We are committed to making a Science & Arts Academy education possible for families of diverse socioeconomic backgrounds. Our need-based scholarship program enables us to assist deserving students who could not otherwise afford to attend SAA. All students are eligible for tuition assistance. Currently, 37% of SAA families receive need-based scholarship funds, totaling approximately $750,000 in aid.
SAA utilizes FACTS Grant & Aid Assessment, an independent, third party company, to help us objectively determine each family’s financial need. Multiple factors are considered by FACTS when evaluating a family’s ability to pay, including but not limited to, household income, family size, expenses, assets, and liabilities. Based on demonstrated need, scholarships are awarded up to 50% of tuition. Families must reapply each year and awards may vary from year to year depending on changes in the family’s financial situation.
All students, regardless of race, sex, color, ethnicity, sexual identity, age, religion or any other characteristic protected under applicable federal, state or local law, are eligible for a need-based scholarship. Per the NAIS Principles of Good Practice for Financial Aid Administration, the amount of aid is not based upon any performance criteria, and the same standards of behavior and academic performance are applied for recipients of aid as for non-recipients. The need-based scholarship application is separate from the application for admission. Applying for a need-based scholarship does not influence the admission decision.
Please follow the steps below to begin your need-based scholarship application.
Step 1: Submit Your Application
Click here to complete the need-based scholarship application form (through FACTS), and submit with a $35 application fee. The 2019-20 need-based scholarship application opens November 5, 2018. In order for new applicants to be considered for a need-based scholarship, the admissions process must be completed separately and concurrently. Please mark the box on the admissions application indicating that it is contingent upon receipt of a need-based scholarship.
Step 2: Finalize Your Application
Upload all requested forms directly to FACTS, including your 2017 federal income tax return, 2018 federal tax return (if available), supporting schedules, and 2017 and 2018 W-2’s. The priority deadline for returning SAA families is January 31, 2019. The priority deadline for new applicants is February 15, 2019. Applications will be accepted beyond these dates as long as scholarship funds remain available.
Step 3: Notification of Award
SAA will review and determine the award only after requested information is verified by FACTS. (Please note that it may take FACTS up to two weeks to process and verify information, so please start the process early). Notification of award for returning families will be communicated in re-enrollment information (mid-February 2019). Notification of award for new families will be communicated with admissions acceptance letter and new enrollment contract (beginning March 2019). Late and mid-year requests will continue to be considered as resources allow.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who decides how much tuition assistance a family will receive?
FACTS Grant & Aid Assessment, an independent, third party company, conducts an analysis of all information provided in your application to determine your family’s financial need. This establishes a common base by which each family’s need can be measured fairly and equitably. FACTS provides SAA with a confidential report, as well as a recommended award. SAA’s Financial Aid Committee reviews this information and determines the final award.
Is my information secure and confidential?
FACTS ensures the security of your information. All documentation received by FACTS is imaged upon receipt and then destroyed. All information received and reviewed by the SAA Financial Aid Committee is restricted to only the information that is needed and is held in the strictest of confidence.
How can I check the status of my application?
You may login to your FACTS user account to review the status of your application. Please allow 2 weeks processing time from the date you provided the supporting documents before inquiring further about receipt and/or status of the uploaded or faxed documents.
What if I disagree with my award?
After receiving notification of your award, if you feel that it is not adequate to meet your needs, you may file an appeal in writing to the SAA FInancial Aid Committee. An appeal should include additional or new information that was not available at the time of the initial award. The Financial Aid Committee will review the appeal and notify you if there is sufficient information to change the award.
Does my submission of a need-based scholarship application impact my child’s likelihood of being accepted at the school?
No. Although the two processes occur concurrently, the need-based scholarship application is entirely separate from the application for admission. Applying for a need-based scholarship does not influence the admission decision in any way.
What kind of economic situation is typical for families receiving need-based scholarships at SAA?
Family circumstances range widely. FACTS Grant & Aid Assessment does not set any specific income guidelines or have restrictions on who may apply for financial aid. In calculating each family's ability to pay, FACTS considers various factors such as household income, family size, expenses, assets, liabilities, and more. If you feel your family needs tuition assistance, it is to your benefit to apply.
Do you need financial information from both parents, in the case of divorce or separation?
In the case of divorce or separation, both parents are required to submit all needed forms. However, in the case of a documented court order which requires one parent to be responsible for all educational expenses, the other parent will be waived on those requirements to submit documents.