2013: Annual Elementary MAGNET Mailbox Watch

March 16, 2013 at 9:03 am 1,748 comments

Waiting patiently for my letter.

Waiting patiently for my letter.

It’s that time of year when parents around the city are on mailbox watch.  Thanks to all of us and for CPS for helping keep the USPS afloat!

With luck, letters about Elementary Gifted and Classical schools, Academic Centers, and Magnet schools will be mailed this week of March 18th.

As we discussed in a post this week, you wait and wait for this day to arrive thinking “it’ll all be clear” once you find out what school/s your child did or didn’t get into it.

One of the frustrations can end up being that you still find yourself in limbo, waiting.   Your child may have gotten into your 4th choice for a Regional Gifted Center, or in one far from your home.  So you might re-enter the pool, hoping for a school closer to home.

You may have what seems like all horrible wait-list numbers at magnet schools, only to discover that over the next 2 months (even through the summer) many schools work their way pretty far down those lists and you may get an offer.)

You may have had your eye on a certain neighborhood school with open enrollment – and those offers won’t be coming until MAY.


If your child gets into a gifted or classical program that isn’t your top choice, you can decline it and wait to see if you get a spot at the one your want.  This involves some risk as you lose what you’ve got in hopes of getting another.  The higher your child’s score, the better the odds of this working out.

If your child doesn’t get a gifted or classical spot, you aren’t out of the running just yet.  Kids with high scores (usually in the 95% an up range) might be offered something as spots open up.

If you don’t get any magnet school offers, those can certainly come later.  Your odds depend on the schools.  Schools like Hawthorne rarely move down the list past 1-2 kids (but it HAS happened!) while some of the neighborhood schools that are “up and coming” can really go down the list.  If you’re waiting, make sure you are available at whatever number you gave CPS.  Answer your phone if you don’t recognize a number and it’s 312/773.  The schools are *supposed* to give you a day to respond but I have certainly heard stories of schools moving quickly down that list without giving people adequate time to respond or people missing a message on an answering machine.

If you’re at the point of despair, calm down.  We can all discuss it and I bet most people will get something satisfactory figured out.  Maybe not right away.  Maybe not even this year.  But by first grade nearly everyone I’ve met in person or on this blog got something figured out in CPS.  Kindergarten is hard to mess up.  Kids are eager to learn, more Kindergarten teachers are lovely people, and you have the knowledge to teacher your kids at home to supplement, if needed.   So don’t panic.

Finally, Chicago school GPS is holding a session on Thursday 3/22 called “What’s Next? Decisions After Notification”.  Info here:


Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/chibimonki/6026538053/

Entry filed under: Applying to schools. Tags: , , , , .

Back to the begining (A Pre-K post) 2013: Academic Center Letters

1,748 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Southshore  |  March 16, 2013 at 10:08 am

    Well I have much riding on my Son’s acceptance to sees. If not accepted, I’ll move out of south shore into a north side( Ogden) district to enroll him there. Beverly has great schools but I’m not willing to move further away from downtown. I’ve dreamed about opening the letter for the past week.

  • 2. newtocps  |  March 16, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Thanks for getting the ball rolling for this one. We are finding ourselves in the situation where we ranked our SE schools in an order that we are no longer comfortable with. For practical reasons, we think our 2nd choice would be more suitable for our family than our our original 1st choice school. (Note that both these schools are excellent schools probably at par with each other.) So, what happens if our kid gets an offer for the 1st choice. A) If we reject it, will cps even bother going down to our 2nd choice school in future rounds? B) If they do keep us on the list for future rounds, would we be taking a big chance by letting go of a good offer (given that both the schools are at par academically)?

  • 3. IB obsessed-tired  |  March 16, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Hoping to come back to CPS after 5 years of private school. Tired of being broke. Tired of my teeny tiny retirement fund and the teeny tiny college fund. Tired of explaining why all the school friends go on school break trips, but we don’t. Tired of my kid asking for upscale brands I’ve never even heard of. Tired of school parent association meetings all held during the work day for the stay at home moms. Hoping I can be over being neurotic/obsessed about where my kid goes to school and see that good enough is good enough. Not expecting to have many finger nails left by the end of the month. Laying in a supply of wine…….

  • 4. Northside  |  March 16, 2013 at 10:26 am

    My morning was stress free until I saw your latest post. There are so many things that can go wrong on test day for the brightest 4 year old, even the poster child for test prep. We should probably just start preparing now for the HS enrollment exam.

  • 5. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 16, 2013 at 10:32 am

    #1~I posted this on another thread but I thought I’d post here as well. Just for future reference~if you take the Rock Island (metra) it’s less than 30 minutes from Beverly to Downtown. But I know what you mean, I lived in Lincoln Park for 7 yrs and walked everywhere. Now w/kids~I wanted to be in a family oriented neighborhood. Good Luck~hope you receive a letter from the school w/an ‘accepted’ soon!

  • 6. albanyparker  |  March 16, 2013 at 10:36 am

    Anyone have inside scoop from Katie Ellis and co. whether OAE is likely to mail out letters earlier in the week vs. on Friday at 5pm? Last year we had the SEES letter in hand by Wed or Thurs of “the” week but the other letter didn’t come until the following Mon.
    Leaving on vacation Thurs night and wondering if there’s a chance we’ll know anything by then….

  • 7. cpsobsessed  |  March 16, 2013 at 10:48 am

    I’ve emailed OAE to see if they have more details on timing. I’ll post if I hear anything other than “this week”.


  • 8. cpsobsessed  |  March 16, 2013 at 10:52 am

    @#2 – Hm, I THINK that if you turn down your first choice, OAE assumes you don’t want a gifted/classical spot at all.
    If that happens, I would contact the OAE office and see if they can help you out. They’d have to manually put you back into the waiting list pool, where presumably your child would be at the top should a spot open at your #2 school after the first round.

  • 9. albanyparker  |  March 16, 2013 at 10:57 am

    Thanks, CPSO. Great photo, btw.

  • 10. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 16, 2013 at 11:04 am

    Ughhh, I can’t wait to put this whole experience behind me — good, bad or indifferent outcome. I tend to believe that (almost) everything happens for a reason. CPSO, you previously remarked that the school thing always seems to work itself out over time. I’m hoping that this is the case for us… without having to relocate to the ‘burbs. In the meantime, how much time is usually allotted to respond to the first round offer? Being spring break, we’re also headed out of town at the end of the month.

  • 11. newtocps  |  March 16, 2013 at 11:07 am

    CPSO: Thanks for your response. I guess, we will cross our fingers & toes & hope that our child has done well enough for the 2nd choice but not any better 😉 Although, we should be so lucky to get an offer from either of the schools, sigh.

  • 12. Chicago School GPS  |  March 16, 2013 at 11:30 am

    For those good at “reading between the lines”, this is what I got from CPSOAE: “Elementary notification letters: the magnet and SEES letters will be mailed no later than March 22nd”

    Also, note the following:
    March 20 – April 19: Reopen Standard Elementary Application process
    April 12: Deadline to accept elementary offer
    Week of May 19: Magnet Cluster, Open Enrollment notification letters sent
    July (dates TBD): Elementary End-of-Year Options process

    Our seminar on 3/21 may be BEFORE letters come out but because of the public and private spring breaks being the last week of March and the first week of April, we wanted to get info to those who are confused, want to “talk it out”, or otherwise want to know their public/private options to get the info ahead of break.

    Regarding anyone who turns down a 1st round offer from SEES: they stay in the pools for any schools on their original list that conduct 2nd rounds. The gamble is that 2nd rounds only occur for schools with enough folks turning down an offer during the first round to warrant a 2nd round. In cases of the more “sought-after” schools such as Edison, Decatur, Skinner North, Coonley, etc- they may not get to a second round for their entry level grades. I think CPSOAE may typically offer one or two seats ABOVE the 28 class size in 1st rounds anticipating one or two turn down an offer. With the public/private shifting of schools that does go on in the summer, those desirable schools MAY end up calling one person in August at the last minute. More common in upper years when families are reluctant to move their child that late in the game.

  • 13. Gobemouche  |  March 16, 2013 at 11:36 am

    Answer calls from 773numbers too! The OAE number begins with 773.

  • 14. cpsobsessed  |  March 16, 2013 at 11:57 am

    @Chicago School GPS: For the schools you mentioned that may not have 2nd round, would you say that varies by Tier? I kind of thought that some of the north side schools (that are nestled among Tier 3/4 neighorhoods) tend to go down the list of Tier 1/2 families who may get an offer then decide it’s too far to travel. ??

  • 15. 60660  |  March 16, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    @8 we turned down a 1st choice SE K spot three years ago, (we took a magnet spot) and were later offered our 2nd and then eventually our 3rd choice so it does happen.

  • 16. Chicago School GPS  |  March 16, 2013 at 12:51 pm

    There are actually pockets of Tier 1s and 2s on the far northeast and the west sides that tend to send families to north side schools, as well as families who drive or bus amazingly long distances. I think it varies year to year but for the most part, the more “sought-after” schools fill up quickly with “yes” answers the first round, especially tiers 3 & 4.

    Beyond entry years, the tiers are not in play so they make offers by rank and move down their list by rank for however many spots they have open, and they may only find out about an opening during the summer when a family moves so you hear of more upper grade offers made in the summer rather than now (except 4th grade does add 3 SE spots to expand to 31 students in some schools).

    The “pools” are separate so if someone doesn’t accept an SEES spot but does accept a Magnet spot, they can still get calls for SEES spots through a 3rd round, after which they are removed from the list (basically 3 strikes- after you turn down 3 offers you’re off the list). Also, Magnets are separate from each other so you can get multiple magnet offers.

  • 17. Workingmommyof2  |  March 16, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    I really hope I *know* when the letter comes. We are heading to Coonley either way, whether it be neighborhood or RGC. I am comfortable with both programs. My worst-case scenario is that he misses RGC by a point and I’m left wondering if we’ll get a call all summer.

    We did list Skinner North, too, but I’ve decided I don’t want to make that commute. Not worth it when we have a good neighborhood option and just a bright kid — not a genius. He’ll be fine wherever he lands.

    I am also just really curious to see which test he did better on. I’ve had several friends be surprised at that one.

  • 18. westsidemom  |  March 16, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    I think it would be crazy if CPS delayed getting the letters out until Friday considering they moved Spring Break up a week! But then again it is CPS…

  • 19. HSObsessed  |  March 16, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    Cute photo! And good luck to everyone!

  • 20. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 16, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    Good luck everyone!

  • 21. WesLooWorkingMom  |  March 16, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    After reading the above posts, I could only think that I’m lucky to have found CPSO. It’s a wealth of info. Thanks!

  • 22. Sunny  |  March 16, 2013 at 6:50 pm

    Chicago GPS – Is 1st grade at Decatur considered an entry year this year? They start a K but accept a classful of 1st graders. Will this be a tiered entry or no-tier considered for this 1st grade?

  • 23. cpsbs  |  March 16, 2013 at 6:56 pm

    Entry year for Decatur is K. They only have openings for children that are leaving. Few spots if any. My daughter goes to Decatur.

  • 24. WaitingChicagoMom  |  March 16, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    Does anyone know the hours that kids are in school for Kindergarten? Or does it vary by school? Is there somewhere I can see the hours for each SEES on one site? My daughter got into 2 suburban private schools and they are both 8:30am-3:30pm for Kindergarten. I thought that was kind of long….

  • 25. Twogirlsmom  |  March 16, 2013 at 8:29 pm

    There are two classes of sixth graders graduating from Decatur this year, so there could be an additional class of first graders next year. That’s how they got this double sixth grade class. Is there official word somewhere that that’s what they’re doing?

  • 26. westsidemom  |  March 16, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    @24, Skinner West is from 8:30 am – 3:30 pm for all grades. I don’t know if there is a site where you can see the hours for each school.

