International Students

International students

Thank you for your interest in The Christian Academy.  We are a SEVIS approved school and can issue I-20s to all international students that qualify for enrollment.  We have had numerous international students over the last several years from a variety of countries around the world.  We offer a personalized education with small classroom sizes to help all of our students to be successful.  If you are an international parent or student interested in learning more about Christian education, please contact Matthew Dunn, our Director of Admissions & Marketing, at mdunn@tca-pa.org.

Countries where we have accepted International Students include South Korea, China, Japan, Thailand & Russia.

Definition of an International Student: TCA is an F-1 approved school. An International Student is any student who fits one or more of the following criteria:

  1. Needs an I-20 for admission to the United States
  2. Home address prior to arriving in the U.S. is international

International Students

High School Academics

High School at TCA

Dual Enrollment Offerings

TCA has partnered with Cairn University where TCA students can get college credit for certain classes they take at TCA.  Below is a list of courses offered at TCA where students can obtain college transfer credits from Cairn University.

TCA (1 Credit) Cairn University (3 Credits)
AP English Composition ENG 101 English Composition
AP US History HIS 322 American History II
AP Calculus: AB MAT 241 Calculus I
Honors Western Lit/Humanities HUM 212 Lit & Arts of the Western World
Chemistry SCI 337 Chemistry


TCA graduation requirements (25 credits) meet and exceed Pennsylvania
State Educational Requirements of 21 credits.

Subject Credits
English 4
History 4
Science 3
Mathematics 4
Bible 4
Foreign Language 2
Wellness & Physical Education 1.5
Electives 2

Click Here to learn more about our High School offerings including information about our curriculum, dual credit opportunities, and books TCA High School students read.

Extracurriculars at TCA

We offer a variety of electives, clubs & athletics for students to participate in.

Middle School
Activity Period Concert Choir Praise Dance
Broadway Jr. Student Ministries


High School
Robotics Concert Choir Drama Team
Graphic Design Photography Multiple Art Options
Nutrition Strength Training Praise Team


Fine Arts

TCA Students can participate in a variety of musical, art and drama electives.

  • Music: Middle School & High School Choir, Praise Dance, Student-led Praise Teams
  • Art: Drawing, Painting, Photography, Graphic Design, Intro to Art, Art Minor & Art Major
  • Drama: Every Spring our students perform a drama for our school audience.  Students try out for their parts, learn their lines and then perform.  Other students are pulled in for stage design, marketing, hair/make-up, light/sound, and in various other ways.


TCA offers a competitive sports program with a variety of varsity and junior varsity options.  All sports options are available for middle school and high school students as well as appropriate male & female teams.

  • Fall: Soccer
  • Winter: Basketball
  • Spring: Baseball & Softball


College Placement

College Placement

While I attended TCA we had at least one project each year called an Interdisciplinary Project (IDP). This project taught me to learn the research method and to write a college-level paper, whether an essay or a multi-page research paper.  TCA teachers would take the time to help us through the process and provide constructive feedback to help us improve our writing.  This project is very unique to TCA and was very helpful to prepare me for college-level writing and academics.

TCA offers college and career counseling and preparation.  Our College and Career Director will take student groups to visit various local colleges, provide college planning seminars specifically for finances as well as provide personalized college planning discussions to help students navigate the college application process.  TCA students take the PSAT during their 9th, 10th, and 11th-grade years to help prepare them to take the SAT at the end of their Junior year.

Recent College Acceptances

Clemson University Penn State Rutgers University
Cairn University Word of Life Bible Institute Purdue University
Liberty University Millersville University Villanova University
Eastern University West Chester University Temple University
Rowan University University of Pittsburgh Howard University
Messiah College Lasalle University Grove City College
University of Pennsylvania Hofstra University Cederville University
Lancaster Bible College

Recent College Scholarships Offered by Class

Class of Number of Graduates Total Amount Offered
2015 32 $1,699,775
2016 35 $1,426,942
2017 38 $2,567,917
2018 37 $3,270,333
2019 30 $2,841,088

Tuition Information & Policies

TCA offers a competitive tuition rate for all international students.  Please see the grid below for base tuition costs and other fees.

