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Old 03-29-2009, 10:52 AM
 
21 posts, read 96,495 times
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Anyone else nervous for the decision letters next week? If so, where did you apply and do you know your first choice?
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Old 03-29-2009, 07:16 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
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Yep, I'm a bundle of nerves, but I'm glad that it will be over one way or another by Monday. We only applied to AIS. What about you?

Good luck!
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Old 03-30-2009, 07:29 AM
 
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Well, we'll be down at the beach when the letters arrive. No point in worrying too much, we did our best and it's out of our hands now.

We have 2 kids, and we're applying for both to Westminster, Lovett, Pace, and Paideia. I'm not sure which we'd prefer -- I'll like a particular school more if they demonstrate they have good sense by admitting our kids! Any school that takes both kids will shoot to the top of our list.

The really interesting question is, how much difference does the economy make this year? If you search this forum there've been some really interesting posts in years past about all Atlanta's private schools. But how different will admissions be this year? That's the big Q.

I've heard from parents at our church that they've heard that many families with younger kids in the competitive schools are pulling out to save money. Their plan is to put the kids back in when it matters the most, in the last few years of school. But this is only hearsay.

I've asked some of the admissions staff at various of the schools how different this year is, but of course they give very guarded answers. Applications aren't down much, but they will have opening in all grades, and many families who have never asked for financial aid before are now. Schools probably do everything they can to help families that are already in, but there's got to be a limit to what they can do, esp. if aid requests go way up.

So maybe it'll be easier to get in than in years past. I bet the schools are tearing their hair out trying to figure out how many offers to extend -- with things so different maybe a way lower percentage of families will go on to enroll than usually do, so maybe they should accept more, but then what if a lot more parents say "yes" than usually do?

What I really hope doesn't happen is that the schools only accept a few kids, then put tons of people on wait lists until they get a final "yes" from the first round of parents. But if I were running a school, that's probably what I would do. On the other hand, if you're a school and you assume that families have applied to a bunch of schools (like we did), maybe you don't want to put too many good candidates on a wait list, in case that drives them to another school? I mean, what if you wait list too many applicants, then half the people you accepted don't come, so you turn to your wait list, only to find out those families have moved on? Then you have Less Than Full classes, which has got to be Something The Board Would Rather Not Happen in these lean times. So the calculation has to be based on what you think your applicant famlies will do, where else they applied, and how "wait-listy" the other school they are likely to have applied to are likely to be this year. Yikes! Makes my head spin!

Oy, I'm thinking about this too much, obviously.

We've got fallback plans, the OK, but uneven & quirky smaller private schools our kids our in now. So my main worry right now is that even after the letters come out, we'll be in wait list limbo for days and days.

Good luck to everybody. I'd really like to hear more details about who's applied to where, and what they've heard about the process this year.

Are there any forum readers who have kids in the big schools? What have you heard? Do you know of anybody not coming back next year, or anybody's who's left mid-term?

Last edited by Hexagonal; 03-30-2009 at 07:40 AM..
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Old 03-30-2009, 08:05 AM
 
3,972 posts, read 12,656,056 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hexagonal View Post
The really interesting question is, how much difference does the economy make this year? If you search this forum there've been some really interesting posts in years past about all Atlanta's private schools. But how different will admissions be this year? That's the big Q.

I've asked some of the admissions staff at various of the schools how different this year is, but of course they give very guarded answers. Applications aren't down much, but they will have opening in all grades, and many families who have never asked for financial aid before are now. Schools probably do everything they can to help families that are already in, but there's got to be a limit to what they can do, esp. if aid requests go way up.

What I really hope doesn't happen is that the schools only accept a few kids, then put tons of people on wait lists until they get a final "yes" from the first round of parents. But if I were running a school, that's probably what I would do. On the other hand, if you're a school and you assume that families have applied to a bunch of schools (like we did), maybe you don't want to put too many good candidates on a wait list, in case that drives them to another school? I mean, what if you wait list too many applicants, then half the people you accepted don't come, so you turn to your wait list, only to find out those families have moved on? Then you have Less Than Full classes, which has got to be Something The Board Would Rather Not Happen in these lean times. So the calculation has to be based on what you think your applicant famlies will do, where else they applied, and how "wait-listy" the other school they are likely to have applied to are likely to be this year. Yikes! Makes my head spin!
I expect that they will accept about the same number and have larger wait lists. I also expect that this is not a good year to need financial aide if you are not already enrolled. Most schools are saying that their obligation is to returning students in terms of financial aide. This is happening right now at the college level... really large wait lists and the understanding that if you come off the wait list there will be little to no aide for those students.