  • 27. Chicago School GPS  |  March 16, 2013 at 9:25 pm

    The last I heard on Decatur was that they are admitting K & 1st this Fall as entry years (so tiers in play for both). With all things CPS, that can change arbitrarily to perhaps 2 K classes but I heard late last year it was going to be K & 1.

    Supposedly all K in CPS will be full day next year, so the start/end times will be the same as the rest of the school. In CPS, the 7 hour days typically start anywhere between 7:45 and 9:00AM. http://www.cps.edu/Spotlight/Pages/Spotlight396.aspx

  • 28. Jen  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:22 am

    This will be the third try for us, and I really hope it’s the charm. I listed South Loop first in the hope that it will have the most spots available for 4th grade, with them initially saying it would close last year then reopening it for applications this year. Argh!

  • 29. MayfairMama  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:22 am

    It’s our third try as well. DD was offered a spot at Pritzker (our 6th choice) for K, but I turned it down. I was hoping we’d get another offer, but we didn’t. We received no offers for G1. I’m really hoping three is the charm for us. My daughter is definitely not getting what she needs in her regular 1st grade classroom. I won’t turn down an offer again!

  • 30. jpark  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:34 am

    At a Decatur open house this year, we were told by the principal that one K class and one new 1st grade class will open up for the 2013/14 school year. It’s the lucky year for first graders.

  • 31. jpark  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:35 am

    Principal at Decatur also said the school would prefer that two K classes open up instead of one new 1st grade class, but CPS central office will not allow this.

  • 32. cpsobsessed  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:44 am

    I thought decatur always switched between 1 and 2 entry classes for K each year.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 33. SN and B Mom  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:48 am

    For the person who said they would not commute to Skinner North if their child got in there, I wholeheartedly respect your decision–commuting can be a big pain and only you know what can work for your family’s situation. For any others who have to make that decision, I can tell you that our northside family has found that Skinner North has been incredibly worth our kid’s bus ride and the pick-ups we do several times a week for afterschool programs. The education our SN kid is getting is beyond fabulous for our kid–challenging and fun with caring, excellent teachers and administration. Our other child goes to the RGC across the street from our house, so we have know the convenience of a close school. Since Skinner North is still “new,” there is a lot of opportunity for parents to help shape the kind of experience the kids have–it’s an exciting time! Best of luck to you all this week and on the decisions you will need to make!

  • 34. Dunning Mom  |  March 17, 2013 at 11:49 am

    Very anxious here, hoping letters get mailed earlier rather than later. We are going out of town to visit Grandma on Saturday morning so if it gets mailed Friday we won’t get it until Tuesday! I’ll go crazy knowing the letter is just sitting there in our mailbox.

  • 35. 60660  |  March 17, 2013 at 1:01 pm

    I’m really curious when the decision was made to open up another 1st grade at Decatur next year. How and when was this communicated to families applying?

  • 36. Esmom  |  March 17, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    @4 “We should probably just start preparing now for the HS enrollment exam.”

    I know you’re probably mostly joking but this is what finally pushed me over the edge into taking ourselves out of the SEHS running. It was the summer after 3rd grade for my oldest son and I ran into some fellow school parents at the Lincolnwood pool, where we were guests of friends for the day, and they were deep in discussion about how they planned to start an informal type of high school test prep in the fall. Of fourth grade. I realized I’d never get through the next few years with my sanity intact!

  • 37. E. Weng  |  March 17, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    I am one of those crazy moms who has a preK child and already started freaking out about the high school thing. As I wait for the SEES/magnet notification letter entering K, I did some research and found these links. They show what universities their students went to. Payton’s numbers represent last 4 years while OPRF and New Trier are just for one year.




    I am little bit surprised by Payton’s performance. I’ve heard over and over how difficult it is to get into Payton (harder than getting into Harvard etc) and I assumed that majority of the students go to Ivy League colleges – that is not the case here. Their numbers are still impressive but I guess I had higher or maybe unrealistic expectations.
    I know people on this board do not like when someone say they are going to move to suburb, but I seriously started considering this option. I am almost hoping that my child won’t get into any magnet/SEES schools. This will force us to move to suburbs – and maybe it might be better for our family… less stress, similar chance to advance to good universities as in CPS SE high schools etc etc. We are renting currently so pretty flexible to move anywhere.
    What do you guys think about this data? Am I overreacting?

  • 38. Christine  |  March 17, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    60660 — it wasn’t communicated at all to families applying. I had two clients who amended their applications after sending them in based on this information! I try to post information like this as I find it out if you want to follow me on Facebook and/or Twitter.

  • 39. WorkingMommyof2  |  March 17, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    33. SN and B Mom: Appreciate your take on Skinner North. (I’m the no-commute posting parent. 🙂 )

    I probably shouldn’t talk in absolutes at this point. Should we be fortunate enough to see an offer from Skinner North, I’m sure my husband is going to at least make me take a last serious look at it. His mind isn’t as made up as mine.

    I don’t think the bus is an option for us — at least for K — since if there is one area my son struggles in, it’s social. I simply can’t put him on an hour-long bus trip there and back on top of the 7-hour-day away from mom. It would be cruel and unusual punishment for him. His younger brother would probably love it. Different kids…

  • 40. afreen  |  March 17, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    I had called CPS yesterday and was told that the sees notifications would be sent on March 22.

  • 41. Christine Whitley  |  March 17, 2013 at 6:23 pm

    #38 we live far north out of the bus boundary and have one child at Skinner North. We carpool and I know there are several families who live up here so arrangements can be made.

  • 42. oldtimer  |  March 17, 2013 at 7:10 pm

    I have been a parent at Decatur for many, many years. Every time a double 6th grade class graduates (like this year) they take in 26-30 new first graders – never a K or 2nd grade. Both my kids were in double classes and entered in first grade. Most people don’t realize this…so it’s a golden opportunity for those who ranked Decatur #1.

  • 43. HSObsessed  |  March 17, 2013 at 8:03 pm

    @36 – Es mom – You keep bringing up how the thought of the high school application process stressed you out so much that you moved your family to the suburbs years ahead of time. I want to let other readers know that although a small number people do choose that route, many parents and kids are much more relaxed about the process, and it still all works out fine.

  • 44. Esmom  |  March 17, 2013 at 8:17 pm

    @44 I’m sorry if my comments or have presence here has offended you. I agree that I’m in the minority. I never claimed otherwise, nor have I tried to convince anyone to follow the same route I have. I’ve just shared my experiences with the system but I’ll take the hint and refrain from now on.

  • 45. HSObsessed  |  March 17, 2013 at 8:24 pm

    You haven’t offended me at all; I’m just trying to provide some balance.

  • 46. Lexus  |  March 17, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    @41: Where do Decatur graduates go after 6th grade?

  • 47. anonymouse teacher  |  March 17, 2013 at 8:30 pm

    @36, thanks so much for your thoughts. When my friends and I were applying for K, virtually all who did not get in somewhere decent moved that spring/summer. There were a few who stayed and those that did could afford tuition at private school. Some reapplied in 1st a few of those got spots, some of those that didn’t left that year. The rest are shelling out large amounts of money each year just for elementary school. I don’t blame you for leaving. Its a valid choice.
    I think staying is also a valid choice. It just depends on the family. I think that for many people, city life is a culture that means so much. Its an identity, a community and for some people, leaving is a little like losing their culture or identity. I also think kids are so different. It sounds like you made a great choice for your children and found a community where you live now (based on your posts over the past year or so). The great thing is there are so many terrific options for our children inside and outside of the city.

  • 48. cpsobsessed  |  March 17, 2013 at 8:30 pm

    Speaking of pre- high school stress I was just talking to a mom from our old private pre-school and she said that the school hired a counselor to do group therapy sessions with the 7th and 8th graders to deal with the application process stress. See what private school $ will get ya!

  • 49. Wondering Mom  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    If your address is out the busing zone for a classical school, but with in a few blocks, can we still get bus service if we take our child to the pick up site?

  • 50. cpsobsessed  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:11 pm

    @wondering mom: nope, you can’t. I just ran into a family that started talking to cps about it in the fall. They tried and tried but cps ultimately said no (even though the bus drive half empty every day.).

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 51. Esmom  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:13 pm

    I know I said I’d refrain from further comment but thank you @47 for the kind words. You said “Its an identity, a community and for some people, leaving is a little like losing their culture or identity.”

    Yes. In my case, an identity that encompassed over 40 years. That’s what made our decision so tough and why a part of me clearly hasn’t yet let go. If I had, I obviously wouldn’t be spending any time here.

    Again, to others, I’m sorry if my comments contributed to an unbalanced view.

    I grew up in Chicago, first on the south and then on the north side. I envisioned the same for my kids. Granted I went to Catholic schools, so I hadn’t even planned on CPS, which is where we unexpectedly found ourselves when my oldest son needed special ed services.

    What also made it hard to leave were the amazing people we met through CPS, most notably the teachers who give so much every day, in often extremely crappy circumstances. I will always be grateful for the experience my kids had because they’ve grown into the engaged, curious learners I’d always hoped and imagined they’d be, with a unique perspective, I think, from spending the majority of their elementary school years in CPS. Kudos to all here who continue to stick it out and pave the way for those just beginning the journey.

  • 52. karet  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:14 pm

    @37 – Many students get into Ivy League schools but do not go to them for financial and other reasons. I thought it was interesting that Payton emphasizes the amount of scholarship money that students in the 2011 class are receiving from colleges — $20M! That alone may account for students making other choices than the Ivy Leagues.

  • 53. karet  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:15 pm

    $20M in scholarship offers, that is.

  • 54. Wondering Mom  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    Thanks! I guess I will factor that into my accepting or declining an offer.

  • 55. HSObsessed  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:36 pm

    @37 EWeng – So what I notice from those links is that Payton sent 20 kids total to Harvard/Yale/Princeton over a period of 4 years, so an average of 5 kids per year. Each Payton graduating class has about 225. So they sent 2.2% of each senior class to Harvard, Yale or Princeton.

    OPRF in 2012 had 5 students admitted to H/Y/P from their graduating class of 761, which is a rate of .7%. In order for OPRF to meet Payton’s rate, it would have to send 16 or 17 kids to those three schools.

  • 56. 60660  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:38 pm

    here’s a possibly relevant article:
    I don’t know much about the topic but my impression was that the majority (or at least 50%) of ivy league students are legacies? so nothing to do with the student or the HS and everything to do with $$$.

  • 57. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    @44: Your experience is hardly the minority in my social circle. Almost all of my friends and close acquaintances made the mass exodus to the suburbs once our kids started preschool. Of the few who remain, I’m the ONLY one who even applied to CPS. The rest have gone private. In fact, over the past 2-1/2 years, I’ve watched in amazement as dozens upon dozens of kids have left my son’s (incredible) preschool to either move out of the city or transfer to private schools. And while I’m committed to seeing how the first few years of a CPS education shake out for my son, I must admit that I felt a twinge of jealousy (and guilt) when our next door neighbor’s young daughter got accepted into Lab. She’s guaranteed a wonderful academic opportunity through H.S., whereas I don’t have the same degree of confidence about my son’s future with CPS… and he’s a similarly bright kid. Hopefully, his kindergarten year will prove me wrong or I’ll start pushing for a relocation to the ‘burbs as well.

  • 58. cpsobsessed  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:48 pm

    I had expected a suburban exodus around kindergarten and it never happened among my neighbors. I don’t know if there are certain neighborhoods where people are more committed city people, if it has to do with the school options or what.

    At work I saw a lot of people move out right after they had kids, but I felt like once people had committed to the city, they stuck it out.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 59. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 17, 2013 at 9:59 pm

    #57~My experience was similar. We moved into this neighborhood for the school, but I never planned to use CPS. I just wanted to be in a great neighborhood school area for property value. (In my area a lot of the Catholic school families come to functions at our school and in turn we go to their functions~ because having a great neighborhood school makes great neighborhoods). But after touring all the schools, we just couldn’t beat our CPS neighborhood school~it offered so much. Several people I knew withdrew their kids from Catholic schools to put them in ours; however, there was an exodus to the burbs by many bc they couldn’t comprehend using CPS. ChicagoMomofBoys my children have had a wonderful experience and education w/CPS and I hope your child does as well.

