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Young Scholars Program FAQ

Overview   |  Eligibility  |  Placement Schools  |  How to Apply

When do students apply to SEEDS?
Students apply to the Young Scholars Program during the fourth and fifth grades, and begin classes in the fall of their fifth- or sixth-grade years.

Who is eligible to participate in the Young Scholars Program?
Students in the fourth and fifth grades who are at the top of their class academically may apply for admission to the SEEDS Young Scholars Program. To participate, students must come from families with incomes of $70,000 or less (for a family of up to four members). The income cap increases by $5,000 for every additional family member. Students must reside in Greater Newark (Newark, Irvington, Orange or East Orange) and be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.

How are students selected for the Young Scholars Program?
Students may apply to the program online. Students can also be nominated by their teachers, counselors and school principals. They must submit report cards, standardized test scores, personal essays and teacher recommendations. Finalists will be interviewed and will take an entrance exam for the program. 

How many students participate in the Young Scholars Program?
Each Young Scholars Program class has approximately 25 students.

How long is the Young Scholars Program?
Young Scholars participate in a 14-month program that begins with a summer program following fourth or fifth grade, continues to meet on Saturdays during fifth or sixth grade and culminates with an additional three-week summer program and overnight retreat the summer before sixth or seventh grade. The Young Scholars Program is only open to students in Greater Newark.

Where does the Young Scholars Program take place?
The Young Scholars Program currently takes place at Newark Academy in Livingston and The Delbarton School in Morrristown.

Is there a charge for SEEDS Programs?
No, there is no charge for participating in any SEEDS programs. We are a nonprofit organization funded entirely by private donations.

Does SEEDS provide scholarships to independent schools?
SEEDS works with our partner schools to obtain 90-100% in financial aid and scholarships for our families. The money comes directly from the independent schools.

How does the independent school application process work?
Our placement team works with each family to determine the best fit for each student. After months of research, families generally apply to 5-10 selective schools. Based on acceptances received, families make their final selection.

Is transportation provided?
Yes, SEEDS provides free transportation to all our students. For the Young Scholars Program, we provide door-to-door transportation for all classes and field trips.

Do you give out homework?
Yes. Because SEEDS is an academic program, homework is given to students during most class meetings. Teachers make themselves available during the week by phone and email to answer student questions.

What do students do on Saturdays?
The students take classes on Saturdays during the academic year. There are academic classes in English and Math. In addition to classes, students work on applications to independent schools. There are also workshops to help our students with interviews, applications, and career development. Field trips occasionally take place on Saturdays.

Do you help with college?
Once graduates are placed, our Guidance team provides annual visits, guidance (academic, social and college selection support), and a network for professional development.