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Old 02-11-2014, 01:32 PM
 
126 posts, read 207,397 times
Reputation: 40

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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnsleyPark View Post
snsh - I have two children who will eventually have graduated from there. It is a heavy financial burden, indeed. I was pretty proud of my daughter's 3.6. She scored a 1490 on her SAT's (excluding the writing part), which was as high of a score as any of her friends scored. Yet...

Please don't get me wrong, she had a great experience at Westminster that she will tell you she wouldn't trade. There is no doubt that the school is top notch in all areas. You guys just have to consider if it is money wisely spent. For some children, I am sure it is. For the average student, less so.

AnsleyPark....I'm trying to make some sense of this. Please, please, please don't take anything I'm asking the wrong way because I assure you that I mean no offense. Yes, I can see the beautiful campus and all the extraordinary facilities that Westminster has to offer and we are very sold on that too...it certainly seems like a very exceptional school. But I'm not understanding something here. This school is touting itself as having very rigorous academics...it is almost legendary for its academics and rigor. So why did your child score a 1490...which was about as high as any of her other friends. The admission folks actually told us "that one thing that all kids have in common here is that they are very very bright". I was just speaking to a friend's daughter who has just graduated from Johns Creek HS with a 2370 GPA. Am I not understanding, or am I missing something here. Because with Westminster's reputation and all the money that you spent to educate her there, I would think that her GPA should have been much much higher...almost in the nose bleed section.

Please...I humbly apologize if anything I've said may inadvertently come across wrong...it is truly not intended and your comments and the time you've taken to post are very helpful for other confused parents like myself who are trying to make choices and understand schools...

Our goal of wanting our kids to go to Westminster is to build on their good earlier academic record and position themselves to be Ivy candidates by availing of the curriculum, rigor, and EC's of a private school Of course, we would not expect the school should do everything for us or spoon feed them into an Ivy....but now I'm really wondering if I'm missing something...

Please do correct me or give me your advice or insights...
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Old 02-11-2014, 02:45 PM
 
1,686 posts, read 1,680,300 times
Reputation: 1456
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnsleyPark View Post
snsh - I have two children who will eventually have graduated from there. It is a heavy financial burden, indeed. I was pretty proud of my daughter's 3.6. She scored a 1490 on her SAT's (excluding the writing part), which was as high of a score as any of her friends scored. Yet...

Please don't get me wrong, she had a great experience at Westminster that she will tell you she wouldn't trade. There is no doubt that the school is top notch in all areas. You guys just have to consider if it is money wisely spent. For some children, I am sure it is. For the average student, less so.
snsh, AnsleyPark is excluding the writing portion (see his post above) and just adding math and verbal together (as in the old days). To compare to your friends who are quoting 2300 etc, just subtract 1/3 of the score. . .

It is much more difficult to get in UGA from one of the competitive privates--they can't take everyone from a given school who applies--and they don't want to fill the school up w/ all kids from metro Atlanta.

I become concerned when I hear of prospective private school parents for whom it is a stretch financially to pay the tuition doing so because they think it will enhance their child's resume for college. Do it if it you're thinking it's the experience you want for your child here and now. . .

There's kind of a catch-22 going on. Send them to a random, small, lack-luster school and they'll be #1 in their class, and maybe get into a top college because of that. . .Or send them to the best prep school you can and they'll actually get a better education--but maybe not get into a top college (because of the intense competition at their high school).

Personally, as a graduate of an incredibly good high school, I plan to pick the latter for my kids. The education they'll receive at the excellent high school is foundational and will take them places, really doesn't matter if their undergrad is Harvard or UGA--they'll do great.
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Old 02-11-2014, 03:08 PM
 
151 posts, read 100,961 times
Reputation: 254
I have looked at the matriculation/acceptances at all of the private schools that we're applying to including Pace, Lovett, Westminster, Paideia, and have been surprised that the number one college all of the kids seem to go to is UGA and not Ivy schools. At Pace, UGA was easily 1/3 of all senior's choice with University of Alabama and Tulane almost tied at #2 and #3 but still far behind UGA. There were probably 40 other colleges but with a handful of graduates going to each. I have also wondered if my child chooses UGA, what will her graduating GPA be at say, Lovett, vs. Grady (which is the public high school we are currently zoned for). I've debated private school for elementary/middle and public for high school. I realize this is the reverse of what most people do but I think the exceptional environment of private may inspire a love of learning that is most important in the early years. In high school, she may do well to start preparing for 'real life' which Grady probably represents more than Westminster.
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Old 02-11-2014, 03:31 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek area
9,583 posts, read 8,662,390 times
Reputation: 5087
Quote:
Originally Posted by AtlJan View Post
snsh, AnsleyPark is excluding the writing portion (see his post above) and just adding math and verbal together (as in the old days). To compare to your friends who are quoting 2300 etc, just subtract 1/3 of the score. . .

It is much more difficult to get in UGA from one of the competitive privates--they can't take everyone from a given school who applies--and they don't want to fill the school up w/ all kids from metro Atlanta.

I become concerned when I hear of prospective private school parents for whom it is a stretch financially to pay the tuition doing so because they think it will enhance their child's resume for college. Do it if it you're thinking it's the experience you want for your child here and now. . .

There's kind of a catch-22 going on. Send them to a random, small, lack-luster school and they'll be #1 in their class, and maybe get into a top college because of that. . .Or send them to the best prep school you can and they'll actually get a better education--but maybe not get into a top college (because of the intense competition at their high school).

Personally, as a graduate of an incredibly good high school, I plan to pick the latter for my kids. The education they'll receive at the excellent high school is foundational and will take them places, really doesn't matter if their undergrad is Harvard or UGA--they'll do great.
snsh - No worries - I took nothing you said as anything wrong or otherwise. I take it all as a caring and concerned parent who wants the best for their child. That's good!

