Financial Aid Overview

Rye Country Day School is eager to encourage all qualified students to apply to the school. We are actively committed to maintaining a school community of students from diverse backgrounds and experiences and our extensive financial aid program helps to make a Rye Country Day education accessible for those who demonstrate financial need. RCDS grants approximately $5.9 million in financial aid to 16 percent of the student body.

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The Rye Country Day School Financial Aid Program uses School and Student Services (SSS) to establish financial need. Parents of financial aid applicants need to complete the Parents Financial Statement (PFS) using the RCDS code 6208. (In the case of divorced or separated parents, the equivalent form from the non-custodial parent must be submitted as well.) The School also requires that applicants submit a copy of all federal IRS forms filed in the previous year as well as the most recent W2 forms. For more information about SSS, call 800-344-8328 or visit their website. Required forms must be submitted by December 15. If a student is accepted, financial aid responses will accompany admissions decisions.

Financial aid funds come directly from the resources of the School, and student awards consider the entire expense of attending RCDS. This factors in "extra" costs such as lunch, books, and other expenses. Furthermore, all financial aid students in Grades 7-12 (regardless of the grant size) receive a new laptop computer from the school as part of their financial aid package. RCDS also supports the cost of school-related trips for financial aid students at the same percentage as their financial aid award for tuition.

If you are interested in pursuing a financial aid application at RCDS, please be sure to mark the appropriate box on the Online Admissions Application. RCDS usually allocates its financial aid budget for new students by mid-February, and the granting of aid after this date is subject to availability of funds.

While we fund students from all three divisions, the majority of the grants are given to Middle and Upper School students. There are limited funds for Lower School students and no financial funds available for Pre-Kindergarten.

Questions about financial aid? Please visit Admissions FAQ or contact Courtney Doucette, Financial Aid Officer, at 914-925-4542 or Courtney_Doucette@ryecountryday.org.

Financial Aid Process for New Applicants

  1. Complete the PFS online through the SSS website by December 15, 2019. The SSS database will open in early October. Because of the early timing, families need to estimate both years of income (2019 & 2020) that are requested on this form.
  2. Families must also upload copies of the most recent federal tax forms (2019) and W-2s (2019) to the SSS website by December 15, 2019. Applicants are required to submit all forms and schedules that they file in a given year, including returns for individual children.
  3. Grants are made by RCDS with the stipulation that all numbers will be verified with tax material from the current year as the information becomes available. Families are also required to upload their 2019 W2's (no later than 2/15/20) and 2019 Form 1040's (no later than 4/15/20)* to the SSS website.
  4. Families may be requested by the Financial Aid Committee to supply additional documentation and/or have personal meetings as needed. The Financial Aid Officer will print necessary copies of documents for the applicants file.
  5. The School distributes financial aid grants simultaneously with admissions offers. Families will receive notifications in mid-February.

*The Headmaster must approve financial aid grants if there is an IRS tax filing extension until October.

Affording RCDS FAQ

Is financial aid available at RCDS?

Rye Country Day School (RCDS) offers financial aid to qualifying families with students entering Kindergarten through Grade 12. Our financial aid program is need-based, which means the School does not offer academic, athletic, or merit-based scholarships of any kind. Financial aid is granted to families of qualified admissions candidates who demonstrate financial need. Please note that there is no financial aid offered for Pre-Kindergarten students.

How much financial aid is available at RCDS?

This year, our financial aid budget is approximately $5.9 million. Currently, 16 percent of the student body receives financial assistance.

Will I have to pay back my financial aid grant?

No. The RCDS financial aid program is entirely comprised of grants. There are no loans in our financial aid grants.

Does financial aid only cover tuition?

No. Financial aid grants consider the entire expense of attending RCDS. This factors in "extra" costs such as lunch, books, and other expenses. Furthermore, all students who receive financial aid in Grades 7-12 (regardless of the grant amount) receive a new loaner laptop computer from the School as part of their financial aid grant. Although the computer is technically owned by RCDS, the student has use of this computer at home and during all vacations. Families will be billed $60 annually for insurance on the laptop. Finally, RCDS is also pleased to support school-related trips for students who receive financial aid. The School will support approved trips for students who receive financial aid at the same percentage as their financial aid grant (e.g., a family who pays 50 percent of our tuition would be asked to pay 50 percent of any school-related trip).

