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Old 02-26-2009, 02:32 PM
59 posts, read 511,780 times
Reputation: 61


My niece just took the test this year in 3rd grade. I think the schools give the test to odd number grades. I'm not sure if the API (academic performance index) is based on just one test or if there are other factors. My kids haven't started elementary school yet.

The link I included in a previous post shows averages for the school, with the API scores being out of a possible 1000 points. Every public school is supposed to be scored based on the same testing criteria. Also, if an individual school has a significant subgroup population (based on ethnicity, ESL, etc), and that subgroup scored differently than the school average, the link shows that as well.

If the school scores 950, it is supposed to be the average (the mean) of all the students' scores. Of course not every child would have scored 950. Some would be higher, some much lower. My niece was told that her individual score was in the high 900's but her school averages about 815.
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Old 02-27-2009, 12:40 AM
8 posts, read 23,016 times
Reputation: 10
OP - I am in a similar situation, but managed to apply to several private schools in time. (by January). It was a very grueling process, but worth it if the schooling is important. LA's public school system is going through a very, very rough time at the moment, you can read all about their problems online on LA times, LA Daily, etc. A friend of mine tells me there are a few exceptions in good public, like Roscamare (sp?) and the Beverly Hills High School, but you must live within the area. If I recall, there are some private schools that will accept off-year, out of town applicants at anytime, to be considered only if there are spaces - Check out a full list of LA private schools at Private School Review - Profiles of USA Private Schools I urge you to call some and find out. (Wildwood, Crossroads, Berkeley Hall, might be good to start...)
As for that 45-minute commute, all my LA friends advise us, when we make our move this summer, to live AS CLOSE to the school as possible, or to work, etc. With the city's legendary bad traffic, your 45 minutes can often run up to way over an hour!
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Old 02-27-2009, 12:49 AM
8 posts, read 23,016 times
Reputation: 10
Great site in 'HousingMaps'!!
Do you have any that really decribes each LA neighborhood in detail - demographics, socio-economic, crime rate, etc...? Sounds impossible I know....
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Old 02-27-2009, 09:10 AM
1,726 posts, read 5,947,166 times
Reputation: 1535
It Girl SF, just Wikipedia the town/city that interests you. Also, City Data has neighborhood info as well.
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Old 02-27-2009, 09:31 AM
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,346 posts, read 80,914,150 times
Reputation: 17414
Go to this thread I created

Useful Househunting tools


Moderator cut: link removed, linking to competitors sites is not allowed

Community Information by Zip Code (http://library.csun.edu/mfinley/zipstats.html - broken link)

Melissa DATA: Free Lookups

Last edited by Yac; 03-16-2009 at 09:11 AM..
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Old 03-29-2009, 11:06 PM
7 posts, read 9,820 times
Reputation: 12
try Chadwick school. An excellent private school and you may check their ratings and reviews by google
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Old 03-30-2009, 06:24 AM
8 posts, read 23,016 times
Reputation: 10
Chadwick's quite far south of the wilshire/westwood area - a commute of no less than 45 minutes i believe...
also wonder if OP has started the apps.
We're moving to LA over the summer but had to come in in January to attend all the school interviews. It might be too late now to be honest, as all the places at good private schools would have been placed. We tried for 5 and were VERY lucky to have received an offer from first choice, plus one of the back-ups...
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Old 03-30-2009, 10:03 AM
Location: West LA
75 posts, read 180,757 times
Reputation: 26
Just to clarify about API.

The API is calculated using student's individual test scores as well as the subgroup test scores (i.e. male/female, African-America, Hispanic, Asian, etc.).

All students in grades 2-5 are required to take the CST, though some of the classes at our school were required to take the CST and the CAT6. At our school even the K-1 students (I taught first) were required to take the CAT6 but their scores did not count in the overall calculation of API.

Don't put too much weight on the API scores though. Ask a lot of questions. Stay away from any school that is a PI school (Program Improvement). These schools have not met their targeted scores for either the entire school or the sub-groups. The further you get on the PI scale (1-5) the more governmental involvement and requirements get thrust upon the kid until you reach the highest level and the government takes over. When I left our school we were a PI3 (I worked in South LA but many schools are PI unfortunately). You can't always tell if a school is a PI school though, so make sure you ask or look it up if you can.

I would also caution you to ask what the test-prep schedule is like. At our school, starting in January, we were required to devote 90 minutes of our instructional day to test-prep activities...for a test that wasn't until May. That meant that I lost 90 minutes every day of precious teaching time, and our scores didn't even count. Many teachers claim that they can't teach what they're supposed to teach anymore, because everyone is so worried about scoring high enough on the tests. It puts a lot of stress on everyone, from the teachers to the students.

If you do choose a private school, your kids may be exempt from all that testing nonsense. I went to private, catholic school for 12 years, and while we took standardized tests, the tests don't count in the way that the tests for public schools do, and our teachers were actually able to teach. My mom is currently a principal at one and it is similar there.
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