  • 60. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:01 pm

    I found that a number of people we know either moved from the city right when they were pregnant/with infant or during that four year old preschool year (either right before, during or right after but before kindergarten). Those who did not move during that time have tended to stay and plan on staying.

  • 61. Annie  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:02 pm

    Is there another smaller exodus for younger magnet and SEES students with younger siblings? I feel many of my kid’s friends are on the edge of leaving to the suburbs due to commute and single school for both kids.

  • 62. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:03 pm

    @58: Many of my friends hail from the north suburbs, so I’m sure that has played the biggest role in their migration. Most interesting, though, is that even though we have a very good neighborhood school, a large percentage of our immediate neighbors don’t plan to send their kids there. They aren’t necessarily leaving the city, but many have opted to go the private school route.

  • 63. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:09 pm

    I have found from speaking to numerous neighbors with very young children (mainly babies) that some of them are under the impression that the only options in Chicago are either sending your child to a horrid CPS school (they don’t seem to be aware that not all public schools are horrid) or to pay $20K+ per year for private. They are surprised when I mention the lottery and selective enrollment process and what some of the public school options actually are like and what the average cost of decent parochial schools in our neighborhood run. I think that some people get so overwhelmed as they only hear about the very top and very bottom rungs of the educational ladder and don’t realize that there may be numerous acceptable options for them in the middle. They think the only option is to flee the city. Obviously that is not everyone who leave but I do think that some people get so overwhelmed by the extremes from the start that they feel it is easier to just move.

  • 64. WRP Mom  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:16 pm

    @Lexus, the majority of Decatur graduates go to Academic Centers after 6th grade.

  • 65. Nervous  |  March 17, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    Does anyone know how many seats Lane Tech is offering for the academic center for 8th grade applicants?

  • 66. Lexus  |  March 17, 2013 at 11:23 pm

    @64 WRP Mom, Thank you! The letter will be mailed out this week. Good luck every one!

  • 67. cpsobsessed  |  March 17, 2013 at 11:27 pm

    Btw, OAE’s response to me about when letters would mail was “by friday.”. So stock up on wine.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 68. WorkingMommyof2  |  March 18, 2013 at 12:14 am

    The time since the test has flown by for me. I suppose the last week will seem the longest.

  • 69. Wondering Mom  |  March 18, 2013 at 7:25 am

    Do all the letters go out at the same time? Can some be sent out earlier? (Hopefully mine!)

  • 70. Northside  |  March 18, 2013 at 7:36 am

    @36 I really enjoy the polite debate on this website. We’re staying in Chicago regardless, and I think there are lots of great options other than options.

    My preference would be for my children just to enjoy sports and coast through school until about 8th or 9th grade, and then wake up to the wonder and enjoyment of academics on their own, However, that’s not the way CPS works, so like it or not, my kids need to get their act together in preschool, and then again in 7th grade. Hopefully this won’t negatively impact their normal progress.

    So I’ve been working toward a “fun”, “10” minute a day approach and little by little documenting it. Saturday morning, when we were doing vocabulary and math, I looked out the window and saw the neighbor kids practicing baseball in the back yard. Maybe in a few years we’ll trade baseball coaching for math coaching and we both try to catch up in something.

    Plus, I’ll be going to that pool this summer to find out how the moms made out with their 4th grade SEHS test prep. I can’t believe there are people more insane than me out there.

  • 71. WRP Mom  |  March 18, 2013 at 7:51 am

    @Nervous, since 8th grade at LTAC is a non-entry grade year, any openings would be from kids leaving. I know of 1 7th grader who has already dropped out and I suppose there could be a few others although my kid hasn’t heard of anyone else yet. I would expect the number of 8th grade LTAC openings to be very small.

  • […] 2013: Annual Elementary Mailbox Watch cpsobsessed: It’s that time of year when parents around the city are on mailbox watch.  Thanks to all of us and for CPS for helping keep the USPS afloat! With luck, letters about Elementary Gifted and Classical schools, Academic Centers, and Magnet schools will be mailed this week of March 18th. […]

  • 73. IBobsessed  |  March 18, 2013 at 9:16 am

    Anyone have comments on how AC kids do socially? Do they have HS friends or AC friends or both? Do they start thinking of themselves as older then they actually are due to being around older kids? And (biggest fear) do the HS boys ‘hit on’ the

  • 74. IBobsessed  |  March 18, 2013 at 9:17 am

    (sorry sent accidentally premature )

    … the AC girls?

  • 75. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 18, 2013 at 9:21 am

    Am I the only one having nightmares and crazy dreams about what is going to be included in this letter? I actually had a dream that my daughter’s score was lower than even the points she has earned from her ISAT scores and grades?!?! Basically, it went down after taking the test!

    I really need this letter to come just to preserve my sanity. At this point, I don’t even care what it says, I just need to know!!

  • 76. mom22boys  |  March 18, 2013 at 9:41 am

    I had my letter nightmare this weekend as well. In my dreams the schools listed were not our selections and of course, no acceptance. Letter had a different name on it and I couldn’t get hold of anyone in the office 🙂
    Wish the wait was over already!

  • 77. cpsmama  |  March 18, 2013 at 9:55 am

    @73- In my experience as parent of 2 kids who attended 2 different ACs- they were fine socially, did not think they were HS-ers and the HS boys were not interested in the AC girls.ACs provide HS level academics in a HS setting, but for the most part, the AC students have their classes with other AC students. I’ve never heard of situations where the HS kids were mean or inappropriate towards AC kids- if anything, they kinda look out for them. Good luck

  • 78. IBobsessed  |  March 18, 2013 at 9:56 am

    Thanks 77

  • 79. db  |  March 18, 2013 at 10:05 am

    This is our 3rd year participating in this crazy nonsense. Twice for the older child and now for the younger one. I can honestly say that for the most part, it works out. Everyone has a spot somewhere. I know it’s hard to stay calm but try to relax, no amount of stress will improve the results.

  • 80. Esmom  |  March 18, 2013 at 10:22 am

    @73, I would echo what 77 says, my friend’s daughter is at the LTAC and loves it, both academically and socially. She’s met a great, diverse, like-minded group of friends — from the AC, not the HS. She mixes very little with the HS except for some extracurriculars, where the interaction is supervised and completely appropriate, where she’s kind of mentored by the older kids. I have to believe the ACs are ideal for easing the transition to high school.

  • 81. Ron  |  March 18, 2013 at 10:46 am

    If my daughter gets an offer for a magnet, can we accept it and then unaccept it when if we get an acceptance in a neighborhood school better than our northwest side neighborhood school? Ours is good but crowded. Her mom applied to neighborhood schools by us that aren’t as crowded but I don’t think we have a prayer because aren’t they crowded also?

  • 82. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 18, 2013 at 10:52 am

    @81 Ron – Yes, people do this type of thing all the time when they receive wait list calls over the summer and even into the beginning of the school year. You can even accept and then unaccept later if for some reason you decide to send your daughter to your neighborhood school after all.

  • 83. NW Chicago Mom  |  March 18, 2013 at 10:58 am

    I was told that all letters would go out in Friday’s mail (3/22). With CPS, who knows, but that’s the feedback I received. Not sure how comfortable I feel with the insanely large class sizes in CPS and generally poor conditions of many CPS schools (even the “good” ones), but we’ll wait it out for now and see what happens. I would love to remain in the city, but we may be part of the suburban exodus.

  • 84. Lexus  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:01 am

    @82 – what if…my son is currently attending a magnet school, and he gets accepted to another magnet and we accept the offer, and then later we decide to go back to his current magnet school. Can we do that?

  • 85. westsidemom  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:01 am

    (cross-posting from the Select Enrollment Fall 2012 board):

    Just curious if this has happened to anyone else before: my daughter took the selective enrollment test in November and it took her 45 minutes after which she told me she didn’t do too well because she didn’t answer several questions. I told her that it was just fine and that she tried her best. Well, the next morning I get a call from OAE asking me if I would bring her back in since she didn’t answer several of the questions and that they would really like to get answers from her for them. I took her back in and she was out in 10 minutes. Has anyone ever heard of this happening before?

  • 86. Lexus  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:06 am

    @85 westsidemom: No, I haven’t heard that before. Is your daughter applying for K – classical and gifted? Both tests should be taken on the same day. I can imagine that they might have missed doing one of the tests. So, they called you back for that.

  • 87. Ron  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:13 am

    OK. Is there a kind of list that shows most crowding? I don’t want my daughter in such a crowded school. I don’t know how she will get any attention to teach her anything. Schools my wife applied to have a lot less kids than our school. Will they keep smaller classes or do they have to take 40 some odd like our school does? I guess I am asking: do we have a shot at a neighborhood school with smaller classes than the one we are assigned to? Thank you for your help. This is our first time we are dealing with elementary school so far.

  • 88. westsidemom  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:17 am

    @86, yes she’s applying to Kindergarten. I had that thought that they forgot to administer one of the tests, but she was in there for 45 minutes, whereas our son was in there for 20 mins when he went to take the test a few years back. It was odd.

    @87, I don’t think that there is a list. You’d probably be best off calling the school or attending an open house if she gets in. The classical/RGC programs cap enrollment at 30 kids per class, so if she gets into one of those, that’s what size class she’ll be in.

  • 89. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:20 am

    @84 Lexus – That is a question I would not feel comfortable answering for you. If the situation arises, best to call the Office of Access and Enrollment and get word straight from the horse’s mouth, so to speak.

  • 90. Also Wondering  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:26 am

    I’ve never heard of a kid being called back either, but it seems like a good sign. Mine was in there for a while (45-55 minutes) but she’s chatty and not a fast question-answerer.

    So now the definitive word from CPS is letters out on the 22nd? Hope our mailman actually decides to deliver on Saturday this week!

  • 91. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:31 am

    @84: I agree with Even One More and any comments you gather on this board would just be speculative. I probably would’ve pushed the issue when I first got the call; it’s pretty odd. My son took both tests and was in and out within 15 minutes. 45 minutes is certainly not unheard of (in fact, the rumor is the longer the test, the better the kid did). I would just question the need for your daughter to return and how the “do-over” will factor into her scores.

  • 92. JLM  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:34 am

    @84/Lexus – no, you can’t do that. If you give up a current magnet spot at school A to take a spot at magnet B, they fill your spot at magnet A. If you later decide that switching to magnet B was a mistake, you can NOT just re-enroll at magnet A. Basically, with the exception of your neighborhood school, there are “no backsies” in CPS. You can always leave your neighborhood school to attend a magnet/SEES/private and then come back if it doesn’t work out.

  • 93. karet  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:46 am

    westsidemom – I did witness something somewhat like this in November as my kid took the test. I saw a boy come back from being tested. He started playing with something and his mom didn’t rush him to leave (I suspected she was trying to figure out how long other kids were taking to test!) — anyway, about 5 minutes later, the tester came back and asked if he could ask the boy a few more questions. He went with the tester and was back in just a few minutes. I really noticed it at the time, because most people grab their coats and leave right away — it was just chance that they were even still there.

  • 94. JLM  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:53 am


    It’s been almost 20 years since I graduated my Ivy League alma mater, but there is no way in hell that legacies make up anywhere near 50%. Maybe 5%, if that? And that included people who were legacies b/c an older sibling went there, not Grandpa Warbucks who had a building named after him.

    The admissions standards are definitely lower for legacies, but also for: athletes, people from low population or far away states (ex. Wyoming, W. Virg), and certain minorities. They, along with other top private colleges, are looking for a diverse student body makeup – not all people with 150+ IQs. They want to fill their athletic teams, say they have people from all 50 states, and not be 100% Asian. And people think the Ivies don’t give athletic scholarships, and officially, they don’t, but athletics can get you in and possibly increase your financial aid package.

    And to fend off any flames, let me state that I of course had friends who were athletes, legacies, and minorities who would have gotten in without those specific qualities.

