Top 5 Start of School Questions
It’s the end of summer, and if you are starting your 8th grade year you will most likely fall into one of two categories:
- You have done very little work on the high school search, are just getting started, and have a lot of work ahead of you,
- You have done a good amount – or even a lot – of work so far, but still feel very anxious and perhaps frantic about what’s to come.
What I’d like to lay out in this blog is what I consider to be the minimum amount of work that you should have accomplished – or should accomplish in the next couple of weeks – to put yourself in position for all the work that’s ahead of you in the next several months. Don’t fret – there is still time and you have every chance to succeed in the high school search!
Here are the top 5 questions to ask yourself now to evaluate where you stand:
- Do you have your final 7th grade course marks and standardized test scores? Be sure to gather all this information as soon as possible, since it will form the basis for many of your choices to come.
- Do you know what kind of high school you are looking for? If you have not yet thought about this at all, now is the time. Big, small, comprehensive school, specialty school, theme-based school, arts school, CTE (career and technical education) school, etc, etc.
- Do you have a working list of at least 10-15 schools? I didn’t say final, I said a working list. This list will evolve over time as you conduct research, talk to others, visit schools, attend school fairs, etc. If your list is already under 12 public school programs (your ultimate target goal), I challenge you to add some programs to it. The last place you want to be when applications are due is a list that only has a few programs on it.
- Do you have a calendar and notebook for high school admissions? Getting organized and staying on top of everything to come is half the battle. (For more organization tips, see my checklist here)
- Have you gotten familiar with the High School Directory? That doesn’t only mean looking at some schools. That means really understanding what’s listed on the school pages and what it means – everything from statistics to admissions priorities and admissions methods.
It is not too late to get back on track, and if you are in good shape stay consistent with your time and effort. As I always say, this is a marathon, and the winners are the ones who commit time consistently to staying on top of the game.
Stay with us throughout the year for more tips and advice, and contact us if you would like to schedule a complimentary 15-minute phone consultation to help you evaluate your own personal situation.