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Do you have any programs for boys between 1 and 2 years old?
No. Our program begins with boys who are two years old by June 1.
Where can I get the most specific information about the curriculum, programs and philosophy of PDS?

The PDS website provides much information about the school.

Every class has its own section with curriculum, goals, projects, educational links, homework assignments, etc.

We distribute a printed version of our most current curriculum guide at Open House. You may also request one from the admission office or view our online curriculum guide.

Once my son is enrolled, what does PDS expect of me?
We are blessed to have a school in which parents and guardians are actively engaged in positive and constructive partnership with the school. As a school, we seek to build close bonds with our families; to be accessible, open, and user-friendly; and to assure that our relationships and dialogue with parents and guardians enable us to serve our boys as well as possible. PDS needs and expects its parents and guardians to support the school’s mission, core values, faculty, administrators, staff, curriculum, policies and decisions, and reserves the right to dismiss from the school a boy whose parents or guardians are unable, unwilling, or incapable of this support.
What if I have additional school admission questions?

You may call Lyndsey Kelley, Interim Director of Admission, to arrange a meeting or tour with her. We want to provide you with as much information and resources about PDS as we can.

We hope to do so in as personalized a manner as possible.

What if we change our mind about PDS or move out of town after we have accepted the PDS offer of admission?

At the time you sign the contract with PDS, you are contractually obligated for the full year's tuition.  A family moving 100 air miles or further from Memphis loses their deposit if they withdraw on or before June 1.

If the withdrawal occurs between June 1 and August 1, the family is obligated for 50% of tuition and fees. After August 1, the family is obligated for the full year's tuition and fees.

If my son is not admitted, may I appeal this decision?

No. There is no forum, process or person for any appeal. However, under certain circumstances, your son may be eligible to go through the admission process at a future date.

If my son is placed in the waiting pool, what are his prospects of being admitted?

Occasionally families move from the area and openings occur for grade levels at maximum enrollment. The school will offer contracts to students in the waiting pool for those openings. 

How long will I have to decide whether or not to accept the offer of admission?

You will have until March 1, approximately five days after new student enrollment contracts are issued for the next school year.  At that time your spot will be released.  You must turn in your contract and a non-refundable deposit to be enrolled.  

If I called the admission office years ago when my son was first born, does that have an impact on his chance of admission?

No. The date at which you first contacted PDS or submitted an application has no bearing whatsoever on admission selection.

If I am a member of Second Presbyterian Church and my son is capable of doing the work, is he guaranteed acceptance?

No. In cases of similarly strong applicants, a connection like that can be given some degree of consideration by the Admission Committee, but spaces are not set aside for any category of applicant.

If I already have a connection with PDS (another son enrolled, etc.) and my son is capable of doing the work, is he guaranteed acceptance?

No. In cases of similarly strong applicants, a connection like that can be given some degree of consideration by the Admission Committee, but spaces are not set aside for any category of applicant.

How does the variable tuition process work?

A small, confidential Scholarship Committee will make awards to those families that qualify (as determined by SSS). Despite our strong commitment to our variable tuition program and to enrolling a very strong student body, each year the number of accepted applicants who qualify for tuition assistance is more than we are able to support. Therefore, a portion of the demonstrated need is typically awarded.

After March 1, tuition assistance funds are limited. PDS will not make tuition assistance awards to families that do not qualify or for amounts that exceed the demonstrated need.

If we are applying for variable tuition, will that have a bearing on the admission decision?

No. We make our admission decision without regard to a family’s financial circumstances. It is our aim to provide tuition assistance for each family that qualifies for it. Finances should not prevent a boy from attending PDS. PDS provides over one million dollars in tuition assistance.

Does it help to contact individuals (current PDS families, PDS teachers, trustees) to ask them to “put in a good word?”

No. PDS makes its admission decisions not based on connections or who families might or might not know, but based on broad admission policies and careful reviews of potential students. Our goal is to offer contracts to boys who match the mission of our school.

Who makes the admission decision?

The Admission Committee makes the decision. The committee is composed of 10-12 teachers, administrators and learning specialists. The school does not announce names of the committee members. The committee will meet consistently during January and early February to carefully review every file and select applicants in accordance with the school’s admission policy. During rolling admission the committee meets when the need arises. The Head of School does not serve on the committee or review individual files.

What type of testing does the school use, and what does it measure?

PDS does not release the name of the tests it uses for its Early Childhood applicants, but the school carefully selects (and may periodically change) age-appropriate and culturally sensitive tests that have been deemed both reliable and valid for the purpose of cognitive, developmental, and achievement screening.

For older applicants, the school uses the Educational Records Bureau (ERB) achievement test and other standardized tests.

May I see test results and the admission file for my child?

While not showing you the actual test, our Director of Admission will discuss your son’s results if you wish.  Files will not be released, as they contains confidential reports. 

What is the best way to prepare my son for his evaluation day at PDS?

Make sure he gets a good night’s sleep and eats a good breakfast that morning. Be low key about the evaluation day (campus visit) at PDS. For early childhood applicants, you might want to discuss the day as a fun chance to go look at a school, play with some other boys and do some work. Don’t let him see you anxious or nervous about the day. Keep him relaxed.

What if my son is sick when he is scheduled to be evaluated?

Call or email Lyndsey Kelley, Interim Director of Admission, to reschedule.

When is Open House?

See the Admission Events page.

When will we find out if our son is admitted?

Late February.  Letters will be mailed around February 24.  We will attempt to call families whose sons are not accepted before this date. After March 1, you will be notified of the admission decision as soon as your son's file is complete and the admission committee meets to make the decision.

For what grades does PDS accept students, and how many openings are there in those grades?

PDS accepts students in Young Knights (age 2) through 6th grade. Our Young Knights class is our largest entry point with approximately 30 spots available. 

What are the steps in the admission process?

Visit our How to Apply page to learn more.

My son was born in late spring. What if I wish to "hold him back?"

Your son will be evaluated for the grade he is eligible for. However, be sure to let the admission office know your concerns and your preference and we will take this into consideration. 

A school

That’s why each gets his own customized education plan and the support of our staff of learning specialists.

Boys are loud and messy and can't sit still. And that's completely okay. We're experts at directing that energy.

Our character education program, Building Boys, Making Men, is integrated into every corner of our campus.

Macbooks, Mandarin, Design Thinking, and Maker’s Club. Even our littlest guys are learning to code.