Illinois Math and Science Academy opens out-of-state, tuition-based enrollment

IMSA, which enrolls 650 Illinois students, said it would accept “a small group” of out-of-state students for the 2023-24 school year.

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The Illinois Math and Science Academy in Aurora is for the first time accepting out-of-state, tuition-based applications.

The Illinois Math and Science Academy in Aurora is for the first time accepting out-of-state, tuition-based applications.

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Any non-Illinoisans looking to send their standout scholar to the acclaimed Illinois Math and Science Academy high school in west-suburban Aurora may now have the chance for a hefty price.

Officials at the grades 10-12 school announced Monday they would open tuition-based seats for the first time for the 2023-24 school year. IMSA, which enrolls 650 students, said it would accept “a small group” of out-of-state students for paid tuition enrollment of $53,790.

“Opening enrollment to those outside Illinois helps our Academy build a more robust population of cross-cultural students who are thoughtful inquirers, integrative thinkers, ethical leaders and problem solvers inspired to invent and test new ideas,” IMSA President and CEO Evan Glazer said in a news release.

IMSA has operated for 36 years and is known in Chicagoland and nationally as a top STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) school that places graduates in Ivy League and other highly selective universities. It has several notable alumni, including YouTube co-founder Steve Chen. Its students live at the Aurora academy.

In-state student fees for the three-year program range from $1,800 to $19,000 on a graduated scale depending on family income, size of household and other factors. Students eligible for the federal free and reduced lunch program can have the fees waived. Illinois students don’t pay tuition, room or board — those costs are covered by the state.

IMSA officials said enrollment will expand and out-of-state students won’t take the spot of any Illinois scholars. Admissions are based on academic performance, extracurricular activities, essays, teacher recommendations and SAT scores.

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