Recently I’ve gotten a lot of questions from families about the different rounds of the high school admissions process, so I wanted to clarify a few things here – especially as families are putting the final touches on Round 1 choices and starting to think about what’s next.


1.  ‘Round 1’ implies there are multiple chances to get what you want, but that’s not really true.   Your Round 1 choices are critical and should be taken seriously, because the reality is that not all schools will be available as options later on.  So if you are considering leaving that borderline school off your Round 1 list, don’t.  In many cases, it’s now or wait until 10th grade.


2.  Many families don’t seem to appreciate the importance of Round 1 and think they can fight to get what they want later on if they don’t get it now.  Poor strategy.  It is not advisable to count on latter parts of the process to get what you want.  The process was not built that way, and you are asking for trouble later on if you follow this strategy.  Round 2 is NOT a chance to get something you didn’t get in Round 1.  And the appeals process is NOT another round in the process – it’s only for special cases, and the reality is many appeals are denied.


3.  Don’t squander Round 1.  You may have heard me say this time and time again, but you should put down as many choices as you are possibly willing to consider for Round 1 – and then Round 2, depending on circumstances.    While you have to be at least somewhat comfortable with all your choices, the more empty spots you have on your application, generally speaking the more risk you take.


4.  Many families are not willing to put down borderline choices.  As I mentioned above, this is not a good strategy.  Understanding that some choices are less desirable than others, the best strategy is generally to put down those borderline choices on the application – whether it’s Round 1 or Round 2.  Consider the fact that those borderline choices may be the better option vs. being placed in a school later on you did not choose at all.


5.  Last year, nearly 8,000 students did not get a Round 1 match at all.  Don’t be one of the thousands in that situation this year.    Follow our advice, contact us for help, and follow our advice all year round by liking us on Facebook.  Whether it’s Round 1, Round 2, or appeals, we are here to help.


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