Monday, June 2

Kindergarten Thread


Parents of kids waiting for g+t kindergarten news, here's a thread to continue the conversation. Anything new in the mail today?

61 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the new thread (indeed, I RAN to see if the Kindergarten citywide letter was in the mail, but nada). I'd be shocked if they came before the June 6th deadline, personally. I am wondering, though, if the DOE has a plan for (and is aware of) the number of people that might forgo assigned spots at schools. I've spoken personally with more than a few people who are very possibly going to turn down spots (at NEST and other G&Ts) for private or zoned gen ed. Others who listed all the schools with no intention of sending their kids to any but their top choices. I for one would like to propose a radical idea: a waiting list.

Anonymous said...

What about the "regular" kindergarten news? I am in a lottery for District 1 kindergarten "empowerment" schools and have not heard yet.

Any word on when that went out?

Anonymous said...

District 1. No news or mail. Can we expect something this early after all the delays?

Anonymous said...

Mail man arrived. No mail from DOE today...

helen,
in your previous post:
>The latest sense we have is that citywide gifted and talented schools have sent out acceptances and rejections; parents have yet to hear from other schools to which their children applied.

Is this referring to K or Middle school?
Please let us know.

edgeforlife said...

Parents should not be in this situation, waiting. The process needs to be rectified. I would bet that the leadership of the NYC Board of ED is not in waiting mode for their children... that would be a great topic for a news journalist to tackle, what are their children's options and did they take the OLSAT like the rest of us. Your readers might find my last blogpost about an interview with a OLSAT tester interesting...

Anonymous said...

No, not yet. Just checked.

Anonymous said...

Nothing in the mail yet -- district 18.

Anonymous said...

FYI = Waiting on the three citywide schools for K, no letter today.

Anonymous said...

Nothing in the mail today. District 3.

Helen said...

OK, I'm checking in with DOE with specific questions about g+t K and about general-ed K, with follow-up specifically regarding the Empowerment schools in District 1.

With good luck, we'll have an answer in 12 hours or so -- will post whatever I get whenever it arrives.

thanks to all -

Anonymous said...

I just want to reiterate the first poster. I also know a few people (and have read about others on Urban Baby) who ranked G&T programs they had no intention of accepting a seat at. They sometimes claim they didn't understand the instructions, or didn't know there was no waitlise, and sometimes it seems they just don't care. I hope the DOE will take this human factor into account and overaccept by a significant margin. Otherwise, we will see a shrinking G&T program with seats going unfilled. Come to think of it, I don't think the DOE actually cares about that!

Anonymous said...

anyone know if 1st grade citywide spots will be announced with K placements?

Anonymous said...

I am a parent who put down two choices I will not send my child to -- UNLESS we don't get into our local school (PS3 and PS41 have not yet been assigned) -- knowing how poorly run the entire system is, I fear that due to overcrowding my daughter will be sent to some other school in District 2! If that were to happen, our 2nd and 3rd choices would look much more attractive. The unreliability of the entire process makes me want as many options as possible.

Anonymous said...

In regards to not accepting seats - Not only does the DOE not Care, they are counting on it. They can close programs with little demand for the seats. It was a clever way to make it look like programs were expanding. But without a waitlist programs will actually decrease.

dr. Monty Weinstein said...

We have not heard from G&T in Districts 21 and 22. Is there an appeal process if the DOE assigns us to our last choice for G&T. Also, what if we want our daughter to attend the G&T at a District 21 school that my 5th grader is graduating from. Who do we contact. I am in accord with the blogger who wants to do a story about the private schools that the top level DOE employees send their kids to . They don't have to take OLSATs, deal with OSEPO or sit on pins and needles for three weeks awaiting the letters. But then again, why should the middle and working classes count in this configuration?

Anonymous said...

I spoke with someone last week from the G&T office who said notification would go out around the second week of June. I don't know how accurate the information is.

Anonymous said...

Is there any reason to believe that the letters will be mailed before 6-6, as previously indicated? Based on my last check with the Anderson admissions office (6-2), it is still their expectation

Anonymous said...

