Clairbourn School Offers Area Parents, Students Series of Merit Scholarships

Awards range from $2,500 to $7,500 tuition credits

Published : Tuesday, August 14, 2018 | 6:27 AM

As part of a remarkable community outreach effort, Clairbourn School is offering a series of merit scholarships to eligible students throughout the San Gabriel Valley.

“We’ve created a path for students who otherwise wouldn’t have a way to get into our school by offering them some financial assistance that they can earn by having excellent grades, excellent citizenship, and excellent teacher recommendations,” said Dr. Amy Patzlaff, Head of School. “We’re looking for students who not only are good students, but who want to be part of a very warm, dynamic, and supportive school community that we have here.”

Clairbourn is an independent private school in the San Gabriel Valley, serving students from Junior Pre-kindergarten through Grade 8, explained Patzlaff.

Dr. Amy Patzlaff, Head of Clairbourn School

“It’s a very family-oriented school, and has a very vibrant community where parents are highly involved and students are encouraged to participate in all kinds of different activities so that they can find out where their passions lie,” continued Patzlaff, who was appointed by the Board of Trustees to lead the school in 2018.

Interested students or parents may first visit www.Clairbourn.org/merit to apply for a Merit Scholarship, and the second step is to then fill out the traditional Clairbourn admissions form, Patzlaff explained. Students will then be guided about obtaining teacher recommendations, as well as information on the Independent School Entrance Exam (ISEE).

The ISEE has two components, said Patzlaff, noting, “There’s a verbal side, which targets the reading and writing, and a math side which asks them to do simple computation, and also some problem solving, and so it’s a test that helps us to compare students’ achievement at the place they are now.”

Once the information is gathered, said Patzlaff, “We can see what kind of student they are, and whether they qualify, and then we can determine what kinds of merit we can provide for the students.”

And, added Patzlaff, “The good thing is that merit can also be combined with tuition assistance. They are independent processes. So if a student qualifies for merit, they may also qualify for tuition assistance and that could really make it possible for a student who didn’t think they could to be able to come to our school.”

For Patzlaff, the private school experience offers a unique type of education for its students as well.

“The public schools are really doing a wonderful job,” Patzlaff told Pasadena Now, “but the private schools have some different latitude that we can use.

In the private school setting, we’re not bound to take everyone, so we can make sure that our environment stays at a very high standard. We also can keep our class sizes nice and small. We try to target between 16 and 20 students in each class and that helps us give really individual attention to each student.

In addition, said Patzlaff, the school knows each student and family “personally.”

“We can tailor our education to really help them to thrive and to progress,” she continued. “And especially in the middle school where students are starting to develop their independence from their parents and figure out who they are, it’s really important for them to be surrounded by high quality teachers, high quality peers and people who are going to influence them to do their best, rather than influence them negatively.”

According to the school’s website, there are two groups of scholarships awards. Group one is open to all students. Students with the highest demonstrated qualifications will be eligible for the highest amount of merit scholarship. The available merit awards are the President’s Middle School Merit Scholarship, with a $7,500 tuition credit; the Founder’s Middle School Merit Scholarship with a $5,000 tuition credit; and the Trustees Middle School Merit Scholarship with a $2,500 tuition credit.

Group Two students must be a resident and public school student in one of a group of San Gabriel Valley cities. Students with the highest demonstrated qualifications will be eligible for the highest amount of merit scholarship

The Group Two merit awards are:

  • Altadena Middle School Merit Scholarship – $2,500 up to $7,500 Tuition Credit
  • Arcadia Middle School Merit Scholarship – $2,500 up to $7,500 Tuition Credit
  • La Canada Middle School Merit Scholarship – $2,500 up to $7,500 Tuition Credit
  • Monrovia Middle School Merit Scholarship – $2,500 up to $7,500 Tuition Credit
  • Pasadena Middle School Merit Scholarship – $2,500 up to $7,500 Tuition Credit
  • San Gabriel Middle School Merit Scholarship – $2,500 up to $7,500 Tuition Credit
  • San Marino Middle School Merit Scholarship – $2,500 up to $7,500 Tuition Credit
  • Sierra Madre Middle School Merit Scholarship – $2,500 up to $7,500 Tuition Credit
  • South Pasadena Middle School Merit Scholarship – $2,500 up to $7,500 Tuition Credit.

Applications for the Clairbourn Merit Awards (to attend for the 2018-2019 school year) are due before Friday, August 24, 2018.

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