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How does a 529 savings plan work?

The 529 savings plans were created by a federal law but are administered by the states. Parents create and put money into a 529 account, which is then invested in stocks and bonds, more like a 403(b) or a 401(k) than a bank savings account. They can select their level of risk: perhaps choosing a plan that invests in higher-risk options with higher rates of return for a child in first grade, then switching to safer options such as bonds as a child gets closer to college.

While the initial investment is taxed normally—through payroll taxes—the federal government doesn’t tax the growth parents see on their 529 funds (unlike bank interest or other investments, which count as income and are taxed). Before the new tax law, the saved 529 money could be used only for qualified higher education expenses such as college tuition, room and board, and books.

How did the new law change things?

Expanding to cover K–12 education was a natural, logical step. The tax plan says that the federal government will extend this benefit—not taxing the growth of the saved money—down to the primary and secondary level. So parents can begin saving as soon as a child is born, and can now use the money for elementary and high school expenses in addition to college costs. However, some state laws may not automatically follow the new federal expansion to K–12. Some states may decide to limit their benefits to college expenses only.

If I pay tuition at a Christian school, how can I take advantage of this?

1.      Check with your state 529 plan or tax department to make sure the state follows the federal law to include K–12 tuition as a qualified expense. Most state legislatures meet in January, so we anticipate these decisions could be made in the first quarter of the year.

2.      Set up a 529 plan. You can find out how by visiting the webpage for your state’s 529 plan. Often you can open an account through the site, though in some states you can use a broker or a bank. They are willing to help you; they want to make it easy for you to do.

3.      A 529 plan is designed as a savings plan, and the growth over time is where you’ll save on federal taxes. If you aren’t going to keep a balance, and your state does not offer other benefits, opening this account may not be fruitful. It may come down to whether you’re ready to risk your savings through investments or choose the safety of a regular bank savings account.

4.    Currently, 529 plans can make payments directly to colleges when it comes time to pay tuition. Check with your 529 plan administrator to see if that’s possible for primary and secondary schools. If not, you can request the money be sent directly to you, and can then use it to pay tuition. (Keep your receipts!)

As we continue to grow Rosehill Christian School, we want to show our appreciation to our existing families by rewarding them with a tuition discount for recruiting new families to our school. When a RCS family actively recruits a new (K-12) family we ask that an Eagle Buck be given to the prospective family.  Upon enrollment, the new family is to submit the completed Eagle Buck to the Business Office (when completing their contract).  The opportunity to submit an Eagle Buck expires at the end of the new student’s first day. After ninety days, the referring family and the new family will receive a tuition credit of $750 per new Kinder-12th student enrolled. (Student must be enrolled to receive the discount.) 

For example: An existing family refers a new family with 2 children to RCS and they decide to enroll their children. Ninety days after the first day of the new students’ attendance, BOTH families will receive a discount of $1,500 from their tuition bills. (Not valid for family members or new preschool students.)

If you should have any questions regarding the Eagle Buck program, please contact the business office. Eagle Buck redemption requires that the new students are enrolled on the date of disbursement. Eagle Buck redemption requires that the new students are enrolled on the date of disbursement. Eagle Bucks are not eligible for submission after the new student's first day.
Click HERE for an Eagle Buck!


A 50% ministry discount is available to individuals employed in full-time pastoral positions in a church whose Statement of Faith is consistent with RCS’ Statement of Faith. This discount is also available to full-time employees of Boys & Girls Country in Tomball. If approved, this discount may be applied to tuition only for Kindergarten -12th grade (excludes summit, preschool and fees). 

Full-time status is defined as paid employment for 30+ hours per week. (Pay rate must meet or exceed the current minimum wage.) Pastoral is defined as those individuals whose primary job function is to shepherd and disciple members of their church congregation (i.e. youth pastors, music ministers, praise & worship leaders, children’s pastors). Employees serving as a part of the support staff typically do not qualify for this discount. 

To apply for this 50% Tuition Discount, please complete the Ministry Discount Application. 
This discount is only available for your dependent children and must be submitted prior to March 1st or as part of the admissions process.  This application must be completed annually.

