For schools using the Admissions module in SchoolAdmin, an Application Fee can be collected from families upon submission of their student's Application Form. You can also use custom fee rules to waive fees or set differing amounts for certain students. Read on or watch this short video to learn more.

How-To: Manage the Application Fee

To configure the Application Fee settings, navigate to Settings -> Financial -> Application Fee in your SchoolAdmin site.

Within the Application Fee Setup page, you have access to the following options:

  • Collect Application Fee: Check this box to activate collection of the application fee on your application form.

  • Default Fee Amount: Default amount to be paid as an application fee.

  • Payment Methods: Check the boxes of the payment methods you want available to parents paying the application fee. Please note: You must have a payment processor set up and integrated with SchoolAdmin in order to accept Credit Card or Electronic Check payments.

  • Application Fee Rules: Any Application Fee Rules will be listed here. Application Fee Rules can be used to assess different application fee amounts for students based on field selections made on the Application Form. For example, if you want to charge a different fee for international students or waive the fee for children of faculty, you can do this with fee rules. Contact SchoolAdmin Support to add or change fee rules.

Remember to click the Save button after making any changes on the page!

Application Fee Paid Email Receipt

Parents or guardians who pay the application fee electronically will receive an automated application receipt email. This template is system generated, and not customizable or viewable within your communication templates. Below is a preview of the template with an important internal note in red for the purposes of this article:

Application Fee Waiver Code Best Practices

If your school uses application fee waiver codes, it is important to understand the benefits as well as some potential drawbacks.


  • You are able to reduce or completely waive an application fee for certain families based on any criteria you define (e.g. families that requested financial aid).

  • You can use a waiver code as an incentive for attending an event.


  • There is one waiver code for everyone. This can present challenges, as one parent could share the code with another parent without the school's consent. 

  • There are no expiration dates for waiver codes.

  • Parents will be prompted for the code on the Application Form, not on the payment page. 


If a waiver code is not used, Admins can "force submit" an application form that is in the 'Pending Payment' stage as a way of letting a parent bypass payment of the application fee. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Make sure that the parent saves the Application Form when they are on the payment page, not any prior pages. This puts the form in 'Pending Payment', which are the only forms that can be force submitted by admins.

  2. Go to the Forms Inbox -> Draft Applications and locate the student in the list.

  3. Click on the Submit Form button in the rightmost column and the system will ask you to confirm your choice: "Please confirm that you wish to submit this application and bypass the online payment process. Once submitted, this action cannot be undone."

  4. Once you confirm, the Application Form will be submitted for the student.

If you do not see the Submit Form button for a student, it is because the form is still in a Draft status instead of Pending Payment. Revisit Step 1 above with the parent.

If you need to record that the fee was waived and a reason for the waiver, you can request the addition of an internal field from SchoolAdmin Support. The field will live in the applicant record, and you can provide a set list of values to track different waiver code reasons or a yes/no field, both of which can be searched on within the Search & Reports page.

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