Entries in choice (27)


eenie, meanie: sorting public, charter and gifted kindergartens

Mentally sort elementary schools into three different catagories:

  1. DoE programs (zoned, un-zoned, out of zone)
  2. Charter schools
  3. Gifted and Talented programs

You will be applying to these programs in 3 different ways.

Click to read more ...


high school fair report

It was business as usual at Brooklyn Tech today; crowded, noisy and hot hot hot! It was also awesome. Thanks SO much to the wonderful educators, students, school security officers and DoE Enrollment officials (and my husband who is a school search widower)! I know a lot of you are now freaked out and just plain tired, but I feel very optimistic and energized!

Here are some take-aways:

Click to read more ...


ch-ch-ch-changes for public high school admissions

The one big thing that is changing in the HS admissions procedure for the fall 2014 admissions season is that 2%ers (students who score in the top 2% state wide on the 7th grade ELA test) will no longer be given a guaranteed entry to an Ed Opt program. In the past if you were a 2%er and you listed an Ed Opt program as your number one choice, it was a GUARANTEED entry. Sorry, no longer.

Now there are NO guarantees of any placement in the entire Doe admissions process from prek to high school. Oh well, that's life in the big city.

See page 5 of the current DoE HS Directory


alligators in the sewer and middle school admissions

At the end of a very thoughtful article in Brooklyn Magazine about Louis C.K. as concerned elementary school parent and the problems with NYC testing culture (their site is down, I will link when it comes up), all of which I passionately agree, I read this sentence,

"Middle schools do look at report cards when evaluating fifth-graders, however, much like with the SATs, test scores are notoriously heavily weighted."

Sounds of screeching tires and broken glass.
It is just not true, at least not in my corner of the world.

Click to read more ...


what "school choice" really means for kindergarten

School choice means that you get to express your wishes. It doesn't mean that you get what you want (at least in April).
Lets get some things down:

Click to read more ...


yes Virginia, there is a method to this ranking madness

I keep having to answer this question over and over, infinitely, every year. Please parents and principals, can you read this?

Q: I've been on tours at 2 popular schools and both warned, if you want to get into this school, you better rank it #1! So, which do i put first?

A: I am asked about this, prek through hs - the schools have NO idea how this matching process works. They are trying to be helpful and when they are very popular, they assume that you need to put their school first to be considered. They never see your application, they don't know how you have ranked them, and they have absolutely NO say in this blind process. They assume, like most people that there is some priority given to first choice over second choice. There isn't.

Click to read more ...


#1 most asked prek question

Q: if I put my zoned school at the end of my ranked prek application list, will I have less of a chance to gain entry than my neighbor, who ranks it #1?

Click to read more ...


the NEW!! prek directory 2014-15

Are you as excited as I am?! I am not being sarcastic - this stuff makes me Geek Out! I do love the DoE's publications and they keep giving us more and more useful information each year. Big doings this year!! They have cleaned up the priority catagories and they have given us the lowest priority catagory that was accepted into each school as a listing in the directory. This goes a long way to help moderate expectations. If you have to wait to hear about a placement until after Memorial Day, at least you aren't flying totally blind.

Click to read more ...


finding your way around insideschools

Updated on Saturday, January 4, 2014 at 11:17AM by Registered Commenterjoyce

I posted this last year when Inside Schools did their redesign, but you need to visit early and often. They are an invaluable not for profit and (if you want more updated reviews) you should support them here.

We are all so sorry that Judy Baum, "ask Judy" passed away in Dec. A great loss for us all.

I love Insideschools.org.

Click to read more ...


nursery school hysteria

Here is the problem. There are many people in a small space who all want passionately, and they want it NOW. Their main source of information is other people in the same boat who have a lot of fear but no accurate information or experience.

Here is the result. Unnecessary fear, misunderstanding, rigidness that creates hysteria, promotes wrong headed decisions and sets up a climate that is unhealthy for the schools, the children and the parents. You are doing it to yourselves, people.

Click to read more ...