Hunter College Elementary School Application Available

The Application for 2013 kindergarten admission to Hunter College Elementary School (HCES) is available today.  For the first time HCES is using an online only application.

A lot of people are curious about this school so we got a Hunter parent to weigh in.

Facts

Hunter College Elementary School is a public elementary school

Despite being a publicly funded, tuition free school HCES is NOT part of the NYC Department of Education and is therefore not subject to DOE rules. Like all public schools, HCES does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, or disability.  Admission is for students who reside in Manhattan only.

HCES is for gifted students

HCES is a coed laboratory school that serves children in grades K through 6 who have been identified as intellectually gifted by Hunter's admission process.

Admission is based on a test

There are actually 2 rounds of assessment for admission to Hunter.  In the first round students are administered a modified version of the Stanford-Binet exam by one of Hunter's approved testers.  Round 1 starts after parents submit an online application, available today.  Test scores are sent to parents and to the school.  In December the eligibility score for Round 2 is determined.  Children who score at or above this score will be invited to the Round 2 on-site assessment.  Please see the HCES admissions website for detailed information about the process.

Fiction

HCES is basically a free private school

No, it's not.  HCES is publicly funded, chartered by the Board of Trustees of the City University of New York and administered by Hunter College.  Some of the extra trappings parents might expect at private schools are not at Hunter.  What the school offers is a challenging, innovative curriculum that emphasizes critical and creative thinking for students who are self-motivated, independent and inventive learners.

Students are subjected to standardized tests like all other public schools

Standardized tests are a fact of life at Hunter just like other public schools.  However, the test students take, the CTP, is used to guide instruction and not to rate teachers and/or the school itself.  Hunter is not a part of the DOE so it does not administer NY State standardized tests and is not subject to ‘No Child Left Behind’ or any other NY state education mandates.

 

Many people enter the Hunter application process thinking they don’t stand a chance and are pleasantly surprised when their child is offered a spot.  If you are a Manhattan resident and think this school might be a good fit for your child I urge you to go through the application process but be prepared for any outcome.

Applications for 2013 are available today.   Hey, you never know.


	

NYC 2012 Pre-Kindergarten Admissions Period Begins

Application season for the 2012/2013 school year is in full swing.  Kindergarten admission ended on Friday, and today, the month-long pre-kindergarten session begins.

The NYC Department of Education offers Universal Pre-Kindergarten (UPK) programs for eligible 4 year olds who reside in New York City.  UPK programs

provide a nurturing environment where children’s natural curiosity is used as a springboard to learn skills that are necessary for success in school.  In pre-kindergarten, children learn how to share, take turns and work in groups.  They also develop the skills that form the foundation for reading, writing, and mathematics.

All UPK programs are free of charge.  Programs can be half-day or full-day; half-day programs may take place in the morning or afternoon.  Programs are available at select public schools and at many community-based organizations (CBOs).  CBOs are independent groups that contract with the Department of Education to provide pre-kindergarten programs and other services to families. 


Starting today, March 5, you can submit a pre-k application in person at an Enrollment Office or online.  Applications  deadline for public school programs is Thursday, April 5.  The Pre-Kindergarten Directory is available at your local borough enrollment office and at the DOE  pre-k webpage.

Before you begin the application, review the Pre-K directory  and brochure and become familiar with the Universal Pre-Kindergarten programs in your community.  Take time to gather as much information as possible; visit schools and attend open house events or tours.

New York's Universal Pre-K program facts:

- All universal pre-k programs are free of charge for children born in 2008 who reside in New York City

- Even though all 4 year olds are eligible, a seat in a public universal pre-k program is not guaranteed

- Programs can be half day (two and a half hours, AM/morning or PM/afternoon) or full day (six hours and twenty minutes)

- Programs are housed in public schools or in community based organizations, and each has their own separate application process.  You can find the CBO application directory online here.  To apply, contact each site directly to obtain specific information.

- Admissions are NOT first come first serve.  Placement offers are made based on standardized admission priorities.

- Public school spots are given by lottery.  First preference is given to Zoned students with a verified sibling who will be in grades K-5 in the school in September 2012.  Additional admission priorities are detailed in the Pre-K Brochure.