  • 95. Open Minded Parent  |  March 18, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    Westsidemom – I am obviously speculating. . . but my guess is that the tester mistakenly allowed your child to not answer questions rather than get a response for every question. That would explain why your child cam out saying that she did not answer questions. Assuming that is the case, they probably brought her back in to get an answer to the questions she did not originally answer. . . .since her score would not be accurate or complete without answers to questions. If this is what happened – then it probably was good that they brought her in to answer the questions. They could have taken the approach of considering unaswered questions wrong – but instead brought her back in to get a legitimate response to those questions.

  • 96. also obsessed  |  March 18, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    And please please please people!!!! If you do not get into an SE or Magnent School, CHECK OUT YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD SCHOOL!!!! It is the best thing I ever did!!!

  • 97. west rogers park mom  |  March 18, 2013 at 12:59 pm

    @IBobsessed – RE: AC Kids

    My kid is graduating from Taft AC. Most of their classes are in a different wing of the building. They go to other parts for language and electives only so yes- they are pretty isolated and protected. The only high schoolers they eat lunch with are freshman.

    That doesn’t mean they don’t see more things than they would normally see in a high school- she has seen fights, couples in the hallway, and lots and lots of smoking. She does know a few girls who ‘like’ or are ‘dating’ hs boys but really only one or two. I think the high schoolers are told to stay away from the AC kids.

    Even when she participates in high school activities she sticks with the other AC kids and stays away from the high schoolers.

    All in all Taft AC has been a great experience- – and I’m glad we did it. I think they had 20+ kids get into Northside this year and not just the Decatur kids- a lot of them were from neighborhood schools in the far northwest side that I had never heard of before she started at Taft.

  • 98. AP Mama  |  March 18, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    Anyone know if magnet proximity lotteries are broken down into tiers like the general lotteries are?

  • 99. 1stgrademom  |  March 18, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Is anyone else worried about being on Spring Break when the letters come with the new “mail by March 22rd” date? Remind me of the turnaround time to answer. I have one in an RGC and am hoping to get the other one in this go around.

  • 100. Mayfair Dad  |  March 18, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    My understanding is CPS will release the acceptance letters to coincide with the announcement of the school closings/actions on Friday afternoon. One massive information dump to confuse, amuse and abuse CPS parents. Then the weekend to allow the hysteria to dissipate.

  • 101. junior  |  March 18, 2013 at 1:32 pm


    “The Ivy League institutions are estimated to admit 10% to 30% of each entering class using this factor.”[3][4]

    3. “The curse of nepotism”. The Economist. January 8, 2004.
    4. “Legacy Admit Rate at 30 Percent”, The Harvard Crimson. May 11, 2011.

  • 102. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 18, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    One private school (not an Ivy League) told us they admit up to 25% legacies. I’ve heard that most Ivy League do as well. I’ve never heard anywhere they take up to 50%. Hope this helps.

  • 103. NowWeWait  |  March 18, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    I called CPS last week and was told letters would mail “most likely at the END of the week” – from other posters, now it sounds like no one will really hear until Monday at the earliest. Ugh…..so cruel.:)

  • 104. 1stgrademom  |  March 18, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    Ah, the Friday press bomb. So what happens if we aren’t home to get the mail ? What’s the grace period for us to accept/negate offers–if there are any.

  • 105. IBobsessed  |  March 18, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    Accepting a magnet spot does not keep you from being selected later by a different magnet or SEs, correct? You can still move up the waitlist at a school even if you have aleady accepted a spot at another? I’m actually kind of surprised CPS allows this. It causes the entire magnet/SE enrollment to be in flux through the summer.

  • 106. local  |  March 18, 2013 at 2:49 pm

    On top of legacies, add recruited athletes, development cases, and diversity efforts. It helps if you can fit in one (or more) of these categories.

  • 107. local  |  March 18, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    Alot has changed in 20 years in the Ivy League: http://www.amazon.com/Price-Admission-Americas-Colleges-Outside/dp/1400097975

  • 108. local  |  March 18, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    A lot

  • 109. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 18, 2013 at 4:54 pm

    @100: The publicist in me has hypothesized that CPS’s grand scheme is to overshadow the dreaded school closing announcement with stupendous SEES/magnet enrollment statistics. The best ever! Thus, the need to release them together. (An anxiety ridden mom can hope, right??)

    @104: I was told that the deadline to accept/decline first round offers will be Friday, April 19th. That should give spring breakers plenty of time to respond.

  • 110. CPSAppalled  |  March 18, 2013 at 4:57 pm

    @west rogers park mom:

    I too have a child at the Taft AC. While all of the AC classes are just for AC students (mostly by grade, except for electives), they do interact with HS students in the halls and at assemblies. My child has personally experienced physical aggression (hitting the back of the head, yanking on backpack) from HS students, when teachers were not around. My guess it that it is only from the immature HS students–the average HS student wouldn’t be caught dead hanging out with AC students! The problem is that the AC students don’t want to complain and cause a fuss, so it all goes unreported and un-acted-upon.

  • 111. Christine Whitley  |  March 18, 2013 at 4:58 pm

    Who’s up for a SEES/Magnet Twitter Party!?

  • 112. Christine Whitley  |  March 18, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    #98 AP Mama: the proximity lottery is not further divided into tiers. And neither is the sibling lottery. Only the general lottery is broken down into tiers.

    As a refresher for everyone playing along at home, here’s how Magnet Schools manage the acceptances:

    1. Siblings of current & returning students get first crack at all seats.

    2. 40% of the remaining seats go to proximity students (this means 1.5 miles). There are sometimes circumstances under which proximity lotteries are not done but you won’t know that going in.

    3. 60% of the remaining seats go into the general lottery. These seats are further divided into the 4 SES tiers.

    When you get your notification letter, your child will be categorized into one of these 6 lotteries. Keep that in mind because #6 on the waiting list doesn’t mean there’s only 5 kids ahead of you in line. It means there are 5 kids ahead of you in your category.

  • 113. Chicago School GPS  |  March 18, 2013 at 5:07 pm

    The first round acceptance due date is April 12, according to CPSOAE. That being said, there is MUCH movement in the days/weeks/months that follow.

    Anyone who comes on Thursday night 3/21/13 to our “What’s Next? Decisions After (Before) Notifications” seminar can get some undivided attention from Chicago School GPS as it will be a small group since the letters most likely won’t have arrived yet. BUT, we will have info on how to decipher the letters once they arrive, what to do next, deciding on public vs. private, private acceptance timelines, etc. So join us if you are so inclined!

  • 114. Christine Whitley  |  March 18, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    Where is the seminar being held, GPS?

  • 115. Jen  |  March 18, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    I also thought there were only two options for Chicago parents, a crappy CPS school or the suburbs, and I certainly asked enough other parents for feedback before very reluctantly making the final decision to move to the suburbs. I knew about gifted and classical but thought there was no way my kid would qualify.

    What a mistake, I’ve regretted it for the last 4 years, in the suburbs you get one school choice, and if you don’t like it you are out of luck. If your school doesn’t have a gifted program you are also out of luck since Illinois does not mandate it. Now I make a point of letting all my friends in the city with younger kids know about their CPS options, in the hopes that they won’t end up in my situation. I tell them to sign their kids up for testing even if they don’t think they will qualify because you just never know.

  • 116. Chicago School GPS  |  March 18, 2013 at 6:01 pm

    @114- Thanks for asking, Christine! The seminar is at Creme de la Creme just north of Webster Place theaters, near Webster’s Wine Bar (convenient!) & east of the river at 2230 N. Dominick. Pre-registration is encouraged: http://www.chischoolgps.com/CSG_ES_Next_Registration.html

  • 117. anonymouse teacher  |  March 18, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    @109, my best guess is CPS doesn’t have any plan whatsoever!

  • 118. MayfairMama  |  March 18, 2013 at 6:38 pm

    The suburbs may not have gifted programs, but they are more likely to allow kids to skip a grade. My friend’s son went to Decatur for K. The following year, when her daughter didn’t get in anywhere, they moved to Park Ridge. The school does have a gifted/accelerated class and her son actually skipped 2nd grade altogether. I’m not sure which school it is, but she’s been very happy with it. Honestly, if my husband wasn’t a teacher in CPS, I would probably follow her lead.

  • 119. LynnJ  |  March 18, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    @Jen, #28. Please elaborate on South Loop “opening up”. This is a neighborhood school. Have you heard anything different? My daughter attends South Loop TB Pre-K and I was told if don’t live in the neighborhood bondaries, you don’t get in. Period.

  • 120. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 18, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    @119: Jen is probably referring to the school’s RGC that’s being phased out. Those who live outside of the boundaries get in via lottery only if space allows. Due to overcrowding, however, the chances of this are slim to none. We live in the neighborhood and our 5-year-old will likely attend kindergarten there in the fall. How do you like the PK?

  • 121. anonymouse teacher  |  March 18, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    Some suburbs do have very well run gifted programs.

  • 122. anonymouse teacher  |  March 18, 2013 at 7:28 pm

    Here is a very incomplete list of suburbs with some kind of gifted programming:
    Orland Park
    Palos Heights
    Glen Ellyn
    and many more in the Chicago/Illinois area

    I got this list from:

    It is possible that some of these schools may have cut their programs with budget cuts, but I know many are still active as colleagues from my second job teach in some of these schools as gifted and talented educators.

  • 123. southlooper  |  March 18, 2013 at 7:39 pm

    @119 South Loop (meaning CPS) did not allow admittance to its RGC seats for the 2012-2013 but have “opened it (the RGC) back up” for the 2013-2014 year–for the 2nd-8th grades. Due to large class sizes (mostly from increasing neighborhood demand and siblings of RGC students), beginning last year, the neighborhood classrooms are strictly neighborhood attendance boundaries only. The communication from the school thus far is that they (via CPS) accept applications into the magnet lottery (but for only siblings of current RGC students–and the acceptance or selection process happens–if at all–after the first day of school to see how many neighborhood students show up). Last year the demand from the neighborhood filled 3 classrooms and few, if any, siblings came in. In other words, the only sure way to get into the school from here on out is to move into the boundaries–even if you already have a child in the RGC.

  • 124. LynnJ  |  March 18, 2013 at 7:41 pm

    @120 ChicagoMomofboys we absolutely LOVE PreK @ South Loop. My daughter is doing very well. I am sad that we will not be able to attend for K though. The sad part is that we live maybe 3 miles from the school. My neighborhood school, which I can see from my livingroom, has been on probation for at least 3 years that I know of and is on the list to close. I would never send her there.

  • 125. JenK  |  March 18, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    @85 – my daughter was called back to finish the test, but this happened 5 years ago. I thought it was very strange and no additional explanation was given. Ultimately, she scored well enough for one offer (declined for closer magnet). So yes, it has happened before!

  • 126. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 18, 2013 at 7:56 pm

    LynnJ @ 124: I’m glad to hear that you love SLS, but feel your pain. We moved into the neighborhood pre-kids knowing that it was an up and coming school. Now, I’m incredibly grateful to have it as our back-up in case our oldest doesn’t get a desireable gifted/magnet placement. (There’s a good possibility of this since we’re tier 4.) Last year, we considered a bigger house in the area… but it was a half-block outside the boundary so we quickly changed our minds. Maybe a move should be in your future?

  • 127. Dunning Mom  |  March 18, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    This is our first time doing this…can someone tell me what the letter will look like? Will it list all of the schools we applied for, with a yes or no? Will there be scores? I am reading here about waitlist numbers. Will there be a different one for each school?

    I am seriously freaking out over here! Been casually worrying about this for 3 years but now it is finally happening and I am much more anxious than I thought I would be.

    We will be going out of town early Saturday morning. I am considering having the neighbors open the letter and text me a picture of it.

  • 128. SN and B Mom  |  March 18, 2013 at 8:34 pm

    #127, Dunning Mom. Try not to freak out. Enjoy your time away with your family. After all, spending quality time together is super-important in helping our kids develop into people we can stand as adults, a worthy goal!

