Fee Waiver Eligibility Requirements 2021-22
Everyone has the potential to learn. A student’s family income should not determine his or her educational or career opportunities. During the 2021-22 school year, ACT will again offer the ACT® test fee waiver program to eligible students.
ACT encourages schools/agencies to emphasize to students the importance of sitting for the test. Since funds are limited, when students do not follow through to test, they not only miss a valuable opportunity, but could prevent other students from testing.
Each student who receives an ACT Fee Waiver must meet ALL eligibility requirements:
1. Be currently enrolled in high school in the 11th or 12th grade.
2. Be testing in the United States, US territories, or Puerto Rico.
3. Meet one or more of the indicators of economic need listed below:
In order to serve as many economically disadvantaged students as possible, only students who meet the eligibility requirements outlined in this document and on the fee waiver form are eligible for an ACT Fee Waiver. ACT may audit school and agency compliance with fee waiver requirements. In doing so, ACT may request written evidence of student eligibility. Ineligible students may be billed, and noncompliant schools/
agencies may be denied additional waivers. Note: High no-show rates may indicate inappropriate distribution of waivers and may result in an audit.
What the ACT Fee Waiver Covers
An ACT Fee Waiver covers the registration fee for either the ACT (no writing) or the ACT with writing. The waiver covers one report to a student’s high school and up to six college choices (at the time he or she registers). After registration, the student can request up to an additional 20 regular score reports for free
• Enrolled in a federal free or reduced-price lunch program at school, based on US Department of Agriculture (USDA) income levels (see table).
• Enrolled in a program for the economically disadvantaged (for example, a federally funded program such as GEAR UP or Upward Bound).
Note: If the student participates in a program, but is not economically disadvantaged, they are not eligible for a fee waiver.
• Resides in a foster home, is a ward of the state, or is homeless.
• Family receives low-income public assistance or lives in federally subsidized public housing.
• Family’s total annual income is at or below USDA levels for free or reduced-price lunches on the USDA Food and Nutrition Service website.
Waivers may NOT be used to pay for any additional fees, products, or services.
Additional Benefits for Students • Access to Test Prep Tools
Students registering with a fee waiver will also receive free access to ACT® Kaplan Online Prep Live, which includes full access to ACT® Online Prep™. – Students registering with a fee waiver online or via phone will have ACT Kaplan Online Prep Live automatically added to their order at no cost. – Students registering via paper registration packet will need to create a student account with the ACT ID provided on the admission ticket. Once the account is created, the order will automatically be processed.
Note: All students will receive an email with their login information.
USDA Food and Nutrition Service
Visit the USDA Food and Nutrition Service website (https://www.fns. usda.gov/school-meals/income-eligibility-guidelines) to access the most current income eligibility guidelines.
Note: Eligibility guidelines for the applicable school year were not available at the time this document was published.
ACT offers a Request for Waiver or Deferral of College Admission Application Fee form for students that qualify for an ACT Fee Waiver. Please complete this form for students to use as part of their application process. The form is available at www.act.org/the-act/resources.
Eligible students may use a maximum of FOUR separate ACT Fee Waivers. Additional waivers for a student will be denied, and the student will be billed. The waiver is used once the student registers, or submits a standby request, even if the student does not test on the requested test date. (Such students may request a test date change and pay the associated fee.) For a current list of fees, visit www.actstudent.org.
Fee Waiver Procedures 2021-22
• Fee waivers are valid through August 31 each year. • Only current, official ACT Fee Waivers may be used.
• Altered, photocopied, or obsolete forms and requests on letterhead will
NOT be accepted.
• Each waiver has a serial number printed in the top-right corner. Instructions for submitting the serial number online or returning the fee waiver form with a paper registration are on the printed form under “How to Apply this Fee Waiver.”
• Students registering online must pay any fees not covered by the waiver with a credit card before submitting the registration.
• Each request is valid only if it is properly completed and personally signed by both the student and a school/agency official.
Each summer, ACT ships fee waiver forms to high schools in the United States that had students who used fee waivers during the preceding academic
year. The number of fee waiver forms mailed to each school is based on the number of waivers students at that school used the prior year.
IMPORTANT: If a school had an unusually high proportion of fee waiver students who did not test, the number of fee waivers ACT sends will be based on the number of students who actually tested.
ACT Fee Waivers are available to high schools, active Upward Bound projects, and qualifying not-for-profit assistance organizations. Officials who identify eligible students may contact ACT to order fee waivers. Fee waiver forms are normally delivered within ten working days of receiving the order.
Please monitor your fee waiver quantities. Reorder only if needed prior to the registration period for each test date.
To order or reorder fee waivers, please visit www.act.org/the-act/ supportmaterials.
If you have any questions about placing an order, please contact ACT Customer Care at 319.337.1320.
Advising Eligible Students
As you identify eligible students and assist them with using the ACT Fee Waiver, please keep the following tips in mind:
• Encourage students to:
1. Register well enough in advance to allow for maximum prep time. Once registration is complete, your student will have time to benefit from the features in ACT® Kaplan Online Prep Live including a personalized learning plan and library ofresources to refresh their knowledge and build confidence in advance of test day.
2. Follow through and test.
Please emphasize to students who register with a fee waiver the importance of sitting for the ACT. ACT has noted a higher-than-expected number of fee-waiver-eligible students who register but then do not test. When students do not test, they not only miss a valuable opportunity but may also prevent other students from testing at that center.
• What happens when a student does not test?
Except for standby students denied admission, please advise fee waiver students who do not test to reschedule for a later ACT test date.
Rescheduling will allow them to “reapply” the fee waiver to the new test date and may encourage them to follow through and test. Please note that the student will need to pay the test date change fee. Late fees will also apply after the registration deadline has passed. Students who choose not to reschedule can register for another test date with their second fee waiver if it has not already been used.
Please discourage students from using two fee waivers simply to register twice—they do not receive the full benefits of their waivers unless they actually test.
• Use the Request for Waiver or Deferral of College Admission Application Fee Form
There is no limit to how many times a student can use this form when applying to schools. Have students send the completed form along with their college application. Colleges and universities may consider the request but are not obligated to waive or defer their admission fees for any particular applicants.
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