Financial Aid Application
Note: Renewal of awards is not automatic. It is the responsibility of the student or their family to reapply each year.

All students who wish to be considered and receive Financial Aid for the 2018-2019 school year will need to submit a complete application for Financial Aid which includes:

1) 2018-2019 Registration Form

2) CMSS Financial Aid Student Information Sheet

3) Two (2) Confidential Reference Statement Forms completed by non-family members

4) Confidential Financial Information which includes:

--Copies of 2017 Federal Tax Returns (FORM 1040) and W2s–Mandatory for ALL applicants

--Record of non-taxable income such as veteran, social security, welfare benefits, AFDC or ADC, if applicable.

--Documentation of other pertinent information you wish to have considered.


These confidential reference statements must be completed by a teacher, coach, instructor, community leader, religious leader or faculty member. They will not be accepted if they are filled out by a family member. All applicants must submit two (2) Confidential Reference Statements. All applicants currently studying at CMSS must have one reference from their CMSS individual instruction teacher. It is preferable that the second reference also be from a music teacher. However, a reference from an elementary, secondary, or post-secondary school teacher is acceptable. It is preferable that the reference forms be sent directly to CMSS rather than returned to the scholarship applicant for delivery.

All applicants are required to submit copies of their Federal income tax returns (FORM 1040) and W2s (state returns are not necessary). You may include other supporting financial data (such as private school tuition etc.) with your tax returns.
If parents are married but filing separately, copies of financial information for both parents must be submitted. Your application is not considered complete until copies of your federal tax returns and W2s are submitted. This means that those applicants who do not submit tax forms by the application deadline will not be considered. CMSS cannot be responsible for returning forms and supporting documentation. Therefore, applicants should send only copies of all tax and supporting material.

Please note: CMSS cannot make copies of any forms. Copies must be made prior to submission.

Who is eligible for financial aid?

Financial aid is considered a need-based award and is based on the following criteria:
-Financial need
-Seriousness of purpose and motivation
-Consistent attendance and progress

Financial aid awards are given as a specific dollar amount and are valid for the full academic year. Federal tax records from the most recent filing period are required as documentation.

CMSS offers financial aid to students in grades K-12 who are 18 years of age and under. Financial aid recipients may receive funding for one lesson, class, or ensemble. Notification of awards will be in writing and mailed to your home; awards are stated as specific dollar amounts. Awards are valid for the full academic year. Families with more than one child may receive financial aid funding for up to two children.

If you are applying for financial aid for two children, you must fill out two separate financial aid packets, one for each child, but only one copy of Confidential Financial Information materials is needed. Additional applications can be picked up at the CMSS front desk.

How do I register for lessons upon acceptance?

Students who would like to reserve a preferred time slot with their instructor may make a payment at the original lesson price consisting of a registration fee and a 4 lesson deposit. The deposit is usually made in the summer months to lock in a time slot. The deposit will be subtracted from the total tuition if and when the student is allocated funds by CMSS. The remainder of the tuition will be divided into 9 monthly bills dated from September 2018 to May 2019.

If you would rather wait until you receive the financial aid before you register you may do so. When you receive the acceptance letter you will also find a Financial Aid Acceptance Form included in the mailing. You must sign and return the Financial Aid Acceptance Form to the Registrar and schedule your lesson, class or ensemble with her at that time. You will need to bring a form of payment to make your lesson, class or ensemble deposit at time of registration.

Important Information for all Applicants

1) Students who do not complete the application forms will not be eligible for consideration. Funds are limited and applying for financial aid does not guarantee that it will be received.
2) Because funding is limited, priority for financial aid is given to current CMSS students. Financial aid for new students, if available, will be granted based on a first-come, first-served basis, beginning with students who are currently on the 2018/19 financial aid wait list.
3) Those students who have made less than satisfactory progress according to teacher evaluation, not registered on time, not submitted their scholarship application on time, and/or not paid any owed balance by prescribed deadlines may be placed on probation or denied financial aid funding outright. Funding for subsequent semesters during the year will be contingent upon the student’s ability to meet CMSS standards of good attendance, progress and practice, adherence to CMSS policies and procedures, and availability of funds.

If financial aid is granted, upon acceptance the applicant must schedule a meeting with the Director of Enrollment and Family Engagement. You can schedule a registration appointment by emailing her at or by calling 413-732-8428, ext. 104. You must return the Financial Aid Acceptance Form with your signature and make a lesson, class or ensemble deposit in order to officially register and accept the financial aid.

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