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Walnut Hill School for the Arts

Tuition & Financial Aid

Walnut Hill School for the Arts is committed to attracting a socioeconomically diverse student population. While the primary responsibility for financing a student’s education remains with the family, all families may apply for a financial aid award. Each year, the School allocates approximately $3.5 million in need-based financial aid. Financial aid is applied toward the total cost of tuition and does not need to be repaid. For more information on Financial Aid, please visit Applying for Financial Aid.

The Admission Committee encourages all families to apply for admission, regardless of ability to pay tuition. The admission review process and financial aid review process occur independently of each other. Financial aid applications are reviewed by the Financial Aid Committee, which is overseen by the Director of Admission and Financial Aid.

Please note: Walnut Hill School for the Arts does not offer merit-based financial aid for the academic year. All financial aid decisions are based on demonstrated need.

2018–2019 Tuition and Fees




The Program and Technology Fee is assessed for all students and includes, but is not limited to, services such as technology support, health services, science labs, required events, ID cards, and student activities.

Additional Fees

Instrumental Music Fee (Music Majors only): $5,300

Jazz Music Fee (Music Majors only): $5,300

Vocal Music Fee (Music Majors only): $4,300

Composition Student Fee (Music Majors only): $4,300

Writing, Film & Media Arts Fee (WFMA Majors only): $500

English Language Learner Instruction: $2,100

International Student Health Insurance Fee: $1995 for 12 months

International Student Fee: $1,000


Like most independent schools, Walnut Hill does not cover all of its expenses with tuition. Nearly 20% of the operating costs of the School are met by gifts to the School and endowment income. Walnut Hill tuition has increased at a rate comparable to that of most independent schools. Tuition increases are intended to help the School provide the strongest program possible to all students. Boarding tuition for the 2018–2019 academic year is $62,280. Day tuition is $47,030.

Walnut Hill requires a nonrefundable enrollment deposit of a percentage of the billed tuition due, after any financial aid is applied. The enrollment deposit must be mailed to the School with both signed Enrollment Agreement forms and be postmarked by the required deadline to reserve a place for your child. The enrollment deposit is credited toward the total tuition due.

Music Major Fees

The fees cover 30 weeks of private lessons for instrumentalists and jazz students as well as one large ensemble. Vocal students receive 28 weeks of private lessons that include a weekly voice and secondary instrument lesson, a vocal coaching, as well as one large ensemble. Composition students receive 28 weeks of private lessons in composition.

The private lesson fee does not cover additional or secondary lessons beyond that which is described here, nor does it fully cover lesson costs of a very small number of highly sought-after teachers. Students may elect to take additional classes or large ensembles at NEC for which they will also be billed.

Secondary Lesson Fees

Students who wish to take private music instruction in voice, composition, or other instruments in addition to their major concentration may register for secondary lessons at the start of each semester. Lessons are held once a week and are individually tailored to the technical and musical needs of each student. Instruction is available primarily in voice, piano, strings, and guitar; however, other instruments can be studied with permission of the Director of Music. An extra fee is charged, typically in the range of $1,000 to $2,000 per semester.

Tuition Refund Insurance Plan

Tuition refund insurance protects parents and the School. It is required of all families who do not choose payment option A on the enrollment contract, and is highly recommended for all families. For details, please refer to the enclosed materials. This insurance is calculated at a rate of 1.85% of total tuition and fees (excluding the English Language Learner fee and International Student Health Insurance cost) due after any financial aid is deducted.

Personal Expenses

Typically, families will incur approximately $30–$50 per week in books and supplies during the school year. Additional expenses are dependent on the individual student’s needs and parental permission, such as School Store purchases, snacks, and gifts. Some examples of costs for students that are not included in fees noted above include, but are not limited to, pointe shoes, paint, journals, tutoring, scripts, optional music or voice lessons, bow rosin, and personal items.