Jump to content


What's with the ads?

Photo

Reach Schools


30 replies to this topic

What's with the ads?

#1 DawnM

DawnM

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 22061 posts

Posted 05 September 2017 - 10:55 AM

This is for my current senior in high school BTW.  I think it is getting confusing because I have a 19 year old CC student and a 17 year old senior.

 

How high of a reach do you try for?

 

My son is on the lowest end of the "accepted" range for the school he suddenly realizes he has an interest in.   :glare: (if he had LISTENED to his mother.....but I am not bitter!  :laugh: ).....he has higher than lowest grades and they are strong, but his ACT scores are not quite there, they are at the bottom range.

 

Anyway, I think we should still apply, but I am prepping him (gently I promise!) for the rejection letter and telling him he can go to CC first and apply again if he still is interested.

 

How far of a reach was your child's reach school?

 

I think it is still worth the application and going through the process.  He does have strong extra-curricular stuff, but he wasn't captain of anything or president of anything.  But he did have some leadership.

 

 


Edited by DawnM, 06 September 2017 - 03:10 PM.


#2 Julie of KY

Julie of KY

    Hive Mind Queen Bee

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 3274 posts

Posted 05 September 2017 - 11:03 AM

The one thing I'd caution about applying to reach schools is to make sure that IF accepted, you feel that they can keep up with the workload there. If it's a kid that didn't listen to you early in high school so has some less than stellar grades but now can do hard courses, then it's very different than a student that learning is hard work and would struggle at some schools. 

 

I think it is fine to apply to reach schools in which you think it is a good fit. 


  • creekland likes this

#3 regentrude

regentrude

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 25441 posts

Posted 05 September 2017 - 11:08 AM

I second Julie's advice. Make sure he is academically strong enough to succeed in case he is admitted.

The work load at my DD's school is brutal. They are all high achieving, ambitious, motivated students, and the school works them to the bone.

 

If you solely think in terms of probability of acceptance: any very selective school is a gamble. My DD applied to six extremely selective schools (admissions rates below 10%) and got rejected from four. She is attending a school with an 8% admissions rate. It is like playing the lottery, even for highly qualified students. Rejections are par for the course.


  • creekland likes this

#4 JanetC

JanetC

    Hive Mind Level 2 Worker: Nurse Bee

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 2389 posts

Posted 05 September 2017 - 12:03 PM

You need to ask and answer the tough questions here - if the scores are low, something else has to make up for it. In terms of his application, what is that? Make sure it's clear in his essays or other application materials why he would be a great addition to the campus community.

 

Also, help him find some schools with similar campus/offerings/whatever-it-is-that-attracts-him-to-the-reach-school that are less selective where he could be happy and put those on the list, too.

 

Finally, go to CC first then transfer to your reach school is bad advice

 

1. Many selective schools are even more competitive for transfers than for freshman admissions

2. For kids who are in range for a highly selective school (even if their scores are at the low end of that range!) there is almost always a four year school that is a better fit than the CC


Edited by JanetC, 05 September 2017 - 12:05 PM.

  • 8FillTheHeart likes this

#5 DawnM

DawnM

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 22061 posts

Posted 05 September 2017 - 01:10 PM

You need to ask and answer the tough questions here - if the scores are low, something else has to make up for it. In terms of his application, what is that? Make sure it's clear in his essays or other application materials why he would be a great addition to the campus community.

 

Also, help him find some schools with similar campus/offerings/whatever-it-is-that-attracts-him-to-the-reach-school that are less selective where he could be happy and put those on the list, too.

 

Finally, go to CC first then transfer to your reach school is bad advice

 

1. Many selective schools are even more competitive for transfers than for freshman admissions

2. For kids who are in range for a highly selective school (even if their scores are at the low end of that range!) there is almost always a four year school that is a better fit than the CC

 

Thanks.

 

For this particular school the acceptance rate is higher for transfer students who apply than for incoming Freshman.  AND, it says over 90% of the transfers come from the state community colleges.

 

He has some back up schools, so we are ok there.  One is a community college, the others are 4 year schools.

 

 

I think some things are regional.


Edited by DawnM, 06 September 2017 - 05:30 AM.