To 8:46 - the G&T form specified that you had to rank *all* of the schools listed, so that's what we did, despite some of them being halfway across Brooklyn. (We're in District 22.) I hope we don't deny anyone an immediate slot at a school we won't accept, but we weren't going to risk our application being bounced because we neglected to decide whether Gerritsen Beach or Mill Basin was our last choice.

Meanwhile, a question: Does anyone know when the deadline is for parents to accept or decline G&T placement offers? Or is that one of those DoE state secrets?

Anonymous said...

Just spoke with someone at the G&T office, K letters have not yet gone out.

Anonymous said...

Did anyone else send their school choices back via certified mail? We mailed ours on the 6th of May. It did not get signed for until the 23rd of May; one day before it was to be returned to us. We called the DOE because we were worried they had not picked up the letter when two notices had been left by the USPS. We were told that the DOE is not processing the paperwork but they had hired an out side firm to do it for them. I just hope seats were not assigned before this agency picked up all of the mail.

Anonymous said...

Didn't it say that applications will not be considered unless you rank all options? I honestly can only accept the first 2 (the others in our district are just too far away) but ranked all 4 because that was my impression from the wording of the instructions. I know other parents in our district who did the same thing for the same reasons.

Anonymous said...

No, you didn't have to rank all choices to get a seat. You had to rank all choices to be GUARANTEED a seat somewhere in your district. I agree that the instructions were confusing and a lot of people probably read them wrong.

Anonymous said...

I am in district 28. My son scored above the 97% percentile. I had no interest in sending him anywhere other than his current school (ps101). I spoke with someone in the DOE to clarify what was required in terms of selection, I was told that I absolutely did not need to list citywide programs if I had no plan to send him. She assured me that he would very likely get a spot at his school but to quarantee a spot, I should list all the district programs in order of preference. I did exactly that, but still have no plans in sending him anywhere other than his school.

Anonymous said...

My understanding was that you only needed to rank all options if you wanted to be GUARANTEED a seat in a District G&T program. In our case, there were some District programs that we know we would never accept a seat at, so we did not rank those programs.

Anonymous said...

Regarding certified mail,

I had thought about sending it that way, then called G/T and they said not to. They may have just been discouraging me because it's a lot of work on their end.

I'm like the other person who ranked all of them, which is what it said on the instructions. I only had one district choice and then the three citywides. I ranked district first, then the remaining three in order of distance closest to me.

I'm trying not to pay attention to all of the speculation regarding why DOE did this or that. I have enough to worry about.

Anonymous said...

I also did the samething with ranking all schools on re-review of the process I realized it stated you will not be gaurenteed a place unless you rank all in your district. Meaning if you do not match with only the one or two you selected you will not be offered a seat. A lot of us read this to mean you will not be offered any seat unless you rank all in the district.

Anonymous said...

from 11:36: Didn't it say that applications will not be considered unless you rank all options?

Yes, it did say you must rank the district options to be considered ... but when you live in a borough that has no district options and when you fill it out, you think, "I don't want to screw this up for my child." Those of us who live in Queens and Bronx (Staten Island, too...sad to say I don't know answer to this) faced this and have taken huge criticism for it. In retrospect was it incorrect, yes...but when you're NOT the norm with normal options open to you, you want to be sure to play the hand you've been dealt in a cautious manner. I know I'll get 20 hate messages about how stupid I am...

Anonymous said...

Does anyone have info on an OLSTAT review class in NYC?

Anonymous said...

RE: ranking all the schools listed on the form. If you wanted to be guaranteed a seat in a district program you had to list them all, not that you had to list them all.

Anonymous said...

The form didn't say for parents to send your response back via FedEx, certified mail, etc. ... and still people did that. Everyone is trying to do what's best for their child, carefully and cautiously. In some cases, that meant filling in all 3 citywide schools when you weren't quite sure about your 3rd choice because you were trying to do what you thought was right at the moment.

The form should have had a quick sentence in there making process clear for parents living in Bronx, Queens, etc.

Anonymous said...

Helen and InsideSchools.org, please, please, please communicate to the DOE about this problem of possible non-acceptance of granted spots. They can not be so machiavellian as to purposefully confuse or instill fear in people in order to decrease their seat count. Can they?

