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My students applying to NYC private schools are taking these tests more than once, and typically seeing score gains on the second administration.The ISEE is required for admission to NYC private middle or high school--you can also take the SSAT, a competing test. With all these options, students are now often taking the tests more than once, seeking the highest possible score. This is a boon to the test companies, and unfortunate for students, as competition ratchets up. Just three years ago, students generally took these tests only once.
Character Skills Snapshot:
More day and boarding schools are requiring or recommending this supplement to the SSAT that is supposed to evaluate students' initiative, intellectual engagement, open-mindedness, resilience, self-control, social awareness, and teamwork. I don't think you can measure character skills by taking an online, at home assessment test. Schools do students a disservice by bringing this test into the admissions process.
Some schools now have a common (shared) middle school essay as well as the common high school essay introduced a few years ago.
Are SAT Subject Tests (SAT IIs) on their way out? Today, few institutions require the tests, and many require them only of STEM and engineering applicants. What this means is that for many students, 11th grade is not the nightmare it used to be. For more information: Are the SAT Subject Tests on the Way Out?
Which SAT or PSAT administration you take may make a big difference in your score, as some test dates feature tests that are markedly easier than others, a problem because then the curve becomes too difficult as one mistake means a significant score penalty: Trouble with October 24th PSAT Scoring Curve
Some colleges are now trying to get students to commit early not only through Early Decision 1, but through Early Decision II. New Front in College Admissions: Nudging Students to Decide Early As elite colleges compose more and more of their classes with candidates who have committed early, students who are looking for best fit vs. best name are disadvantaged.
Harvard is getting sued and sued. Besides the high-profile admissions lawsuit alleging that Harvard's admissions process discriminates against Asian-American applicants, Harvard is dealing with several other legal challenges.
A new private high school makes big promises. Inside Higher Ed reports on a new and dramatic change in a private high school's sell to families: a top college admission guarantee.
A private, for-profit high school in Orange County, California, Fairmont Private Schools, does not just "help" your child obtain admission or brag about prior graduates' success. They actually guarantee top college admission, and even scholarships.
"Fairmont Private Schools, Orange County's largest and oldest nonsectarian private school, is boosting the return on investment in education with the Fairmont College Promise, which guarantees that Fairmont Preparatory Academy graduates will be accepted to and receive scholarships for tuition at the Top 100 U.S. colleges or universities. The school also says it will convert up to 100 percent of tuition paid to attend its high school into a scholarship to the college of choice if the promise is not met."
No private school in New York has yet followed Fairmont's lead. But is this fortunate?
According to Inside Higher Ed:
Myra A. McGovern, vice president of the National Association of Independent Schools, ... said she was troubled by any high school designating only a certain kind of college as appropriate.
"Does that serve students well?" she asked. "The idea of a school isn't that it produces one outcome exclusively, but that it helps a student develop into an adult." Defining success as being admitted to a college praised by U.S. News "is a relatively narrow outcome."
She pointed to her association's code of ethics, which has a provision that warns against any relationships that would have school officials favoring some colleges over others in admissions advising.
NYC private school notification dates...results are almost here!
Kindergarten Notification Date
Mail or email on Friday, February 9
Respond by Friday, February 16
On-Going Schools, 2, 3, 4 year olds only, Notification Date
Mail or email on Wednesday, February 7
Respond by Tuesday, March 6
2, 3, 4 year olds, Notification Date
Mail or email on Thursday, March 1
Respond by Friday, March 9
1st Grade - 8th Grade Notification Date
Mail or email not before Tuesday, February 6
Respond by Tuesday, February 27
9th Grade- 12th Grade Notification Date
Mail or email not before Thursday, February 15
Respond by Thursday, March 15
Good luck everyone!