#6 DawnM

DawnM

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 22061 posts

Posted 05 September 2017 - 01:12 PM

I do believe he is academically strong enough.  He is actually in a very strong academic high school, and I feel they are preparing him well.  And the truth is, his math scores are high, but the rest of it brings the test scores to mid-range overall.

 

But I guess the best he can do it go ahead and apply and see what happens.  


  • creekland and regentrude like this

#7 Gr8lander

Gr8lander

    Hive Mind Larvae

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 1053 posts

Posted 05 September 2017 - 01:34 PM

I have been working with an extended family member (2018 grad) on his college applications, with a focus on schools with very large merit awards. He's got some real strengths that could push him over the top at certain schools, but certain weaknesses too that might ultimately put him in the "no" category. He's got a wonderful SAT score and National Merit semifinalist status, along with some nice extracurriculars and geographic diversity, which has understandably put stars in his eyes. On the other hand, his GPA is not all that it could be, and his course rigor is just average.

 

I think it has been helpful to be objective with him about the parts of his application that can be perceived as strengths or weaknesses, and focus on things he could do to beef up the application (in his case, heavy focus on the essays and taking a couple of subject tests), and then be realistic about his chances at various schools.

 

In your case, if money is no object and he has a solid safe option, I see no problem in going for the high reach, if, for nothing else, to eliminate that "what could have been" factor in his mind. If he gets the acceptance, of course the two of you will want to seriously evaluate the wisdom of attending, both financially or academically. But you can cross that bridge when it comes :-)


  • DawnM and creekland like this

#8 DawnM

DawnM

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 22061 posts

Posted 05 September 2017 - 01:51 PM

I have been working with an extended family member (2018 grad) on his college applications, with a focus on schools with very large merit awards. He's got some real strengths that could push him over the top at certain schools, but certain weaknesses too that might ultimately put him in the "no" category. He's got a wonderful SAT score and National Merit semifinalist status, along with some nice extracurriculars and geographic diversity, which has understandably put stars in his eyes. On the other hand, his GPA is not all that it could be, and his course rigor is just average.

 

I think it has been helpful to be objective with him about the parts of his application that can be perceived as strengths or weaknesses, and focus on things he could do to beef up the application (in his case, heavy focus on the essays and taking a couple of subject tests), and then be realistic about his chances at various schools.

 

In your case, if money is no object and he has a solid safe option, I see no problem in going for the high reach, if, for nothing else, to eliminate that "what could have been" factor in his mind. If he gets the acceptance, of course the two of you will want to seriously evaluate the wisdom of attending, both financially or academically. But you can cross that bridge when it comes :-)

 

 

Money isn't the concern as they are all state schools at this point.  But ask me again when we start applying! 



#9 jdahlquist

jdahlquist

    Hive Mind Level 4 Worker: Builder Bee

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 1763 posts

Posted 05 September 2017 - 02:47 PM

Unless it is an extremely lengthy application process that takes time away from applying at schools he is more likely to be accepted at or there is a high application fee, I see no reason why not to let him apply.  Even if he doesn't get in, the process can be educational.

 

At the same time, I do not buy into the notion that every student needs to apply to reach schools; just because there is a lower probability of a student getting into University X doesn't mean that the student will be better off attending that school if admitted than attending a school with a higher probability of admission.


  • Corraleno, DawnM, creekland and 3 others like this

#10 WoolySocks

WoolySocks

    Googleplex master of hivedom

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 9041 posts

Posted 05 September 2017 - 04:12 PM

I think kids can apply for reach schools at will.  My junior got e-mails from Princeton and Yale recently.  ROFL.  Why not!?  Assuming application fees and the paper work don't get out of hand anyway.  Some kids eat that stuff up.   My first born will plug his nose through it.  My kid is not a name brand school kid at all.  He's interested in quirky music programs and I'm trying to moderate to somewhere that also has strong academics.  He has the ACT scores trending in a good direction to apply to highly competitive schools if he wants to - hence the e-mails I guess.  He will take it one more time next spring. 

 

I don't think kids NEED to apply to a reach at all.  I don't think the rankings and ratings systems are all that.  It could be motivating the last couple years of high school if nothing else.  Overall fit for a particular student in combination with no to minimal debt is where it is at for us. 