Anonymous said...

They said you won't be guaranteed a spot unless you ranked all the options - but didn't say you HAD to rank all of them.

Anonymous said...

I believe the form said that you would be guaranteed a spot only if you ranked them all, but not that your form would not be considered.

Anonymous said...

To 11:36- It did not say will not say "will not be considered", it said
"will not be guaranteed a seat" unless all options are listed. Big difference. I only ranked 4 schools (I am in D3 and my child qualified for citywide with a 99), so I had a lot of other "options" but did not list them as I would not send my child to those other schools. i know my child is not guaranteed a spot in doing it this way.

Anonymous said...

June 2: District 11 - no word yet for K.
I sent my application Certified Mail and also worried when there was no 'pick up' confirmation a week later. It was eventually confirmed by the Post Office that the mailing was received.
When I originally called the DOE out of concern, I was told not to worry, because they were still receiving mail that was picked up from the P.O. Box.

Anonymous said...

Our GT form said that you needed to list ALL choices if you wanted to be guaranteed an offer. I didn't feel that I needed to be guaranteed an offer since I knew that we are really only willing to accept 2 out of the 5 schools listed. So - we chose to list 2 out of 5.

The letter was poorly worded, though - and, unfortunately, families that listed choices that they are unwilling to accept will likely end up essentially blocking other families (with lower percentile scores) from being offered spots at those schools.

helen said...

anonymous at 2:23 today, I am glad to take your question directly to the DOE, because I'm sure you're not the only parent wondering about what the end result of all this confusion will be. But I want to be sure I understand what you're asking: I think you want to know whether the DOE/the school can rescind seats they've offered.

Please let me know so I can get the right answer. And if I've misunderstood, ask again - want to get it right. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Helen - we want to know what they will do with spots that are given that families don't accept. many people ranked schools they have no intention of accepting so as to be guaranteed a spot, but if they won't take those spots, what happens? with no wait list could Nest end up with only 4 classes though clearly far more people wanted it? this is the issue.

Anonymous said...

helen,

Have you heard anything back from DOE??
I'm just so stressed out....

Anonymous said...

Helen-I am not the 2:20 poster but what I think she meant is what several of us have been saying--that a large number of people put down spots that they might not accept. Therefore there are likely to be unclaimed spots in certain schools when people turn the spots down. The question is how will they fill those spots without waiting lists? Some people who get their 2nd, 3rd or 4th choice etc. would happily trade up to a 1st choice if a seat were available.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone heard anything about the former-ps151zone/uppereast-side assignment? I did fill out that "assisted lottery" form before the april 11 deadline, i thought the answer will come in mid may (which is what they told me when I turned in the form personally at the DOE). Are there any parents out there who were in the same situation last year, and can share a word or two? I heard rumors that last year, the assignment didn't come till august!

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know what is going on with the Manhattan School for Children lottery? I understand that they are having their lottery this Thursday. I and the majority of people I know still have not received the emailed letter from them acknowledging our application and assigning a lottery id number. The only person I know to have received one got it May 29, with a number in the low 100s. She suggested there might be some glitch in the emailing whereby only AOL customers might be receiving the letter which, in her case was sent from an AOL account. Any evidence of this elsewhere? Other theories or insight? Will they really have everyone's data entered by Thursday? Or will they just apologize to those whose forms were never entered in the lottery after the fact?

Anonymous said...

I'm about to dress my son for his kindergarten orientation at PS 24 this morning. And on the walk there we'll have a talk about "this is probably the school you're going to go to, but, then, there's this small chance you may go somewhere else." Honestly, I wanted an orientation to be something we could both get excited about and absorb ... what an awkward position this process puts parents in!! All of his preK friends will be there and socially, it wouldn't be good for him not to go. I feel like I'm in 2 different places at once, as there is this good chance he will go there...but you never know! I just hope this doesn't hurt his feelings.

Bill said...

Does anyone have good information about TAG? We were not able to tour it.

Anonymous said...

