This is the BIG WEEK. Finally after months of waiting, schools will notify parents about elementary school admissions decisions on Friday, March 18. If you applied for secondary school, or if you applied to Pasadena schools, you most likely found out yesterday. Friday is the BIG DAY for L.A., you been waiting for since you first started the admissions process in September. The Los Angeles Times called it “Black Friday” because it sets off so much panic among parents.
I’ve been there. I know what its like to open the schools’ emails or to log on to Ravenna. I’ve felt the exhilaration of the acceptance letters and the letdown and distress of a wait-list letter (in our case, it was an email that was most likely a polite “no”). I found out that doors shut, making room for other doors to open. I learned the harsh reality that people lie during this process. Friends don’t come through for you the way you’d hoped. School administrators think they can tell you where your kid should go to school, despite your objections.
After going through kindergarten admissions and middle school admissions processes, I’ve experienced some bumps and bruises along the way. With my two kids now at Viewpoint School and previously at The Willows School, I’ve lived the ups and downs of L.A. admissions. If you received the news you wanted, congratulations! If you don’t get the decisions you hoped for, you may need to pivot and quickly develop another plan to pursue. You’ll need to set aside your ego, your pride and maybe even a few friendships–I certainly did. Focus on your kid and what’s best for him or her. Contact the schools where your child was wait-listed to see if they might have a spot, making sure you tell them you’ll accept it if offered. If you got an acceptance from your second or third choice school, don’t let it slip away: put down the deposit, then see what happens with your first choice school if your kid was wait-listed there. I fully acknowledge all of this seems crazy-complicated. What I’ve learned, however, is that somehow it all works out. Everyone finds a school that works for their kid, even if it isn’t the one they expected. You’d be surprised how this happens every year. If you find yourself without a school, keep an open mind, expand your options if needed, reconsider schools you may have initially thought might not work, contact an educational consultant, look for “hidden gem” schools, forget about the “popular” schools because this isn’t a popularity contest, inquire about whether a school will accept a late application–some do. There are options, you just have to find them.
Here’s a link to one of our most popular posts: Types of Admissions Decisions: Accepted, Wait-Listed or Shut-Out
Good luck! Christina
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Here's another insightful, honest post from our friend Barbara Cameron. This time she writes about the thorny issue of waiting for admissions letters. Then, there's the rose at the end of the journey...if things go well. We're wishing all of you the very best of luck as you wait for letters and find…
Get your copy of Beyond The Brochure: An Insider's Guide To Private Elementary Schools In Los Angeles (September, 2017). You can buy the book on Amazon! The book has been featured in The Daily Beast, The Hollywood Reporter, Town and Country, Los Angeles Magazine and on KPCC 89.3, The BBC and numerous other publications. What you won't…
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