I think that this may be an easier year to get in, but I actually think the next year 09-10 may be even easier as the "losses" really hit home.

I think the applicant pool size hasn't changed much because of families like yours that apply to many schools. The real question is how many families, in the past, had only applied to one school --generally one they thought they could get financial aide with -- who aren't even bothering this year.

Also, many families may have put deposits down to return hoping that the economy turns around by summer (or at least their economy). I expect schools will be drawing from the waitlist until August.
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Old 03-30-2009, 09:22 AM
 
21 posts, read 96,495 times
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Hi

I'm glad I'm not the only one stressing! My husband thinks I'm crazy

We applied to Davis and Pace with Pace being our first choice. They are both great schools but Pace seems like the better fit for our family and we like that it is nondenominational. I'm sure he would do fine at either though so I'm not sure why I am so anxious.

hexagonal- are both your kids going into kindergarten or are they transferring from another school?

What are the chances the letters will arrive on Saturday since they are mailed out on Friday? I really don't want to wait until Monday!
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Old 03-30-2009, 09:24 AM
 
Location: Dunwoody,GA
2,240 posts, read 5,855,678 times
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We're waiting too. Slightly different situation as my daughter is already at the school we're applying my son for. We only applied to that school. They admit that sibs get some preference, but the party line is that they look for an equal mix of sibs and new families.

Honestly, I will not be heartbroken if he doesn't get in this time (for Pre-K) b/c he can stay at his (much cheaper!!) church preschool for one more year. We'll just re-apply for K if that happens and save some money.

Que sera, sera!
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Old 03-30-2009, 10:39 AM
 
Location: East Cobb
2,206 posts, read 6,889,338 times
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Chacun a son gout, aussi.

Public school is fine for some families.
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Old 03-30-2009, 10:46 AM
 
21 posts, read 96,495 times
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That's what I hear if you live in east cobb or some other districts. We do not though.
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Old 03-30-2009, 04:22 PM
 
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lawteddyher - yep, we've got older kids. We're not trying to get into the system in Kindergarten or any other "expansion year", just looking for slots in the middle of elementary school and middle school. We just didn't see a compelling need to try for the more competitive schools before now, largely b/c of the travel time.

That's why I'm so interested in what the economy might be doing to school enrollment -- we're applying to grades that in some cases may have no spots at all unless there's attrition. In fact at one of the places we applied, they returned our app. fee, saying they anticipated no slots at all in that grade -- then, later, after they got our kid's SSAT results, and after they'd asked current families for deposits for next year, we got a call from them, saying, well, we will have a few spaces after all and we are interviewing a few kids, so come on in. I found that encouraging.

Can I just vent a bit and say the whole process stinks? Our kids are such troupers -- they were game for the interviews and even for the testing -- and as you might know, by middle school the kids themselves have to write most of the application. It's a ton of work, and our older kid just buckled down and did it. It was like having another class of homework for several months, what with SSAT prep.

And of course our younger kid sees no reason to switch schools away from friends. But we just want our kids somewhere that goes to 12th grade, that's big enough to expose them to extracurriculars that might really catch their interest, and that has other kids that actaully like to learn like they do, instead of the misbehaving kids that take so much of their teachers' time where they are now.

I will say this, though -- every year both of us have worried about our kids' education, and every year has been a really good experience for them. They're good kids, bright and reasonably well-adjusted. They'll be fine whereever they go next year.

I'll keep the forum posted on what happens next week. We're not going to open any envelopes until we have all the envelopes. -- Hex
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Old 03-30-2009, 04:47 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
45 posts, read 213,315 times
Reputation: 22
Wow. I think the only thing more nerve wracking than hearing about one kid would be hearing about more than one. Yikes!
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