Making CFA affordable for all

Diversity is a core principle at Cape Fear Academy

 “Students from varying backgrounds, income levels and ethnicities bring unique insights, intelligence and perspectives to the classroom providing a broad and diverse peer group from which all students and teachers can learn,” said Carla Whitwell, Director of Admissions for Cape Fear Academy.

To make its educational curricula accessible to all, Cape Fear Academy offers two avenues for tuition reduction. The first is merit scholarships that are need-blind and awarded solely on a student’s academic achievement, talents and leadership. The second stream is need-based aid. Between these two avenues, one in four Cape Fear Academy students receives some form of tuition reduction, Whitwell said. This school year, Cape Fear Academy awarded over $1 million in financial aid to students.

To qualify for need-based tuition reduction, parents submit an application with tax returns from the previous year and an assessment of assets to a third-party certified organization called FACTS. The application process is relatively easy and can be submitted on-line or in hard copy, Whitwell said.

FACTS assess a family’s financial documents in order to recommend a tuition amount affordable for that family. A committee of three Cape Fear Academy administrators reviews FACTS’ suggestion and works to offer the difference for that student’s tuition.

“A family that makes less than $125,000 annually in household income with a typical assets package qualifies for some amount of financial aid,” Whitwell said citing the National Association of Independent Schools.

Tuition at Cape Fear Academy is $9,000 to $14,000 for pre-kindergarten to fifth grade and $14,000 to $15,000 for fourth to 12th grade. All financial aid information is kept confidential. Faculty and staff are not privy to who has received tuition reduction.

“We take into consideration extenuating circumstances submitted directly to the [financial aid] committee,” Whitwell said. For example, financial burdens from a recent job loss, illness or out-of-state move will be considered.

The first round of new student applications to the school are due by January 17. First priority tuition reduction applications are due by March 1 for the fall semester.

Visit capefearacademy.org for more information including the “Making CFA Affordable” link.