Financial Aid in Firm Schools and Social Concerns

by NYC Firm Schools on February 26, 2009

Creative Commons License photo credit: Scoobay

When parents accept Financial Aid to NYC private school, it is with the understanding that any FA given is confidential and transparent to the child and the educational environment. It is, in effect, an agreement between the School’s financial division and the child’s family, nothing else. As more and more families are seeking FA arrangements with Firm Schools, however, the subject is being hotly discussed in private school forums, school lobbies, playgrounds and living rooms across the city.

Some parents of children who are receiving Financial Aid are open about the subject, if asked, and are more than willing to help other parents who are looking for information about the possibility of applying for FA themselves. Some parents, however, are worried about other families finding out that their child is using an FA arrangement and that it might negatively affect their child’s reputation at school.

For the many parents who once attended public schools, this discussion is much like the one you may have had with classmates about who was receiving “free lunch” with a pass from the school. Public schools long ago recognized that some families and children seize upon that stigma, and so instituted password-based lunch programs where the cost of lunch is taken out of an account. If the account is funded by the state, no one else knows about it. The “free lunch” program was made transparent.

If you are one of the many parents who have a child attending private school using Financial Aid, you have the absolute right to keep that information private if you feel that you are being asked about it in a negative fashion from another parent. Keep in mind, however, that the other parent may be asking because they, too, are looking into financial assistance for their child’s NYC private schooling.

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