    The letter will be there when you get home. The information will be the same, whether you read it on March 23 or March 30. (Now, that said, I freaked out when it was our time and had our babysitter open the mail and call me at work! LOL!)

    My recollection (and people can and will correct me here) is that the magnet schools are the only ones with actual waitlist numbers in the letter. The RGC and classical school letters have simply a score and a yes or no to the schools you listed. If your child’s score is lower than a particular cutoff score, they will tell you that, so you don’t get your hopes up for a spot opening up. (I believe a friend’s kid got a 114, missing the 115 cutoff for the RGC last year, so she knew not to expect a late offer and planned accordingly.)

    If you get a “no” and the score is above the cutoff mentioned in the letters, you do not know where you are on those schools’ waiting lists unless you call that individual school and find out (and they may not tell you). Even then, you’re not really on an easy-to-comprehend wait list. You are on a list and your tier matters a lot. A spot for “your” tier has to open up, not just any spot. I have seen lots of people get frustrated on that issue: “My kid should have gotten that open spot–he had the same score as that kid who got in!” But the kid who got in most likely was in a lower tier, to help keep the class diverse and the process as fair as possible for all WITHOUT using race as a determinant.

    Best of luck!

  • 129. LynnJ  |  March 18, 2013 at 8:37 pm

    @126 ChicagoMomofBoys…. Ahhhhh. So we have this same exact conversation about moving pretty much daily at our house. LOL 🙂 Due to the economy, we may not be able to sell the condo we’re in now, or break even. Also, would love a house that is a good value for the space we need. We have looked at properties in South Loop and those that we’ve seen on the market are more like townhouses (sharing a wall with a neighbor), and are very expensive. We also have had conversations about moving to Oak Park where there are more single family homes and a great school district. Not sure where we will land. 2013-2014 will be my daughters last year in Pre-K so I’m not as nervous yet, however very worried about where we might land. I cannot see myself living in the suburbs.

  • 130. cpsobsessed  |  March 18, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    I really think there are a lot of city-minded people in Oak Park. And I know someone with kids there and they do a cool system in the morning where parents sort of watch out their front door as the kids walk to school so they can go alone/in groups – or something like that. Parents take turns or something. It did make me wonder if it would be worth the high taxes. I just can’t fathom leaving the city, especially for high school which was the point when i wanted my kid to be in the city so he can take the El etc places with his friends. I remember there being nothing to do in the suburbs other than drive around and get into trouble.

  • 131. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 18, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    @129: I agree with CPSO that Oak Park could be a great compromise if you decide to go this route in the future. Once upon a time, it was on our list of places we’d consider living. Good luck and I’ll most likely see you at SLS in the fall!

    CPSO, I’m actually freaked out by the idea of my kids taking the el with their friends as teenagers. For some reason, it seems so city brat rebellious to me 😉

  • 132. Rfr6231  |  March 18, 2013 at 9:56 pm

    I remember how stressful this wait is, especially for child #1. I wanted to give my family’s perspective. DD scored very high on the classical gifted section do the testing, and shocked me that she was accepted on the first run to our only gifted choice-Skinner West, and we have been thrilled, as is she. Perfect fit. We will be dealing with AC for 7th or wait for the high school for her. For DS, 2 yrs younger, we did the testing. He is young for his grade, summer birthday. I believe he is as intelligent as his sister, if not more so. He just missed the gifted score. We are in a very good neighborhood school catchment area, but opted for a more up and coming nearby elementary in an attempt to have a smaller school feel. Again, a perfect fit! The gifted testing was right on for both. DS is smart, but prefers to play sports than learn. The school is bringing him along in the way I would hope.

    My point in telling this story is to support that you willl find what fits for your child. The beauty of Chicago is the sheer number of choices you have. Good luck in finding what fits for your own child!

  • 133. JLM  |  March 18, 2013 at 9:58 pm


    My bad. But it looks like 10%-15% of a class, at least at Harvard, are legacies – not 30% or 50%. The 30% is just the acceptance rate. Joe Schmo has a 6% chance of getting accepted, while Joe Legacy has a 30% chance of being accepted. Definitely a very nice bump – but the chances are still that you won’t get in.

    I’m not a legacy, nor were any of the 13 women I had as roommates at some point during my 4 years. Guess I hung out with the wrong people!

  • 134. ChristineD  |  March 18, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    @85, my son was called back to finish his test. I asked him if he finished the test and answered all the questions. He said he answered all the sections they were asked to but they skipped an entire section because they were told to. Later that same day, I got a call from OAE saying they didn’t administer a section of the test to the entire group that tested with my son and that I needed to bring him back.

  • 135. Southside Daddi-o  |  March 18, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    I’m not going to sweat it if DD doesn’t get into Keller RGC, although it would be nice to not have to ay Catholic school tuition. Whether she gets in or not, she’s still extremely smart and I’ll be providing her with educational enrichment until college. Speaking of which, does anyone REALLY care if you went o U of I, IIT or Harvard? I’ve known some seriously inept Harvard grads (Humanities grad didn’t know what the Cuban Misssile Crisis was) and some ultra-smart EIU grads. Water seeks its own level, no?

  • 136. NW Chicago Mom  |  March 18, 2013 at 10:34 pm

    @ Ron (#87) — yes, you can find school space utilization figures through CPS and the class size numbers for each individual school. Space utilization data is at: http://www.cps.edu/About_CPS/Policies_and_guidelines/Pages/qualityschools.aspx (scroll down). The class size numbers are available on each school’s school report card through ISBE (http://webprod.isbe.net/ereportcard/publicsite/getsearchcriteria.aspx) or the interactive school report card run through NIU. They break down the class size by grade level. If you’re on the northwest side, good luck. Everything is overcrowded (like 70-80% of the schools in the O’Hare network).

  • 137. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:20 pm

    I had applied for kindergarten last year (meaning for fall 2012) and remember being an utter wreck at this time! I feel for you all and have fingers crossed for you! In the end it worked out for us as we got an initial offer for a magnet we now love…….of course, out of 20 lottery and 5 SEES schools that we applied to it was the furthest from home of all the schools! In fact, I almost did not even include the school on our application simply because of the distance and I only decided to add the school in lieu of one of the neighborhood magnet cluster schools that was on my list at the very last minute before submitting. I almost fell over when I opened the envelope! But, our child loves school, is doing well and thriving there. I just say this to point out that with this whole crazy lottery system, sometimes while going over your options it pays to be open minded and to seriously consider any and all available choices. You might not get quite what you expected or ideally hoped for, but it might work out well any way. Good luck everyone!

  • 138. Suburbanite  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:32 pm

    @37-I also have a pre-k child and I decided to take the plunge and moved the burbs. I work for cps (special Ed residency waiver) and I couldn’t stomach the idea of the HS process and I tend to get very worked up about this stuff and it wasn’t a major priority of mine to live a city life. So much fightting-for everything-;for resources, for teacher attention bc of class size, for special Ed services, etc. I don’t question my decision for 1 minute and another issue is that I have family (my parents and siblings) near me now and I don’t have to worry about childcare constantly-that is a huge stress gone. I am suburban born and bread and received an amazing education-but there was no diversity. This is my only issue with moving but ultimately this is just better for our family. Neighborhood school a few blocks away, middle school less than a mile and high school 2-3 miles.

  • 139. RJ  |  March 18, 2013 at 11:51 pm

    I’m waiting for my letter, but for me I just wanted to see if my pre-K child could pass the test to get into the selective enrollment schools. If passed, I can brag and post the acceptance on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. I live too far away from the schools on my list and my work schedule won’t allow for me to pick up my child. Buses are not an option!!! I may have some luck with the magnets on my application. Their walking distance from my home. If that doesn’t work then private school is in my future.

  • 140. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 19, 2013 at 12:22 am

    #131. ChicagoMomofBoy~the thought of my child taking the train/el around the City use to freak me out too…now I’m use to him taking it and glad for the option~otherwise, I’d be hauling my kids all over the City!

  • 141. Esmom  |  March 19, 2013 at 6:55 am

    I have two friends who have had two very different experiences with Oak Park. Basically one hated it (to the point where she ended up taking a job out of state within two years) and one absolutely loves it. The one who hated it moved there from the city and the one who loves it moved there from a further-out suburb.

    I guess the moral of the story is every place has its pros and cons and there are no guarantees. I’d also add that I recently spent time at their high school for a swim meet and — not that the physical space has any connection to the quality of education — I was shocked at how ancient it was. A beautiful old building but dark and confined-feeling, just not modern whatsoever. Such a change from the light, bright schools that I have become used to seeing.

    Still, they’re clearly doing something right since it seems to be desirable. Although I know Fenwick is in the area and two other families we knew there years ago in River Forest both sent their kids there instead of the public high school. I think the debate over public vs. private can be just as vigorous in the suburbs as in the city.

  • 142. db  |  March 19, 2013 at 8:42 am

    I just called the OAE office and they said that the letters will be mailed out no later than Friday. I wouldn’t expect anything until Saturday or Monday.

  • 143. ChgoBoys  |  March 19, 2013 at 8:53 am

    I wonder how this new proposed charter school in Lincoln Square will enter the mix if it does indeed open in the Fall- http://lincolnsquare.patch.com/articles/charter-school-company-applies-for-lincoln-square-location

  • 144. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:09 am

    Mayer (2250 N Clifton Ave) will be having its last tour on Thursday, 10 am.

  • 145. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:11 am

    Mayer” (2250 N Clifton Ave) will be having its last tour on Thursday, 10 am.

  • 146. Grace  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:22 am

    We can get an offer to more than one magnet I understand. (if we are lucky)

    Would you rank these magnets in this order if commute makes no difference. The information I’m getting is from this website and another one where parents discuss schools.This will be a life decision for us since we have another child to follow in this childs footsteps and hopefully we’ll have a third child.
    1. Hawthorne
    2. Disney 2
    3. Stone
    4. Disney 1

  • 147. cpsobsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:27 am

    @Grace: I’m not sure about Stone and D1 – that is a more personal decisions based on the classroom style (Disney have the more open classrooms I hear.. never been there but the school has a great reputation.)

    Honestly, if you end up being able to select from 2 or more of these you’ll be extremely lucky. Usually the choice among those 4 is made for you by CPS and random luck. 🙂

    But you never know! Good luck!

  • 148. EdMom  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:28 am

    @Grace – You’ll be extremely lucky to get a single magnet offer. I wouldn’t worry about ranking them unless by some miracle you get multiple offers.

  • 149. HSObsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:32 am

    @Grace, I agree with the others — it’s fun to dream, but it’s unlikely you’ll have much choice. Are you within the proximity lottery for Hawthorne? If not, then there are probably only about 5 spots open for citywide lottery for any given tier, and hundreds of applicants for each of the tiers.

  • 150. cpsobsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:34 am

    Well, ranking them can be fun. Kind of like thinking about what you’ll do when you win Powerball. 🙂

    Honestly though, I recall every year there is like 1 or 2 families who hit some lucky streak and get a couple enviable options. It’s kind of like getting the golden ticket.

    That’s what kind of bugs me when CPS calls it “school choice.” Not much choice going on….

  • 151. Grace  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:37 am

    My friend received three magnet offers for her child. I realize likely I won’t but I want to be ready.Does anyone have helpful information instead of hammering me with negatives?

  • 152. EdMom  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:43 am

    @Grace – I wasn’t trying to be negative, just realistic. As someone who went through this 2 years ago and came nowhere close to a single magnet offer (best wait list number was 98, worst was 462), I wouldn’t spend too much time worrying about the what-if in advance. I think you’d be in great shape with an offer at any of these schools, though to echo cpsobsessed, Disney I is a unique setup that may not be a good fit for all kids.

  • 153. HSObsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:43 am

    Re: the lucky streak — I’m waiting for that inevitable person who posts: “We got an offer to Skinner for RGC, got into LaSalle, live in the Ogden boundary, but love Lab, where he is now. We’re really torn — what should we do? Money/commute is not an issue.” and everyone else silently screams at their laptops while they read it.