  • DawnM likes this

#11 JumpedIntoTheDeepEndFirst

JumpedIntoTheDeepEndFirst

    Empress Bee

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 3585 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 11:56 AM

Being at the bottom end of the reach statistics---

 

In both my opinion and experience this is a difficult place to be.  You need to decide if the student can be successful at the school.  Sometimes a reach school can be very competitive and demanding at a level beyond the student's capability.  Some kids rise to the challenge and others can't handle it-academically and/or emotionally.

 

As far as just admissions-I think it is worth applying to a few reach schools.  Why not take a shot?  However, being at the bottom of their statistics you should be realistic about the possibility of a rejection.  Also, being at the bottom of the statistics typically doesn't lead to merit aid in any quantity.

 

Knowing that-I'd say go for it.  And if all this sounds a bit mean or harsh, it is actually exactly what I tell my own kids.  This is the reality, I believe enough in you that I think you should give it a try, you might or might not be accepted, and if you do attend you need to understand the challenges and rewards of that choice.  (I prefer to think of myself as a mean guidance counselor and not a mean mom; mom chews her fingernails off all winter waiting and hoping for acceptances.)


  • Gr8lander likes this

#12 creekland

creekland

    Retired homeschooler!

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 23220 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 12:10 PM

To me it depends upon the scores we're talking about and the major being considered.

 

When I just pulled up data from UCLA and Stanford, I see the 25-75% ACT scores for CA residents at UCLA range from 27-34.  That's a wide difference, I'd be wary if my kid had a 27.  I've seen kids at school who score in the mid 20s vs mid 30s and there's often a major difference in ability (work ethic can't be determined however).  With Stanford the difference in range is merely 31-34.  I'd be far less concerned as that just isn't a ton of difference.  The same kid could get either of those scores on different test dates (more or less).

 

But major comes into play too.  If looking at a math or English heavy major, it would double my concern that they could keep up at UCLA.  If looking at one of the Social Sciences or other majors that don't depend as much upon what is tested with the ACT, then I'd be less concerned TBH.  Other factors will matter more.

 

And overall, if I thought my kid could do better than his scores suggested, that would come into play too.

 

The big thing I'd try to avoid is the improbable acceptance leading to feeling like a failure due to not being able to keep up.  That can hit kids hard and last for a long, long time making them feel inferior.  I'd want to be solid in feeling my student could keep up if s/he got in.


  • Hoggirl likes this

#13 DawnM

DawnM

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 22061 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 03:09 PM

Being at the bottom end of the reach statistics---

 

In both my opinion and experience this is a difficult place to be.  You need to decide if the student can be successful at the school.  Sometimes a reach school can be very competitive and demanding at a level beyond the student's capability.  Some kids rise to the challenge and others can't handle it-academically and/or emotionally.

 

As far as just admissions-I think it is worth applying to a few reach schools.  Why not take a shot?  However, being at the bottom of their statistics you should be realistic about the possibility of a rejection.  Also, being at the bottom of the statistics typically doesn't lead to merit aid in any quantity.

 

Knowing that-I'd say go for it.  And if all this sounds a bit mean or harsh, it is actually exactly what I tell my own kids.  This is the reality, I believe enough in you that I think you should give it a try, you might or might not be accepted, and if you do attend you need to understand the challenges and rewards of that choice.  (I prefer to think of myself as a mean guidance counselor and not a mean mom; mom chews her fingernails off all winter waiting and hoping for acceptances.)

 

I am a counselor and a mom, but I am not mean to my students.  You can give them reality without being mean.

 

For this particular child, he is much higher than the bottom for grades, but not for the ACT.  We will see how he does after this 2nd try.

 

He doesn't have his heart set on this school, so it isn't something that will break him if he doesn't get in, in fact, he just decided to maybe apply this week.  He has some solid Plan B and Plan C options in place, including some 4 year college options.  

 

Maybe I shouldn't have asked.....everyone is assuming I have a C student with a 19 ACT score kid and I am banking on my kid getting into Stanford.  I am not.  AT. ALL.  



#14 musicianmom

musicianmom

    Hive Mind Level 6 Worker: Scout Bee

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 1548 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 03:21 PM

I don't think lower standardized test scores mean that a student would have a hard time keeping up in a competitive school.

I say this as someone who got scholarships based on high test scores and was unsuccessful due to executive functioning issues.

