Tuition and Aid

Tuition & Aid

We recognize that choosing private education is a sacrifice. However, an investment in an EMS education is one of the best you will ever make and will reap dividends in your student’s life for years to come! We strive to keep our tuition and fees as low as possible to make Eastern Mennonite School an affordable option for families. Every year, the school's financial reports show that the actual cost of educating an EMS student  is considerably higher than the annual tuition and fees charged. Essentially, each student receives a discounted tuition as we supplement the true cost of education through our Annual Fund program.


In comparison to our local school divisions*, EMS strives to keep our costs low and educates students for roughly the same per-pupil cost as Harrisonburg City and Rockingham County school systems. For approximately the same amount as a public school education, your child can experience an individualized and experiential education in a nurturing environment, rooted in faith and serving your student well into the future!

*Per student spending: Harrisonburg = $13,203, Rockingham County = $10,012. Source: VA Department of Education website.

Tuition Rates for 2018-19

A family's per student tuition rate depends upon several factors such as the student's grade level, the family's congregational affiliation and financial aid eligibility. For the 2018-19 school year, EMS tuition rates fall within the following ranges, with many paying signifcicantly less if qualified for Financial Aid: 

  • Elementary  $6,595 - $7,995

  • Middle  $10,995 - $13,495

  • High  $11,895 - $14,795


EMS offers several programs to make a private Christian education more affordable: 

  • Church Discounts - thanks to the generosity of many local congregations across several denominations, EMS offers discounted tuition rates to families who attend supporting and partnering congregations. When your church commits to supporting EMS financially, you receive a generous discount as a result. Click here to see if your church participates.

  • Financial Aid -  families who demonstrate need are eligible for financial aid. This aid is made possible through generous donations from alumni, members of the community, and local organizations who contribute to the EMS Annual Fund. The total amount available for financial aid can vary annually. Therefore, it is important to submit your family's financial aid application as soon as possible during the admissions process. Financial aid applications received by March 15 each year are given priority when determining financial aid awards.  

  • Tuition Cap - no family, regardless of size, will ever pay more than the equivalent of two full high school tuitions per year.


Did you know you may use a 529 Plan for private K-12 educational expenses? This investment account can now be used as a savings plan for private K-12 tuition expense! These plans allow anyone to contribute to a student's 529 Plan and receive state tax advantages. Please contact your certified financial advisor or tax preparation professional for more details. 


86% = percentage of students receiving reduced tuition. 


25% = percentage of students receiving Financial Aid.


$473,398 = total amount of Financial Aid awarded* thanks to our generous donors.

*Data current as of 2017-18 school year. 


Financial Aid

EMS partners with the 3rd-party evaluator FACTS Financial Aid to offer parents a convenient online application and process. This confidential application requires financial information such as the value of assets owed, monthly expenses and other payments. Copies of current tax returns must also be provided. FACTS considers multiple factors to determine eligibility such as age of parents, number of dependents, income, assets and debt load. Once all data is entered, a formula is used for determining how much a family can spend on a student’s education.


Click here to begin the FACTS Financial Aid Application


Financial Aid FAQs:

  • Do you offer full scholarships? No. Every EMS family pays some amount of tuition, fees and other charges. To be considered for the most financial aid possible, it is important to submit your financial aid application between February 1 and March 15 each year. Please refer to the timeline on the right for more information. 

  • Is there a way to know if our family will qualify for aid before we apply? No. We will be glad to review preliminary financial information but cannot guarantee financial aid eligibility until the financial aid application is completed. Families must be in the admissions process before their financial aid application will be reviewed. Contact for more information.  

  • How does EMS determine a family’s need?  We follow financial aid guidelines established by FACTS Financial Aid. An application is required along with copies of the prior year’s tax returns. Once the application is submitted, the EMS Business Office will notify you in April regarding your family’s eligibility and subsequent aid award.

  • What if our family does not qualify for financial aid?  EMS offers a payment plan so that families may schedule tuition payments using several options. Our Business Office will be happy to work with you to create a plan that works for your family.