- Applications available online or at a borough enrollment office only.  Do not apply by mail.  You may apply for a number of schools in one submission and rank those schools by order of preference.

There are information sessions in each borough starting next week.  Representatives from the Office of Student Enrollment and the Office of Early Childhood Education will be available at the sessions to answer your questions.  The sessions are often crowded so be sure to arrive early.

Pre-Kindergarten Information Sessions

All sessions will be held from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m.

 

Brooklyn

March 12, 2012

Sunset Park High School

153 35th Street

 

Manhattan

March 15, 2012

The High School of Fashion Industries

225 West 24th Street

 

Queens

March 19, 2012

Flushing High School

35-01 Union Street

 

Bronx

March 20, 2012

P.S. 121 Throop

2750 Throop Avenue

 

Staten Island

March 22, 2012

P.S. 69 Daniel D. Tompkins

144 Keating Place

Once your application is complete the waiting begins.  Notifications are not sent out until early June.


Kindergarten Applications are Due Today

Today is the last day to submit an application for a spot in a kindergarten class for the 2012-2013 school year in New York City. All students entering kindergarten in September 2012 must submit an application. Applications are not considered complete without 2 original documents that verify your address such as a utility bill, rent or mortgage statement.

To apply, visit your zoned school or any other school(s) you are interested in and eligible to apply to. Bring your child's birth certificate or passport and 2 documents which provide proof of residence.

NYC District 3 Magnet School Program Parent Workshop

SCHOOL CHOICE:  CHOOSING THE RIGHT PUBLIC SCHOOL FOR YOUR CHILD

 

The NYC District 3 Magnet School Program is having the first of a series of parent workshops this evening to help demystify the public school choice process.

These workshop aim to help local families understand all of the public school options available to them and teach them how to go about finding the right schools for their children.

In addition, they will help parents understand what Magnet Schools are, how the enrollment process works, and how they can apply.

DATES AND LOCATIONS

February 6, 2012 and March 5, 2012

115th Street Library, 5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.

203 West 115th Street, NY, NY 10026

 

February 13, 2012 and April 3, 2012

District 3 Headquarters, Joan of Arc Auditorium, 5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.

154 West 93rd Street, NY, NY 10025

(Between Amsterdam and Columbus)

 

NYC District 3 Magnet Schools applications are currently available at www.D3mag.net

National Catholic Schools Week – January 29-February 5 2012

The theme for Catholic Schools Week 2012 is “Catholic Schools: Faith. Academics. Service.”  The annual observance starts the last Sunday in January and runs all week, which in 2012 is January 29 to February 5. Schools typically celebrate Catholic Schools Week with Masses, open houses and special activities for students, families, parishioners and the community at large.  This week also kicks off the enrollment period for September 2012.  Information about Catholic schools from Pre-K through Grade 12 in the Archdiocese of New York can be found on the bilingual website: www.BuildBoldFutures.org, or by calling the bilingual recruitment phone 212-794-2885.

The theme for 2012 focuses on three priorities that make Catholic schools stand out from other educational institutions.  Children are taught faith – not just the basics of Christianity, but how to have a relationship with God.  Academics, which in Catholic schools are held to very high standards, and help each child reach his or her potential.  Service, the giving of one’s time and effort to help others, is taught both as an expression of faith and good citizenship.

Hunter Announces SB5 Cut Score Today

The following message was posted on Hunter's website today:

This year's modified Stanford-Binet V testing for Kindergarten 2012 admissions has concluded. The eligibility score for progression to Round 2 (on-site assessment) has been set at a Sum of Scaled Scores (SSS) of 148.

Letters will be mailed on December 19th informing eligible families of their appointments for Round 2.

Congratulations to everyone going on to the 2nd round!

Manhattan Borough President Wants to Improve NYC Kindergarten Admission Process

An email on one of my parent listserves a few weeks ago said "Help!  Confused about the K admissions process."  This is not uncommon feeling  at this time of year as many parents are knee deep in the private school applications process.   However, many are surprised to hear that, with the exception of Hunter and G&T programs, the public school application process doesn't happen until the beginning of the next year, long after the private school process has ended.

