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Children raising their hands to ask questions while in class.

FAQs

You have questions, we have answers.

Admissions

Questions

The admissions process begins in the fall for the following September.

In the fall, parents may begin the process by submitting an Online Inquiry and creating a profile in our Ravenna system and by calling the Admissions Office to schedule an individual parent tour. Student Applications and accompanying materials are due by January 15 for a March 10 decision. Application materials include a Teacher Evaluation form which must be given to the student’s current school. Students applying to Grades 4-7 need to complete the Student Questionnaire and are required to take the ISEE or SSAT with results sent directly to DCD. Students are scheduled to visit in January and February. Admissions decisions are available online on March 10 with a response due back to us by April 10. Applications submitted after March 10 will be considered on a rolling basis to meet the needs of the program. Families applying for financial assistance must do so by January 15.

All application materials are online. Once families create an inquiry and set up a Ravenna profile for their students, they will see a checklist of steps including application materials.

Students entering Pre-Kindergarten must be four years old by September 1.

Sibling preference is given for pre-k and kindergarten applicants only. DCD understands the importance of families finding one school for their children. When possible, qualified siblings will be considered at other grades.

Applications are welcomed for all grades.

The common notification date set by AISNE schools is March 10.

This is an unnumbered group of students who would be accepted should a space become available between March 10 and the opening day of school.

Yes. Financial assistance is awarded based on qualifying need, and the Financial Aid Committee meets to review financial aid applications.

Parents apply by going to the NAIS website and completing the Parents’ Financial Statement (PFS). Current tax forms and schedules must be submitted to DCD by January 15 to be included in the March 10 decision.

DCD offers close to $1.8 million in financial aid to accepted students who qualify for aid.

25% of the student body receives financial aid.

Yes. The process for current families to reapply for financial assistance begins in November.

General

Questions

While most schools can offer children a place to learn, DCD gives them a place to grow and develop in a connected and safe community—outward through their community connections, upward in their academic success, and inward as they find their unique strengths.

Students who succeed are highly motivated to achieve, are active participants in the classroom willing to take academic risks as they strive for success, and are eager to contribute to their community.

The range of class size is 12 to 17 students with additional reading and math sections in Grades K-5 of 5 to 10 students each.

DCD has taken several steps in recent years to operationalize our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion throughout the community involving students, faculty and staff, and parents. From affinity and social justice groups for students to professional development for faculty and staff to SEED groups for parents to joining the Boston area’s Diversity Consortium to hiring a new DEI leader, our priority is to continue to create an inclusive and supportive environment for every member of our school community.

The school day begins at 8:00 a.m. for all students. For students in pre-K through grade 5, the school day ends at 3:00 p.m. All middle school students participate in DCD’s interscholastic athletics program, so their school day ends at 4:30 p.m.

Class participation, homework, projects, presentations, long-term assignments, informal quizzes, tests, assessments, and written assessments are included in a holistic approach to evaluating academic growth and development. Primary and Lower School parent conferences are scheduled twice a year followed by two narrative written reports. Middle School parent conferences are scheduled in the fall and parents receive narrative reports three times a year in the middle of each term and letter grades in December, March, and June.

DCD embraces service-learning pre-k to grade 8. Student, faculty, and parent involvement is the reason why DCD is a leader among schools in receiving Parents’ Independent School Network (PIN) Awards for community service. Middle School students in particular have a number of service days built into the calendar year. Though they are not required to participate in service-learning, the majority choose to participate because they have grown up embracing the spirit of giving back.

The Parent Association (PA) is a vital part of the community that helps keep the school strong and healthy. DCD values the partnership between home and school in helping children to develop as learners. Parents are able to volunteer in a variety of ways that work for their schedules. The school also offers many opportunities for parents to further their own learning through speakers and community education opportunities.

Technology is an integral part of our curriculum in each grade used as a tool to both support learning and innovative thinking as well as a skill set to be developed in computational thinking and digital citizenship. Students in the Primary and Lower schools have one-to-one access to devices and also spend time in our lab with dedicated lessons enhancing their in-classroom work with programming, coding, or robotics. Middle school students receive their own laptops at the beginning of 6th grade, which then becomes theirs after graduation.

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