If your child is admitted to Gordon and you applied for financial aid, there are three possible decisions you may receive:
 
  • full funding of your financial aid need, as determined by SSS;
  • partial or no funding of your financial aid need, placing you in a financial aid wait pool, and Gordon would stay in close contact with you in the event that additional funding for your family becomes available;
  • no funding offered because you did not qualify. 
Gordon strives to meet the full need of each applicant. However, depending on availability of funds, Gordon may be unable to meet the needs of everyone who has been admitted.
 
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