Whitaker Scholar Program

Whitaker Family Scholarship Program from The New School on Vimeo.


The New School is excited to introduce the Whitaker Family Scholars Program. The New School awards three $5,000 scholarships per grade to new incoming students starting in 7th grade, renewed annually and totaling $30,000 per student over his or her school career.

“The school has made a commitment to maintain a socioeconomically diverse community,” said Dennis Chapman, The New School’s President and Head of School. “We will recruit outstanding scholars to benefit from The New School’s innovative educational environment, who then go on to lead and develop creative solutions to effect positive change in our world.”

The Don and Pauline Whitaker family have generously established the scholarship fund in order to provide talented students access to the best education available in Northwest Arkansas. The New School’s progressive and adaptive learning environment, empowered faculty and inclusive community focus on developing the whole child and preparing them for college and life.

“Our family has proudly supported The New School in many ways over the past ten years, said Amy Whitaker Merryman. “We have helped build playgrounds and classrooms; and now, we are excited to provide opportunities for more students to attend this amazing school. We deeply believe in the school’s mission and it is our hope that the recipients of this scholarship will carry on the lasting impact of a well-rounded education for many years.”

Eligibility requirements include demonstrated record of academic excellence, a score at or above the 90th percentile on a recognized standard achievement test in reading and/or math and demonstrated financial need by qualifying for tuition assistance. Upon acceptance into the Whitaker Scholar program, students must maintain a non-weighted 3.5 GPA, demonstrate financial need and show good citizenship and enthusiasm for the school.

For more information, please contact the Office of Admission and Financial Aid at jack.sweeney@thenewschool.org or call 479-521-7037.


  • New students entering 7th grade or above as designated by the Whitaker Family Scholar Committee.
    • THREE scholarships to be awarded per grade to students 7th grade or above.
  • Demonstrate a record of academic excellence that exemplifies characteristics inline with the school’s mission.
  • Applicant must score at or above the 90th percentile on a recognized standard achievement test in reading and/or math.
  • Demonstrate financial need by qualifying for tuition assistance through FAST.

Steps to Apply

  • Complete and submit the Whitaker Scholar Application.
  • Write one-two page Personal Essay (questions on application).
  • Applicant and Parents/Guardians meet with Whitaker Scholar Committee for personal interview.
  • Submit a financial assistance application through FAST.
  • Student must go through the admission process and be offered enrollment.


  • $5,000 scholarship towards tuition renewed annually ($20,000 over school career).
  • Applicant may receive financial assistance for remaining demonstrated need (as defined through FAST application) - not to exceed total recommended by FAST (per Arkansas Activities Association).

Non-Covered Expenses

  • Athletic participation fees and equipment
  • Activity participation fees
  • Field trips
  • Summer activities/camp

Additional Information

  • Scholarship continues annually as long as student remains at The New School and:
    • Maintains non-weighted 3.50 GPA (TNS may show leeway with rationale and committee approval).
    • Student and family demonstrates overall continued good citizenship and enthusiasm for The New School.
    • Demonstrates financial need each year through FAST.
  • If chosen, Scholar and Parents/Guardians must agree to participate in marketing campaign.