The public elementary admissions timeline for 2012 is:

January 9, 2012 – March 2, 2012 Kindergarten Application Period
March 19, 2012 – March 23, 2012 Families Notified About Assignment Offers
March 26, 2012 – April 20, 2012 Offer Acceptance Period

Recently, Scott Stringer, Manhattan's Borough President, has  undertaken an initiative to help simplify the kindergarten admission process, something near and dear to all New York City parents.   Nothing casues more anxiety to NYC parents than where to send their child(ren) to kindergarten and how to go about getting in and registering.  In a letter to School Chancellor, Dennis Walcott, Mr. Stringer provides suggestions about how to simplify the process for  both families and schools.  These include adjusting admissions timelines to eliminate waitlists, automating admissions, standardizing applications and offering school directories tailored to each district.

Full story and copy of letter can be found at Gotham Schools, here.

We want to hear your comments.  Tell us your suggestions on how to make the process better for all involved below in our comments section.

Parents Weigh In On the NYC Public High School Admissions Process

School admissions in New York City is not for the faint of heart. Gone are the days of just walking to your neighborhood school and signing your child up to attend. Instead, we have school choice, where parents and children get to choose from the many offerings. But sometimes too much choice is not a good thing.

Witness the high school choice admission process. A diagram of the process can be seen in this Gotham Schools article from a year ago.

Parents and students are fed up with the complexity of the process.  This Inside Schools article provides suggestions on how to simplify the process and make life easier for parents and students.

What do you think?  Are you going through the high school process?  Share your thoughts below.

Applying to Schools? Then Come to Our School Information and Networking Night

'Tis the Season...the school application season...and everyone is talking about schools -- at the playground, on anonymous online message boards, at the supermarket-- but are you talking to the right people and are you getting the right information?

  • How do you know what the right school is?  What do you really need to know about tours, play dates, thank you notes, lottery schools, testing, etc.?
  • Financial aid for private schools – is it real?

We have done the research for you and have put together a group of parent experts from the schools that you want to attend, who are ready to share their experiences.  Let’s Talk Schools is having a social mixer, to provide parents applying to schools an opportunity to connect with other parents in an informal setting to 'talk schools’ with each other.

Come mix and mingle at our School Information Speed Date Night with parents that will give you the real, unedited scoop on schools and answer your questions live, one-on- one.  Our Parent Experts have knowledge of ongoing schools*, experience of successfully completing the application process and they don’t mind talking about schools all night long!

Come join our conversation.

*Schools represented include the following:-

  • Fieldston Lower / Dalton / Trevor Day / Riverdale Country /
  • Bank Street / Columbia Grammar & Prep / St Hilda’s and St Hughe’s / Spence
  • NEST+m / PS 166 G&T / Hunter /PS 180 /Manhattan School for Children / Ascension
  • New York French-American Charter School / Upper Westside Success Academy
  • Weekday Preschool / Claremont (now MontClare) / Twin Parks Schools – Riverside, Central Park and Park West Montessori
* Final list of schools subject to change

Hunter College Elementary Date Change For Round 2 Kindergarten Admissions

Hunter College Elementary School (HCES) has announced that it has added a second weekend to its kindergarten Round 2 admission dates and has eliminated the two weekdays.

HCES had originally set January 28, 29, 30, 31 as the days that parents should save for Round 2 onsite assessment.  Round 2 sessions will now be held on the weekends of January 21/22 and 28/29.

If you have a child that scores high enough on the modified Stanford-Binet V test that HCES uses to screen applicants during Round 1 of the application process, (in recent years the cut off has ranged from 143 to 149) such that the child MAY be invited to Round 2, please take note of this change.

Families with an unchangeable conflict on January 21/22, including scheduled DOE Gifted and Talented (G&T) OLSAT testing, should send an email to HCESAdmit@hccs.hunter.cuny.edu noting the conflict.  HCES will not take special requests for appointment times, but will ensure that all qualified children are able to attend a Round 2 assessment session.

Also note, the deadline to apply to HCES is this Friday, November 4, 2011.  Hunter is accepting applications from children who are born in 2007 and reside in Manhattan only.