Affording Bentley

We understand that an independent school education is a significant investment for your family. Bentley is committed to making our program financially feasible for families and to attracting talented, well-qualified students, regardless of their families’ economic circumstances.
Our Financial Aid program reflects a dedication to fostering a community that is enriched and strengthened by diversity and 25% of our families participate in the program. Each family must complete all application procedures annually by the renewal deadlines and continue to demonstrate comparable financial eligibility to receive assistance.

2024-2025 Tuition & Fees

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  • Kindergarten - 5th Grade

  • 6th - 8th Grades

  • 9th - 12th Grades

Additional Fees:
Transportation is provided for families K-12 at no additional cost, and our Before and After School Program is provided at no additional cost for Grades K-8. Families should expect to incur an additional fee related to co-curricular programs, field trips, textbooks (9-12), and supplies depending on grade level. (Approximately $1,500 for grades K-5 and $2,500 for grades 6-12.)

Applying for Financial Aid

The financial aid program at Bentley School is designed to make a Bentley education possible for all families based on demonstrated financial need and the availability of funds. Although all families pay tuition, the range varies from a few thousand dollars a year to full posted tuition. Bentley uses the Clarity Application to determine a family’s level of financial need based on the information that families share in the application which includes assets, income, expenses, and debts.

List of 4 items.

  • STEP 1: Submit Your Financial Aid Application

    To begin the financial aid process, please go to the Clarity Application and create an account. The application typically takes less than 30 minutes to complete. The Clarity Application is also mobile-friendly. You are also able to save your progress and return at any time. At the end of the application, there is a $60 fee to submit. Many schools in the East Bay use Clarity for financial aid, meaning you can share your application with additional schools that accept the Clarity Application for no additional charge. Simply use the dropdown menu in the application to select those schools.
  • STEP 2: Submit Supporting Tax Documents

    Please remember to return to your dashboard after you complete and submit your Clarity Application, as Bentley School requires you to upload additional tax documentation including previous year 1040s, W2s, and most recent pay stubs.
  • Financial Aid Deadlines

    The deadline for completing the financial aid application, including relevant supplemental documents, is for new families on January 9, 2024 (for grades 9-12) and January 18, 2024 (for grades K-8). Returning Bentley families must apply by November 6, 2023; this includes returning families applying for a new sibling to join Bentley.
  • Questions & Support

    If you need support during the process of completing your application, there is in-app support available through the HELP button in the bottom left of the screen, as well as email and phone support at or (206) 210-3752, in both English and Spanish. La solicitud por ayuda financiera es disponible en español. 

    For questions about Bentley’s financial aid program, please contact David Lazo, Director of Enrollment Management.

Our Ongoing Commitment

To ensure a student body that demographically represents the Bay Area, Bentley’s Financial Assistance Program aids the school in reaching a wider spectrum of students. 

Frequently Asked Questions

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  • What is Clarity?

    Clarity is an online financial aid application service. The methodology created by independent school financial aid experts and provides guidelines when awarding financial aid grants. Bentley uses Clarity in order to better serve both our current and prospective families.
  • What percentage of students participate in the Financial Aid program?

    On average, 1 in 4 of all Bentley School students receive financial assistance.
  • How is Bentley’s financial assistance calculated?

    Bentley considers many financial factors that affect a family’s ability to pay an independent school tuition. The entire Financial Aid Application must be completed in order for the school to determine the appropriate Financial Aid grant. The Financial Aid Committee calculates a family’s ability to afford tuition and operates separately from the admissions process. Bentley does not offer Financial Aid to every student who qualifies for both admission and a reduced tuition. Each of the following are considered when determining a student’s Financial Aid grant.

    Annual Income refers to pre-tax earnings from wages, personal investments, and business investments. The formula that determines a Financial Aid grant considers different expenses than the IRS uses to calculate taxable income. Therefore, all tax schedules must be submitted. If parents/guardians reside in separate households, the income and expenses of both households are considered in the calculation. 

    Assets also help determine a student’s Financial Aid grant. If a family has major assets, savings, or investments, the formula computes an income supplement that is added to the gross income. For some the additional income inferred from assets is a small factor, for others the asset value has a larger influence on their Financial Aid Grant. If a student has assets (savings, trust accounts, etc.), the formula includes them in calculating the amount the parents can pay. 

    Family Size influences how income is adjusted by expenditures for housing, food, or medical needs to obtain the available discretionary income. 

    Number of Private School or College Tuitions Currently Being Supported - A student’s Financial Aid grant takes into account the number of family members (including adults) attending any tuition-charging elementary school, middle school, high school, or college.

    Unusual Expenses are also used in determining the parent contribution for educational expenses. Aging grandparent, parent educational loan payments, legal fees, closing costs, and other expenses are examples that are listed in the application instructions.
  • In families where the parents/guardians do not live together (e.g. divorced, separated, never married), do both households have to submit financial information?

    Yes, each parent/guardian household must submit a Clarity Financial Aid Application along with all previous year's tax documents (1040, W-2, and any relevant schedules) to be considered for a Financial Aid grant. Bentley determines the ability to pay by factoring in all available resources from both parents and step-parents, regardless of custody or other legal issues.

    Bentley may request additional tax documentation and families will be contacted directly for additional information, if needed.
  • If a family participates in the Financial Aid program, does the student stay in the program until they graduate?

    Provided family circumstances remain the same and Bentley’s resources can continue to support the program to the same extent, the school aims to fund the student during their entire enrollment provided the families circumstance remain the same. To continue in the program, the family must reapply each year.
  • When does a family learn if they have been offered a Financial Aid grant?

    Admission acceptance letters include a student Financial Aid grant award. Families that do not qualify for financial assistance will also be notified at this time. 

K - 8 Campus

1 Hiller Drive
Oakland, CA 94618
(510) 843-2512

9 - 12 Campus

1000 Upper Happy Valley Rd.
Lafayette, CA 94549
(925) 283-2101