Who are the students that receive financial aid at RCDS?

The School looks to support qualified students who will be able to contribute to school life in many ways. RCDS has students who receive financial aid in all divisions of the School (Lower, Middle, and Upper). Historically, the School has had a larger concentration of students who receive financial aid in the Middle and Upper divisions, but all families are encouraged to apply. There are limited funds for Lower School students and no financial funds available for Pre-Kindergarten. Currently, our students who receive financial aid come from approximately twenty different communities in Westchester and Fairfield Counties, as well as Manhattan and the Bronx. Our families also come from a range of incomes and qualify for varying amounts of financial support.

How does one apply for financial aid at RCDS?

The first step in applying for financial aid is to indicate your interest in financial aid on the Online Application for Admissions. Please note, our admissions literature addresses the financial aid process in general, but it can be helpful to speak with our Financial Aid Officer, Courtney Doucette, by phone or in person if you would like to complete a financial aid application (PFS).

How does Rye Country Day assess a family's financial need?

RCDS uses School and Student Services (SSS) to establish financial need. For more information about SSS, call the family help line at (800) 344-8328 or visit their website at www.solutionsbysss.com. Financial aid applicants need to complete the Parents’ Financial Statement (PFS), which must be done online. SSS will notify the Financial Aid Officer when the PFS is completed. The School also requires that applicants submit a copy of all federal IRS forms submitted in the previous year, as well as the most recent W2 forms. All of these documents combined give RCDS an informed sense of a family's financial need. It is important to note that although RCDS uses SSS as a guide in this process, actual grants are always recalculated locally and distributed by the Financial Aid Office at RCDS.

What if our family is separated or I am a single parent/guardian?

Our students who receive financial aid come from a wide variety of family structures, and ultimately every family's situation is considered on a case-by-case basis. However, RCDS does have a clear policy for considering aid in separated/divorced situations. The Financial Aid Committee does consider financial resources from all parents/guardians (non-custodial and step-parents included) that are available to applicants.

How does the timing of the financial aid application work?

The School distributes financial aid grants simultaneously with admissions offers. Since most of our admissions decisions are communicated in early February, our financial aid application process must commence well in advance of this date. The SSS portal (in order to start your PFS) opens in early October. The due date for a completed financial aid application (PFS) for prospective students is December 15.

Will my application for financial aid (PFS) impact my admissions decision?

If your financial aid application (PFS) is completed by the aforementioned deadline, then the answer is almost always "no." Financial aid and admissions are two separate processes at RCDS; our Admissions Committees do not consider—and are unaware of—financial need when evaluating the qualifications of an admissions applicant. While the financial aid budget is generous, it is limited. Applications for financial aid (PFS) that are submitted after the December deadline can only be considered subject to the availability of funds. Sometimes RCDS is unable to make aid grants to all qualified students based on budgetary constraints.

Will I continue to receive financial aid for the duration of my student's tenure at the School?

Generally, yes. As long as a family's financial situation remains relatively unchanged, families should anticipate that their percentage of tuition support will remain relatively constant throughout their experience at RCDS. Grants can change in either direction depending on significant changes in a family's financial circumstances. Families must complete the PFS and submit supporting documents each year.

While attending RCDS, will everyone know that my student is receiving financial aid?

No. The identity of students who receive financial aid is kept in confidence at RCDS. Beyond the Financial Aid Committee, only Senior Administrators have access to financial aid status. No one has access to any financial documents except for the Financial Aid Committee.

What should I do if I have more questions?

At any time during the financial aid process, please feel free to contact Courtney Doucette, Financial Aid Officer, at 914-925-4542 or courtney_doucette@ryecountryday.org. Our goal is to make this process as efficient and clear as possible.

Resources

financial aid process & faq