0/X? What next?

Denied Admission. The harsh words shock many parents who open private elementary school letters hoping their child would be offered admission. Instead, they’ve received a letter informing them that their child has been declined admission. Then another letter with the same rejection. And again. This is extremely upsetting (understandably) to these families. If you’re a parent who got rejection letters, the question is what next? Here are some suggestions:

Don’t beat yourself up over this! It’s very common in the competitive LA private elementary school environment.

Understand how subjective the admissions process can be; it’s not random, but it’s not a hard science either. Factors completely out of your control enter into the equation. Too many siblings, too many legacy families, too many families with connections to board members and on and on.

Enroll your child in your local public kindergarten and reapply to private elementary schools again next year. We know numerous families who are admitted the second year they apply (either for 1st grade or kindergarten).

Understand that not being admitted may have to do with your child being too young or another factor not entirely within your control. Another year at preschool or local kindergarten will solve that issue.

Don’t expect admissions directors to “debrief” you as to why your child was not admitted.

Recognize that applying to the same schools for a second time will signal your strong interest in the schools and your commitment to private elementary school.

Focus on your “Plan B”. Develop a strategy for next year’s application process, if that’s what you plan to do. Expand the number of schools you apply to next year. Ask your preschool director for feedback. He or she may have spoken to admissions directors and gained valuable information about your application.

Make sure your preschool director gave your child and your family a favorable recommendation.

We cover the issue of rejection letters and wait-lists in our book because it’s so common in LA.