Though many parents may feel that an independent school would be the best learning environment for their child, some find the potential cost of school fees to be prohibitive.
Whilst there’s no doubt that independent education is an investment, financial support is available to help with school fees.
In this blog, we explore how you can get help towards your child’s school fees.
How can you plan ahead for fee payments throughout the year?
For some parents making a commitment to paying school fees throughout their child’s schooling can seem overwhelming. It can be especially difficult for self-employed parents or contract workers who may find it harder to budget for regular fee payments.
Help is out there, as most schools can direct you to independent fee advice as well as offering the opportunity to contribute lump sums, set up monthly direct debits or allow regular contributions from grandparents. Talk to the school about the options that they offer and consider which payment plan will best suit your finances.
What types of fee assistance is on offer?
Scotland’s independent schools provide considerable fee support for their students to widen access to independent education. Fee assistance offered by the schools enables lower-income families the opportunity to send their children to their school of choice. In 2019, 24.5% of students attending independent schools received some form of financial support from their school, and 3% of students had their school places fully funded by the school.
How do you apply for fee assistance with your school?
Each school will have different criteria to select which families qualify for fee assistance. For the best chance of securing fee assistance, you will need to begin the application the year before your child would be starting at the school. If you think you might qualify, get in touch with the school’s admissions team as early as possible, and arrange a meeting to discuss potential strategies and assistance. Don’t forget that normal entry requirements will apply such as an entrance assessment or exam results.
The application will require you to provide detailed information about your household finances. This data will be used to calculate your gross household income and take into account your other financial commitments, to better understand your circumstances and requirements.
Are there other routes to funding school fees?
Your child may qualify for a more specific educational grant. The majority of these are administered by charitable foundations and geared towards supporting the education of children from minority or disadvantaged households.
Each of these charities will have their own criteria that will need to be evidenced before funding can be granted, we would recommend visiting their websites for detailed information.