Financial Aid Policy
Building a Financial Aid Budget
The Admission and Business Offices work together each fall to determine both enrollment and FA projections for the following school year. These projections are part of long-range projections comprised of current data. Once enrollment and financial assistance budgets are set, they are reviewed with the Head of School and the Finance Committee of the Board of Trustees.
When financially viable within a given budget year, Far Hills may allocate up to 20% of the aggregate gross tuition revenue for the year to financial assistance.
In mid-January, the Financial Aid Committee meets to consider new and existing FA allocation. The FA Committee considers late applications after processing all on-time applications, and only if funding remains.
Far Hills strives to provide financial aid to families in the range of their demonstrated need. Demonstrated need is the difference between what a family can afford to pay as determined by SSS and the estimated total cost of attendance.
Meeting Financial Need
The Financial Aid Committee strives to meet the needs of as many families as possible, enabling them to enroll without great hardship while recognizing that tuition payments may stretch their family financially. All families receiving financial aid contribute to some portion of their education expenses.
Commitment to Financial Aid Families
Far Hills requires enrolled families to reapply for financial aid annually through SSS. Far Hills is committed to assisting families that qualify for assistance each year as long as they are in good academic and financial standing at the school.
Financial Aid Appeal
The Financial Aid Committee thoughtfully and diligently reviews each family’s application. However, if extraordinary circumstances make it such that a family chooses to appeal their financial aid award, then they must submit a request in writing to the FA Committee, which provides additional information about circumstances that might impact the calculation of their need. Even if there is a demonstration of further need through an appeal, there is no guarantee that additional funding will be available after initial award decisions are made.
If FA funds are not available for admitted students, then they are placed in an FA wait pool. If funding becomes available, then the FA Committee reviews the wait pool and makes awards.
Household and Family Structure Policies
In cases of divorce, separation, or unmarried couples, Far Hills requires information from both custodial parents. Each parent must complete and submit an SSS application and provide household incomes. The FA Committee calculates a family’s ability to contribute based on the income and assets of both custodial parents.
In the interest of equity, if one parent elects not to seek employment, the Committee will impute a net after-tax income of $30,000 to that parent. (Exceptions include if the parent is at home caring for a non-school age child or elderly/disabled parent.)
If one parent is temporarily unemployed and not disabled, the Committee will review past years of employment history. If awarded a financial aid grant, then the unemployed parent must participate in quarterly financial aid reviews to report on and demonstrate a continued job search.
If a parent elects to return to school or to change jobs, or a sibling elects to enroll in a 5–year advanced degree program resulting in a decrease in family financial resources, Far Hills cannot underwrite this family choice with additional financial assistance.
Unusual Family Circumstances
Far Hills will consider significant financial setbacks on a case by case basis. We expect a family in this situation to make other adjustments to their expenditures, in addition to seeking financial aid to help cover the costs of independent school education. Likewise, when a family’s financial situation improves significantly, the annual grant will be adjusted or eliminated to reflect the return to financial stability.
Family-Owned Farms or Businesses
If a parent is self-employed or owns a farm, Far Hills requires additional tax information (all additional schedules) to support the 1040. In calculating a grant, depreciation is added back into the calculation to adjust income, as appropriate.
Multiple Children in Tuition Charging Schools
If a family applies for financial aid at Far Hills, then they must also apply for assistance for other children enrolled in schools with tuition fees.
Far Hills maintains confidential financial aid records for all applicants. The financial aid committee reviews these records. All FA awards are confidential agreements between the recipient family and the school; Far Hills does not share information with any other party. Families may not discuss assistance information with anyone other than a member of the Financial Aid Committee. Awards can be withdrawn for breach of this expectation.
For details about how to apply for Financial Aid, please visit our Financial Aid page on this website.