When they extended our deadline, they also extended their own and now they are saying we will get the letters by "early June". My feeling is that they won't arrive until next week or later.

I can sympathize with 8:00 who is worried about the K orientation. We are trying to keep our son out of the process but he does know that we don't yet know where he is going next year. It is very strange to be building up to his pre-K graduation, singing "Kindergarten here we come", when we are so in the dark about where that will be.

Anonymous said...

Helen: you had mentioned earlier that you would be speaking with DOE about the District 1 lottery for the "empowerment" zone schools? Is there any news there? District 1 applications were due April 25, and they told us "mid-May" for the lottery. Last week I spoke to them and they said the mailings were going out, yet nothing in the mail yesterday or last week for that matter. This seems like a really long time?

Anonymous said...

Response to Bill re: TAG - I toured briefly but didn't get a feel for the teachers or kids. The building is pretty drab and the location isn't ideal for us but we are considering it since the peer group should be good with the citywide requirement. The big question for me is how the new testing requirements will impact the diversity of the K class and if the administration will be welcoming to kids that are outside of their traditional mission of serving underrepresented minorities.

Anonymous said...

For those of us who can not take the wait any longer. DISTRICT 3 Lottery assignments for general K will be announced Thursday June 5 at 7:00 pm at Joan of Arc on West 93 Street as per the BOE this morning!

Anonymous said...

Gifted & Talented Assessment Program Update
The Gifted & Talented Assessment process for student placement in district G&T programs and citywide G&T schools has concluded. Parents of students who have been tested can expect score reports (test results) in the mail by the end of April 2008. All students who meet program eligibility criteria will receive applications with their score reports. In order for a student to be guaranteed an offer, all district programs listed on the application must be ranked in order of preference.
Completed applications are due back to the DOE no later than May 9, 2008 and final offers will be made by early June.
For district programs, the DOE has established eligibility criteria at or above the 90th percentile* on national norms using a combined score of two assessments – The Otis Lennon School Ability Test (OLSAT) and the Bracken School Readiness Assessment (BSRA). For citywide programs, eligibility criteria are at or above the 97th percentile.
If seats become available, students applying for second and third grade seats will be offered a placement using rank order by percentile score. There will be only a limited number of seats.
Testing for the very limited seats in fourth and fifth grades has not been finalized. Please continue to check this Website for further updates.
*Note: On April 10, 2008, the Panel for Educational Policy approved the Chancellor’s recommendation to change eligibility criteria to at or above the 90th percentile for district Gifted & Talented programs.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand angry posts by some parents- Yes , i ranked all schools because i want my kids to be Guaranteed a place in g+t class. What's wrong whis it? It's not mistake or misunderstanding, DOE put it clear and most parents understood it correctly.

Anonymous said...

Did the 'rule' about listing ALL schools on the g&t
form in order to be 'guaranteed a spot' also apply to the citywides? We listed ONLY the one citywide school which we'd have our child attend and now wonder if this may have further compromised her chances for acceptance.
We opted to leave all district(6) choice fields blank, as we would not send our child to any of them.**
I did speak with a DoE 'vip' while filling out the application, regarding our intent to move out of district before Sept and how that might (or not) impact our district g&t options. His advice was to
complete the district application, so our child would be in the database as an eligible g&t student, move and then apply for a variance with our new, well-documented address.
In the very next breath, he told me the likelihood of being granted any variance was 'low to nil'; That
pretty much said it all, so I skipped it.

**I apologize to the many wonderful families and eds in D6 working so hard to combat the gross underservice of the DoE.
While reading the DoE stat chart on olsat/bsra testing and results (posted in news&views on this site), I was truly stunned that only 1 child in D6 qualified for a citywide 1st Grade seat; Can I be reading this incorrectly? Was there a shortage of kids testing for 1st grade seats or is this chart truly one of the most compelling compilation of data illustrating the DoE's failures- a map of the truth- showing where
results are better and scores higher, there tends to be a more active parent body whom can contribute more time, money and enrichment possibilities.
We can't begrudge the families for doing what they can; this lets the DoE off the hook for their unfulfilled duties, while also giving them the credit which is so often due to very able, involved and active eds and families within some more economically 'comfortable' districts.
This is a banquet for thought and a feast for advocates and media.

