Monday, November 13, 2017

What to Expect after Submitting the Choices Application

Now that you've submitted your Choices application, you might be wondering what happens next. Here's a brief timeline:

December 2017: Confirmation/Correction letters are sent. Online applicants should receive an email stating that the letter can be viewed online. Paper applicants will receive the letter via snail mail. The Confirmation/Correction letter states that your application has been received, indicates which school(s) you applied to, and any priority points your child may have. It also states whether any corrections are required.

February 2018: If you applied to a Gifted/High Ability or Highly Gifted magnet program, you will receive a separate notification regarding your child's eligibility or ineligibility for the program.

March 2018: Notification/Waiting List letters are sent.  All letters should be sent via snail mail, regardless of how you applied. However, online applicants may be able to view their letters online before receiving their snail mail letter. If your child is accepted to a school you'd like him or her to attend, congratulations - and be sure to follow the instructions in the letter to claim your spot!

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Reminder: Choices Application is due tomorrow!

This is a quick reminder that the Choices Application is tomorrow - it must be postmarked or received by 5 p.m. on Thursday, November 9, 2017.

If you're still debating where to apply, the LAUSD Magnets Handbook, is my short e-book that explains what factors you should be taking into consideration and how to prioritize your choices. It can help you quickly narrow down your choices, and figure out the order in which to rank your choices.

Good luck!

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Just a quick reminder that the Choices Application is due one week from today. Your application must be postmarked or received by 5 p.m. on Thursday, November 9, 2017.

If you are still wondering how to decide where to apply, be sure to check out the LAUSD Magnets Handbook, my short e-book that explains what factors you should be taking into consideration and how to prioritize your choices.

Good luck!

Monday, October 23, 2017

Why Choose a Magnet School?

There are lots of reasons to want your child to attend a magnet school, but most parents I know (including myself) have chosen magnet schools because we want our children to excel academically.

And our choices are backed up by the recent report that magnet schools performed extremely well on the most recent standardized state assessment test (often referred to as the SBAC or Smarter Balance test).

The focus of the LAUSD-produced report is on how magnet schools outperformed charter schools, but the report also states that magnets significantly outperformed non-magnet LAUSD schools as well.

Additionally, the LA Times recently reported that five of the top ten high schools with the highest college-going rates were magnet schools.

So if your priority is academic excellence, you should definitely consider a magnet school for your child.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

How to Get Your Child Into an LAUSD Magnet School: A step by step guide

The 2018-2019 Choices Application is now available. Here's a step-by-step guide to getting your child into a magnet school:

1. The first thing you need to do is determine your objective. Do you want your child to be admitted this year, or do you just want to accumulate wait list points?

2. If your goal is wait list points, then use the Choices Brochure to look for schools that have few openings and received lots of applications. This will maximize your chance of not getting in.

3. If your goal is admission, then you must next determine what school(s) you would like your child to attend. This means you should go on tours, speak with families whose children attend the schools you're considering, and learn everything you can about the school to figure out which school(s) would be the best fit for your child and your family.

4. Once you know what school(s) you will apply to, you can complete the Choices Application.

5. If you are only applying to accumulate wait list points, apply to only one school, and check "no" when asked if you want your child's name shared with other schools in the event he or she is wait listed.

6. If you are applying with the goal of admission, the decision of how many schools to apply to is more complicated. If you have a second and/or third choice that you would be fine with, you should probably list them, but if you feel strongly that your child would do best at your first choice school and you believe there is a good chance he or she would be admitted off the wait list, then you might not want to list a second school. (Your child would only be wait listed at your first choice school if he or she does not get into your second or third choice school.)

7. Double check all of the information on your application before you submit it.

8. When you receive the application confirmation letter, be sure to check for any errors, especially any errors regarding points. If you find an error, be sure to follow the instructions in the letter to correct it.

9. If your child is admitted to a school you want him or her to attend, congratulations! Be sure to follow the instructions in the admittance letter to accept the spot.

If you want more detailed information on getting your child into a magnet school, check out my e-book, LAUSD Magnets Handbook: A Guide to Getting Your Child into an LAUSD Magnet School, which is just $2.99 at Amazon!

Monday, October 2, 2017

What You Need to Know about the LAUSD Magnet School Choices Application

The 2018-2019 Choices Application is available today, Monday, October 2, 2017. If you're interested in getting your child into a magnet school next school year, or any time in the next few years, here's what you need to know:

1. The easiest way to apply is online at the LAUSD eChoices web site. If you prefer to fill out a paper application, you'll need to print one from the web site, or pick one up at an LAUSD school, Local District Office, LAUSD Headquarters, or Los Angeles City Library.

2. The answers to your questions are probably on the eChoices web site. There is a lot of information available there, as well as in the Choices Brochure.

3. If you can't figure out the answer to your question, you can usually get a live person on the phone by calling Student Integration Services at (213) 241-6572 (and being patient).

4. The Choices Brochure lists the number of openings this year and the number of applications received last year at each school. This information is very helpful in deciding what school you want to apply to, regardless of whether your goal is admission or wait list points.

5. Most schools have already scheduled their tours, and some require advance registration. If you can't find tour information on a school's web site, call their magnet office to find out the schedule.

6. You can tour as many schools as you want to, and you can apply to up to three magnet schools at once.

7. If you are applying to a Gifted/High Ability/Highly Gifted magnet, your child must be verified as meeting the applicable criteria by the application deadline of November 9. (The one exception is the Science Academy STEM Magnet, which gives its own test. Check their web site for more info.)

8. The deadline to apply is Thursday, November 9, 2017. Don't miss it! You'll lose priority and lessen your child's chances of getting in (and you won't accumulate wait list points if that's your goal).

Thursday, September 28, 2017

2018-2019 Choices Application includes Dual Language Programs

As previously mentioned, the 2018-2019 Choices Application is now available. The biggest change for this year is that it now includes Dual Language Programs (also known as two-way immersion programs).

Programs are available in Korean/English, Spanish/English, and Mandarin/English in selected elementary, middle and high schools. Students must enter the program in kindergarten, although students who are already proficient in the language may be admitted in a later grade.

For more information, visit the eChoices web site - there is a section dedicated to Dual Language Programs that includes an FAQ and more.