  • 154. Leggy Mountbatten  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:48 am

    As if to make things harder, our neighborhood elementary school sent a letter home yesterday explaining that anyone who entered school in 12-13 and moves out of the attendance area will have to leave the school at the end of the year and enroll in their neighborhood school. Further, if there is a sibling who is already enrolled, and you move out of the attendance boundary, then any siblings who are not already in the school will be waitlisted for spots. I imagine this will make competition for magnets/gifted/lottery etc. even more daunting in the future.

    As one may imagine, this was the talk amongst all the yentas in the school yard this am.

  • 155. Mayfair Dad  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:49 am

    @ 146: Disney II will be expanding their program to include grades 9 – 12, so admission to D2 includes an automatic magnet high school solution. Can Hawthorne make the same claim? That being said, getting three magnet offers sounds like an urban legend to me. Unless you saw the letters with your own eyes. Statistically speaking, it is easier to get into Harvard than D2.

  • 156. cpsobsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:49 am

    top of mind thoughts, I’d say Hawthorne is a great all around but less diverse. Strong parent involvement. If I recall correctly, good SEHS placement.
    D2 has impressive leadership and is more diverse. Guess now that you have an “in” for the D2 high school?
    D1, also great rep, inside gifted program. Some people don’t love the principal (while others do.) Open classroom is an obstacle for some people.
    Stone is a good magnet with nice diversity. I know someone with a smart kid who kept missing the gifted cutoff and didn’t feel like the child was being fully challenged at Stone.

    But I think the ranking is a personal choice based on fit for your family/child.

    And distance is hard to ignore given how spread out those are.

  • 157. momof3boys  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:50 am

    1. Hawthorne
    2. Disney 2
    3. Disney 1
    4. Stone

    i dont have any kids at any of the schools but after years of reading thru this blog, here’s how i would rank them if i had to choose. Disney2 is supposedly going to have a HS and the kids have first dibs so that might be something to consider.

  • 158. cpsobsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:51 am

    @154: Leggy. Has, love the yentas. 🙂
    Do you think the school will enforce it? I think our schools says that every year and I get the sense that people ignore it and not sure the school does anything about it. But I could be wrong.

  • 159. HSObsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:51 am

    @154 – That’s how neighborhood schools are supposed to work, unless they have excess capacity and there’s a system for allowing non-neighborhood kids in. If the school is at capacity or over, then only kids currently living within the boundary are supposed to attend school there.

  • 160. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:51 am

    HSO: Even though your post is purely fictional, it still managed to jab a hole in my heart 😉 Here’s hoping I’m the enviable person, lol.

  • 161. Anxiously waiting for Academic Center results  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:51 am

    #22, Decatur has some “double” classes and some “single” classes. This year there are 2 6th grade classes leaving. Next year there will also be 2 6th grade classes leaving. Typically that means that they will add a second 1st grade class in the fall of ’13 and ’14.

  • 162. cpsobsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:54 am

    @160: I think this is why this whole school application process fascinated me so much years ago. It really is like a real-life experience of opening the chocolate bar to see if you got the golden ticket. It’s not just money that you can choose what to do with. It’s a life experience for you child that you’re “winning” or not. Very surreal.

  • 163. Sam  |  March 19, 2013 at 9:59 am

    Whoa! The snark is starting. It’s sad what this process does to people.

  • 164. Dunning Mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:00 am

    @Grace – location really doesn’t matter? Because those schools are all over the map!

    IMO the “best” school really depends on your child. For example, my son probably couldn’t do well at Disney I because of the open classrooms. He has a disability (autism) and I imagine he’d have a hard time staying focused.

    If we are lucky enough to get more than one offer I will be thrilled. We are in the proximity for our top choice (Thorp) and I will be so disappointed if we don’t get in.

    Anyone have any info on the “odds” for Thorp?

  • 165. Leggy Mountbatten  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:04 am

    #159 there’s been a system for letting kids from outside the neighborhood in for years. That appears to be going away now.Plus, when we moved out of the Mayer district to our present one, we asked if we could have still attended Mayer, and they said yes – so I guess it wasn’t enforced in the same way, even for neighborhood schools.

    #158 it’s a good question – but I’m guessing that the real effect will be on the kids who are already at our school who are already out of district and therefore grandfathered in who have younger siblings who aren’t of school age yet; those younger sibs will get waitlisted according to the letter, which will be a huge change, and one that’s easily enforceable.

  • 166. cpsobsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:05 am

    @Leggy. Ah, gotcha. I didn’t realize that’s what it meant. Yeah, our school does that as well so parents often don’t know until the first week of school if the younger sibling can attend.

  • 167. mom22boys  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:06 am

    Does anyone have any experience with Pulaski? They changed the school to the IB program but I spoke to one parent that wasn’t happy this year at kindergarten. She complained about lack of attention and very big class size – can’t remember the exact number, I know it was way over 30. Any other insights?

  • 168. Grace  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:06 am

    Thats how I feel, I asked a question and got some snark comments. Like someone talking about a fabled lucky streak and taking glee, like this is a game.These are people’s lives. Not a game. It’s sick to have fun waiting for the ‘games to start’

    I went through this with my friend last year.She had THREE magnet offers. Jealous much? It happened.

    Thanks to the kind people who posted helpful information.I suppose with these type of people I should not believe all the posts since mis-information is probably being posted, too. ‘Pick this school so you don’t take a possible spot at my first choice.’

    Have fun to those posting snark, waiting for the ‘lucky streak’ watching this game..Nice entertainment for you I guess.

  • 169. Grace  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:08 am

    Thanks Dunning.Location for these four does not matter. All are near our condo or on way to work for us.

  • 170. HSObsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:09 am

    @160 – I’m hoping all Obsessors will be able to report good news. Again, seriously, good luck to everyone. I’m an old timer, I can tell you there are more great schools out there than ever before. I went through the process nine years ago, and on the north side, there were only 3 classical/gifted schools, 4 magnets, and 2 neighborhood schools that were considered solid possibilities, for a total of 9 schools. Now there are probably 20 or more. The number of kids staying in the city for kindergarten in these areas has gone up a little, but it hasn’t doubled, so chances are better than ever for everyone.

  • 171. HSObsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:11 am

    Oh, sorry, I didn’t mean my hypothetical to be snark. It’s just that every year, there are people who get lucky and have lots of choices, whereas others have fewer choices. It’s not glee, but this is what happens each year.

  • 172. Leggy Mountbatten  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:13 am

    #166 well, our school was one that had a great deal of “back door” admission through the tuition based pre-school, back when plenty of folks from outside the district would use that as their way to get into the school. That option went away a few years ago, but if you had the older sibling already in the school, they still got in. No longer, it seems.

  • 173. EdMom  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:14 am

    I also didn’t intend snark. I know when I went through this, I had unrealistic expectations. I was trying to be helpful. BTW – I do believe things work out for almost everyone in the end. I know it did for us.

  • 174. Momma  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:15 am

    Not quite sure how describing stats is considered “snark.” low odds are low odds without any judgement attached. Let the numbers speak for themselves.

  • 175. Dunning Mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:17 am

    @Grace – I guess if I look again at my list I will see schools all over the place too.

    We put 2 schools that were reasonably close to our house and 3 schools that are reasonably close to my job. That left 15 spaces which we filled with other great schools that are farther away, but can be reached by private transport if necessary. I work at an SEES where the kids come from every corner of the city. A lot of them use private transportation, which makes me feel more comfortable using it.

  • 176. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:22 am

    Grace, always fun to conjecture but as others had mentioned, the chance of getting more than one magnet offer is small (actually, the chance of getting any offer is small, but obviously it does happen). That being the case, our family did get two magnet offers last year. LaSalle II as an initial offer and Stone as a wait list offer. We chose LaSalle II even though the drive is much longer (and no busing). We are very happy with our decision. Have had a great experience at LaSalle II so far.

    Now, for the fun conjecturing……(with drive and such being no factor and only considering quality of program…..)
    1. Hawthorne or Disney 2 – Honestly, to me this one totally depends on where you live. And, I believe Hawthorne might have busing if you live within the busing boundaries. Disney 2 does not. Also, there is the issue of the Disney 2 high school opening so that might be something to consider. I’d say just go with whichever school is closer to home if busing is not an issue.
    2. Disney 1 (personally, I really liked this school but some do have issue with the principal and the open classroom setup. They have some pretty great resources.)
    3. Stone

    But…….these schools are all pretty different and have very different climates so best to just tour if you get offered or have a low wait list number! Frankly though, try not to think about this too much in advance. Keep an open mind and do all your fretting AFTER the results arrive and you see where the real possibilities are. Doesn’t pay to fret a lot about a particular school just to find out that you are number 692 on the wait list. Personally, I thought a lot about Disney I as I thought this was the magnet we had the greatest chance of getting into and as it turned out it was a big fat non-issue. We got a very high wait list number (tier 4, out of proximity) and never got a call. Made me a little frustrated at myself for thinking about it so much.

    Good luck to you!

  • 177. Leggy Mountbatten  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:25 am

    My wife calls me “the great white snark”. Just so you all know.

  • 178. HS Mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:32 am

    #131 – Taking the el – love the convenience. No more chauffeur service, we can now have a life. Zero problems (other than the very occasional delay, but kid gets to school early anyway). The “usual” car is filled with kids with backpacks going to several high schools. It’s A LOT safer than having a teen that drives or is a passenger with a group of teens.

  • 179. E. Weng  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:49 am

    Thanks everyone for your insight. I really appreciate that you took your time to comment. I change my mind weekly about the school – CPS vs suburbs. I still believe that CPS is the way to go if I want my kids to have opportunities to receive the best education academically (with no guarantee, accompanied by stress.) On the other hand I feel  suburban schools will allow kids to pursue their interests without worrying so much about tests and grades until they become high school students. 

    I was watching Colbert Report last month and he had this girl Tavi Gevinson as a guest. She is a high school freshman at Oak Park high school who started her own magazine when she was 11. Apparently this magazine is a big sensation that now she has big celebrity like Lady Gaga involved. I was thinking….. when my kids will be 11 and if they go to CPS I am pretty sure that I will discourage them to spend too much time on playing/blogging/do whatever because they have to get ready for high school test!! 

    I tend to go extreme, finding good balance is so hard for me. I am learning how to compromise…..

  • 180. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:55 am

    Interesting that when you called they said the letters “would BY mailed by Friday.” I also called yesterday (cause I clearly am obsessing over this) and was told that the letters “would be mailed ON Friday.” I hate that everyone gets a different answer when they call there. I’m sure our letters are just sitting in a stack waiting for something silly, like to be run through the postage machine or something!

    I’m starting to think they know the anxiety we parents are developing over this and are just sitting back and enjoying the show =P

  • 181. WorkingMommyof2  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:58 am

    They probably hold the letters an extra day for every 50 calls they get. 😉

  • 182. southshore  |  March 19, 2013 at 11:01 am

    @162. I feel the exact same way, this process is just like Willy Wonka and the golden ticket. Here in South Shore, these are nothing but glorified failure factories posing as schools. There is no way I’m sending my child to any of my neighborhood options- I’ll terminate my lease and move faster than the speed of light! My family has much riding on the letter WHEN it finally arrives.

  • 183. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 19, 2013 at 11:06 am

    @181…if that’s the case, we are never getting our letters LOL Think about all of the people who are calling that don’t obsessively come to this blog!!!

  • 184. JuneBugs  |  March 19, 2013 at 11:06 am

    I also called OAE yesterday and was told the letters would be mailed ON Friday, not by Friday. So I know at least I don’t need to be a freak so eager to check the mailbox until Saturday…

  • 185. southshore  |  March 19, 2013 at 11:09 am

    I won’t even bother calling OAE- the person on the other end will most likely receive a tongue lashing from a frustrated parent. I’ll just continue losing sleep until the letter comes.

