FAQ

Admissions

2015 Admissions FAQs

What is Avenues looking for in an applicant?

There is no single profile of an Avenues student and applicants are considered on their completed application. Avenues seeks students who can thrive in a rigorous, collaborative and creative learning environment. Avenues strives to have a student community diverse in interests, talents and backgrounds, and the application process is designed to assess all these aspects equally.

What testing is required?

Students who are applying to our ELC (Nursery, Pre-K, Kindergarten) and grade 1 participate in small playgroups run by Avenues teachers.

Students who are applying to Grades 2-4 are required to take the ISEE Primary.

Students who are applying to Grades 5-12 are required to take the ISEE OR the SSAT. Note that only one test is required.

Are there minimum test scores needed to be considered a competitive applicant?

We do not require a minimum score for any form of standardized testing. Assessment of each candidate is made from a range of criteria, and standardized test scores are only a small portion of the application that we review.

What is the birthday cut-off?

Small World, nursery, pre-kindergarten and kindergarten students must be two, three, four and five years old respectively by August 31 of their year of entry.

Applicants to grades 1 and above are assessed based on the last year of completed school. However, applicants are encouraged to apply for the grade to which they are eligible based on the August 31 birthday cutoff.

Are first choice letters or personal recommendations required?

First choice letters or personal recommendations are not necessary. Each applicant is assessed according to the requirements stated on the application forms. However, academic recommendations are required, and each applicant for the Middle or Upper School must respond to a creative essay question, as well as submitting a recently graded paper that includes teacher comments.

Can an applicant reapply?

Applicants are welcome to reapply for the next admissions year.

What is the application process for international students?

International students are expected to follow the standard application process and submit all requirements. We will work with your family to schedule your Avenues appointments for a time when you plan to travel to New York. We suggest you schedule admissions testing in New York prior to planning your trip. As always, please contact us at admissions-ny@avenues.org or 646-664-0800.

What is Avenues’ policy on immunizations?

All students attending Avenues New York are required to have up-to-date immunizations as outlined by the New York State Department of Education. If students are not compliant with the New York State immunization requirements, they will be excluded from school until they receive the vaccines. In rare occasions, two forms of exemptions to this requirement are available: medical and religious. Medical exemptions are granted when a New York State licensed physician certifies that an immunization is detrimental to a child’s health. Such medical exemptions waive the requirement for a particular immunization until the immunization is no longer detrimental to the child’s health. Parents or guardians may request an exemption from the school’s immunization policy on the grounds of religious belief. Requests for religious exemptions must be submitted to the head of school and the school nurse before August 1. By law, children holding either a medical or religious exemption must be excluded from school during any disease outbreaks. A copy of the immunization policy is available from admissions upon written request to admissions-ny@avenues.org.

TUITION AND FINANCIAL AID

New FA FAQs

Is financial aid available in all grades?

Financial aid is available for grades kindergarten through 12.

How does the SSS program calculate my family’s “contribution” or ability to pay?

The calculation of your family’s ability to pay considers your income, what you own (your house and other investments), what you owe (your mortgage and other debts), the size of your family, and how many family members are enrolled in tuition-charging schools or colleges.

After making allowances for basic necessities, taxes, and certain other expenses, taking into account the cost of living in our area, SSS estimates what portion of your remaining funds is available to pay school costs. (Note: eligibility for financial aid does not guarantee that Avenues has enough financial aid available for your family.) SSS then provides the results of the analysis to Avenues as a recommendation on your ability to pay.  The final award determination always comes from Avenues based on our school policies, practices and available budget — not from SSS or NAIS.

WHICH TAX YEAR DOCUMENT SHOULD I USE TO COMPLETE MY FINANCIAL AID APPLICATION?

Due to the early deadlines, families applying for aid should enter information from their completed 2017 1040 tax returns. When prompted on the application to estimate income, please enter your estimated 2018 earnings. The instructions on the SSS website will guide you to enter 2018 tax return information and estimated 2019 earnings which you may disregard.

Our family has children in multiple tuition-charging schools; how does Avenues account for these expenses?

When determining a family’s estimated contribution, SSS takes into consideration the total number of children in tuition-charging schools, including other college, parochial, and independent school programs. These expenses may be more or less than an Avenues tuition, and therefore the Financial Aid Committee will determine the appropriate percentage of the family’s overall estimated contribution to be allocated to Avenues. Avenues cannot subsidize tuition associated with other schools where financial aid is unavailable, and reserves the right to adjust awards based on any changes to the number of children in tuition-charging schools.

CAN MY FAMILY RECEIVE A WAIVER SO WE DON’T HAVE TO PAY FOR THE PARENTS’ FINANCIAL STATEMENT PROCESSING FEE?

Yes, SSS offers a program where application fees can be waived for families most in need of financial help. Family size, income, and asset information from the Parents’ Financial Statement is used to assess the family situation and SSS will automatically apply a waiver if a family qualifies.

HOW ARE FINANCIAL AID FUNDING PRIORITIES DETERMINED?

When the need for aid exceeds the Avenues’ resources, The Financial Aid Committee follows a policy that prioritizes awarding funds each year to returning students with aid packages already in place, new students in need of aid, and then, last, to current students who are new to financial aid. Current families with a sibling in the admission process are given priority during the new student round of funding. Avenues reserves the right for financial aid grants to reflect the enrollment priorities of the school (e.g. gender balance, class size, socio-economic diversity, immersion language preference).

