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Lower School (Ages 6-10)

Welcome! We hope this page helps you to know how to apply for your child to become a CFS Lower School student. We are fully enrolled for Fall 2016, but we continue to accept applications to be considered in the event that space opens up. Please give us a call at 919.383.6602 x240.


Since its beginning, Carolina Friends School (CFS) has sought to build and maintain a student body fully representative of the surrounding community. We actively seek young people diverse in race, nationality, creed, family structure, physical ability, and socioeconomic background. In doing so, we continue to seek students from families whose values are in harmony with Quaker philosophy and with the educational goals of the School, and we consider the student’s potential to benefit from and contribute to the School. Admission decisions are made by the Admission Committee, which includes the unit Head Teacher and the Director of Admission. The Head of School may review decisions to ensure that they comport with School policy, which is developed by the CFS Board of Trustees.



Please apply online and submit all supporting documents to the Admission Office on main campus. To be considered as a first-year student in the Lower School, students need to be 6 years old before September 1 of the year in which they would enroll.

For consideration in the first round of admission, please apply by January 15 of the preceding academic year (January 4 for the first-year class) – the earlier the better. In coordination with other local schools affiliated with the Triangle Independent School Consortium, we will notify families applying to the first year of Lower School on February 17; families of older Lower School students will be notified on March 3.

This means that timely completion of the admission process – including online application, main campus tour, teacher recommendation, parent interview, and student visit – is very important. If your child is applying for the first round of admission to the first year of Lower School, please arrange to have the process complete by the end of January, and for older applicants please have the process complete by February 15 whenever possible. We'll do what we can to help make this possible.

We also welcome applications after January 15 and will consider all applications as spaces arise. And if you’re applying from out of town, please know what we will do whatever we can to work with you so that your child can be considered for admission to CFS.

The complete application process typically includes the following steps:

  • A parent tour designed to orient parents to the overall program of the School. To schedule a tour, please contact Kathy Krahenbuhl, our Admission Secretary (919.383.6602 x 221 or kkrahenbuhl at cfsnc.org).
  • Submission of a completed application and non-refundable $75 application fee.
  • A completed application includes one confidential recommendation from a teacher who has worked with the student. (Please ask the teacher to email, fax, or send this directly to us.)
  • An interview between the parents and the Director of Admission. This is an informal conversation in which you can share stories about your child in and out of school, your hopes and concerns, and any questions you might have. After submitting an application, please call Kathy in the Admission Office to schedule this interview.
  • A visit by the prospective student. When possible, we schedule student visits after the parent interview, although sometimes they occur on the same day.

Families are notified about admission per the timetable listed below.

First-year applicants: Apply by January 4

File complete by January 31

Notification date: February 17

Reply by March 3

Applicants to L2-L4: Apply by January 15

File complete by February 15

Notification date: March 3

Reply by March 17

Decisions and Notification

Students are accepted, placed in the waiting pool, or denied admission to the School. Incomplete applications are automatically placed in the waiting pool.

We welcome applications at all times, and when spaces open up, the Admission Committee looks to the entire waiting pool, which then includes applications received after January 15. After the first round, admissions occur on a rolling basis, so it’s never too late to apply to CFS.

Tuition Assistance

Decisions regarding admission are made independently of consideration of families’ financial situations, although we do not always have sufficient funds to offer assistance to all the families whose children we would like to enroll. The admission and tuition aid processes are concurrent so that when we offer admission to a family, we can notify them about the tuition they will be expected to pay. To apply for assistance, please go to Tuition Aid Data Services (TADS): www.tuitionaid.com.

If a family does not apply for tuition aid when applying for admission, we will not expect to consider them for assistance in the next year unless their financial circumstances change in unexpected ways.

Limited funds for tuition aid make it impossible to accommodate every family’s unique financial circumstances. If you wonder whether your family would qualify for assistance, please feel free to call the Director of Admission to discuss your situation, but only a TADS analysis can reveal whether your family qualifies for aid.

Future Consideration

If your child is placed in the waiting pool, we will contact you in the fall to ask whether you wish your child’s application to be reactivated for consideration for the next year, without charge. If we offer your child a space in the first round and you refuse it, you would need to reapply if you determined that you wanted your child considered at a later time.

The Head of School bears the final responsibility for all admission decisions. Questions concerning such matters should be directed first to the Director of Admission and then, if necessary, to the Head of School’s office. If you have questions about the status of your application, please feel free to call the Admission Secretary or the Director of Admission – not the Head Teacher – to request information. When in doubt, please call or email us. We are eager to work with you!

Revised May 2016

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Carolina Friends School          
4809 Friends School Road
Durham, NC 27705
919.383.6602 tel / 919.383.6009 fax / info@cfsnc.org

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