  • 186. Wondering Mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 11:11 am

    How much does private transportation cost? I mean like a taxi or car service that takes kids to school when busing isn’t an option.

  • 187. just another mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 11:18 am

    I’m guessing they are too busy answering the phones to get the letters out. : )

  • 188. anotherchicagoparent  |  March 19, 2013 at 11:30 am

    SE high schools went out on a Friday also, most of us received them on Saturday.To appease us CPS showed a picture of them being sent out on facebook. I knew what to expect though as I have had experience with the process before.And most years, “the week of” or “by a certain day” has meant mailed Friday afternoon.Good Luck on every child’s school journey.

  • 189. RealMarchMadness  |  March 19, 2013 at 11:31 am

    I just called to inquire about not receiveing “spit time” letter and nice woman told me that she cannot check my mailing address “cannot access date because system is DOWN”…!?…” and letters will be send on Friday”..

  • 190. AC and waiting  |  March 19, 2013 at 11:46 am

    CPS just announced on their FaceBook page: CPS has identified $15.7 million in savings that can be reinvested in our schools. Keep this in mind when you accept a school that you were counting on your child being bussed to. $15.7 mil is a lot of money to cut from an already convoluted busing system where kids can be on buses for 45 minutes or more each way.

  • 191. 3 kids, 3 schools  |  March 19, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    Just wanted to briefly share my experience of 9 years of selective enrollment schools with those of you who are anxiously awaiting letters for the first time (which will probably be mailed on Friday because CPS doesn’t want to answer thousands of phone calls). When you get that score, please don’t take it as gospel. Please put it in perspective and remember this is just a snapshot of a 4 year old on one day. You know your child’s ability better than anyone. If they had a good day and tested well, congratulations! If you have more than one child, just know that not all of your kids may get in the same school when it comes to selective enrollment. I have 3 kids, 3 schools. It’s not easy. Was this the best choice? Ask me in 20 years. Is it crazy that my 3 kids may NEVER go to school together? Maybe. But we do the best we can as parents. What if your child doesn’t get the score you thought or even miserably bombs the test? It’s just a test. Does it mean they won’t get into Harvard? No. Just means they’re 4. Keep supplementing. Keep reading to them. Keep loving them for the wonderful, unique blessing they are. And yes, if you find a suburb you truly love, just move. It will make your life a whole lot easier logistically. I sometimes wish we had. Anyway, wishing the first timers all the best!!

  • 192. Gobemouche  |  March 19, 2013 at 12:17 pm

    Yep. Busing is taking a hit. They tried this at the beginning of this year and it was a holy disaster. I’d rather them just have parents pay on a sliding scale than try to keep it free (but messy) for all.

  • 193. laura  |  March 19, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    We were one of those families a few years ago that had, and I am not kidding, 1 classical offer, 3 magnets, and 3 great neighborhood offers. Of my friends, it seemed like feast or famine. People either got 2-3 offers or none. We knew 2 other people who had 5+ offers. I think that children should only be given 1 classical or gifted offer and 1 other offer, be it magnet, magnet cluster or open enrollment. It would cut down on a lot of hard feelings. People should have to rank their schools just like with SEES.

  • 194. SutherlandParent  |  March 19, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    @165, that happened at our neighorhood school a few years ago, and families who lived out of district were told that younger siblings would not be allowed to attend, even though their older siblings had permission to attend. Needless to say, it was tremendously upsetting for the affected families–I know at least one family decided to move the few blocks into the neighborhood school district.

    And attendance boundaries are enforced at our school. although the process is a very lengthy one. If CPS determines someone is using a false address to attend the neighborhood school, the options are usually to move within the boundaries or change schools. CPS can sue for the cost of tuition, but I’ve never heard of that actually happening. Doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen, of course…

  • 195. @193  |  March 19, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    I totally agree with you. Once a kid gets 2 offers they should be taken out of the running. At least for magnets. We were lucky enough to get one of the non-sibling, non-proximity spots at Hawthorne last year. We also received other offers during the summer. I guess what I’m trying to say is that everyone should keep their hopes up. Huge wait list numbers don’t necessarily mean anything. There is so much movement during April and May.

  • 196. Stephanie Francis Ward  |  March 19, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    2013 K parents, if you don’t get good news right away don’t despair ( like I did). You never know what will happen, & great spots open up. Of course it’s easy for me to say that now, the first year since 2008 that I have not been stressed out waiting for CPS magnet and SE letters!

  • 197. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 19, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    @193, 195 & 196: Keep the positive stories coming! They make me feel so much more relieved about the whole process. It’s ALL I can think about this week.

  • 198. Chgojen  |  March 19, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    Good luck to all the applying families! I will be doing this next year, as our 2 oldest are currently in preK. The entire lottery/testing process is very interesting and complicated.

  • 199. South Loop Dad  |  March 19, 2013 at 1:16 pm

    @193. I second that. Keep your hopes up!!! Our child didn’t get any offers until the end of summer. 1 classical – Skinner West, 4 magnets – Andrew Jackson, Franklin, LaSalle II, STEM.

  • 200. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 19, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    @199: Where did your child end up going? Just curious b/c we also live in the South Loop…

  • 201. klm  |  March 19, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    @133 (and others) re: admissions to Harvard and other Ivies

    Well, yes, I’m sure that lots of kids of Harvard alums go to Harvard, also. However, the most glaringly obvious fact/factor is that smart people have smart kids, or at least TEND to do so. Not to mention that the kinds of people that graduated from Harvard are more likely to read/role-model, have intellectual discussions, stimulate their offspring, live in places with great public schools (Glencoe, New Canaan, Palos Verdes, Chevy Chase, Moutain Brook, Hillsboro, blah, blah, blah..), or can afford great private schools (and live in places where really great ones exist), have afford private tutors, nannies that are recent graduates of Vassar, Oberlin or Sarah Lawrence (that need something to do until they go to grad school or move to Santa Fe).

    I remember reading (I swear I’m not just making this up) once that when people studied admission of legacies to the Ivies, the legacy kids tended to be just as qualified (and often more so) as the other “non-legacy”applicants.–again, having much to do with the fact that they have 1 or 2 parents that benefited from a degree from Big Prestige U already –socioeconomics and genetics tend to favor the offspring of people that graduated from Yale, Harvard, Princeton, etc. No big surprise when you think about it that way.

    The Al Gore/George W. Bush days of getting into an Ivy just because of family history and graduation from the right prep school, etc., have been over since the late 60s.

    I know some people want to believe that things are “fixed” against all of us regular people in favor of the “1%”, but it’s more likely that the child of a Harvard grad has had a pretty charmed life, in terms of getting an intellectual boost both through (let’s face it) genetics and through the right parental and social shaping (the Upper West Side vs. Podunkville, Kentucky). Is it really so shocking or upsetting that the kids of Harvard grads also tend to be pretty smart, cultured, prepped and qualified for an Ivy education? Physicians’ kids are much more likely to become doctors .–it doesn’t mean that those doctors’ kids are in med school through some kind of quasi-fixed med school admissions that favors people “‘in the club,” etc.

    My spouse went to any Ivy (being black I’m sure helped [a lot] in terms of Ivy admissions for my spouse, there’s no doubt)), but when we talk to college friends, parents of our kids classmates that went to Princeton, Stanford, Dartmouth, etc.they all seem to be like. “I’d never have been admitted today, so crazy has the competition become.” The same can be said of Northwestern, Michigan or NYU, for that matter, relatively speaking. These same people are not counting on their kids going to that same college,as them, even if their kids ARE smart. For all the talk of Americans being more stupid than the rest of the industrialized world (anybody that has lived in Western Europe knows that this is simply not true), there are a remarkable number of really smart, high-scoring American 17-year-olds competing for a very relative few spaces at Name Colleges.

    There are 3 million+ American HS grads every year. The top 2-3% would be like 60,000 or 100,000+. There are 1,600 spaces in the freshman class at Harvard. Do the math.

    As I mentioned before, admissions to Harvard, Yale, Princeton-type schools is so crazy (just being plain ‘smart’ is nowhere near enough, without a ‘hook’), so that most of us need to think as a goal about getting out kids into U of I, not Ivy schools.

  • 202. Leggy Mountbatten  |  March 19, 2013 at 1:42 pm

    #194 – Interesting – guess we’ve reached that point where the school is overcrowded and they’re doing their homework. I’m sure that at least one of the families I see is using a phoney balony address to stay in the school – they drive two very very expensive automobiles, yet list their address as a crappy little apartment.

  • 203. Anony  |  March 19, 2013 at 1:44 pm

    Definitely have hope! This sounds like b.s., but for K we got so many offers we couldn’t keep them straight by the end of the summer. Including our 1st choice private, gifted, magnet (2) and at least 8 neighborhood (neighborhood schools that were acceptable to us.) Went with CPS over private and are very happy.

  • 204. west rogers park mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    Re: Stone-

    I have posted this before. Stone’s biggest asset is its diversity and its diversity is amazing. The school seems to have changed tremendously with the new principal and many many teachers have retired or transferred schools. They have recently eliminated the reduced size first grade class in exchange for a computer lab. The smaller first grade class was an amazing thing.

  • 205. beaubienmom  |  March 19, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    Waiting anxiously for our letter – daughter kindergarten. Our son is currently first grade at Beaubien options, great program if anyone has questions. On a side note, are there any other parents out there concerned with food allergies and school? If you are in the same boat please find our Facebook group looking to bring Chicago parents of food allergies together. facebook.com/groups/foodallergy.school.chicago

  • 206. JuneBugs  |  March 19, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    #203 and other parents: if you don’t have any offer before the summer, what’s the backup plan? I assume some want to move to suburb and some applied for private schools. But for private schools, they will require you commit to the full-yr tuition before certain date, say April 15th. So before 4/15, there is no public school offer and you don’t want to move to suburb, you will probably commit to the private school contract. And later on, during the summer, you get off the waiting list and get into a wonderful school. Are you planning to go to the wonderful public school and swallow the full-yr tuition for that private school or just forget about the public school since the notice is too late?

  • 207. Chgojen  |  March 19, 2013 at 2:24 pm

    Question about proximity lotteries:

    Does anyone have any experiece with them personally that you can share with me? I’m curious about the changes of getting admitted into a magnet just based on proximity…are your chances pretty good? Or is it just one more waitlist we should be anticipating.

    We are in the Stone area, if that info helps.

  • 208. Esmom  |  March 19, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    The two CPS schools we attended enforced the neighborhood boundaries. I know of one family that was asked to leave because they were caught using a grandparent’s address and another one that was asked to leave because they were using the dad’s address (parents were divorced but kids did not live with him). The question is how did CPS find out? Rumor had it that fellow parents (either spiteful or rule-following, depending on how you look at it) anonymously reported them. In both cases, the kids never lied about their addresses to fellow classmates and parents, presumably thinking that CPS wouldn’t do anything about it.

  • 209. ttatting  |  March 19, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    Where is the “LIKE” button for #153?

  • 210. JLM  |  March 19, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    @Leggy Mountbatten – what is your neighborhood school? We’re in Nettelhorst, and in my DD’s TBPK class of 21ish, there are 3 children of teachers and 1 child of someone who works at the school in another capacity – I believe 3 of the 4 do not live in boundary.

    I’m friendly with one of the teachers, and she told me that she was told that her child would not be getting in next year for K (unless he got in randomly through the lottery). Sounds like they used to let children of teachers in the school slip in, and that is being put to an end.

  • 211. Bridget  |  March 19, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    I love these threads and have been reading them for years. Thank you to the owners of this blog. It truly has more info than you can find anywhere else. I love the mailbox watch threads. Nice to see all sides and hear the reports of the envelopes. Thanks CPS Obsessed

  • 212. JLM  |  March 19, 2013 at 2:44 pm

    @208 – I’m all for enforcing boundaries, but that’s pretty rough re: the divorced parents using the Dad’s address and getting kicked out of the school. I’m thankful my husband and I are together and only have to pay for one home in this city – I can’t imagine paying for 2 and making sure the larger one, where the kids live, is in a decent neighborhood school.