AtlJan is correct with her explanation of things. I appreciate the insight and thoughtfulness of the comments. I don't know for sure what I think is best. I graduated from a very small rural high school in a very agrarian area of south Georgia, and it has worked out for me just fine. I simply often times think that some parents place too much importance on the value of a private high school education (I think, perhaps, my wife and I did).
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Old 02-11-2014, 03:45 PM
 
Location: Dunwoody,GA
1,872 posts, read 4,568,591 times
Reputation: 1957
Quote:
Originally Posted by chabang View Post
I have looked at the matriculation/acceptances at all of the private schools that we're applying to including Pace, Lovett, Westminster, Paideia, and have been surprised that the number one college all of the kids seem to go to is UGA and not Ivy schools. At Pace, UGA was easily 1/3 of all senior's choice with University of Alabama and Tulane almost tied at #2 and #3 but still far behind UGA. There were probably 40 other colleges but with a handful of graduates going to each. I have also wondered if my child chooses UGA, what will her graduating GPA be at say, Lovett, vs. Grady (which is the public high school we are currently zoned for). I've debated private school for elementary/middle and public for high school. I realize this is the reverse of what most people do but I think the exceptional environment of private may inspire a love of learning that is most important in the early years. In high school, she may do well to start preparing for 'real life' which Grady probably represents more than Westminster.
Some of the schools only list matriculation. It's important to keep in mind that you often don't see the acceptances, only where they actually wind up going. At least some of those UGA decisions are surely driven by the parents who want their child to use the HOPE as opposed to paying full-fare at an out-of-state public or private university. The schools that list where their students are accepted are probably better representative of how the school is perceived by colleges.
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Old 02-11-2014, 05:20 PM
 
3,966 posts, read 10,818,258 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CMMom View Post
Some of the schools only list matriculation. It's important to keep in mind that you often don't see the acceptances, only where they actually wind up going. At least some of those UGA decisions are surely driven by the parents who want their child to use the HOPE as opposed to paying full-fare at an out-of-state public or private university. The schools that list where their students are accepted are probably better representative of how the school is perceived by colleges.
That isn't quite right, as one student may be accepted to 7 Ivies and be the only student from that school who is accepted to any Ivy, but on the accepted list each school shows up. (Does this make sense?)

In addition, I think most selective colleges would say they judge the student and not the school -- they judge the student in his/her context. If a high school doesn't offer any AP classes, UGA, for example, doesn't hold that against the student. However, if a student is at school that offers 12 APs and he/she hasn't taken any, they are very, very unlikely to be admitted to UGA.

I do think economics drives many of the college decisions. However, I also think that many students who end up in top colleges from a private school would end up there from their neighborhood public school. Additionally, the same goes for the kids who end up at Bama from a top private school, outcome probably would have been the same at neighborhood public school.


There are some notable exceptions to this. I think economically disadvantaged students really benefit from the opportunities at a more affluent school, be it public or private. I also think that private school counselors are far better at guidance related to college than public school counselors. (Much, much smaller student load, much less to focus on.)

That said, you can hire a private college counselor for far less than 1 year of private school tuition.
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Old 02-11-2014, 05:20 PM
 
151 posts, read 100,961 times
Reputation: 254
Yes, that's true which is why it is so concerning to me that a student with a 3.6 from Westminster is waitlisted. That says alot to me as to how the school is perceived by the college. It also makes me wonder who they ARE accepting.
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Old 02-11-2014, 05:29 PM
 
126 posts, read 207,397 times
Reputation: 40
Now that is a great comment and something that I never thought about....that you can hire a private college counselor for far less than a year of private school tuition.

If I had to speak for our family....and I think we are a representative of many other typical families....we see private school as an investment in our child's future and that is why we make the sacrifices or the stretch to try to afford it. We feel that it gives a better education than going public....and has possibly better college acceptances. But when I read these forums, I second guess myself and wonder whether we are doing the right thing...
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Old 02-11-2014, 05:34 PM
 
126 posts, read 207,397 times
Reputation: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by chabang View Post
Yes, that's true which is why it is so concerning to me that a student with a 3.6 from Westminster is waitlisted. That says alot to me as to how the school is perceived by the college. It also makes me wonder who they ARE accepting.
From what I'm hearing from my friends and their kids, getting a 4.0 GPA is very easily doable with a modicum of hard work (in a public school). Getting a 4.0 GPA doesn't seem to be a big deal to them....the big deal seems to be "what extra do we need to do to distinguish ourselves among this pool of 4.0 GPA high school grads"

That is what concerns me....was this 3.6 GPA lower, only because this child attended Westminster and so the competition bar was set much higher. It is similar to being unable to get a high GPA from GaTech, because the college is known to be very tough and getting a high college GPA is hard...many students who are trying for grad school avoid it for this reason...
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Old 02-11-2014, 06:36 PM
 
2,599 posts, read 2,989,168 times
Reputation: 1426
Wow, this is great advice. Thank you. Do you mean average or average for Westminster? Obviously two different things. And congrats to your daughter on her success. She finished Westminster with almost all A's. I just cannot understand how much more a college could ask for. I guess colleges don't consider as much the rigor of the program? I guess that may be too difficult to do.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnsleyPark View Post
snsh - I have two children who will eventually have graduated from there. It is a heavy financial burden, indeed. I was pretty proud of my daughter's 3.6. She scored a 1490 on her SAT's (excluding the writing part), which was as high of a score as any of her friends scored. Yet...

Please don't get me wrong, she had a great experience at Westminster that she will tell you she wouldn't trade. There is no doubt that the school is top notch in all areas. You guys just have to consider if it is money wisely spent. For some children, I am sure it is. For the average student, less so.
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