Be patient, this is just the begining
OK, so despite what I had hoped would be my reassurance, it’s hard not to go into a panic when you get the letter saying your child didn’t get in anywhere or didn’t get in your top choice. This is just the very very first set of letters to go out and there will be a ton of re-shuffling over the next 2 months (and even at the begining of the school year.)
To recap, there are some weird things going on this year. The gifted scores which used to send out a score and percentile have inexplicably switched to just the score this year. To date, my best guess of the type of test given for the gifted program is the Stanford Binet test which is basically and IQ test (and thus that score you’re given may be an IQ score.) Check out this post (scroll down) to see how they break out kids by IQ. It matches up with the CPS claim that scores of 130+ are “good.”
So the weird thing this year is that kid who scored in the high 130’s don’t seem to be getting into the programs they necessarily wanted. I know that there are kids at Edison (the north side school that has traditionally take the uber-smarties) with scores in the lower-mid 130’s and kids at Coonley in the mid-upper 120’s. I believe I’ve heard of kids with 97% getting into Decatur.
But there are a couple things that may have ruffled things up this year:
1. Could they have changed the test or scoring? Seems odd about them removing the percentile and at the same time the high-scoring kids are getting spots.
2. More private school kids were tested this year in case their parents want to save money on tuition or lose their jobs.
3. Throwing Coonley into the mix with Edison has sort of shaken things up a bit.
A friend of mine who is good with getting info out of CPS is going to call the GEAP office tomorrow to see if she can find out anything.
But in the meantime, sit tight. There are many spots that’ll open up next month and again after that. Many parents apply to gifted/classical programs without even realizing where they’re located. Once they figure it out or find out there isn’t bussing availabile, they’ll bail. Others will get spots in private schools or magnet programs. Others will move to the suburbs. Some will pick different schools to keep their kids together or because the schedules don’t work. Spots will open for sure. The hard part is waiting, especially if you fall on the cusp – I’d say for Classical in the 97%+ or for Gifted in the 130+ (or maybe even lower based on last year.)
I’ll report any news from GEAP when I hear it. In the meantime, keep sharing the information… it’s so helpful to everyone to know what’s going on.
UPDATE: Not a lot to report from GEAP, but they do say that there were many more kids who tested this year (probably due to the economy is my guess) and that they *may* be seeing higher scores this year (no logical explanation other than some years kids score higher, others lower.) For whatever reason, the kids born in 2004 were smarties.
I’ve also heard the number of kids testing for Kindergarten was around 2000, which is double what I’d been told by GEAP. Gotta love the CPS system… it’s nearly impossible to get an answer about anything. Could they please hire me as their director of communication?!
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