Tuition and Value

Valuing the MCDS education
The life-long benefits of a strong work ethic, self-confidence, creative thinking, and a love of learning are difficult to quantify. While MCDS tuition remains well below the average tuition cost for U.S. independent schools, we recognize the significant commitment each family must make to join the MCDS community.

Tangible Benefits of MCDS—What does your money pay for versus public school?
• An independent, non-profit school; a self-governing body free from politics and bureaucracy.
• An 8:1 student/teacher ratio and smaller class sizes.
• World-proven curriculum and teaching methods that deliver superior results, exceeding local and national test levels.
• Accessible and dedicated faculty, providing continuous communication of individual progress.
• Important subjects often missing from other programs: Science, Spanish, Music, Art, PE – all with specialized teachers beginning in Lower School.
• Semi-private musical instrument lessons, beginning with piano in First Grade.
• A character education program, embracing values such as respect, honesty, responsibility, and community service.
• A full day of school, from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., with convenient after-school activities, athletics, library, and child care options.
• A well-kept, secure facility with modern science labs, an expansive gymnasium, inspiring classrooms and a prairie-filled 45 acre campus ideal for our hands-on science program, joyful recesses and extra-curricular activities.
• A comprehensive college advising program, beginning in Ninth Grade.
• A motivated and inclusive peer group which enjoys and values learning.

Intangible Benefits of MCDS
• A mindset of limitless possibilities, where no boundaries are set on what your child can achieve.
• A community where each student is truly known and valued for their individuality.
• Work ethic, self-confidence, leadership and teamwork skills that flourish from great expectations.

Cost of educating a student at MCDS
The actual cost of educating an MCDS student is approximately $2,000 greater than the tuition charged. Like many independent schools, MCDS is committed to building a culturally and economically diverse body, and keeping tuition reasonable is critical to our success. The Annual Fund raises funds to make up the gap each year.

After the enrollment deposit, tuition may be paid in one, two, or eleven installments. The cost of books is included in tuition, and there are no mandatory fundraising requirements.

Building Use Fee
$500 per family: a standard independent school fee used solely for routine facility expenses. This fee can be offset through participation in the Scrip program.

Technology Fee
MCDS will provide students in grades five through eight with a Chromebook including pre-loaded applications and licenses. MCDS will also take on the burden of performing minor repairs, while students will take the device to and from school and keep the device after the eighth grade year. This Chromebook program necessitates a one-time $250 technology fee for families of middle school students.

Financial Aid
A generous financial aid program supports our efforts to enroll qualified students regardless of financial status. A wide range of families, including those with multiple children, may qualify for financial aid.

Prairie Hawk Merit Scholarships
Middle and High School applicants can apply for The Prairie Hawk Merit Scholarship, awarded to students demonstrating academic excellence, personal responsibility, integrity, and citizenship. Current MCDS High School students can also apply for a Merit Scholarship each year of High School.