learning about different schools can be very exciting. Visiting campuses, calling parent
mentors or alumni, attending open houses, going to an athletic event or
concert, and surfing through the schools' websites all contribute to a deeper
understanding of what each school has to offer.
- Take the opportunity
to discuss all aspects with your child. This will help illuminate important
aspects of the decision. Does the size of the school matter? How about
location? Are there certain sports, artistic opportunities, academic emphases,
use of technology, teaching practices, or clubs that are of particular
importance to your family?
- Avoid making the
decision based on hearsay or stereotypes. Use the parent mentor list to
call parents and ask your questions directly. They are eager to share their
experience and support our families in any way.
- Likewise, help your child make
a decision based on his or her knowledge, values, and experience. Have him or her
envision life at different schools and explore how to maximize the
opportunities available at each.
When I was choosing where to go to college, I told my
parents, "I am worried that if I choose the 'wrong door,' I'll be unhappy
and regret my decision." My dad replied, "Think of it this way:
Whichever door you open, you will shortly see a whole new set of very
interesting doors." He was right. Long after college, I am still opening
doors and walking through to more.
There is an information night held in May for 7th graders and their families. During the summer before 8th grade, families meet with the
counselor to learn about their options, the timeline, and practical concerns.
They receive a handbook detailing the entire process, including a comprehensive
list of schools, alumni and alumni parent ambassadors, and the “to-do”
list—including how to handle letters of recommendation, test scores, and more.
Students are supported up to and beyond the time of decision making. There are a lot of steps, but
we work together to stay organized and on track, while also empowering the students to take responsibility. We take pride in seeing that
all of our students have found themselves in the schools that feel right for
them and experience great personal and academic success.