Financial Aid Application Process

Every tuition grant is made for one year and must be renewed every year. Below are step-by-step instructions to ensure a successful submission process. Please call, email or stop by to see Margie Stanbrook, Director of Financial Aid, if you have any questions or need assistance in completing and submitting your application: or 843.402.4681

Financial Aid Application Submission Dates:

CURRENT/O'QUINN FAMILIES: Please submit your application by December 1. Financial aid applications submitted after December 1 will be placed in a wait pool for financial aid and unfortunately, funding cannot be guaranteed.

NEW FAMILIES: Please submit your application by February 1.

Step 1: Prepare to Apply

The 2019-2020 online financial aid application can be accessed beginning October 2, 2018.

1) Download your 2019-20 Parent Financial Statement (PFS) Instructions and Workbook.

2) Gather your financial documents (the complete list is found on Page 2 in the Workbook)

Step 2: Complete and Submit Parent Financial Statement (PFS).

Note: Once you collect your financial documents, please plan on this process taking a couple of hours.

1) Visit to create your Parents Financial Statement (PFS). Porter-Gaud's SSS code is 5848.

2) Create your PFS Online account with your email address and a password. If you applied for financial aid last year, simply login to the PFS Online as a Returning Family, using the email address and password you set up last year.

3) Begin a PFS for Academic Year 2019-20. You can log out of the PFS Online at any time, then return later to complete it.

4) After you have pressed Submit, you will go to the payment screen. Please make your payment of $51. It is non-refundable.

5) Once your PFS is submitted, it cannot be withdrawn from the SSS system. You can, however, login and update your PFS at any time.

Note: SSS evaluates eligibility for families to receive an application fee waiver, which will apply automatically, if eligible.

Step 3: Submit documentation.

Note: Instructions exception. DO NOT upload documents to SSS.

Deliver documents (with redacted federal ID numbers, by U.S. Mail, secure email, or drop off in person in envelope marked 'confidential') to:

Margie Stanbrook, Director of Financial Aid.

Required documents:

  • Your 2017 federal income tax return, including all attached forms and schedules and W-2s.
  • Any additional documents, if any, that the Director of Financial Aid has requested from you.

If you do not have a tax return, please contact Margie Stanbrook, for other acceptable income documentation.

The Financial Aid Committee will begin its review of completed applications and make awards for the 2019-20 academic year beginning in January.

IMPORTANT: A completed application consists of three parts:

1) the online PFS, and

2) your most current federal income tax return (include all tax form schedules and W-2’s) and

3) any other requested documents


What are the current tuition and fees?

Detailed information about current tuition and fees can be found here. Tuition and fees for 2019-20 academic year will be approved by our Board of Trustees and posted on our website in January 2019.

What types of financial assistance does Porter-Gaud offer?

All financial assistance is need-based and awarded in the form of an annual grant. We do not offer solely merit-based awards, although some of our need-based awards include a merit component. Financial aid is specifically not contingent upon or awarded on the basis of academic, athletic, or other particular skills. We do not offer loan programs.

What are the general parameters for receiving financial aid at Porter-Gaud?

Generally, a two-parent, two-child home, with both parents working and only one child in Upper School, would qualify for a financial aid award close to the full cost of Upper School tuition if their household income is $63,410 or less. Conversely, the same family would be able to afford the cost of tuition if their household income is $219,679 or above.

Both scenarios assume no assets and no debt. These are only general guidelines. There are many factors that influence aid qualification and award amounts; therefore, every application outcome will be different. The very best way to find out what you qualify for is to apply.

What is Porter-Gaud's financial aid policy?

Our financial aid program is need-based and is made available to applicants of any race, color, gender, national or ethnic origin. All financial information submitted for all financial aid applicants will remain confidential and it is not made available to anyone other than SSS and members of the Financial Aid Committee.

Financial aid awards are made annually. Families must re-apply for financial aid every year. Families of current students who reapply by December 1 are given priority and their award decisions are made first. Next, families of current students with new aid applications are considered; followed by families of newly accepted students with new financial aid applications that are completed by February 1.

Thereafter, new and renewal applications are considered provided there are still funds available.

The financial analysis provided to Porter-Gaud by SSS serves as a point of reference for the Porter-Gaud Financial Aid Committee, which makes all final decisions on financial aid amounts. Please understand that the result of this analysis does not necessarily indicate what amount your grant will be. The SSS provides a standardized analysis of the information provided in the PFS, while Porter-Gaud performs a detailed analysis considering every aspect of a family’s unique financial situation.

