The Flexible Tuition program ensures access and socioeconomic diversity at LWHS.
Thanks to its 125 year history of being accessible to students from all walks of life, including 77 years of being tuition free, Lick-Wilmerding High School enjoys the legacy, the resources, and the strategic resolve to push the limits on what it can mean to be a truly accessible independent school.
Today, 28 percent of LWHS’ operating budget is devoted to Flexible Tuition, 35% of our students are enrolled through the school’s Flexible Tuition Program. One thing we have learned is that language of discourse really matters—especially when talking about accessibility. Based on feedback received from parents during the 1988–1989 school year, we have for more than two decades eschewed the use of the term "financial aid" in favor of "Flexible Tuition."
Income is only one of the factors that goes into determining Flexible Tuition. Each student’s Flexible Tuition is determined on a case-by-case basis because every family is unique. For more information about how Flexible Tuition is calculated, please click here.
Flexible Tuition Application Process
List of 4 items.
Step 1: Start preparing your 2020 Tax Returns as soon as possible.
Complete and submit the Parents' Financial Statement (PFS) to School & Student Services (SSS). For full instructions and help click here. The PFS must be completed online. (Note: Parents/Guardians living in separate households must submit separate PFS forms.)
SSS Code for LWHS: 4630
Step 3: Submit 2020 tax information and LWHS Supplemental Information Form by Friday, February 12, 2021
We recognize that many families who might not expect to be eligible for “financial aid” still qualify for a tuition break. The Flexible Tuition Program allows families to apply for reduced tuition, which ranges from $700 to $46,200 for the 2020-2021 school year. Full tuition for the Class of 2024 is $51,200. The school encourages families to apply if they think they may qualify. LWHS is determined to keep the school accessible to families from a wide range of economic backgrounds, so we offer a wide range of tuitions that include fees, lunch, and expenses for books and supplies.
There is a wide range of families who qualify, from those who can afford only minimal tuition to those who can afford almost full tuition. In calculating each family’s ability to pay, the school considers many factors. The complex formula used to calculate the exact Flexible Tuition level considers many factors that affect a family’s ability to pay. It is impossible for the school, or for a family, to determine the level of tuition for which they qualify unless the entire Parents' Financial Statement (PFS) application is completed.
Admission acceptance letters sent on March 18, 2021, will include a separate response regarding Flexible Tuition. Responses to families will fall into three categories: an offer of Flexible Tuition; notification that the family does not qualify for Flexible Tuition; or notice that the family is waitlisted for Flexible Tuition. A waitlist designation means that a family will be considered for Flexible Tuition if additional funding becomes available.
Provided family circumstances remain the same and the school’s resources can continue to support the program to the same extent, the school intends to fund the student for four years. To continue in the program, the family must reapply each year.
Unfortunately, we do not have the resources to offer Flexible Tuition to every student who qualifies for both admission and a reduced tuition. A student may be admitted to the school but waitlisted for Flexible Tuition.
Yes, each parent/guardian household must submit a Parents' Financial Statement (PFS) along with all 2020 tax documents (1040, W-2, any relevant schedules) to be considered for Flexible Tuition. LWHS determines ability to pay by factoring in all available resources from both parents and step-parents, regardless of custody or other legal issues.
Please send us a supplemental letter if there is additional information that addresses your financial situation not taken into account by the Parent Financial Statement or the LWHS Supplemental Information Form.
755 Ocean Avenue | San Francisco, CA 94112 | 415.333.4021
A private school with public purpose, Lick-Wilmerding High School develops the head, heart, and hands of highly motivated students from all walks of life, inspiring them to become lifelong learners who contribute to the world with confidence and compassion.