Students at The Downtown School are intellectually curious and academically capable, and they have a collaborative yet adventurous spirit. They embrace learning with purpose and enjoy multiple modes of expression. They come from diverse backgrounds and share a willingness to listen to and learn from others. They actively cultivate an authentic school culture, all the while contributing to the world to make a difference.

Please read below for details on the application process and requirements. For questions, please contact the admissions office at or 206-717-2849.

Tuition and Financial Aid

Tuition for The Downtown School’s 2019-2020 school year is $18,200. Tuition includes a Chromebook (laptop) and course-related software that all students use.

If the full tuition at The Downtown School is a stretch for your family's resources, a modest amount of financial aid is available. We are currently engaged in raising a financial aid endowment. To apply for financial aid, you must submit an application through the School & Student Services website. Applications for financial aid are due February 6, 2020.


During the year, The Downtown School holds a number of open houses for prospective students and families. Open houses allow you to visit the campus, learn about our programs, and meet the teaching team and support staff. For students and families considering enrollment for or after fall 2020, open houses have been scheduled for:

  • Sunday, October 6, from 2:00-4:00 p.m.

  • Tuesday, October 29, from 6:00-8:00 p.m.

  • Saturday, December 14, from 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

The Downtown School also offers family tours to those who have submitted a preliminary application and fee. The family tours are optional and do not impact a student’s application.

The Application Process

Once a student decides The Downtown School may be a good fit, the first step is to create an admission account in Ravenna, our application management system. Through Ravenna, families can manage applications online, complete family forms, and request teacher evaluations and transcripts. Applications for the 2020-2021 school year will be due January 16, 2020.

Application Types

Once a family has created an account in Ravenna, they will be asked to choose an application type. Select the Rainier Scholars application type only if the student is currently a Rainier Scholar. Please note that The Downtown School does not enroll international students. All applicants must be U.S. citizens or U.S permanent residents.   

Preliminary application and application fee

The preliminary application form is used to gather general information about an applicant's family. The non-refundable $25 application fee is due upon completion of the online form. The Downtown School will extend fee waivers to qualifying families. Please contact to request a fee waiver.

Please note: The preliminary application form must be completed before the student interview.


Families can schedule an interview after filling out the preliminary application and paying the application fee. During rolling admissions, families may schedule an interview by emailing

The interview process is a 20-minute, informal conversation with the applicant and is followed by 10 minutes for parents and guardians to ask questions of their student's interviewer. Students do not need to prepare anything in advance of the interview and may dress casually.

Admissions testing

The SSAT is the preferred admissions test for applicants to The Downtown School. To register for the SSAT: Visit for registration and other specific information, including access to the practice portal. Fee waivers for the SSAT test and practice portal are available to qualified families. Please contact to request a fee waiver.

Independent School Entrance Examination (ISEE) scores are also accepted and do not put a student’s application at any disadvantage. To register for the ISEE: Visit Please note: The Downtown School is not able to offer fee waivers for the ISEE.

All testing must occur during the current school year. Scores from prior years or summer months will not be accepted. There is no minimum score requirement for admission.

Student essay

The Downtown School uses the Puget Sound Independent Schools (PSIS) Student Essays form. The essay is an applicant’s opportunity to share more about who they are and what makes them unique. The student should complete the form within Ravenna without help from anyone (parents, guardians, teachers, etc.).

Student interests and activities

To learn more about the applicant and how they spend time outside of the classroom, The Downtown School uses the PSIS Student Interests and Activities form within Ravenna. The student should share their extracurricular activities, interests, and/or responsibilities on the form.

Parent/guardian statement

The Downtown School uses the PSIS Parent/Guardian Statement form to learn more about the applicant's strengths and challenges from the parent/guardian perspective.

School administrator form

An administrator at the student’s current school completes the school administrator form. Applicants delegate (assign) the form within Ravenna.

Teacher evaluations

The Downtown School uses the PSIS Teacher Evaluation form. Two teacher evaluations are required. One evaluation must be from a humanities teacher (English, history/social studies) and one from a math or science teacher.  At least one evaluation must be from a current teacher.

Teacher evaluation forms are also delegated within Ravenna.

Student records

Student records must come directly from the applicant’s school. Please use Ravenna to delegate a request to the school(s) for these records:

  • The first complete report card from the current 2019-2020 academic year.

  • Full-year transcripts from the 2018-2019 academic year.

Nondiscrimination Policy

The Downtown School does not discriminate on the basis of age, color, creed, disability, marital status, national or ethnic origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, use of a trained guide dog or service animal by a person with a disability, or genetic information. This policy applies to all areas of student concerns (admissions, educational policies, financial aid, and other school-administered programs) as well as to all areas of employee concerns and hiring, discipline, promotion, and termination. The Downtown School is an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE).