School refunds $1,000 per student, provides over $1 million in financial aid for community members

Ethan Lachman

*Correction: The school has given only a small fraction of the financial aid to employees. Almost all of the money has gone to families.

Board of Trustees Chair Alan Wilson (P ’10, ’13 and ’15) announced the return of $1,000 of this year’s tuition per student because of differences between the online and in-person learning experiences in an email Monday. Wilson said that since the pandemic has greatly impacted the community’s operations, the school decided to give the rebates.

“Harvard-Westlake strives to deliver the very best educational experience for our students in the most cost-effective way possible,” Wilson said. “Each year, the board is tasked with setting a tuition level calculated to enable the school to provide such an experience. With our campuses largely closed to students, operational expenses have been somewhat lower this year, yet the financial needs of many [Harvard-Westlake] families and employees have been considerably greater as a result of the pandemic.”

Additionally, Wilson said the school has provided over $1 million in emergency financial aid for families, faculty and staff during the pandemic. In the letter, he encouraged parents to donate some of the money they were refunded to help the school community.

“[We will also be] providing an opportunity for you to direct any part of this amount toward a year-end recognition fund for [Harvard-Westlake] faculty and staff if you so choose,” Wilson said in the letter. “I hope you will agree that they have done a remarkable job of adapting to remote instruction and providing inspiration and devoted care for your children.”