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A Big Announcement

July 08, 2019
By Jay Adams

I hope everyone had a fantastic Independence Day.

In addition to writing the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson had strong thoughts on the virtues of general education. In fact, he believed that in order to preserve liberty, our society had to make sure that “those persons, whom nature has endowed with genius and virtue, should be rendered by liberal education worthy to receive, and able to guard the sacred deposit of the rights and liberties of their fellow citizens; and that they should be called to that charge without regard to wealth, birth or other accidental condition or circumstance.” (Emphasis mine.)

I’ve been thinking about that Jefferson quote a lot lately in regard to this announcement today. I’m very excited to announce that we’ll be introducing and evaluating a unique pilot program this year.

The Edgewood Academic Opportunity Program will provide reduced tuition to local students with a track record of academic excellence and demonstrated financial need. Our goal is to create access for any academically-driven student to afford an Edgewood education. This year, we will open up a limited number of seats to evaluate the program’s long-term viability at Edgewood. Students who are accepted into the program may reapply for the duration of their stay at Edgewood, even if we stop accepting new applicants.

Details are below, but the short version is this: If you have friends or family who would love to attend Edgewood, but don’t think they can afford it, we’ve now got a plan for them. If that’s all the info you need, scroll to the bottom to learn how they can apply.

For this first year, we’re opening 4 seats in each grade that has space available. This means some grades are already closed to the program, and some may close quickly as the July enrollment rush hits. To qualify, families must demonstrate financial need through the FACTS online tuition assessment program by submitting financial and tax records. In addition to financial need, students must meet at least one of the following academic criteria:

Grades 9-12, any of the following:

  • GPA of 3.75 or higher.
  • ACT score of 25 on Reading, Math, or Composite.
  • PSAT or Stanford Achievement Test score in 80th percentile on Reading, Math, or Composite.

Grades 1-8, one of the following:

  • PSAT or Stanford Achievement Test score in 80th percentile on Reading, Math, or Composite.
  • A/B honor roll the previous year with a numeric average of 87 or better.

Kindergarten:

  • Complete Edgewood entrance testing successfully.

There are many reasons I love this program, but here are a few of the highlights:

COMMUNITY OUTREACH: The Edgewood Opportunity program clearly demonstrates a commitment to our local community and our willingness to work to find a way to partner with anyone who’s willing to work for an Edgewood education. In short, we believe in what we do at Edgewood, we believe it provides immense value to our students, and we want to maximize our ability to impact more students.

INDEPENDENT VERIFICATION: The FACTS tuition assessment system is robust, used in thousands of schools across the country. This means all applicants’ financial information is documented and verified by a neutral third party. It also weeds out applicants who actually could afford our full tuition rate, but aren’t willing to pay full price.

BUDGET: Our expenses in a classroom are essentially the same, whether there are four empty chairs or eight empty chairs. This program lets us do a good thing for our community while also monetizing those empty chairs, which helps keep everyone’s tuition cost down in the long-term and stabilizes the school's revenue from year-to-year, making the board's job in budgeting and my job in planning much more efficient.

I can personally vouch for the effectiveness of this program; at my previous school, it was a joy to watch families who never dreamed they’d be able to afford private school come into our midst and have the lives of their students completely changed. That never got old, and it never will.

Here's how new families can apply:

If you already know someone who’ll be a great fit for this program (and I suspect many of you have already been thinking of names), you can send them this link to begin the application process: https://online.factsmgt.com/aid  

If you have questions about the Edgewood Opportunity Program or how it works, please feel free to call or email me. 


And, as always, thank you for trusting us with your children.

JA

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