Click HERE for the Ministry Discount Application.
Need based financial assistance is available for qualifying families with children entering Kindergarten through 12th grade. RCS awards up to 75% off of the annual tuition (discount may not be combined).  Families awarded assistance are required to have tuition insurance and are expected to remain in good standing with the business office. Each year a new financial assistance application must be submitted.
  • Applications open on January 1, 2019 and close on April 15, 2019.
  • Applications are considered complete once tax documents have been received and verified.  Completed applications are processed as they are received from FAST.
  • If an applicant would like to find out how much assistance they will be granted prior to applying to Rosehill Christian School, the following steps are necessary:
  • Complete the financial assistance application on the website by following these prompts:
  1. Rcseagles.org
  2. Admissions
  3. Reduce your Tuition Bill
  4. FAST
  • Submit the required documents to FAST
  • Email Jessica Gehrke (jgehrke@rcseagles.org) with your cell number and email address as she will be your main point of contact through the admissions process. 
  • Copy afroelich@rcseagles.org on the email for FAST processing communication.

While the availability of school resources, the number of qualified applicants, and overall budgetary constraints influence financial assistance decisions, Rosehill Christian School is committed to making grants available to as many eligible applicants as possible. In an effort to make the process fair to all, Rosehill Christian School considers the following when making award decisions:

The primary responsibility for financing a student’s education rests with the family.
Both parents are expected to contribute to tuition. If a parent chooses not to work, Rosehill Christian School inputs an annual income for a non-working parent.

In the case of divorce or separation, Rosehill Christian School requires both parents to file an application for financial assistance. Rosehill Christian School is not bound by any divorce agreement specifying a parent’s responsibility for educational expenses.

Rosehill Christian School believes a family should invest in their child’s education before elective expenses, for example, secondary home ownership, club memberships, expensive car leases/purchases, and excessive vacations.

As a general rule we require financial disclosure of all parents regardless of status by which they have filed their taxes…to include both natural parents as well as any step-parents where a divorced parent has remarried. Parents not fulfilling their court ordered financial responsibilities are not exempted, and in fact their refusal to complete disclosure forms may impair the child’s chances for assistance. The only exceptions made tend to be when we cannot identify a responsible party through skip-tracing. Custody arrangements don’t have much of a bearing on aid eligibility as we consider all parents to share responsibility for the child’s development and educational success.



The Board of Directors has adopted the policy of funding most of the school’s annual operating expenses with tuition dollars. This decision means that tuition controls, in large part, the quality of the education Rosehill Christian School is able to offer. While recognizing that some sacrifice is appropriate for something as crucial as a child’s education, the Board acknowledges that financial assistance will be necessary to build and maintain the sort of student body to which RCS aspires. Consequently, since the beginning of the school in 1990, an annually determined amount of funding has been devoted to tuition assistance. 

In order for us to allocate our resources wisely and fairly, we have enlisted the help of Independent School Management's FAST (Financial Aid for School Tuition) program. ISM's FAST does not decide whether financial assistance will be given or how much to give; rather FAST provides a need-based financial aid analysis service. FAST provides the school with a report, which includes a recommendation of what a family should reasonably contribute toward tuition. All information from FAST is kept confidential. Applications are reviewed by the confidential Financial Aid Committee. The committee then makes recommendations to the Head of School relative to the allocation of financial assistance resources for the upcoming year. Upon approval by the Head of School, financial assistance offers are sent to families.

  • Click the “F.A.S.T.” Button 
  • Click “Start Application”
  • Financial information should be entered directly through the secure server. Space is provided to fill out additional information that may be pertinent to your application. If desired, you may utilize the “Quick Processing Wizard” to speed up the application process. 
  • Lastly, you will need to scan/mail the required tax documents directly to FAST as directed on the application. 
  • There will be a nominal non-refundable fee to process this application. 
  • Once completed the application will be available immediately for the Financial Assistance Committee’s review. You may be contacted by the Director of Business, Aimee Froelich if additional information is needed.


  • Once the application is entered the Financial Assistance Committee can access your application.
  • Financial Assistance Committee review of the FAST recommendation for each family’s completed online application.
  • Recommendation to the Head of School for allocation of financial assistance resources for the next year.
  • Head of School approval.
  • Financial Assistance offers are sent to families.

Providing excellence in Christ-centered education as an extension of the Christian Home

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