Admissions Process and Instructions 2019/20

Now accepting K-8 applications for Fall 2019!

Thank you for your interest in The Community School.  We have designed our admissions process with the intent of getting to know your family and your child(ren), and for you to get to know the philosophy and faces of our school.  The school director will serve as the admissions  director and will guide you through this process.  All admissions decisions are made by faculty consensus.  We look forward to embarking on this journey with you.  

The Community School supports children with various academic, social, emotional, and physical needs, however we do not have a special education program. We are happy to meet with families to discuss any special concerns or requirements.  

The Community School aims to foster an inclusive and diverse community, is non-sectarian, and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender identity and expression, disability, sexual orientation, religion, or national or ethnic origin in its admissions or educational policies.

How to Apply
Please note: Kindergarten applicants must be at least 5 years old, on or by October 15, 2019.  We ask that all Kindergarten applicants undergo a Kindergarten screening through their local school district, along with the Community School screening.

Step 1: Complete an Application
A complete application includes the application form and the $35 application fee.  If you are applying for more than one child in the same family, only one $35 fee is collected. The application fee is non-refundable.

You may either fill out and submit the application materials found on our website or print and mail application materials to The Community School of Mount Desert Island, P.O. Box 825, Bar Harbor, ME, 04609.  We will contact you when we have received your complete application.

Financial Aid Application (optional)
If you are applying for Financial Aid, please do so no later than 10 days after your admissions application is submitted.  We use a third party auditor, TADS, to process all financial aid applications. The financial aid application process takes 2 weeks after you have submitted all requested documents to the auditor, so the sooner you complete it, the sooner we will be able to offer you your award.  The TADS representatives are very helpful and we request you be in contact with them directly with any financial aid related questions, once you begin the process.  The Community School financial aid information and all TADS forms are located on our website, under “Tuition and Financial Aid.”  All forms can be completed online. You will set up a username and password with TADS and they will guide you through the process and report to The Community School when they have processed your award amount.   

Note: In the case of shared custody, both caregivers must submit a financial aid application before a reward amount is determined.

Step 2 : Family School Visit
When we receive your application,  we will contact you and invite you and your child(ren) to meet the director/class teacher.  The goal of the visit is for the family to learn more about the school’s philosophy, structure, and curriculum, for the school to begin to form a more whole picture of your child(ren) and family, and to answer any specific questions you have at that time.  This meeting will take place at our schoolhouse.  This is not an interview, but a chance to get to know one another beyond the content of your application.

Step 3: Class Visit and Artifact
At the time of your Family School Visit, we will schedule a time for your child(ren) to come visit their respective class during the school day (8 am-1 pm for K-2 applicants, and 8 am-2 pm for grades 3-8).  Please pack a snack, lunch, and water bottle for your child, along with appropriate seasonal layers. We eat our meals outdoors most days.  

For all applicants, we request that children bring an artifact to their visit to share with the teacher.  Our hope is that the artifacts tells us about the child as a learner or of an interest of theirs.  For the younger children, this may be a favorite book or a drawing they have done recently.  For the older children, this may be a poem, project, report, or a book they are currently reading.  

Enrollment Notification
Once your admissions process is complete (application, fee, school visit, class visit, and artifact), we will make a decision about enrollment for your child(ren). Your enrollment notification will be emailed to your family, unless otherwise specified.  You can expect notification at the end of the application round in which you are applying.

Admissions Decisions
Decisions for Kindergarten applicants are based on school, social, and emotional readiness.  Decisions for all other grades are based on the child’s past educational experiences, academic abilities and potential, and classroom and social behavior.  We also consider the applicant and their family’s support, along with general fit for the school’s philosophy and values.  

There are two rounds of admissions:
Round 1: February 15 - March 30
Round 2: April 1 - May 15

Applications are processed on a first come, first served basis.  Space and financial aid are limited, and priority is given to Round 1 applicants.  If space is still available, we will accept rolling admissions after May 15.  

Enrollment Deadline and Terms
Families whose children have been admitted and plan to enroll must submit a Community School Enrollment Contract (included with your admittance letter), a $500 deposit, and the supplies fee ($250 K-2, $300 grades 3-8) within 10 days of receiving your admittance letter.   You may enroll and submit the deposit while your financial aid application is still pending to ensure a space.  If your financial aid award makes it infeasible for your family to attend The Community School, your deposit will be returned.  

The Community School of Mount Desert Island does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to student admissions, hiring and firing of staff and faculty, and the selection of volunteers and trustee. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment to everyone in our school community.