Manhattan Country School is widely recognized for its unique sliding-scale tuition system that supports diversity and equity. 

About our Sliding-Scale Tuition Model

In 1970, MCS parent and economist Franklin Roosevelt worked with MCS Founder Gus Trowbridge and other families at the school to come up with a tuition model that supported the school’s mission of creating real diversity and equity in education. The sliding-scale concept they developed was predicated on the idea that a family’s financial commitment should be in equitable proportion to its economic resources. 

Today, in a city with the most segregated schools in the nation, MCS stands apart for having maintained unparalleled diversity in its student population and staff for over 50 years while providing a high quality progressive education that prepares MCS graduates to gain entrance to the city’s most competitive public and private high schools and boarding schools in the region with no achievement gap.

Tuition Costs

Maximum fees are set annually by the Board of Trustees and are graduated by age level. 

Included in the annual tuition are the following:
City- Based Education
  • Books and classroom materials
  • Daily morning snack
  • Lunch Monday through Thursday
  • Field trip transportation and expenses
  • Chromebook Program in the Upper School
  • Early drop-off coverage between 8:00 a.m.– 8:30 a.m.
Farm-Based Education for 7-8s through 8th Grade
  • Classes in cooking, farming, nature and textiles
  • Meals
  • Room and Board
  • Field trip transportation and expenses
  • Three meals per day and daily snack
  • Full time, dedicated Farm staff
Child’s Age/Grade (as of 9/01/2019)
Maximum Tuition*
4-5s to 9-10s
$48,200
Fifth to Eighth Grade
$50,500

*These figures apply to the 2020-2021 school year and are likely to see annual increases.

Meet the Admissions Team

List of 2 members.

  • Photo of Tanya Espy-Disparti

    Tanya Espy-Disparti  

    Director of Admissions and Enrollment
  • Photo of Jennifer Eugenio

    Jennifer Eugenio 

    Admissions Associate

Tuition FAQs

List of 4 frequently asked questions.

  • Q: Why Sliding-Scale Tuition?

    In 1970, MCS began to search for a new way of financing the school, based on the precept that the school is one community of individuals joined in the common task of educating children. The sliding-scale tuition model was the result.

    Our commitment to diversity rests firmly upon this tuition system and eliminates the categories of “financial aid” and “full-paying” families.

    Sliding-scale tuition enables all MCS families to educate their children as equal members of an economically, racially and culturally diverse community.
  • Q: How Does Sliding-Scale Tuition Work?

    Sliding-scale tuition is based on the principle that a family’s financial commitment should be in equitable proportion to its financial resources. The same financial information is asked of all parents. The Family Financial Worksheet is used to determine each family’s contracted fee (tuition amount) for the coming school year. Approximately 75 percent of MCS families pay a fee calculated on the sliding scale.
  • Q: How Is Each Child’s Fee Calculated?

    Families submit a confidential Family Financial Worksheet (FFW) as part of their admissions application. Current families also submit a new FFW each year. Student fees are set on a sliding scale based on each family’s unique financial profile and situation.

    Although we encourage all families to complete the FFW, families may choose not to submit financial information by signing the waiver at the end of the worksheet. This serves as an agreement to pay the full annual tuition throughout their child’s time at MCS.
  • Q: What If a Family Has More Than One Child Enrolled at MCS?

    The Family Financial Worksheet includes a graduated discount for siblings.
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