#15 whitestavern

whitestavern

    Hive Mind Queen Bee

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 3377 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 03:24 PM

Not to hijack, but how do you assess how hard a school is and determine if your child would be able to handle the work? My dd has one far reach and two low reaches if you look at her stats. She's had one C (a 79 dang it!) and taken all honors and AP classes at a pretty rigorous Catholic high school. Her grades and test scores in English are high, and she's looking at majoring in English, so I feel like she'd be successful at those schools. Is there some way to figure out how academically difficult a school is?



#16 JumpedIntoTheDeepEndFirst

JumpedIntoTheDeepEndFirst

    Empress Bee

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 3585 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 03:41 PM

I am a counselor and a mom, but I am not mean to my students.  You can give them reality without being mean.

 

For this particular child, he is much higher than the bottom for grades, but not for the ACT.  We will see how he does after this 2nd try.

 

He doesn't have his heart set on this school, so it isn't something that will break him if he doesn't get in, in fact, he just decided to maybe apply this week.  He has some solid Plan B and Plan C options in place, including some 4 year college options.  

 

Maybe I shouldn't have asked.....everyone is assuming I have a C student with a 19 ACT score kid and I am banking on my kid getting into Stanford.  I am not.  AT. ALL.  

 

I'm not accusing you of being mean (nor advocating folks should be), I am joking that some might think my realistic view is mean but I didn't sugar coat the admissions process for my kids.

 

I wouldn't necessarily panic about test scores as an indicator of future success, they are but one measure of readiness and may not be the complete picture.  

 

I am in no way assuming that you have a C student who expects admission to Harvard nor thinking that is your expectation.  But the admissions game, with regard to test scores, is pretty multi-faceted. I think that being realistic about applications includes answering the question, if I am admitted will I be able to be both happy and successful here?  That applies to every school from the local community college to Harvard.  Another aspect is knowing that every application holds the possibility of "rejection" and that those rejections need to be viewed in the proper light.  I would counsel my student that if they cannot cope with the idea of being rejected from a given school or envision themselves being successful at that school, they need to reconsider applying or why they want to apply.  

 

Unfortunately too many students (and parents) get wrapped up in and get their sense of self-worth wrapped up in the application process without a thought for what happens after acceptance. I have watched kids be devastated by not getting their dream school without acknowledging the wonderful opportunities that have become available.  

 

I think that myself (and probably the other responders as well) are offering our best generic advice and experience on the topic.  Some might not apply, some might be thought provoking, and some might prompt action.

 

Best of luck with whichever schools make your final application cut. :)


  • Hoggirl and creekland like this

#17 creekland

creekland

    Retired homeschooler!

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 23220 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 04:26 PM

everyone is assuming I have a C student with a 19 ACT score kid and I am banking on my kid getting into Stanford.  I am not.  AT. ALL.  

 

FWIW, I haven't seen this at all nor was it what I was responding to.  I was assuming you have a student with a 27 looking to go to UCLA or with a 31 hoping for Stanford (or anything similar with another college).

 

I don't think lower standardized test scores mean that a student would have a hard time keeping up in a competitive school.

I say this as someone who got scholarships based on high test scores and was unsuccessful due to executive functioning issues.

 

These two things are not connected at all.  A low score on an ACT/SAT either means the student wasn't prepared for the test or (sometimes, but rather rarely) has test anxiety issues.  If not prepared for the test, it can be due to a poor foundation or not familiar with the speed required.  If speed processing issues, those can be worked on or sometimes accommodations can be obtained.  If test anxiety issues, one has to beware that those don't also carry over into college exams causing issues.  But most often, it's a not-as-solid foundation - and that can be a major problem when a student gets into a class and feels inferior because "everyone else knows this already."  Some can/will buckle down and do well, but most do not IF in difficult majors that tend to align with what is tested on those tests.  IME, it's pretty rare for a student in the lower 25% score-wise (for their school) to do well and far too many return home dejected and thinking pretty poorly about themselves.  They tend to think they are "dumb" rather than "we just weren't exposed to that - I can do it if I put more time in."

 

A good score shows a good foundation (in English and math) and ability to work through problems quickly, but it does not show a thing about work ethic - something also needed for college success.  It sounds like that was your issue, but it's not at all the same issue as a low score even though both can end up sending students home.

