Our Commitment to Affordability

When Andrew Ritchie founded Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School in 1903, his main goal was to offer an exceptional educational experience to all students, regardless of ability to pay. Today, we remain committed to this central pillar of our mission.

Our admissions and financial aid staff works with families to make a Rabun Gap education a reality for their child. Each family’s situation is different, and there are many different levels of financial aid awarded, so we don’t publish tuition prices.

Unlike most independent schools, the majority of our students (75%) receive need-based financial aid and merit scholarships. This commitment creates a community of students from a range of socioeconomic backgrounds, one of Rabun Gap’s unique assets. We value diversity in all forms and offer your child an opportunity to grow and learn in a community reflective of their future.

All students receive some level of support in our commitment to affordability because the school’s endowment provides resources to keep tuition lower than many of our peer schools.

To learn more about making Rabun Gap affordable for your family, please call our Admission Office at 706-746-7720 or email admission@rabungap.org.

Financial Aid

Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School’s financial aid and scholarship program seeks to provide qualified, motivated students from a broad socio-economic background with the opportunity to attend Rabun Gap. However, Rabun Gap recognizes that the primary responsibility for financing an independent school education rests with the student’s parents. We recognize that parents must plan carefully and make sacrifices to meet a full year's education expense. We are committed to working with families to simplify the financial aid process and payment options so that the focus can be on your child's education.

All families receive some assistance with the cost of a Rabun Gap education, as the tuition does not cover the yearly cost to educate a student. More than $7 million in financial aid grants for full and partial tuition assistance is awarded annually.  This means approximately 75% of our families receive either merit or need-based financial assistance to make Rabun Gap a reality for their child's education.  

Financial aid is available not only to families with limited financial resources, but also to families that may need a minor subsidy. While it is the goal of the Financial Aid Committee to help as many families as possible, each year the number of applications for financial aid is greater than the number of available awards.

Although demonstrated need is the first requirement for financial aid, the final decision is based on the student's overall academic achievement, personal strengths, and their potentially positive impact in the Rabun Gap community. Financial aid awards are based on a family’s demonstrated financial need without regard to race, color, gender, religion, or ethnic origin. Financial aid decisions are made independently from admission decisions.

Rabun Gap offers need-based financial assistance to families to help bridge the gap between what a family can afford and the cost of tuition. Need-based financial aid is a grant that does not require repayment. While Rabun Gap commits more than $7 million dollars annually to financial assistance, the school is not able to fulfill every request for assistance.

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  • All Applicants: File an Application through FAST

    Families seeking financial aid must file an application through the Independent School Management Financial Aid for School Tuition (F.A.S.T.) Program in Wilmington, DE. The F.A.S.T. program is designed to be very responsive to families. It is flexible in terms of the information it will accommodate, thus allowing families to represent their own particular circumstances accurately. To ease the online application process, F.A.S.T. provides 24/7 help-desk support.

    F.A.S.T. provides us with a need-based financial aid analysis service which ensures that our process for establishing financial need adheres to nationally established standards of best practice. All information from F.A.S.T. is kept confidential, as is all information pertaining to a family's financial aid request.

    Financial Aid grants are made for one year only and, therefore, you must reapply each year. Start the application process on the FAST website.

    The application process is self-guided. You may navigate in and out of the program, allowing you to partially complete an application and go back to it at another time. Online e-mail and a 24/7 helpline (1-877-326-3278) is provided. The charge for the application is $43 to be paid by credit card at the end of the session. After completing the online application, you will be required to mail your 2016 Federal Tax returns with all schedules and W-2's to:

    F.A.S.T. Processing
    ISM
    1316 North Union Street
    Wilmington, DE 19806-2594

    Including the School's name on the outside of the envelope will ensure faster processing of your application.

