Financial Aid

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A Cushing Academy education is not only an investment in your child's future but also a significant financial commitmentFor the 2020–2021 academic year, over 149 students received nearly $6.5 million in financial aid grants. The financial aid pool is, however, very competitive, and families applying for aid should begin the process as early as possible. Due to the limited financial aid budget Cushing is not able to offer financial aid to every family who qualifies.

Steps to complete your Financial Aid Application
Please note the SSS Financial Aid Application opens in October and the forms below will be updated when available.

To be completed prior to February 1, 2021:
  • The Parents' Financial Statement to the School and Student Service for Financial Aid (SSS) on or after October 1 but prior to February 1.

  • A photocopy of your signed 2020 Federal Income Tax Return (Form 1040, all attachments and your W-2s).
    A photocopy of your signed 2018 & 2019 Federal Income Tax Return (Form 1040, all attachments and your W-2s).
All of the above information must be on file at SSS before a financial award is considered. The first financial aid awards will be made along with Admission Decisions starting March 10, 2021. All information related to the parent's financial position is treated as confidential. These forms will only be used for the arrival at a fair and reasonable determination of financial need.

How can I make Cushing an affordable option?

Tuition loan and payment programs assist many families in making tuition more affordable. For example, tuition funds may be provided up front with payments spread over a longer period of time than tuition payment plans allow. The providers listed below have assisted Cushing families in managing their tuition obligations. Please click on their links for more information:

Additional Information

List of 7 items.

  • Computation of Family Contribution

    The School and Student Service for Financial Aid (SSS), is a “need analysis” service that relies on “national economic factors” to determine the eligibility of families. The SSS, like Cushing Academy, believes a family has the primary obligation to finance their child’s education. In determining a family’s eligibility, factors such as family size, parents’ age, extraordinary expenses and retirement provisions are considered. Distinctions must be made between obligatory expenses, such as tax payments, and those made by choice, such as vacations or purchasing a recreational vehicle. Because situations vary, an objective analysis system computes a recommendation based upon the information the family provides to SSS. Often, families with similar incomes have a different RFC; this is due to the numerous variables involved in the calculations. Cushing reserves the right to accept the recommendation made via the Report of Family Contribution or to amend it by using more extensive documentation required to complete the application process in accordance with the Academy’s mission and policies. The Financial Aid Committee assesses each family’s financial situation individually. This assessment is completed with certain general principles and practices, which are in addition to those of the SSS guidelines.
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  • Confidentiality

    Cushing maintains confidential financial aid records for all applicants. These records are reviewed by the members of the Financial Aid Committee and, occasionally, by the Head of School or Chief Financial Officer. All financial aid awards are confidential agreements between the recipient family and the school. The Financial Aid Committee considers financial aid awards strictly confidential. Families may not discuss financial aid information with any party other than a member of the Financial Aid Committee.

  • Day and Boarding Consideration

    Cushing strives to support as many students as possible in the financial aid process. Generally financial aid for students living within 25 miles of campus will only be awarded on the basis of day student tuition.

  • Divorced, Separated, Non-Traditional Families

    Cushing maintains a philosophy that requires active participation of a student’s family in funding this educational opportunity. In all cases where a student does not live with his/her married, biological parents, families should understand that, where appropriate, two adult members of the family are expected to participate in funding tuition, room and board. These expectations are in effect regardless of any legal agreements arranged between family members, such as alimony agreements, pre-nuptial agreements, custody or other similar agreements. In cases of co-habitation, Cushing considers the entire household income, whatever the legal status of the family may be. For parents who are separated, divorced, or have never been married: Cushing requires that a complete financial aid application be submitted by each parent/family (IRS 1040, PFS, etc.) Cushing expects parents, guardians, domestic partners, and/or step-parents to play an appropriate role in financing a student’s education.

  • Multiple Tuition Charging Schools

    If more than one child in a family attends a tuition-charging institution, Cushing requires that families apply for aid at each of the institutions their children attend. Cushing is unable to subsidize tuition for other tuition-charging schools of any type. If one of the tuition-charging schools has lower tuition, Cushing expects that there are additional funds available for Cushing tuition. It is important to note that SSS computes the total funds available for education, then divides that amount by the number of children attending tuition-charging schools. If Cushing is the only tuition-charging school, and/or only one child decides to enroll, the total amount deemed “available” for education will be used as the Estimated Family Contribution. Copies of awards (from other institutions elementary through college) are required.

  • Non-Working Parents

    Cushing assumes that all adult family members will work to contribute to the investment in a Cushing education. The Committee will impute income for parents or guardians who choose not to work and adjust the Report of Family Contribution accordingly. Families with preschoolaged children or extraordinary situations should make the Committee aware of their circumstances. Parents returning to school or changing jobs as a personal choice must realize that a resulting decrease in their family income cannot be underwritten by financial assistance provided by Cushing.
  • Student Assets/Trusts/College Funds

    Savings, investments, trust-funds, 529 funds, or other assets in a student’s name or held for a student for any reason, or restricted in any way, are considered available resources for use in funding a student’s education at Cushing. The general rule is that students’ assets be equally distributed over their years at Cushing, plus four years of college/university. Cushing does not consider tuition paid for children beyond the undergraduate level when determining eligibility for aid.

Questions? Please contact the Office of Admissions

If you have any other questions, please contact the Office of Admissions:

Cushing Academy
Office of Admissions
39 School Street
Ashburnham, MA 01430-8000

Tel: 978.827.7300
Fax: 978.827.6253

Cushing Academy

39 School Street
Ashburnham, Massachusetts 01430

Cushing Academy

Cushing Academy exists for students and develops curious, creative, and confident learners and leaders. Founded in 1865, Cushing is a co-ed, college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12 and PG. Our students, who come from over 30 states and 30 countries, excel in our outstanding academic, art, and athletic offerings. We welcome you to visit our community and beautiful 162-acre campus in Ashburnham, Mass., just one hour from Boston, to experience all that Cushing has to offer.