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Apply To Private Schools With the Standard Application Online

The Standard Application Online (SAO) is the most efficient way to apply to 400 private schools. Take comfort in knowing that schools give SAO applications equal priority. Save yourself the time and frustration of poring over multiple application forms and essays by applying with the most-used common private school application today!

SAO by the numbers

applications submitted
participating schools
hours saved on average

Account Creation

Get started today by creating an account in our family portal. You can also use your account to access the SSAT and the Character Skills Snapshot.

Family Profile

The SAO easily handles multi-household families, letting schools know whom to contact and where to send their materials.

Interests and Achievements

Help schools get to know your child by submitting interests and academic or personal achievements. Even upload multimedia links such as YouTube channels or blog pages to highlight athletic, art, or writing abilities.

Required Documentation

Add parent statements, student essays, recommendations, and transcripts once and seamlessly submit them to all schools to which you apply. School-specific instructions and supplemental forms are clearly indicated.

Recommendation & Transcript Requests

Make recommendation requests and track submissions through the SAO. Likewise, request transcripts from school administrators by officially signing release forms through the system.

Standardized Test Results

Track individual school requirements for the SSAT and the Character Skills Snapshot, and individually release scores and results to each school.

Financial Aid

Financial aid applications are managed separately through each school; however, you indicate whether your family intends to apply for tuition assistance on the SAO.

All-in-One Dashboard

Track individual school deadlines and the completion of all SAO applications through one convenient dashboard!

Family Support

Have a question or hit a snag? No problem! Quickly access FAQ answers in our Help Center, or contact our friendly Support team for more detailed questions.

School Participation

Participating schools give SAO submissions equal consideration as those submitted through the school’s website. In many cases, schools have integrated the SAO with their website's application.

Application Fees

All school application fees are charged through the SAO, and the SAO processing fee is only $10 per application. Families that receive an application fee waiver from the school won’t incur either charge.

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Let's Talk About Interviewing

Want the inside scoop on admissions interviews for private schools? Listen to Kila McCann from The Bolles School and Lisa Pelrine from Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall discuss what they look for from students along with their advice for families going through the interview process.

What Our Schools Are Saying

"We know that many families find the school application process complex and daunting...The SAO is a rich application platform that is both family friendly and provides admission officers with ample information on each applicant.”

Doug Price

Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid
Middlesex (MA)

"At a time when we are trying to reduce barriers, create access, and alleviate unnecessary stress on families, the value of the SAO has never been more evident."

Quentin McDowell

Head of School
Mercersburg Academy (PA)

Admission advice to help you get in.

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Let’s get going!

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One application, over 400 participating schools! Start saving time today with the SAO.