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Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How many students are in a Banner classroom?

A. Typical class size throughout the grades is 15 students though some middle school classes may be slightly more where appropriate. Our Preschool and Kindergarten classes have full-time co-instructors.

Q. Does Banner offer financial aid? 

A. We do offer a financial aid program that is managed by an outside organization called FACTS Tuition Management.  After a signed contract is submitted, a family may submit an application for financial aid.

Q. Does Banner provide before and after care?

A. We provide a structured Extended Care Program that begins at 7:00 a.m. and  ends at 6:00 p.m.  For more details, please go to Programs, Extended Care.

Q. Is Banner affiliated with any particular religious organization?

A. No, Banner is Frederick County's only independent school that is non-sectarian.

Q. Does Banner administer standardized tests?

A. Yes, a summary of standardized tests that Banner administers is below:

ERB CTP 4

Each year at Banner, students in grades two through eight take a battery of standardized assessments known collectively as the Comprehensive Testing Program 4th Edition (CTP 4), which is developed and distributed by the Educational Records Bureau (ERB).  This program is designed to provide information about student performance and achievement and is administered by independent schools throughout the country.  It comprises eight parts, one each of verbal ability, vocabulary (auditory comprehension for grade 2 only), reading comprehension, writing mechanics, writing process, writing concepts and skills, and quantitative ability, and two sections of mathematics.

Students take these tests in grades two through eight to:

  • Become familiar with standardized tests in preparation for the Secondary School Admission Test (SSAT) and other similar assessments.
  • Help educators evaluate their curriculum.
  • Provide an objective measure of how students are faring in various skill areas.

Banner does not believe in "teaching to the test"; rather, we contend that our outstanding educational program in and of itself prepares students to excel and to reach their potential. As such, student scores truly reflect their academic achievement. Each year, roughly 50% of our students qualify for the prestigious Talent Search of the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth based on their ERB scores.

SSAT

The Banner School is the only school in Frederick County that administers the Secondary School Admission Test (SSAT), one of the only standardized tests required for admission to independent secondary schools and other private schools throughout the country and around the world. Students come from far and wide to take this comprehensive half-day test. Banner's own students benefit greatly from having the opportunity to take the SSAT right here at their home school, a place with which they are altogether familiar. 

Q. Does Banner provide transportation?

A. Banner families drive their children to and from school.  We do encourage families to car pool with each other. Our two 14-passenger activity vehicles are used primarily for field trips and athletic events.  We currently provide morning pickup service for one location in Urbana.

Q. Does Banner provide lunch daily?

A. Students bring their lunches to school. Milk is available for purchase.

For more information or to schedule a tour, call the Admissions Office at 301-695-9320 x32.