DowntownParent said...

Helen:
I am still curious, of the 978 chidren that fell in the 97% and above, how many fell in each percentile(97 vs. 98 vs. 99)? Based on comments on this board and others, it seems there was an overabundance of 99 scores. The 978 number comes from the Kindergarten column second from the right on the following page:

http://www.insideschools.org/nv/NV_GT_4_15_apr08-chart.php

Thanks!

Anonymous said...

to downtown parent- b simple logic , in each percentle was the same amount of kids- that's what % mean- total tested kids in theig age group devided by 100

Anonymous said...

Office of Student Enrollment just told me the G&T placement letters will not be mailed til some time next week. UGH.

Anonymous said...

downtown parent, I would like to know that as well. My daughter scored in the 97th percentile but from the look of things she doesn't have a prayer of getting an offer from a citywide school (which being on the Island of Staten were our only options for K). Dunno if anyone has this info to share but it would be interesting. I spoke to a lady from the enrollment office today who said K offer letters would not go out for another 2 weeks!! I am hoping that was an over-estimate to buy time and keep the likes of me from calling again next week if no letter arrives.

Anonymous said...

Anyone know what the procedure will be for accepting a G&T placement (if we are lucky enough to get one?) My family will be out of the country for the next 3 weeks, so if the DOE requires us to turn around a signed acceptance letter before July, that's going to be a problem... Does anyone know how the DOE handled this in prior years?

DowntownParent said...

To the anonymouse poster of 2:46pm:
The Score result indicated that the percentile rank was based on a national scale, not just the NYC test-takers. To quote the score report: "The Percentile Ranks for the OLSAT come from a nationally standardized sample and show the students standing in comparison to students of the same age". The way I interpret that is to not assume an equal number of children in each percentile.

Anonymous said...

Helen, could you please find out for me... There is a good chance that we may get our first choice for G&T placement because of sibling preference. However, there is a school that would be an even better fit for our child. This school has him on their waitlist. My issue is what if my son gets called from the waitlist for the school that we really want after I already accept the G&T spot. Am I obligated to go through with the G&T placement? Or can I accept the waitlisted spot at the other school that opened up without complications from the DOE?

Thanks.

Anonymous said...

To 11:30, how do you know that your child is waitlisted for one of the G&T schools?

Anonymous said...

We weren't actually expecting any DoE mail
but we checked today anyway- on the way home from our child's graduation from her pre-K. It was rather bittersweet.
There were many children enrolled for Sept. in private schools; They've already visited their classrooms, met their teachers and become excited about moving forward. I know that is part of what we all want but may not be able to afford, or obtain due to lack of space.
I can understand the difficulty of providing the same orientation opportunities w/in the DoE, yet
it was truly striking to note the difference in demeanor of the children whom lack the most basic information- Where they'll be attending school.
Quite a few of the kids (&Parents)whom depend on or are committed to the DoE 'system', were tearier than they may have been any other year, at such a sweet goodbye.
Our kids are young and for the most part, as insulated from this debacle as we can all manage.
They are also quite astute; In lacking a place, they
also lack a point of focus, direction or inclusion in
a school community- a basic structure SO important in building enthusiasm, positive outlook and confidence to continue as lifelong learners.
The DoE is screwing with our children before they even have them placed in their screwed-up system!
I heard today, that we likely won't receive Citywide
notifications for K&1st through the DoE but from those schools directly. What if we don't? Are the DoE simply hoping we'll assume we didn't get a seat for our child and go away?
Has anyone else heard this? I'd like to hear. If I was the Principal at Nest, Anderson or TAG, I might be compelled to try to have(back) some say
in how classes should be built in my school. If the DoE leaves it up to the schools, this could happen- I really couldn't hold it against them.


.

Anonymous said...

I'm the one that posted on June 6, 11:30 am. In response to 7:20 pm... My son was not waitlisted at a G&T school, like everyone else I have not received any official news on that. He was waitlisted at a non-G&T, public progressive school...one that is still able to handle their own admissions.