    Families will receive notification of their child’s financial aid award with acceptance. The grant offer is confirmed once Rabun Gap receives the student’s signed contract and non-refundable enrollment deposit.
  • For Divorced Families

    In case of divorce, each parent/household must complete one F.A.S.T. application (as “Family One” and “Family Two”) and send in all required documents. Information entered is kept confidential, and family information is kept separate. The Financial Aid Committee will consider the resources of both natural parents. If the custodial parent has remarried, we consider the resources of the stepparent, bearing in mind the obligation that the stepparent has to his or her own natural children. If the non-custodial parent is not included in the child’s life, the custodial parent should contact Nichole Healy the Director of Financial Aid at nhealy@rabungap.org to outline the situation and answer any questions regarding unique family circumstances.
  • Early Decision & Regular Decision Deadlines

                                                                  
    CycleFA & Application Deadline
    Early Decision New Families     *For Boarding Only*December 1
    Returning 
    Lower School
    December 15
    Returning 
    Middle & Upper School
    January 12
    New Families
    Boarding Regular Decision
    February 2
    New Families
    Day Regular Decision
    February 2

    Families will receive notification of their child’s financial aid award with acceptance. The grant offer is confirmed once Rabun Gap receives the student’s signed contract and non-refundable enrollment deposit.

     
  • International Students

    Please fill out the International Financial Aid form for Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School.

    Families will receive notification of their child’s financial aid award with acceptance. The grant offer is confirmed once Rabun Gap receives the student’s signed contract and non-refundable enrollment deposit.

    In case of divorce, each parent/household must complete one International Aid application each (two separate applications) and send in any relevant documents. Information entered is kept confidential, and family information is kept separate. The Financial Aid Committee will consider the resources of both natural parents. If the custodial parent has remarried, we consider the resources of the stepparent, bearing in mind the obligation that the stepparent has to his or her own natural children. If the non-custodial parent is not included in the child’s life, the custodial parent should contact Nichole Healy the Director of Financial Aid at nhealy@rabungap.org to outline the situation and answer any questions regarding unique family circumstances.

Merit & Special Scholarships

A limited number of scholarships are available upon admission to new students who have demonstrated exceptional academic ability, leadership skills, and are of good character. Currently, Rabun Gap offers the following merit-based and special scholarship programs for students new to the Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School Community.  Merit scholarships cannot be combined.
 

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  • The Woodruff Scholarships

    The Woodruff Scholarships are academic and character scholarships for Middle and Upper School students. Minimum criteria for Woodruff scholars are as follows: have achieved grades of “B” or better, score in the top 25% on the Independent School Entrance Exam (ISEE), and demonstrate strong leadership skills and abilities (as indicated on teacher evaluation forms). No action is required by the family for this scholarship; this is awarded upon acceptance to Rabun Gap.
  • Presbyterian Fellows Scholarships

    Presbyterian Fellows Scholarships are academic and character awards for Middle School and Upper School students. Presbyterian Fellows Scholarships are available to students who are active members of the Presbyterian Church (USA) entering Rabun Gap for the first time. Nominees for this scholarship must receive an endorsement letter from the Session of a Presbyterian Church, (PCUSA), indicating that the student is an active and participating member of their nominating Presbyterian Church. Minimum requirements are that the student must have achieved grades of “B” or better, and demonstrate strong moral character and citizenship. For more information about this merit scholarship, contact Nichole Healy at nhealy@rabungap.org, or at 706-746-7722.
  • Alumni Scholarships

    These scholarships are designed to recognize our legacy students.  The structure for the Alumni Scholarships are as follows:
     
    $1,500 reduction in published tuition for Lower School day students
    $2,500 reduction in published tuition for Middle School day students
    $5,000 reduction in published tuition for Upper School day students
    $10,000 reduction in published tuition for boarding students
     
    The applicant must have a parent, grandparent or legal guardian that attended Rabun Gap. This scholarship cannot be combined with any other merit or special scholarship. The family can apply for additional need-based aid, if desired. Alumni should notify the Admission Office of their year of attendance to qualify for this scholarship. The Alumni Scholarship is awarded upon acceptance to Rabun Gap. 

Contact Us

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All financial information provided is confidential and only made available to the Financial Aid Committee. All information is to be reported to the best of your knowledge and is to be complete and truthful. Any misrepresentation of financial information submitted to the School can result in an adjustment, or elimination, of your child’s financial award.
Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School is a private, coeducational day and boarding school for grades Pre-K through 12, located in Rabun Gap, GA. Centrally located between Atlanta, GA, Greenville, SC, and Asheville, NC, we combine our strong academic program, mountain setting, and Presbyterian heritage to inspire young people who are eager to learn and grow.


Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School does not discriminate regardless of race, color, religion, gender, disability, creed, or national origin.