Prompt completion of the financial aid application and submission of all supporting documentation is essential to the award process. Applications are processed on a first-come, first-served basis and notification of award is sent out via US mail beginning in January, and is included as part of the online enrollment contract.

Applications submitted after the date noted above will be placed in a wait pool for financial aid and, unfortunately, funding cannot be guaranteed.

In addition, failure to submit requested documents, misrepresentation, or failure to completely disclose all required information on the PFS may also result in the loss of financial aid.

Our complete financial aid policy can be found here.

Do we apply every year for financial aid?

Yes. Every tuition grant is made for one year and must be renewed every year. Annual renewals are subject to (1) the filing of an annual Parents’ Financial Statement and submitting required documents, (2) maintenance by the student of the academic and high citizenship standards, and (3) continued financial need.

Normally, a family should expect that financial aid will continue throughout the student’s enrollment; however, the Financial Aid Committee may reduce or refuse subsequent grants if the student’s academic effort or conduct is deficient, even if such shortcomings do not preclude continued enrollment.

Assuming your family’s financial situation remains essentially the same, the percentage of tuition covered by your child’s financial aid award should remain generally consistent from year to year.

What if we do not receive enough financial assistance to enroll our child(ren)?

Regrettably, the school is not able to meet the funding needs of every qualified student, and an offer of admission does not guarantee that a candidate will also qualify for or receive financial aid.

Families who have applied for financial aid are given a one-week grace period from the date of their award letter to accept or appeal the award.

If you feel that there are circumstances that may have been overlooked in the original application then you may request an appeal. To appeal an award, please contact Margie Stanbrook, Director of Financial Aid. She will review your application and may request additional information or documentation. Then, your appeal will go before the Financial Aid Committee for review at its next scheduled meeting.

The Committee's final decision will again be sent via email and included in the online enrollment contract. An increase in the award will be dependent on the availability of funds and verifiable additional information that may have not been included or considered at the time of the original decision.

What is the tuition refund plan?

The Tuition Refund Plan offers tuition coverage should a student withdraw. If you purchase this coverage and your child withdraws, a claim will be filed with A.W.G. Dewar. Dewar will compute the tuition refund benefit subject to the terms of the policy and amount insured and will pay the benefit to Porter-Gaud. This benefit will be applied to your outstanding balance and any resulting credit balance will be refunded to you. You will be responsible for any balance remaining not covered by Dewar and you will receive a statement of your account detailing your remaining balance due.

Participation in our Tuition Refund Plan is required for all new families, families of returning students on academic or disciplinary probation, and families paying by the 60/40 and ten-month payment plans.

If not otherwise required, participation is elective with the annual payment plan, if tuition is paid in full by August 1, 2019; however, tuition is non-refundable and no refund or cancellation of the yearly fees will be made by the School for absence, withdrawal, or dismissal before the end of the school year; therefore, parents are strongly encouraged to purchase the Tuition Refund Plan.

The complete Tuition Refund Plan can be found here. Please familiarize yourself with the exclusions and details of this coverage.

Below is an excerpt from our Enrollment Contract regarding the Tuition Refund Plan:

“Unless this Contract is cancelled by written notice received by the Admissions Office on or before June 1, 20—(“Cancellation Date”), it is understood by the undersigned Parent(s) that a contractual obligation exists to pay the full tuition and fees. Following the execution of this Contract, the School will rely on the Student’s enrollment … It is understood and agreed by the undersigned Parent(s) that the obligation to pay the full tuition and fees for the entire academic year is unconditional. It is further understood that under no circumstances will any portion of the tuition or fees be refunded, forgiven or reduced, except as outlined in the attached Tuition Refund Plan.”

Will our financial award change year after year?

Porter-Gaud remains committed to each financial aid recipient's level of need throughout enrollment. Returning applicants are given priority in the award process. Generally, a family can expect that financial aid will continue throughout enrollment as long as need remains. The dollar amount of the award may increase or decrease based on income and cost of living fluctuations, but families can rest assured in the same level of commitment to need year after year.

However, the Financial Aid Committee will reduce or refuse subsequent grants if the student's academic effort or conduct is deficient, even if such shortcomings do not preclude continued enrollment.

Additionally, failure to submit an annual financial aid application by the requested date, failure to provide requested documents, misrepresentation, or failure to completely disclose all required information, may also result in the loss of financial aid.