DOES AVENUES OFFER FINANCIAL AID FOR OTHER SCHOOL-RELATED EXPENSES ABOVE THE COST OF TUITION?

Yes, financial aid packages extend beyond just tuition so that all students can fully enjoy the breadth of our program. Support is offered in several areas, including extended day, music rental, athletics, overnight class trips within the U.S. and study abroad. The level of funding correlates to the same percentage of tuition aid a family received. Enrolling students receive detailed information regarding accessing funding and certain restrictions.

WILL MY CHILD CONTINUE TO RECEIVE AID FROM YEAR TO YEAR, INCLUDING AID TO COVER TUITION INCREASES?

Avenues renews grants based on a family’s demonstrated financial need. Therefore families must update, annually, a report of their income, assets and debts via the Parents’ Financial Statement.

Avenues remains committed to partnering with families to finance an independent school education but recognizes that a family’s ability to contribute toward tuition may increase or decrease depending on their annual reporting. With no change in financial profile, a family can expect their parent contribution toward tuition to increase slightly each year, typically equal to the percentage increase in tuition.

IF MY CHILD ENROLLS WITHOUT RECEIVING A FINANCIAL AID PACKAGE, CAN WE EXPECT TO RECEIVE AID IN FUTURE YEARS?

Generally not. Families who enrolled with no financial aid must wait two years before applying for financial aid, unless a sibling will be joining Avenues. Avenues recognizes that there are unfortunate events that change a family’s ability to contribute to tuition, and Avenues will work with families to formulate a plan for financing. If your child does not receive a financial aid award and your family cannot afford to finance full tuition for the remaining years, we strongly recommend that your child does not enroll.

DOES AVENUES OFFER LOANS?

Avenues does not provide tuition loans. Your family may apply for educational loans, through a third party tuition loan provider, to manage tuition costs. Click here for more information on loans

HOW DOES AVENUES ENSURE CONFIDENTIALITY THROUGHOUT THE FINANCIAL AID PROCESS?

Protecting the confidentiality of personal data is one of the most important tasks for our financial aid office.  All financial data and subsequent proceedings with Avenues are strictly confidential; only members of the Financial Aid Committee have access to a family’s information. Avenues faculty are not privileged to any financial information regarding students.

Families can take steps to ensure confidentiality.  Your family should use school-established channels for submitting an application, as well as disputing or appealing a financial aid decision. Additionally, your  family should respect confidentiality by not disclosing financial aid outcomes to any other community members.

 

THE FINANCIAL AID DEADLINE HAS PASSED. CAN I STILL APPLY?

Submitting an application by the deadline is critical as most funding is allocated soon after the deadline. New families to Avenues are encouraged to reach out to the Admissions Office to learn if any funding remains for students. Please note: Late applications for returning families will not be considered for any increase in financial aid. Applications more than one month late will likely result in a reduced award or no award, depending on the availability of funds.

 

Does Avenues offer a sibling discount?

No. Families who believe in the benefit of having multiple children with us are encouraged to file an application for financial aid.

Divorced, single, or never married parents: what does Avenues expect?

Avenues believes that both parents are responsible for the education of a child. Any legal arrangements or commitments to the contrary are the responsibility of the parents to negotiate between themselves. Avenues will consider the income and assets of both natural parents, even if only one parent is in favor of a student’s attendance at Avenues. If natural parents have remarried, we will also consider the assets of the stepparent, always bearing in mind the primary obligations of that stepparent to his or her own children. Click here for the non-custodial parent info form.

Does Avenues expect both parents to be employed to file an application for financial aid?

The Financial Aid Committee will impute a salary for a non-working parent when there are no pre-school age children or others to care for in the home, and/or no medical or disability issues that prevent the parent from seeking employment. An annual income of $50,000 will be imputed if the above situation does not apply.

May I apply for financial aid after my child has been offered admission?

No. Avenues calculates its financial aid grants and budget in conjunction with offers of admission. Both applications should be filed concurrently in the fall.

How is self-employment evaluated in the financial aid process?

All self-employed parents filing for financial aid must submit business tax returns. Avenues reserves the right to request full business filings semi-annually.

Are student assets used in the calculation of financial aid?

All student assets are to be included in the application and will be considered. Certain financial vehicles that preclude family access to the asset must be documented.

Can I appeal the financial aid grant I received?

Families may request reconsideration by the Financial Aid Committee upon receipt of a financial aid decision. The only condition under which an appeal may be filed is if there is new information available for consideration that wasn’t previously known. If there is no new information to be submitted, an appeal will not be considered. A detailed monthly budget of household income and expenses, a letter to the Financial Aid Committee explaining the request for additional aid, and additional documentation of unusual circumstances are required to process appeals. Click here for the monthly budget form

How is “cost of attendance” defined when calculating need?

Avenues recognizes there are additional mandatory costs associated with attendance. For 2018–19 awards, $55,000 was used for K–5 students and $60,000 for 6–12 students.

Can international families apply for financial aid?

International students are eligible to apply for financial aid. Additional documentation may be required by The Financial Aid Committee to verify a family’s ability to contribute toward the cost of education. Though Avenues strives to meet full demonstrated need of each enrolling student, funding is limited.

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