Student FAQ


Who is eligible to apply to Student Sponsor Partners?

• Students currently enrolled in the eighth grade.

• Students from all schools can apply, but priority is given to students in public school.

• Students who come from low-income families. In order to qualify financially, a family should have an income for $10,000 or less per person in the household each year. For example, a family of four should have an annual income of about $40,000.

• Students of all backgrounds; SSP does not discriminate on the basis of religion, race, or national origin.

• Students who, along with their families, are willing to contribute a portion of the tuition costs, usually around $900.

Can I apply to SSP if I am not in the 8th grade?

No. SSP only accepts applicants currently enrolled in the eighth grade, and who are planning to start the ninth grade in the fall.

What are Student Sponsor Partners’ financial guidelines?

SSP gives priority to students from low-income families; paying tuition must be impossible without financial assistance. SSP reserves the right to review finances on a yearly basis.

Do I need to have excellent grades to apply to SSP?

No. SSP students have grades that are average to below average. We accept students who would not test into public magnet schools and who would not qualify for merit-based scholarships.

Where do SSP students attend high school?

SSP students attend 25 quality, non-public high schools in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx. A list of our partner schools can be found here. SSP does not offer financial assistance to students attending schools outside this list.

Is SSP a Catholic organization?

No. Each of our partner schools has a long history of successfully educating vulnerable inner-city youths in a disciplined and nurturing school community. Although most of them are Catholic schools, SSP is not a religious organization, and students are not asked about their religious affiliations. Our partner schools simply provide the best education available to our students at the most affordable cost.

What are the financial expectations of the families of SSP students?

SSP sponsors cover the majority of SSP student tuition. Students’ families are expected to contribute a portion of the tuition costs, usually around $900 per year. In addition, many schools ask families to pay various fees for things like books and uniforms. Families are encouraged to set up monthly payment plans with the schools to make these costs more manageable over the course of the school year.

How do I apply to SSP?

To apply to SSP you must fill out the Student Application here. Please familiarize yourself with the application requirements before completing the application.

When is the application due?

There is no specific due date for the SSP Student Application. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis, and we will close the application once all of the spots for the 2014-2015 school year are full.

Do I need to take the TACHS exam to apply to SSP?

Yes. Students who apply to SSP must take the TACHS exam. To register for the TACHS exam, please visit Additionally, students accepted to a school through the TACHS exam are not guaranteed an SSP placement.

I really want to attend a particular SSP partner school. If I am accepted, can I go to whichever school I want?

SSP applicants are given the opportunity to list their top three schools in order of preference on their application. SSP students are not guaranteed acceptance into their first choice partner school.

Students who have not heard whether they are accepted to SSP must not register with a partner school unless they are prepared to pay full tuition at that school. Please note that most high school registration fees are non-refundable.

Partner schools’ published registration deadlines can be disregarded by SSP applicants; registration dates for SSP students are different from those for the schools’ general student populations.

I have applied to SSP. When and how will I be notified whether I was accepted?

Once an eighth grade student applies, SSP determines whether the student is eligible for the program according to the financial and academic guidelines. If the student meets the requirements, SSP calls the student and a parent or guardian into our office for an interview. Following the interview, applicants will be notified of their status by June 30th of the year in which they apply.

Notification of the final decisions will come through the mail; no information about an applicant’s status will be given by phone or email.

Are students obligated to participate in SSP over the summer?

New SSP students are expected to attend a Summer Readiness Program at their respective schools during the summer before their ninth grade year. Each individual school with determine the exact time of the Summer Readiness Program and will communicate that directly to the students and their families. During this program, student learn valuable information about adjusting to a new high school, and they have the opportunity to meet other SSP students.

During the summers following ninth, tenth, eleventh, and twelfth grade years, students who are failing classes or who have failed Regent’s Exams may be required to attend summer school in order to move onto the next grade (or to graduate). Students’ families are expected to cover any costs associated with summer school.

I’ve been accepted to SSP. What are the expectations for students?

• SSP students must follow all of the rules of their school, which include: attending school daily, getting to school on time, adhering to dress code, adhering to behavior code, respecting teachers, respecting peers, working hard in the classroom, and completing all assignments on time.

• SSP students must be active in the mentor relationship. Students must meet with their mentor three to six times each year, and students must be in phone or email contact with their mentor at least once a month. Students should initiate contact with their mentor rather than waiting for them. If students are unresponsive to their mentor, their place in the SSP program could be put in jeopardy.

• SSP students must meet the academic requirements of both their partner school and SSP. These requirements are explained to the student during their interview and once they are accepted into the SSP program.

I am struggling in school. What should I do?

It is common for SSP students to struggle during the adjustment to their new private school. If a student finds that they are struggling academically there are a number of tools at their disposal to help them:

• Students can ask teachers for extra help. SSP partner schools have teachers who genuinely want their students to succeed, and they are willing to provide extra academic help.

• Students can attend free extra help sessions after school.

• Students can speak with the SSP school coordinator at the school.

• Students can speak with their mentor.

It is important that students work hard in school, because if they do not meet the academic standard of their partner school or SSP, they could lose their place in the SSP program or be asked to leave the school.

I have more questions about SSP and the application process.

If you have more questions about the SSP application process, please go to the Admissions section and look over Student Sponsor Partners’ admissions Process and Requirements or email your questions to NO PHONE CALLS RELATED TO ADMISSIONS WILL BE ACCEPTED.