Financial Assistance FAQs

May all students apply for financial assistance?

Eligible students in Pre-K 3&4 Flexible Full Day Program through Eighth Grade may apply.

What is Chesapeake’s philosophy regarding financial assistance?

Since the re-establishment of Chesapeake Academy in 1965, the true cost to educate each student has been more than the tuition charged. Therefore, in reality, every student receives assistance. This difference is made up each year through our Endowment and Bell Tower Annual Giving Fund. Every family is asked to participate in the Bell Tower Annual Giving Fund at a level which is comfortable for them, and gifts will range from $1 to $10,000. Participation from parents, alumni, grandparents, parents of alumni, trustees, faculty, and community friends makes it possible for us to reach our ambitious, but attainable goals each year. Additionally, families are invited to consider investing a larger portion of the full tuition as each child moves towards Eighth Grade by becoming life-time stewards of the Chesapeake Academy experience, just as those before you made a Chesapeake Academy education possible for your child today.

Our broader community invests in children’s education at Chesapeake Academy. Each year, approximately 45-50% of CA families receive financial assistance to attend. While, financial assistance funds are limited and may not meet 100% of your family’s demonstrated financial need, CA seeks to work with families to make education affordable for them. Of course, not every family who applies for financial assistance will quality. Families seeking financial assistance are expected to prioritize education in the family’s budget.

Are decisions regarding admission and financial assistance related?

Chesapeake Academy’s Admission Committee initially makes its decisions without regard for financial matters. A child’s acceptance to enroll at CA is based solely on the child’s academic and citizenship record. Offers of enrollment are not based on your family’s ability to pay full tuition. Should your family wish to consider financial assistance, parents may choose to apply for financial assistance after you have received an admission decision, or you may apply as part of the application process so that any financial assistance offer may be part of an enrollment offer.

Is the financial assistance application process at Chesapeake Academy confidential?

All applications for financial assistance are held in the strictest confidence. Only the members of the committee have access to the records.

How is financial assistance determined?

Need is determined by the Financial Assistance Committee, which uses the current tax returns (personal and business, if applicable), W-2 (or 1099), and FACTS application. Through all submitted materials, the committee then determines qualification for assistance and how much assistance is granted.

Should I apply for assistance?

Some families find it a challenge to pay independent school tuition. Most adjust their spending priorities, maximize both parents’ earnings, and carefully manage assets to do so. Some will need financial assistance no matter how carefully they fine tune family finances. We would like to provide firm guidelines to help you decide whether to apply for assistance, but we have found that each family’s combination of circumstances is unique. The most helpful guideline comes from personal knowledge of your family’s finances. Family assets, the number of children in the family, the number of children in tuition charging schools, and many other factors will influence the likelihood of receiving assistance and the actual size of the allocation.

Does Chesapeake Academy offer loans to finance the Academy’s tuition?

Currently, no loans are available through the Academy to finance tuition. However, we do suggest that you consider speaking with your banker or accountant about creative ways to finance your child’s education.

How do I begin the process?

Check “yes” in response to the question, “Will you be applying for Financial Assistance?” on the Chesapeake Academy application. This will alert Admission to your desire for consideration of financial assistance should the applicant(s) be accepted. During the admission process, please review the steps for applying for financial assistance on our Financial Assistance page. Should your family wish to consider financial assistance, Chesapeake Academy encourages parents to submit applications early. You may choose to apply for financial assistance after you have received an admission decision, or you may apply as part of the application process so that any financial assistance offer may be part of an enrollment offer.

How can I get help with the paperwork, if I need it?

If you need help with any part of the financial assistance process, call the Admission Office at 804.438.5575, ext. 105.

What deadlines do I need to be aware of?

Financial assistance paperwork should be uploaded through ParentsWeb to FACTS by March 11:   tax year 1040 and W-2 (or 1099). The FACTS application must be completed by this deadline as well. If you are a business owner, please submit your 2022 business tax documentation.

What happens if our family misses the stated application deadlines?

In general, the financial assistance awarded in March more closely meets family need than for students who apply in late spring and summer months. If, however, a student is accepted into school after March, their application for financial assistance will be considered until such time when all funds have been allocated. This is in no way meant to deter families from applying for financial assistance after the deadlines

I have other children applying to or attending tuition-charging institutions. Must I also apply for financial assistance from those schools?

Yes. We assume that a family applying for assistance from Chesapeake Academy will apply for financial assistance from all tuition charging institutions their other children may be attending. If another school does not have a financial assistance program, please note on the FACTS application.

Only one parent works outside the home. Must both parents be employed to receive financial assistance from Chesapeake Academy?

In general, yes, if all children in the family are school age. We also realize, however, that circumstances may make it impossible or very difficult for both parents to work outside the home in specific cases. Explaining such circumstances on the FACTS application, and describing the non-working spouse’s plans for eventual employment, are important. The school may impute income for a non-working parent.

I have decided to attend college/graduate school while my child is at Chesapeake Academy. Will it affect my financial assistance?

We assume that a parent who is enrolled in school will continue to earn income and has arranged to fund his or her education without taking away from their family’s obligation to Chesapeake Academy.

Our family could experience a major financial emergency while our child is enrolled at Chesapeake Academy. Would the financial assistance program help us?

We will do our best to help. Naturally, we assume that parents who are recovering from a job loss, business failure, or other financial dislocation that has compelled them to request financial assistance or additional award are also actively addressing their own situation in various ways.

I am divorced, or no longer living with my child’s other parent. Will Chesapeake Academy still expect that person to be part of my application for financial assistance?

Yes. We will ask your child’s other natural parent to submit all required documents to provide a realistic picture of family resources, and will request mailing information if it is not provided. We are also aware that circumstances differ widely among separated or divorced parents and urge you to contact Chesapeake Academy if such information cannot be provided.

I may remarry or establish a permanent relationship with another adult. Will that person’s financial circumstances be considered in the financial assistance allocation for my child?

Yes. The addition of another adult into a household generally changes its financial picture to a considerable extent. In the school’s view, your resources and expenses, including those for education, become family resources and expenses, just as those of your new partner become part of the family financial picture. We will ask you to complete the FACTS application together, providing information and appropriate tax documentation pertinent to the new family unit.

When will we be notified if we have received an award?

Financial assistance decisions are emailed to the parents at the end of March. Your attention to meeting all deadlines allows for the committee to address your application in a timely fashion. If you choose to apply for financial assistance as part of the application process, the financial assistance decision will be part of an enrollment offer.

We received a financial assistance offer that we cannot manage. Is it possible to appeal the financial assistance offer?

Yes. What we need is new information in writing. If you feel that you have omitted or not appropriately clarified specific information, mention this first in your appeal for reconsideration. It often helps to include copies of recent pay stubs from both earners, a detailed list of family monthly expenses, or other specific and telling documentation that will allow the committee to understand your situation more completely.
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What are the expectations of families who receive financial assistance?

None that is different from any other family at the Academy. Each family is asked to participate to the fullest extent possible through both volunteer and financial resources. Remembering, however, that each student receives financial support beyond the cost of tuition, and that the Academy recruits students and families to create as diverse and enriching of an experience as possible. This enables each child to have the best experience. Parents volunteer for CAPPA (Chesapeake Academy Parents and Patrons Association) committees and fundraising events as time allows.
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