VARIABLE TUITION FAQs
What is Variable Tuition?
Variable Tuition is a need-based tuition assistance program similar to those used by many private schools, colleges, and universities. This program allows families to apply for reduced tuition that is right for their families’ financial situation. Thus, this makes an OLL education affordable to many qualified students who could not otherwise join our school community.
How Does Variable Tuition Work?
Any family (current or new) of a kindergarten through eighth grade student may apply for Variable Tuition if they are concerned about affording the full tuition rate at Our Lady of the Lake Catholic School and they think they may qualify for the program. Many factors are considered when determining the tuition amount a family is able to pay, including income, assets, unusual expenses and the size of the family. The resources available for the family in a given year must also be considered in light of the Variable Tuition awards available at Our Lady of the Lake Catholic School.
An application for Variable Tuition does not affect the re-enrollment or admission process. Regardless of financial need, parents should initiate the re-enrollment or admission process as early as possible. Families may apply for Variable Tuition only after they have applied for re-enrollment or admission to the school.
It is not possible for a family or the school to estimate the tuition level for which a family qualifies without the completion of a Variable Tuition application. Applications are submitted directly to TADS, a third-party agency. TADS evaluates the application based on criteria set by the school and makes a recommendation to the school’s Variable Tuition team. Families are notified of the tuition level for which they qualify from the school’s admissions office.
Unfortunately, the school is not able to provide Variable Tuition to every deserving student. We work within the available resources to make the school accessible to as many students and families as possible.
Should every new and/or returning Our Lady of the Lake Catholic School family submit an application for Variable Tuition?
No. Only families who feel that they may not able to pay the full amount of tuition should submit an application.
Do I need to apply for Variable Tuition every year?
YES. Priority is given to re-enrolling families. The online application must be resubmitted each year along with the appropriate tax returns and other documents.
If I do not qualify for the program this year, can I apply again next year?
Yes. A family that does not qualify is welcome to reapply the following year.
Do I need to apply for admission separately from applying for Variable Tuition?
Yes. Application to Our Lady of the Lake Catholic School and application for Variable Tuition are two separate processes. However, families may complete both application processes simultaneously.
Will currently enrolled students receive priority over new students applying for Variable Tuition?
YES. Current OLL students will have priority over new applicants provided all deadlines are met. TADS will provide an evaluation via an online application which must be completed each year. Tax returns are required. No aid will be awarded without a completed application.
Will applying for Variable Tuition hurt my student’s chance of being admitted to the school?
No. Admission applications and Variable Tuition applications are evaluated separately, and an application for Variable Tuition has no bearing on the admission process. OLL practices need-blind admissions.
What kind of economic situation is typical of a family who qualifies for Variable Tuition?
A wide range of families with a variety of circumstances qualify for the program, from those who are able to pay close to exit range of Variable Tuition to those who are at the entry level of the range. Many factors are evaluated, including income, assets, unusual expenses and the size of the family.
What expenses are there other than tuition?
Even with reduced tuition, families will still be responsible to pay the $150 per child school application fee and $275 fundraising fee. Each student will incur expenses such as lunch, school supplies and wardrobe/dress code compliant clothing.
Are some families awarded full tuition?
No. Every family is required to make a financial investment in their child’s education. Our commitment to providing Variable Tuition means that we are sharing in that investment with you.
Are all admitted students offered Variable Tuition if the family qualifies?
No. Unfortunately, the school does not have the ability to offer Variable Tuition to every student who qualifies for both admission and Variable Tuition. A student may be admitted to the school but placed on a waiting list for Variable Tuition. It is recommended that families apply for Variable Tuition as early as possible.
Will the addition of new students lead to larger classes and lower levels of instruction?
Our Lady of the Lake Catholic School has established grade level appropriate teacher/student ratios for each class to ensure the highest level of classroom instruction and discipline. We will accept students that meet our standards within those ratios. If we get more students at a grade level than our ratio allows, we may open additional sections. However, we will not overfill classrooms to the detriment of instruction.
I see that the Variable Tuition ranges don’t include a “multi-student discount.” Where did this go?
Multiple students are one of several key factors in determining Variable Tuition. One of the important questions asked on the confidential Variable Tuition application relates to family size and number of students enrolled at OLL.
Who should I contact with questions about Variable Tuition?
Questions about Variable Tuition should be directed to:
Kassie Ricke, Advancement Director