Financial Aid Information

**Updated 9/13/18**

Saratoga High School Scholarships

We are fortunate to have an incredibly generous community and are able to offer a variety of scholarships for SHS students only. To be considered for an SHS scholarship, please complete the SHS Scholarship Application.

Financial Aid Information

Navigating through all the different types of financial aid can be daunting and confusing, but take heart and know that there are many different ways to fund your education! The information here is meant to provide a brief overview of the different types of grants and loans available but please refer to the websites listed for more details.


    In order to be eligible for financial aid at most colleges, students must complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). The FAFSA is used to determine a student’s financial aid package (i.e. eligibility for various grants, work study and different types of student loans). Even if you know you will not qualify for any free aid, filling out this form is often the first step to applying for many types of aid including federal loans and college scholarships. Senior students and parents can file their FAFSA online with the Department of Education at their website


Grants are need-based financial aid that does not need to be repaid.

Cal Grants

Cal Grants are given based on academic record, financial need and eligibility requirements. The Senior GPAs have been electronically uploaded to the Student Aid Commission. Students do not need to complete a Cal Grant GPA Verification Form.  To be eligible for the Cal Grant, students must fill out a FAFSA application by March 2nd.

After you have filed a FAFSA, you can go on-line and check the status of your Cal Grant application by logging on to WebGrants for Students and creating a WebGrants for Students account. This secure site will let you view the status of your Cal Grant or Chafee Grant application, update your address, view payment history or report your college of attendance to the Commission.

Federal Pell Grants

Pell Grants are need-based grants awarded to undergraduates who qualify. You must submit the FAFSA in order to be eligible for Pell Grants. This is money from the federal government.


Student Loans: are monies students borrow that must be repaid with interest.

Federal Direct Loans

You must complete the FAFSA in order to qualify for direct loans. Direct loans are awarded by the US Department of Education (as opposed to a private financial institution). There are two types of direct loans: subsidized and unsubsidized.

  1. Subsidized loans will not be charged interest while enrolled in school at least half-time, during the grace period, and during deferments.

  2. Unsubsidized loans will accrue interest all periods, including the time in school, the grace period and deferment periods. For more information go to

Parent Loans: There are also direct loans available for parents, more commonly referred to as the Direct Plus Loan. For more information, please go to

  1. Federal Perkins Loans are loans where colleges are the lender and award the loan funds. Students pay no interest on their loans while enrolled at least half-time and must begin repaying the loan 9 months after graduation, leaving school, or being enrolled less than half-time. The interest rate is fixed. You must complete the FAFSA in order to qualify for Perkins loans. For more information go to

2. Federal Stafford Loans another type of federal loan for students. There are two types of Stafford loans: subsidized and unsubsidized:

Subsidized Stafford loans means the government will pay the interest on your loan up till 6 months after the student leaves school.

Unsubsidized Stafford loans are available regardless of financial need; however, the student is responsible for all interest accrued from the time the loan is disbursed.

• Website: You must complete the FAFSA in order to qualify for Stafford loans,

Federal PLUS loans for parents may also serve as a supplemental source of money for students IF the student has a Stafford loan.


The CSS/PROFILE is utilized by some colleges, universities and scholarship programs to award non-federal student aid funds. In order to complete the PROFILE, students must register with the College Board at and you will be charged a fee for submitting your application. 

**For more information about filing the FAFSA and other financial aid information, be sure to attend the Financial Aid Workshop presented at the Campus Center at West Valley College on Tuesday, January 20th at 6:30 pm. All college bound Seniors and their parents are welcome.