Fee Amount
Yearly Tuition (2021-2022) $18,300
One Time Application Fee        $100
One Time Acceptance Fee       $950
Enrollment Fee (after 1st year)       $250


Tuition Policies

  • All figures provided are to be paid in US Dollars.
  • Tuition covers ELL/ESL instruction, field trips, retreats, and any other standard high school fees that students would normally pay.  Tuition does NOT pay for school supplies, uniforms, lunch, etc.  These are at the expense of the student.
  • Tuition is to be paid in full at the start of the year.
  • Application Fee is due at the time of the application submission with all corresponding documents.  Application is not processed until the fee is paid.
  • Acceptance Fee secures the student’s spot in our school.  Once the fee is paid, the I-20 will be issued.
  • If the student attends a second year or more, $250 will be charged yearly instead of $950.
  • All fees are non-refundable.
  • Sending agency will have their own separate fees.

After students are accepted they are provided with the following materials:

  • Summer reading list
  • Uniform information
  • Transportation information
  • List of courses
  • Course schedule
  • Sports information
  • Extracurricular information

Please refer to your sending agency regarding additional expenses.

TCA partners with multiple agencies each of whom have their own application process and policies in regards to what they provide for the student and host family. 

The host family must apply directly to TCA and be approved by TCA administration.  

English Language Proficiency Admissions Standards:

Prospective International students (non-native English speakers) should take one of the recognized English language proficiency tests listed below to show their ability to understand, speak, read, and write English.  We highly recommend that students take the TOFEL Jr., Standard test as it is an excellent measure of English proficiency for students ages 11-16.  The English Language proficiency score is one important measure, but not the only measure, in determining whether a student will be successful at TCA.

Application Process

International Students do not follow the traditional application steps.  The steps for them to apply to TCA are outlined below.  Please note that ALL forms and documentation must be officially translated into English, or they will not be accepted by TCA. This will cause a delay in acceptance consideration.

Definition of an International Student: The Christian Academy is an F-1 approved school. An International Student is any student who fits one or more of the following criteria:

  1. Needs an I-20 for admission to the United States
  2. Home address prior to arriving in the U.S. is international

Steps to Apply to TCA

  1. Application: Students are expected to coordinate with their sending agency to formally apply for admission to TCA.  Fill out the application provided by their sending agency and submit to TCA with a $100 application fee.  Once the application is completed, the following forms will need to be supplied to TCA:
    • I-20 Information Form
    • Student Essay
    • Official School Transcript/copy of most recent report card
    • Copy of Student F-1 Student Visa/Passport
    • Immunization Record
    • Copy of students Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores
  2. Meet & Greet: All students who attend TCA are provided with a 30-minute meet and greet with our admissions team.  Depending on the student’s location, the meet and greet may take place in-person or over an online platform such as Google Meets, Skype or Zoom.
    • The student should plan to attend the meet & greet with their parents/guardians
    • TCA individuals in the meet and greet will include the High School Principal, Head of School, Director of Admissions & Marketing, and any other admissions associates.
    • The meet & greet is an informal interview to get to know the student and their family while also allowing them to get to know TCA in a deeper way.  Topics of conversation will include how the family found TCA and why they are pursuing the school, their faith journey, and an overview of TCA’s policies and procedures.
    • The student must also demonstrate fluency in speaking English.
  3. Offer of Enrollment: The leadership team at TCA will meet to discuss the applicant and will decide whether to offer admittance for the upcoming school year.  If the family wishes to move forward with enrolling into TCA, a one-time $950 Acceptance Fee must be paid to TCA.  The USCIS Form I-20 will not be issued or transferred until the Acceptance Fee is paid.
  4. Enrollment: Once the Acceptance Fee is received by TCA, the I-20 will be issued or transferred and an official “Your In” packet will be sent to the student.  The welcome packet will include other enrollment paperwork as well as forms that require parental signatures.  The forms that will need to be returned to TCA include:
    • Family Contract (Agreeing to policies & procedures of the school and financial responsibility)
    • Medical Authorization Form
    • Emergency Form
    • All tuition paid in full in US currency

Host Family Resources

It can be difficult in helping an international student to adjust to life in American and education at TCA.  Host families are encouraged to reach out to TCA administration and staff for help and support.  Sending agencies also have their own “in house” resources they offer to help best support host families.