 

Not to hijack, but how do you assess how hard a school is and determine if your child would be able to handle the work? My dd has one far reach and two low reaches if you look at her stats. She's had one C (a 79 dang it!) and taken all honors and AP classes at a pretty rigorous Catholic high school. Her grades and test scores in English are high, and she's looking at majoring in English, so I feel like she'd be successful at those schools. Is there some way to figure out how academically difficult a school is?

 

This is what standardized tests try to do.  They test oodles of kids from across the nation (or planet) and rate them based upon the same questions.  One can use that info to see where areas need strengthening or fill in gaps, but in general, I've found a pretty good correlation to knowledge and potential with "current" test scores barring the potential outliers I mentioned above with test anxiety or speed issues.

 

Assessing work ethic is more difficult, esp since many kids at college find oodles of things (clubs, etc) they want to get involved in and sometimes don't remember studying needs to be a priority daily - not just cramming.


  • frogger, regentrude and MysteryJen like this

#18 Nan in Mass

Nan in Mass

    Apprentice Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 9765 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 08:03 PM

Not to hijack, but how do you assess how hard a school is and determine if your child would be able to handle the work? My dd has one far reach and two low reaches if you look at her stats. She's had one C (a 79 dang it!) and taken all honors and AP classes at a pretty rigorous Catholic high school. Her grades and test scores in English are high, and she's looking at majoring in English, so I feel like she'd be successful at those schools. Is there some way to figure out how academically difficult a school is?


As their teacher, I had a pretty good idea of how prepared my children were for an academically challenging school. I sent them off with warnings about what sort of classes they were not prepared for. For instance, I told them not to take art history. They were totally unprepared for this sort of writing that they would need to do for an art history class and the sort of history they would need to know. I also knew that they were likely to think the sort of analysis required for that kind of class stupid.

I think that to survive an academically difficult course load, a student has to be able to:

Read quickly and easily
Skim large quantities of material and pick out the important points
Do research for different sorts of material
Bang out papers quickly
Reduce large quantities of material to a study guide
Memorize efficiently
Write a lab report
Use lab equipment
Apply math to real problems
Work through math and science problem sets quickly
Really think about the information that is presented and its implications and apply it, link it up with the rest of their knowledge, and use it, not just parrot it back
Make a coherent argument

I also think the student needs to have some sprt of knowledge base and experience. And they need a reasonably good work ethic OR some natural talent with academics. Both would be even better.

I could take some sort of guess at how difficult a school in my region is by using a combination of thinking about the people I know who went to the school, requirements for applying, reputation, advertising, talking to students, graduation requirements, and course descriptions. Do all students do a senior project/thesis? How much research do they do for a class? Reading? How many papers or labs do they do? Are all the exams multiple choice? Does their calculus 1 class start where a typical high school calc class leaves off? How far do their course choices go in a particular subject? (For example, if there is a French major, how many French literature classes are offered?) Etc.

You can also ask professionals in a particular field which schools have a good reputation.

Nan
  • regentrude likes this

#19 daijobu

daijobu

    Hive Mind Worker Bee

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 2270 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 08:04 PM

Many competitive colleges make it harder to get it than to graduate.  Even very selective universities will have an easy major or two.  



#20 Nan in Mass

Nan in Mass

    Apprentice Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 9765 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 08:24 PM

.
.
.
Maybe I shouldn't have asked.....everyone is assuming I have a C student with a 19 ACT score kid and I am banking on my kid getting into Stanford. I am not. AT. ALL.


I think most of us have at one time or another worried about the possible disadvantages of letting one of our precious children apply to a school where they landed below the middle of the students' test scores. Because we know it can be harder to judge our students' academic abilities when we don't have a lot to compare them to, we all feel obliged to issue the ovious "don't get in over your head" warning, it is something we all are scared of doing, I think. I was petrified of doing this, I kniw, despite children'stest scores that were solidly in the middle. And as homeschoolets, we know how test scores can be misleading. So we are cautious when giving advice.

I just assumed you were wise and checking to see if anyone had thought of a disadvantage you hadn't.

Nan

#21 MarkT

MarkT

    Hive Mind Queen Bee

  • Moderators
  • PipPip
  • 2216 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 10:27 PM

Not to hijack, but how do you assess how hard a school is and determine if your child would be able to handle the work? My dd has one far reach and two low reaches if you look at her stats. She's had one C (a 79 dang it!) and taken all honors and AP classes at a pretty rigorous Catholic high school. Her grades and test scores in English are high, and she's looking at majoring in English, so I feel like she'd be successful at those schools. Is there some way to figure out how academically difficult a school is?

