Admissions FAQ

Admissions/Application Process

Q: When should I apply to Marshall School?

A: Marshall uses a rolling admissions process, so applications can be completed at any time. Certain grades fill faster than others, so it is worth getting your application in as soon as possible. We start receiving applications for the upcoming school year in October, and will take applications for grades with available space right up to the start of the school year. The steps to applying can be found on the "Prospective Families" page in the coral-colored box to the right.

Q: Do I have to visit or interview before I fill out my application?

A: No, our admissions process can be done in whatever order best fits your schedule. Some of our applicants visit the school first, others visit with our Director of Enrollment initially, but many others start the process by completing the application right out of the blocks.

Q: We're relocating to Duluth, so how can we take care of this process around our moving schedule?

A: Easily! We'll work with you to map out visits, tests, and interviews in coordination with the other parts of your move to our incredible, beautiful area.

Q: My student doesn't have straight-A grades, can we still be considered for acceptance at Marshall?

A: Absolutely! We have a diverse student body in many ways, including academic skills and abilities. We want to get to know all of our applicants beyond just their transcript. We do not offer acceptance to all of our applicants, as we want to make sure they can hit the ground running in our academic environment, but there is certainly more to consider than just their grades. This is part of why meeting with our Director of Enrollment is so valuable for you and important for Marshall.

Q: When will I hear about my acceptance to Marshall School?

A: We offer our initial acceptances in late March/early April, and then continue to enroll students regularly after that point. These come after a student has completed all the necessary steps to the admissions process ... the student interview, parent interview, visit day, admissions test, and transcript submitted by the previous school.

Q: This is a big decision for our family and we don't want anyone to know that we are thinking of switching schools. How can you help us with this process?

A: Our admissions process, from application to visits to testing, is entirely private. We can wait to request transcripts at a time you are comfortable with, and in the meantime still work toward acceptance. This is one of the most important and impactful decisions you can make to set your student on the best path; we certainly understand and respect that, so we work to create a process that certainly serves your privacy.

Tuition and Financial Aid

Q: What is the tuition at Marshall School?

A: For 2019-20, tuition for 7-12 is $19,980 and for 4-6 is $18,300.

Q: How can we find out if we are eligible for financial aid?

A: There are two ways to determine if you family is eligible for need-based financial aid. The official financial aid application can be found at and will ask a variety of questions to help draw the best understanding around your financial situation. The second, even quicker way to determine if you are eligible, is to connect with our Director of Enrollment to work through a limited number of questions in order to get a estimate of your eligibility. This second process is both free and fast.

Q: Is the financial aid application process private?

A: Certainly! Just as we take the privacy of people exploring Marshall as an option on the admissions side of the search seriously, we do the same when it comes to the financial matching. Our office and our partners at do not share any of your financial information with others.


Q: What makes your academic experience different?

A: This is our biggest (and most frequent) question. The really long answer includes the stories of hundreds upon hundreds of happy and successful Marshall graduates. They felt empowered in their college choice, garnered a great deal of scholarships, and took their next step prepared and proud. Hilltoppers are traditionally very strong communicators, excellent at building relationships, and talented on those elusive "soft skills." But they are also really really smart and studious (which can be different than having a high GPA or great grades), with positive academic habits to fall back on in challenging times. They are usually creative, courteous, and courageous, while also knowing about asteroids, apertures, and alliteration. This all happened because we have incredible teachers and staff members who are equal parts mentors and experts, and they are given the latitude to connect and teach both deeply and broadly. We have high expectations, are guided by solid values, and we do all of this in a special community (Duluth and the greater Twin Ports area). Not to mention, we have advanced academic experiences all across the student spectrum at Marshall, from engineering, coding, and robotics to orchestra, photography, and Random Acts of Shakespeare. Really, the best way to answer this question, is to come visit!

Q: Do you have the academic support and help that my student might need?

A: Yes we do, and we pride ourselves on it. Of course this answer does boil down to each student's individual needs, but for students who are admitted we work hard to both meet their needs and appropriate challenge them. From the work done formally in our Marshall Academic Commons (MAC) to support students in moving up to whatever their next level might be, to informal lunches focused on improving a student's skills and confidence in math or other subjects, Marshall's faculty members are creative, dynamic, and dialed in to the needs of our students.

Q: Can my student earn college credit while at Marshall School?

A: Certainly! In fact, more than 75% of Hilltopper seniors receive college credit before they graduate from Marshall. Whether through Advanced Placement (AP) opportunities, Virtual High School (VHS), Post-Secondary Enrollment Options (PSEO), and St. Mary's University Program for Advanced College Credit (PACC) there is a wide range of different ways to earn college credit at Marshall School. Recent graduating classes have had the opportunity to claim hundreds of college credits through these different avenues.


Q: What different extracurricular options do you offer?

A: This is a long and evolving answer, which is part of what makes Marshall School so great. We have 20+ athletic teams, robotics options at all ages, speech, CyberPatriots, theatre, Destination Imagination teams, and this is just getting started. Add in that students are creating new, different clubs and opportunities on a regular basis, and the list continues to evolve!

Q: Can my student participate in multiple extracurricular activities?

A: Yes! There are certainly students at Marshall who are musicians, actors, engineers, skiers, soccer players, and baseball players all at the same time! We haven't quite figured out how to have students in two places at once, but at times it feels like we are close. The best part ... it is virtually all here at Marshall. No more running around an entire city to get to multiple locations!

Q: Is my student going to be able to balance the academic expectations with their extracurriculars?

A: Yes! Of course this is a student-by-student answer and a student or family can have circumstance that change at times, but virtually all of our students are already successfully balancing their academics with their arts, athletics, robotics, speech, and/or whatever else they may pursue. Learning and experiencing balance in secondary education is important in having the foundation in place when students take the step up to higher education. Marshall students are doing exactly this on a daily basis here.

Additional Questions

Q: Do you have diversity among your student body?

A: Yes ... and in more ways than you might expect. Traditionally, more 20% of our student body self-identifies as students of color. Geographically, we have students from several countries and dozens of local schools. Even academically and socioeconomically, we are have a much wider spectrum that most people would expect of an independent school.

Q: Will my student make friends/get lost/wear the wrong clothes?

A: Yes, no, and no. Every student is nervous for their first day at a new school, and every student at Marshall has been the "new kid" at one point. Our Admissions Office does an excellent job of helping new students transition into Marshall, but really our current students are what help it click so quickly. You'll certainly make friends, we aren't such a big building you'll get lost, but we will admit that our favorite clothes are usually black and gold with a particular 'M' featured on them!

Q: What if my question isn't included in this list?

A: This is the best question of all! We really do want to visit with you about exploring Marshall School. Send questions to or give a call to the Admissions Office at (218) 727-7266.

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