Why Support ACS
Tuition alone does not cover the cost of an ACS education; in fact, tuition covers only 83% of what it costs to educate your child. To cover that 17% deficit, we need to raise funds.
We rely on voluntary support for the Annual Fund to balance our budget. Donations to the Annual Fund support everything from campus renovations, financial aid and scholarships, to faculty and staff professional development, art, music, athletics, technology and supplies.
Frequently Asked Questions
All schools and universities need to constantly update their campuses to ensure that the facilities keep up with the program.
At ACS, our new building is the first we have constructed in 60 years. Part of the building is for academic purposes including 4 fifth grade classrooms, 3 music rooms, and 2 ES language classrooms. The remainder of the building is devoted to 16 faculty apartments and an apartment for the Head of School, including an entertainment space for various school functions. We save about $355,000 a year from having our new building.
We hire teachers from around the world because we are an American School. Our Board and most of our parents want us to offer an American Program with a complement of teachers who are up to date on the latest educational trends in the USA, and who are native speakers of English. This is very important to our identity.
Currently about 1/3 of our teachers are overseas hires, and this seems to be about the right ratio to maintain going forward. We want to end up with a good balance of excellent teachers from Lebanon and from abroad. When we recruit teachers from abroad, we need to fly them here, house, and support them.
Over the next few years ACS will turn its attention to our Master Plan. That plan calls for us to build an expansive new facility on the site of our green field. We will have 2 floors of parking below the building, a learning center, meeting and gathering space on the first two floors, classrooms for Middle School and High School, on the next three levels, a new gymnasium and fitness center on the top two floors, and a beautiful new field overlooking the sea on the roof. When that new building is complete, we can turn our attention to Early Years and Elementary School, and upgrade those facilities as well. Of course this plan will involve raising considerably more money.
Endowment is a corpus of funds that have been accumulated over time from endowed gifts to the school, from bequests, and from accumulated surpluses in the operating fund. Some gifts were made to support scholarships at school, some to support awards, and many are unrestricted.
ACS invests the endowment in the "Common Fund" in the USA. We have an investment committee of our Board of Trustees and they have authorized applying 4% of the three year rolling average of the endowment to the annual operating budget, funds that subsidize every ACS student.
Our goal is to raise more funds to support the endowment as a large endowment is the only way to mitigate tuition increases and hedge against unexpected expenses.
Yes, ACS has a number of different scholarships and offers some financial aid. About 5% of our students receive some sort of financial aid assistance from the school.
Students wishing scholarship or financial aid complete an application and demonstrate financial need. Earning a scholarship to attend ACS is very competitive. We have noticed that scholarship recipients often are some of our very best students.
Tuition goes up because we need to continually refurbish our facilities, add technology, strengthen our programs, and increase salaries and benefits in order to attract and retain excellent teachers.
As noted above, salaries and benefits make up the most significant part of our budget, and for salaries to increase; tuition must increase as well.
We have a Finance Committee of the Board of Trustees who review our finances regularly and prepare an annual budget for full board approval. We are also audited annually. This year our audit firm was Deloitte. We also have a dedicated Business Office team including highly qualified bookkeepers and accountants.
Whenever you have questions about ACS finances, you are invited to meet with Johnny Tanas, Business Manager.