 

 You can get a feel for a school's general academic environment from the College Niche comments.

 Also the Fiske Guide to Colleges has a decent rating system for "Academics". 

(for example The University of Chicago got a 5 rating - the highest)

 

 It is very hard to find out how difficult a particular major at a college will be unless you know someone with that major at that school.



#22 MarkT

MarkT

    Hive Mind Queen Bee

  • Moderators
  • PipPip
  • 2216 posts

Posted 06 September 2017 - 10:37 PM

I second Julie's advice. Make sure he is academically strong enough to succeed in case he is admitted.

The work load at my DD's school is brutal. They are all high achieving, ambitious, motivated students, and the school works them to the bone.

 

If you solely think in terms of probability of acceptance: any very selective school is a gamble. My DD applied to six extremely selective schools (admissions rates below 10%) and got rejected from four. She is attending a school with an 8% admissions rate. It is like playing the lottery, even for highly qualified students. Rejections are par for the course.

We have received recruitment flyers from the University of Chicago at least once a month for the last year or so. [There are several former students from my son's small charter school that attend there.]

 

DS currently has no plans on applying. From the above I would try to dissuade him. 



#23 DawnM

DawnM

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 22061 posts

Posted 07 September 2017 - 04:47 AM

FWIW, I haven't seen this at all nor was it what I was responding to.  I was assuming you have a student with a 27 looking to go to UCLA or with a 31 hoping for Stanford (or anything similar with another college).

 

 

 

 

Ok, well, we are aware that both of these schools are off the table, as is Berkley.   :lol:   We aren't that far in to denial.



#24 DawnM

DawnM

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 22061 posts

Posted 07 September 2017 - 04:52 AM

I think most of us have at one time or another worried about the possible disadvantages of letting one of our precious children apply to a school where they landed below the middle of the students' test scores. Because we know it can be harder to judge our students' academic abilities when we don't have a lot to compare them to, we all feel obliged to issue the ovious "don't get in over your head" warning, it is something we all are scared of doing, I think. I was petrified of doing this, I kniw, despite children'stest scores that were solidly in the middle. And as homeschoolets, we know how test scores can be misleading. So we are cautious when giving advice.

I just assumed you were wise and checking to see if anyone had thought of a disadvantage you hadn't.

Nan

 

Well, that is just it.  He hasn't been homeschooled for 3 years.  He has been in one of the top high schools in the nation (ranked right about 250 by US News) and is doing very well.  He isn't top by any means, but he isn't even near the middle, he is solidly in the top 20-25% or so of his class.  

 

So, his grades are not from me, they are from his honors level teachers.  But, not AP.   So, he is good, but not in the top 10% where some of these schools want you to be.

 

But, I am not naive enough to not know this would be a reach school, and possibly not attainable at all.  But we are ok with that.  Really.



#25 Nan in Mass

Nan in Mass

    Apprentice Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 9765 posts

Posted 07 September 2017 - 05:46 AM

Well, that is just it. He hasn't been homeschooled for 3 years. He has been in one of the top high schools in the nation (ranked right about 250 by US News) and is doing very well. He isn't top by any means, but he isn't even near the middle, he is solidly in the top 20-25% or so of his class.

So, his grades are not from me, they are from his honors level teachers. But, not AP. So, he is good, but not in the top 10% where some of these schools want you to be.

But, I am not naive enough to not know this would be a reach school, and possibly not attainable at all. But we are ok with that. Really.


Well in that case, your son knows what stiff academics are like and can judge what he is getting into and whether he wants to tackle that or go someplace where he would have some energy left over from the academics to do some extra stuff. In my extended family, we encourage going someplace where you are in the middle of the pack so you don't get bored, cynical, arrogant, lonely, and depressed by not being challenged, or have to focus so much on avademics that you have no time to make friends, grow up, try new activities, excersize, and continue things like one's music. But it all depends on your goals. We aren't very academic-minded as a family, despite having some very capable students (not my sons grin).

Nan

#26 creekland

creekland

    Retired homeschooler!

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 23220 posts

Posted 07 September 2017 - 06:14 AM

Ok, well, we are aware that both of these schools are off the table, as is Berkley.   :lol:   We aren't that far in to denial.

