General Tuition Information

Payment of tuition monthly is required to maintain your child's enrollment at Step by Step.  Payments are due by the 1st of the month for each month of care, or on the first day of each week if using ELRC subsidy.  If eligible for multiple discounts, only the highest discount will be applied. 

Making Tuition Payments

You can check your current balance, make online payments, and print receipts/invoices by visiting and using your email address on file to access your family's account. 

Our preferred method of payment is via ACH automatic withdrawal.  ACH forms may be obtained at the front desk.  Accounts are automatically charged each month on the first of the month. Tuition payment may also be made each month at the front desk (cash, check, or credit card) or online at (credit card).  Checks should be made out to Step by Step.  Checks returned due to insufficient funds will result in a $30 fine.  


Late Payment fee

If a tuition payment is not made by the 5th of the month, it will incur a late fee of 5%, which will increase an additional 5% if still not made by the 15th.  Due to increasing expenses and the need for timely payment, these late fees WILL be enforced.  If payment has not been received by the start of the following month, care for the child will be suspended until all accounts are paid in full. 

Changes in Tuition

When your child has a birthday, the new tuition rate (if applicable) will take effect on the first day of the following month. 

Tuition rate is valid through February, 2024 and will be reevaluated for any cost-of-living increases necessary beginning in March 2024.



Step by Step will have planned closures for 15 business days in the 2023-2024 school year, marked on Our Calendar

The school may also have some unplanned closures for weather emergencies and/or unsafe commuting conditions.  

Note: Step by Step will follow Penn State's determination on weather-related closures when Penn State is in session. Tuition cannot be reimbursed for any days the school is closed. 


Absences and Tuition Reimbursements

Tuition reimbursement cannot be given for any days your child is sick, on vacation, or absent for any other reason.  Tuition must be paid in full each month in order to maintain your child(rens)'s enrollment, with the following exception: 

Between the months of May and August, for planned absences lasting one month or longer, families may reserve their child(ren)'s enrollment with the payment of a reduced rate ("holding fee") during month(s) of absence.  The holding fee is equivalent to 25% of their regular tuition rate, based on the child(ren)'s previous schedule of attendance.  Advance notice must be given one month prior to departure.  Eligibility for the rate reduction does not apply between the months of September and April, regardless of absence duration. Exceptions are detailed in contract addendum available for Penn State subsidy families only. 


Lunch fee

Families have the option of packing food from home, which can be served at lunch time in place of the school lunch at no cost.  If purchasing lunch, families may choose from the standard lunch or the vegetarian option; alternatives to accommodate food allergies are also available as needed (egg-free, dairy-free, etc).  Families must notify the center of their chosen option, and report any changes before the first of each month.  Lunch plan selection may not change from day-to-day or mid-month.  Fees are based on your child's scheduled attendance days.  Families meeting any of the following exemption criteria may still be eligible to receive school lunch without paying lunch fees: 

1) Child is under 12 months; 2) Child is enrolled in Pre-K Counts; 3) Family is eligible for ELRC subsidy


Late Pick-up

All children and parents must have exited the building by 6:00 pm daily.  If parents check out their child(ren) after closing time, a late fee will be applied automatically to the family's account the following day, as noted: 

6:01-6:05 pm - $15    6:06-6:10 pm - $20    6:11-6:15 pm - $30 

$15 will be added for every 15-minute interval following 6:15 pm.  If none of the child's emergency contacts have been successfully reached 1 hour past the school's closing time, staff will contact the Ferguson Police Department to take the child home. 


Withdrawal Policy

You can withdraw your child from care at Step by Step at any time and for any reason.  Notice must be given to the director of the school at least 2 weeks prior to your child's termination date.  Any outstanding balances must be paid prior to leaving.  Step by Step will provide reimbursement for any days after termination date for which you have already provided payment.  


Pro-rated Months

If a child enrolls or withdraws in the middle of the month, a modified tuition will be owed or reimbursed, determined using a daily rate.  Daily rates are calculated by dividing the child's monthly rate by the number of weekdays in that month, regardless of closings.