Admissions

University School welcomes applicants for current year transfers and for 2014-2015 (grades 3-12). The application and admission processes are explained below. Furthermore, we invite you to learn more about USL, to visit our campus, to see our classes in action, to have your child spend a school day with us, and to speak with our students, parents, and faculty. If you are applying for financial aid for 2014-2015, you can begin the process by following the link below.

University School is nearing capacity, and please contact us for information about openings for a specific grade. Because USL begins in third grade, this is the best opportunity for a student to be admitted.

Overview
Process
Admission to University School
Tuition and Fees
Financial Aid
Non-Discrimination Policy

Overview

To clarify, University School is for high-achieving students who are kind, hardworking, empathetic, curious, and intelligent. The student body ranges from above-average students who possess grit to well-rounded students who are dynamic leaders and mentors to academic prodigies who refine their gifts while advancing their social and emotional skills. The result is a unique and varied collection of students who benefit from an array of learning experiences, on and off campus, that open their hearts and minds. The result is an individual who can thrive in a wide array of settings and can excel in working with all types of people.

Process

Each potential student is evaluated on the above criteria through a comprehensive admissions process, and this information allows us to get a full view of your child.

The application and recommendation forms are available for download. Just click on the form you need. If you have difficulty with this, please contact us. We will email or mail the forms to you.

If you wish to apply for enrollment for your child in University School of the Lowcountry, please follow this guideline:

Admission Procedure Guidelines (PDF)

1. Shadow Day
If after learning more about University School through the website, an on-campus tour, attendance at an Open House, etc., and you feel USL may be a good fit for your child, please schedule a day for him/her to shadow at the school. Students can shadow more than one time, but the first visit must be on a non-LOTC (field learning day, typically Wednesday) day. Please arrive between 7:30 and 7:40 on the agreed upon date. Your child will need a lunch, snack, writing utensil and a notebook.  Because we have PE every day, they should wear shoes for running and dress to approximate our dress code (khaki/navy bottoms and a collared shirt). They should stay the entire day until dismissal at 2:55 (Intermediate School, grades 3-5) or 3:10 (Middle & Upper Schools, grades 6-8 / grades 9-12). Parents are welcome to join in the morning for the tour and for Morning Meeting and the first class of the day. Determining from the child, the parents, and USL how the shadow day went (does it appear to be a good fit) then determines whether a family should begin the application process for their child.

2. Application & Fee
The feedback your child provides about his/her shadow day and the feedback from USL will help you decide whether to apply to University School. If so, please submit a completed Application for Admission along with a non-refundable $75 Application Fee. Applicants are now considered on a rolling admission and space-available basis: the priority deadline for admission for 2014-2015 was January 31, 2014.

Application for Admission (includes student essay) (PDF)

3. Receipt of Records
Please complete and send the Parent Authorization for the Release of School Records form to your child’s school. This will give permission to your child's school to send us your child's transcript. 

Parent Authorization for the Release of School Records (PDF)

4. Receipt of Recommendations
Please ensure the completion and return of the three recommendations:
- Math teacher
- English teacher
- Teacher/coach/mentor
* Students in elementary school may have only one teacher for Math and English. In this case, he/she should fill out both. However, we are interested in gaining three distinct perspectives on your child, so please have another teacher (ex. the prior year's teacher) also complete the teacher/coach/mentor recommendation.

Recommendation Form – English Teacher (PDF)


Recommendation Form – Math Teacher (PDF)


Recommendation Form – Teacher/Coach/Mentor (PDF)

5. Admissions Test
Please schedule an appointment for your child to take University School’s admissions test.  Testing can be scheduled in conjunction with the Interview (step 6).

6. Interview
Your child will likely be interviewed during his/her shadow day at University School. If not, the interview will be conducted in conjunction with the administration of the Admissions Test (step 5).

7. Admission Decision
Once this process has been completed and a decision about the applicant’s admission made, the parents/guardians will be notified. Students who applied by the January 31, 2014, deadline will be notified by March 3, 2014. After January 31, 2014, applications and acceptance decisions will be considered on a rolling admissions basis.

8. Agreement to Enroll
If your child should be invited to join University School, your prompt acceptance will be important.  Upon agreeing to enroll your child, pertinent forms will be sent to you. Please complete and return these forms with a $750 deposit (which is applied to the student's tuition for the year).

In conclusion, your child will benefit from University School. We pledge to help your child be:

  • Actively engaged and motivated to learn
  • Challenged by creative school curriculum and guided by superior teachers
  • Independent and self-directed to confidently pursue his or her interests
  • Well-prepared for the demands of secondary and higher education
  • A responsible young citizen with an awareness of and involvement in the greater community and world
  • A respectful, responsible young adult

Admission to University School

University School admits students of any race, color, religion, sex, and national or ethnic origin who demonstrate sufficient promise of academic success and parent-student agreement with and subscription to the school's philosophy and regulations.

Tuition and Fees

Tuition (2013-2014) ...............................................$10,400

Textbooks / Class materials Fee................................$400

* Please note - The costs of Learning Outside the Classroom experiences are included in tuition, and the below table includes our historical data for tuition and fees.

Year
Tuition
Fees
Total
2007-2008
8500
400
8900
2008-2009
8500
400
8900
2009-2010
8500
400
8900
2010-2011
8700
400
9100
2011-2012
9200
400
9600
2012-2013
9500
400
9900
2013-2014
10400
400
10800

** Tuition schedules reflect a pre-payment discount for families choosing to pre-pay the entire year's tuition and fees or to pay in two installments.  For full-year prepayment, the book fee ($400) will be waived.  For two-installments' plans, $200 of the $400 book fee will be waived.

Tuition & Fees Schedule
* the following reflect payments after the $750 deposit

Single Payment (due 7/15/13).....$9650

Two Payments (due 7/15/13 & 12/15/13).....$4925

Nine Payments (due monthly 7/15/13 through 3/15/14).....$1116.67

Financial Aid

A University School of the Lowcountry education is an investment in your child’s future. It is also a significant financial investment. Our financial aid program provides need-based tuition assistance to families who would otherwise not be able to attend USL.

No student who meets the admissions criteria should be deterred by financial reasons from applying to University School. Parents who require aid are encouraged to apply for an award. Grants of financial aid are not intended to cover 100% of the cost of attendance at USL: the current policy for maximum award is 90%. All families are expected to contribute to the cost of their student’s education.

Families are asked to submit financial aid applications online, and financial aid decisions are made independently of admissions decisions. Applications are processed by FAST Financial Aid for School Tuition, and the results are returned to University School. There is a $38 application processing fee that must be paid via credit card at the time the on-line application is submitted.The financial aid program is managed in accordance with USL's Non-Discrimination Policy.
* When submitting tax forms to FAST, please write "University School of the Lowcountry" under your return address on the envelope to speed the processing of your application.

Should I apply for aid?
Few families find it “easy” to pay tuition at independent schools. Most adjust their spending priorities, maximize their earnings, and carefully manage assets to do so. We would like to provide guidelines to help you decide whether to apply for aid, but each family’s combination of circumstances is unique. The most helpful guideline comes from your own knowledge of your family’s finances. Think of your monthly budget and then calculate the annual amount which you feel you can pay. If this amount is less than the amount of the annual tuition, you may be a candidate for financial aid.

Applying for Financial Aid

 

Click here to fill out your FAST application online.

 

Non-Discrimination Policy

University School of the Lowcountry is committed to its growth as an institution that welcomes and values a diversified school community. The school does not discriminate on the basis of race, national or ethnic origin, religion, economic background, or any other classification protected by law in the administration of its educational policies, financial assistance policies, or any other school policy or program.