 

Hey... it was late.  Those were two schools I could come up with in CA.  ;)   :lol:

 

The same principle applies to any school.  If there's not much of a range difference or if the desired major isn't a math/English heavy one, scores don't matter as much.  I wanted all of mine to be in the top 25% where they attended, but the major reason for that is wanting aid.  An added perk is academics were easily handled (meaning they still had to study, etc, but never felt inferior to their peers aside from a minor gap or two).


  • DawnM, WoolySocks and MysteryJen like this

#27 regentrude

regentrude

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 25441 posts

Posted 07 September 2017 - 07:14 AM

Another thought that I did not see here yet: a lot depends on the student's personality, and that's even the case for students who are well within the test score target range for a school (and perhaps most of all for the student who has always been the overachiever)

A student who is used to being advanced, on top of his class, always the one who explains the material to the others, not challenged by his high school coursework (even with AP and DE) and is academically prepared for the reach school may find himself in a situation where, for the first time in his life, he is barely average, or below. He will go from being the smartest person in the classroom to suddenly being among a cohort of people who are as smart and smarter than him. This can be a tremendous challenge for the psyche! It will require the student to completely reevaluate his abilities, self esteem, view of the role of academics, and can be a painful process that not every person can negotiate.

Something to keep in mind for those who aim at extremely selective schools.


Edited by regentrude, 07 September 2017 - 07:14 AM.

  • creekland, MysteryJen and MarkT like this

#28 wapiti

wapiti

    Apprentice Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 11602 posts

Posted 07 September 2017 - 09:15 AM

He will go from being the smartest person in the classroom to suddenly being among a cohort of people who are as smart and smarter than him. This can be a tremendous challenge for the psyche! It will require the student to completely reevaluate his abilities, self esteem, view of the role of academics, and can be a painful process that not every person can negotiate.

Something to keep in mind for those who aim at extremely selective schools.

 

And alternatively, or perhaps simultaneously, he may "find his people" for the first time.


  • Hoggirl, Kathy in Richmond, DawnM and 3 others like this

#29 regentrude

regentrude

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 25441 posts

Posted 07 September 2017 - 09:55 AM

And alternatively, or perhaps simultaneously, he may "find his people" for the first time.

 

yes, definitely
 



#30 DawnM

DawnM

    Qualified Bee Keeper

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 22061 posts

Posted 07 September 2017 - 10:14 AM

I have had so little time lately.

 

This week has been after school meetings with my kids' schools and work all day, and then repeat.  I get one here for a 10 min. break here and there when I need to decompress.

 

Anyway, my son and I had a little talk last night, very little, but I went over what the counselors said in the senior meeting.  They want the kids to come in and meet with them and have their reach, match, and safety schools already picked.  I told him he needs to pick one for each state, so he will need to pick 6 schools total.

 

All of the schools will be ones he meets at least the GPA requirement for, and he has a lot of EC and volunteer/service hours.  The test scores will be his sticking point, as I mentioned.

 

He is taking it again in 2 days, so we will see what happens.


  • creekland likes this

#31 creekland

creekland

    Retired homeschooler!

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 23220 posts

Posted 07 September 2017 - 01:41 PM

And alternatively, or perhaps simultaneously, he may "find his people" for the first time.

 

This happens often IME.  I can't count the number of times our tippy top students return from a college visit so happy to have found their "tribe" and so eager from that point on to get in and get there.  I actually can't recall any who were unhappy afterward with their choice, unless they went into too much debt, but that's rare here.  If they got in, top students usually got good aid (or went somewhere with good merit aid).

 

I have had so little time lately.

 

This week has been after school meetings with my kids' schools and work all day, and then repeat.  I get one here for a 10 min. break here and there when I need to decompress.

 

Anyway, my son and I had a little talk last night, very little, but I went over what the counselors said in the senior meeting.  They want the kids to come in and meet with them and have their reach, match, and safety schools already picked.  I told him he needs to pick one for each state, so he will need to pick 6 schools total.

 

All of the schools will be ones he meets at least the GPA requirement for, and he has a lot of EC and volunteer/service hours.  The test scores will be his sticking point, as I mentioned.

 

He is taking it again in 2 days, so we will see what happens.

 

Here's hoping these test scores come back very in line with his GPA!


  • Hoggirl likes this