Sweetbay Montessori School is committed to making a Montessori education a realistic option for any family willing to support our school community and the Montessori philosophy.
Indexed tuition is a model of setting tuition rates for enrolled families based on what the family can reasonably afford and the school can accommodate within the operating budget. Each family who applies for indexed tuition will complete an application with a third-party service (FAST Aid by Independent School Management) who will evaluate the family’s financial resources. The results of the evaluation will determine the family’s tuition rate, up to the amount of full tuition.
The application process for indexed tuition is separate from the admissions process, and is completed after a family is admitted and enrolled. We work diligently with each family to set a rate that is affordable for both the family and the school, but if at the end of the process the family does not feel that the rate is affordable for them, they may withdraw with a full refund of their enrollment deposit.
State need-based scholarships and traditional financial aid programs generally provide most of their financial assistance to those families with the most financial need. However, those programs are often not available to middle income families who are financially secure but who just cannot afford private school tuition, especially for multiple children.
We feel that we need a more innovative approach to achieve our vision of making a Montessori education accessible to families willing to support the Montessori philosophy for their children's education.
Any family enrolled for the upcoming school year may apply for indexed tuition, which is a separate and independent determination process from the admissions process. After a student is accepted for admission, the family simply checks the block on the Enrollment Agreement that they would like to apply for indexed tuition and we will provide the link for the FAST Aid system.
The application includes a series of financial questions and will require submission of federal income tax documents. There is a 24/7, US-based family support service provided by FAST Aid to assist applicants with the process.
No. Indexed tuition is completely optional and any family who chooses not to apply simply agrees to pay full tuition.
We will accept applications at any time, but priority is given to those applications completed and submitted prior to May 1. Families must be enrolled before applying for Indexed Tuition.
The FAST Aid application provides many different ways for each family to communicate their financial resources and constraints. If the resulting tuition rate is not affordable, families have two options: 1) they may use the FAST Aid appeal process to provide additional information to help determine an appropriate tuition rate, or 2) they may withdraw their child(ren) within 7 days of notification for a full refund of the enrollment deposit.