Affording CDS

Sliding Scale

Applying for sliding scale tuition is a straightforward process, but it moves quickly. Families are encouraged to submit materials well in advance of the deadlines.
The core of the sliding scale application is the “Parents’ Financial Statement” (PFS). CDS uses the services of School and Student Services (SSS), an organization that works with many independent schools in the country. The PFS is an SSS form that gathers information about family income, expenses, assets, liabilities and other factors that might influence a family’s ability to pay tuition. SSS impartially analyzes the financial information families provide and computes a recommended family contribution for tuition.

There are many factors that determine if a family qualifies for sliding scale tuition and the formula used to calculate each family’s exact sliding scale tuition level is complex. The SSS analysis considers a wide range of variables specific to each family, including income, assets, family size, expenses, discretionary costs and the number of children enrolled in independent schools. The CDS Access and Affordability Committee makes a cost-of-living adjustment to the SSS recommended contribution to reflect the high cost of living in the San Francisco Bay Area, and also considers other factors, including whether a family owns real estate or has other significant investments; lifestyle choices (stay-at-home parent, discretionary spending such as vacations, etc.); other possible sources of funding for tuition; the tuition being paid by families in similar financial situations; and many other factors.

Online submission of the PFS is required (SSS no longer accepts paper versions of the PFS). Online submission of all additional documents is strongly preferred. 

In addition to the PFS, additional documents must be submitted. The following chart details all documents required. All documents must be submitted by the due dates indicated in order for your sliding scale tuition application to be considered complete.

List of 1 items.

The school will make a provisional sliding scale tuition decision based on the above materials, subject to review and revision once a final 2022 federal tax return is submitted. Current families and prospective families who accept an enrollment offer must upload to the SSS site and submit to CDS a signed copy of their final 2022 federal tax returns, including W2s, 1099s and all schedules and supporting statements, no later than April 15, 2023.

Because the number of accepted students whose families qualify for sliding scale tuition usually exceeds the school’s budget, the school does not guarantee funding for, nor is able to fund, all deserving students. Most years, however, sliding scale tuition is offered to a very high percentage of accepted students whose families demonstrate need. Once a family enters CDS paying sliding scale tuition, and provided family circumstances remain the same, CDS intends to fund the student for all the years they are enrolled at CDS (absent an unexpected change in sliding scale tuition resources). To continue receiving sliding scale tuition, families must reapply every year. We also do our best to meet the needs of current families who are requesting sliding scale tuition for the first time due to a changed financial situation.
Children's Day School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school.  Learn More