Admissions FAQs


Admissions FAQs, 3s–5th Grade

Also see Lower School Program Overview & FAQs

Do I need to call for my parent tour and child visit?

Upon receipt of your application, you will receive a confirmation by email.  After Labor Day, dates for your appointments will be offered via email.

Is testing administered by ERB required?

No, Calhoun does not require or accept any standardized test results.  See the article that appeared in The New York Times.

Are letters of recommendation required?

A teacher recommendation (Teacher Recommendation PDF) is required for the 2nd-5th grade applicant.  No letters of recommendation for parents are considered in the decision process.

How will I know when my child’s application is complete?

An email message confirming completion of the admissions process will be sent.

When will decision notifications be sent?

Notification dates in accordance with Independent School Admissions Association of Greater New York guidelines are: 3's and 4's on Wednesday, February 7, 2018; K on Friday, February 9, 2018; 1st-8th grade on Tuesday, February 6, 2018.

Are legacy and sibling applicants given special consideration?

While Calhoun values having students with legacy or sibling status—child of a Calhoun graduate or sibling or half-sibling of a current student—join the community, the school cannot guarantee admission. An earlier notification date is optional for 3's and 4's legacy and sibling applicants.

When can I reapply to Calhoun if I am denied admission to 3rd through 11th grade?

Students denied admission to 3rd through 11th grades must wait one year before re-applying to Calhoun. All application materials (application, application fee, transcripts and letters of recommendation) must be submitted by the published deadline as reapplications are treated as new applications and are considered without reference to the initial admissions decision.  
*Exceptions may be made for current families and will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the Admissions Committee.

What kind of students do well at Calhoun?

Calhoun serves a broad range of students representing a variety of temperaments, skill levels and passions, whose parents understand and value Calhoun's progressive philosophy.  We meet a variety of learning styles by offering multi-modal methods of instruction and individualized expectations for each child.  However, while we comply with the American Disabilities Act, we are not a school that is able to accommodate all learning disabilities.  Children requiring speech or physical therapy schedule their sessions outside of school hours.  Our program is not designed to support children requiring a SEIT or shadow teacher in the classroom.  Calhoun does not use the Orton-Gillingham or Wilson Reading System programs for reading instruction.

Is Calhoun accessible for individuals with physical challenges?

Calhoun has two buildings: The main building at 433 West End Avenue, where 3rd–12th graders are housed, is equipped with a mechanical lift for entry and elevators to the nine floors. The Lower School building at West 74th Street, for 3’s–2nd graders, is not accessible. 

Admissions FAQs, 6th-12th 

Also see Middle School and Upper School Programs

When can I reapply to Calhoun if I am denied admission to 2nd through 11th grade?

Students denied admission to 2nd through 11th grades must wait one year before re-applying to Calhoun. All application materials (application, application fee, transcripts and letters of recommendation) must be submitted by the published deadline as reapplications are treated as new applications and are considered without reference to the initial admissions decision.

*Exceptions may be made for current families and will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the Admissions Committee.

How can we see Calhoun before applying?

Families are welcome to attend an evening open house before applying.  Families may also tour Calhoun during the school day before applying.  Typically, however, families tour on the day of their interview.  In order to schedule an interview a family must submit an application first.

Does Calhoun require ERBs or ISEEs exams?

No, Calhoun does not require standardized tests. Standardized testing cannot accurately reflect and assess this range of academic strength and success.  If, however, your child has taken the ERB/ISEE and you believe it does support his or her application, we are very glad to add the test results to your child’s file. See this New York Times article about Calhoun's decision not to require standardized testing.

When is my application complete?

Families must submit the admissions application first.  Once we have received all supplementary materials and interviewed the family, the application will be considered complete.

When and how will we be notified about the admissions decision?

Calhoun follows ISAAGNY guidelines. Families who apply by November 15, 2017 will be notified via email on the following dates:
Grades 2 - 8: February 6, 2018
Grades 9 -12: February 15, 2018

Are there additional costs besides tuition?

Books and required school trips are included in tuition. Lunch is included for 2nd-12th grade students, but 3's-1st grade families send lunch from home. A light breakfast is also available for 2nd-12th grade students.

After school programs (ASP), including extended care during the school day, and summer camp programs are not included in the tuition. For families receiving tuition assistance, the cost of in-house after school programs is reduced by the same percentage as the tuition award. Annual Parent Association dues ($50 per family) are additional.

At what grade levels can one apply for assistance?

Tuition Assistance is considered for students applying to kindergarten through grade 12, but not to applicants to the 3’s or 4’s programs.  Families who enroll in the 3's or 4's may apply for tuition assistance for the kindergarten year, though we cannot guarantee that tuition assistance will be awarded.

When does one apply for tuition assistance?

The deadline for submitting Tuition Assistance materials for the 2018-19 school year is December 15, 2017.

What factors are considered when considering if a family qualifies for aid?

Income, savings, investments, assets, debt, living expenses and education and child-care costs are included in the calculations of tuition assistance.

What percentage of your student body receives tuition assistance?

Each year, tuition assistance is awarded to approximately 20 percent of the student body.

Are there any full tuition grants?

All grants are for partial assistance, though awards vary greatly in size depending on the financial circumstances of the family.  Families are expected to contribute a minimum of $1,500/year toward tuition.

Are there any scholarships or merit awards?

No, all awards are based on need.

Does every student who demonstrates need receive tuition assistance?

Unfortunately, no. Due to limited resources, Calhoun cannot award assistance to every financially qualified student who applies.

If a family is offered tuition assistance for the first year at Calhoun, can they count on it in future years?

Calhoun is committed to renewal as long as need exists, but returning students must apply for renewal of their awards each year. When it is time for renewal, our Business Office will send families an e-mail reminder to complete the online Tuition Assistance application form.

If a family does not receive tuition assistance and enrolls the student for the first year at full tuition, can the family apply for assistance the following year or in some future year?

It is the school’s expectation that families who start at Calhoun paying full tuition will continue to do so.  In cases where there is a dramatic change in financial circumstances, very limited “emergency funds” are available. In this situation, Calhoun accepts applications for assistance from returning families who have not received it in the past.  The school cannot, however, guarantee that there will be sufficient funds available to continue the assistance for more than one year.  Families requesting emergency funds are asked to contact the School's controller in the fall.

How can I relay special circumstances or additional information?

A letter may be submitted to TADS by December 15, 2017 and will become part of the applicant's electronic file.

How can I get additional TADS support?

For questions regarding the Tuition Assistance application process or how to fill out or submit forms, please contact the TADS helpline at 1-800-477-8237 or email TADS Support.  Support and tuition assistance forms are available in English and Spanish.
Hear from alums about how Calhoun has impacted their lives:

Main Building 3rd - 12th Grades 433 West End Avenue New York, NY 10024 212.497.6500

Robert L. Beir Lower School Building 2.8 Years - 2nd Grade 160 West 74th Street New York, NY 10023 212.497.6550

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