    @207 – No personal experience, but proximity really is just a slight leg up, I think. I toured DIsney II where they have 2 K classes of 25 apiece, so 50 slots for K. I was told that 26 were essentially already taken by incoming siblings, leaving 24 slots for prox. plus 4 tiers. So, 10 slots for proximity and 3 to 4 for each non-proximity tier. You can look at it and say that proximity has 3 times the slots that any individual tier has, or you can do what I do and say that 10 slots is not very many. I would also assume that a lot of people apply in proximity, because who wouldn’t want to send a child to a good school near their home vs.a good school not near it? Not sure how large Stone is, and also not sure what the sibling situation is, though, but my guess is that your chances are minimally raised by being in proximity. Good luck!

  • 213. @Grace  |  March 19, 2013 at 2:49 pm


    1. Hawthorne
    2. Disney 2
    3. Disney 1
    4. Stone

    We also know few kids that got into Stone are not challenged enough. They were leaning in K what they learned in our awesome private preK.

    Also, two years ago our magnet letter never came. After it was confirmed to me three times, that OAE received it, it disappeared! We were lucky to receive a classical offer, so I did not fuss about it as much, as much as I would have, have we not gotten a selective school offer. I was told we could have filed an appeal, but there was not guarantee. Not sure how that would have worked out.

  • 214. Grace  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:04 pm

    Thanks for the information about the four schools!Thanks for stopping being snaky to me, too!

  • 215. Esmom  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:04 pm

    @212 it was indeed rough, lots of tears and outrage involved. I felt bad for them, they were a nice family. I think the principal was torn up, too, but had to stick by the “rules are rules” adage and hold her ground when they appealed for the decision to be reconsidered.

  • 216. Grace  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:07 pm

    I meant snarky not snaky!

  • 217. Waiting preschool mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:11 pm

    @212. Consider, too, that the D2 KG proximity wait list barely moves at all. I think was a year in the past they did not even get to #1.

    My guess is that there is more movement on the tier wait list. So it’s possible that individual tiers get more “offers” (over the summer as the WL moves) than the proximity list does.

    Could it be harder to get a spot if you are IN proximity than out of proximity? (Can’t really tell unless we know how many applicants there were for each lottery list!) I would love to data crunch application/admission statistics for the magnets!

  • 218. Open Minded Parent  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:11 pm

    @210 – I think that is a shame. I think children of teachers and staff should get in to the neighborhood or magnet school at which their parent works. The teachers and staff of a school contribute so much to that school – and its good for everyone to have teachers completely invested and even more dedicated to the school because they have a personal stake in it. (I can understand why you might not do it for a SEES school where everyone has to test in – but it was a little strange hearing the principal of SN say at an open house that he couldn’t get his child into his school).

  • 219. Another mommy  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:11 pm

    @146- Jackson Language Academy has gotta be HIGH on that list , maybe #2?

  • 220. SR  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    @207 – the odds from proximity lottery really varies by school, but you may be able to find out more specifics from Stone or by asking neighbors who applied. We are in proximity for Disney I, and two years ago the principal said she thought everyone who applied within proximity was either offered a spot outright, or was able to get in off the waitlist. Disney I has 6 or 7 kindergarten classes, though, so the odds are worse at other schools just based on number of spots available (as JLM said about Disney II).

    It will be interesting to see if it is harder to get into Disney I this year or next year from proximity. Three schools in the proximity area are on the threatened closure list and more local kids may choose to apply.

  • 221. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    I heard from one magnet school principal that initially there may be a slightly greater chance of getting an offer being in proximity but that if you are on a wait list, they tend to get deeper into the Tier wait lists, since people are more likely to turn down a school that is farther from home. So, maybe you have a greater chance at getting in initially from in proximity but if you are say, #5 on a wait list, maybe you want to be #5 on a Tier wait list rather than #5 on a proximity wait list.

  • 222. klm  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:19 pm


    Do you know the rules about kids, non-custodial parents, etc? I don’t know how it is here in Illinois, but in Michigan (for example) it is state law that a child can attend a boundary school where either legal parent lives (even one without primary physical custody).

    Does anybody know if it’s the same in Illinois?.

    If so, I can imagine a scenario where the parents are “separated” (either for real or not) and one parent rents or buys the cheapest place in a good school district for no other reason than the school (s) (Hello, New Trier!).

    I guess for CPS that would go for Lincoln, Bell, Edgebrook, etc.

  • 223. JLM  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    @222 – I don’t know the law here, but I’m assuming it’s not as generous as Michigan or that family would have won their fight with CPS, right? Doesn’t sound like it went to court, but sounds like it was important enough to them that they probably investigated the legality of what CPS was doing.

    @everyone discussing proximity – yeah, I would love to see how the numbers shake out by school. I think Disney I and II are probably at opposite ends of the spectrum – 7 K classes vs. 2 K classes of 25 apiece.

    I feel like applying to CPS is some kind of War Games scenario. If child #1 gets into an RGC/Classical AND a great magnet, do you take the magnet if you have more than one child b/c then your other children are pretty much assured a spot? Because really, forget proximity and tiers – your best bet is to have a child already in a great magnet – kind of like a “legacy” – ha ha! Interestingly, when I toured Hawthorne, the principal stated that there was one year when not all siblings got in, which is crazy, b/c to me that means that then nobody got in who wasn’t a sibling, right? They had a class of 100% legacies! I’m torn on the magnet/sibling thing. It will certainly be a PITA if my kids are at different schools, but there’s such competition for magnets that it seems a shame that half the spots are already spoken for by families that already hit the jackpot one time around.

  • 224. Leggy Mountbatten  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:44 pm

    #210 it’s a aschool on the Northside that begins with a “B”. That’s all I’ll say. And they had tyhe same conditions in the letter regarding teachers as well.

  • 225. Waiting preschool mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    @218–I think giving school employees spots at a school is a nice idea, but has negative public policy implications. It gives teachers with school-aged children a strong incentive to work at the high-performing/ highly sought-after schools, and a strong incentive NOT to teach at lower-performing schools. Do we really need to create any more disincentives for teachers to teach at some of the “toughest,” lower-performing schools?

    And, it seems antithetical to how a public school is supposed to operate. Giving out spots as perks sounds more like private school.

    (And, I’ve only ever heard this idea floated by people who already “won the lottery” and have the spots they need from the school. It’s easy to give something away when it does not affect you at all.)

  • 226. HS Mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    @222 I’m going to cry urban legend on the divorced parent thing. Here is the only stipulation that addresses students using a false address:
    “Students may not, for the sole purpose of enrolling in a particular school, live with adults who are not their parents or legal guardians. If there is a finding that a child is living with an adult who is not the parent or legal guardian solely for the purpose of attending school in that attendance area, then:
    1. If the parent or legal guardian lives within the City of Chicago, that child shall be enrolled in the school of the attendance area in which the parent or legal guardian lives, absent extenuating circumstances. If there is a dispute as to what constitutes extenuating circumstances, the parent may seek a review by the appropriate Area Instruction Office.
    2. If the parent or legal guardian of a CPS student lives outside the City of Chicago in violation of the residency requirement, that
    child’s parent shall be charged tuition as calculated by the Board’s Department of Revenue, in accordance with Board Rule 5-12 Non-Resident Pupils – Tuition.”

    Last I checked, both the father and mother are parents and may never have been married. No proof of “living with a certain parent” required.

  • 227. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 19, 2013 at 4:29 pm

    Thank you #226~HS Mom~CPS had told a friend of mine that their children could only go to the custodial parent’s neighborhood school. I have copied the above and emailed it to her to bring to her principal…they were going to have to leave the school. This will make it much easier for them. Thanks!

  • 228. Chgojen  |  March 19, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    About proximity (stone). I checked their website, turns out only two K classes, so I suppose it will be similar to D2.

  • 229. stassi  |  March 19, 2013 at 4:40 pm

    Stone’s small 1st grade classes didn’t get replaced by a computer lab.

    The funding went to extra reading specialists dedicated to 1st gr only and they work with the 1st gr kids every day to my knowledge.

  • 230. stassi  |  March 19, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    Also, in real estate I hear about the schools a lot – proximity can’t be depenede on AT ALL. Don’t listen to someone who tells you o/w.

  • 231. Open Minded Parent  |  March 19, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    225 – I think that incentive already occurs. I guarantee the teaching gig at the high performing school is already a lot more desireable – and there is a finite number of those positions. Sure, its a nice perk – but I don’t think it moves the needle because the teacher in a position to choose was probably already choosing the sought after school for so many other reasons unrelated to where she can send her kids. I think permitting teachers to enroll their children just better aligns incentives. Its like the expectation that upper management at public companies own stock – they should have skin in the game. Its also better that a teacher – who is more likely to be invested in a school – not be dividing their attention to support other schools. I’d much rather that the teacher be invested and loyal to my school because she cares about it from more than a professional standpoint.

  • 232. CPSAppalled  |  March 19, 2013 at 4:48 pm


    While my experience with Disney I was almost 10 years ago, for my child it was clearly not a good fit. The “open” model they were following meant that each class (of at least 25 students) was in a “pod” of 100 kids: meaning that the four classes were all in one large room, divided only by low bookshelves. The noise level was indescribable. My child has sensory processing disorder and is extremely sensitive to noise, so clearly this would have been a disaster. While we were on the parent tour (with the principal), we witnessed a teacher yelling at a student, and she didn’t stop at all when she saw the tour group passing through. Chilled my heart. I do have several friends who have thought highly of their children’s educational experiences at Disney I, so it clearly works for some. Just not my kid.

  • 233. Bridget  |  March 19, 2013 at 5:05 pm

    Just got the mail, full of bills and ads. Nothing yet from CPS today.
    My watch continues…

  • 234. Ttime  |  March 19, 2013 at 5:57 pm

    I’m a first timer, and this wait is killing me. I can’t believe I might have to wait another 4 days or more to find out where we stand. I know it’s silly, but I had the date of March 18th engrained in my brain, and now I might have to wait another 4 days or more.
    Good luck to everyone!

  • 235. SutherlandParent  |  March 19, 2013 at 5:57 pm

    @227, SSI4, I think everyone should always double-check EVERYTHING anyone at CPS tells them, whether it’s the local school or someone on Clark Street. And using email is good, since it leaves a paper trail. It’s such a massive system, the turnover is constant and the rules seem to change all the time.

  • 236. Esmom  |  March 19, 2013 at 6:07 pm

    @222. Good question. I don’t know the ins and outs of IL law but I can verify (for whatever it’s worth in an anonymous online setting) that the “divorced parent boundary-related expulsion” isn’t an urban legend because one of the kids involved was in my son’s class. And then he was gone. We (fellow parents) had known he lived on the other side of the city with his mom, and didn’t really know nor pry into the dad’s situation. But that’s the reason that was circulated. Maybe his address ended up being fraudulent, who knows.

  • 237. Lincoln Square Parents of 2  |  March 19, 2013 at 6:38 pm

    My wife and I are new to the process, I went to Private school my whole life and she was the complete opposite. As a Chicago native I was adamant to send them through the CPS system, and well now were here anxiously waiting for the letter as well. This is a very insightful forum to say the least, glad we found this. Good Luck to everyone!

  • 238. Another CPS parent  |  March 19, 2013 at 7:00 pm

    Esmom – as 235 notes, I would certainly confirm any directive given by a school. Is there anything within state or municipal law that says that a child’s school address has to be the same as one parent or the other? If it were me asked to leave, I would certainly find that out and contest it. I just think that there are too many situations that fall outside the lines eg. parents who co-parent; parents who still own the home together yet one moves out to be with family, separated spouses, non custodial parent who really does take on the living arrangements for the sake of school etc. No way that CPS could define a divorce as being the reason a kid should leave the school.

    By urban legend, I’m suggesting there may be details about the situation that are unknown. Perhaps a parent living across the city may not want to fight it.

  • 239. Nervous  |  March 19, 2013 at 7:51 pm

    One person says the letters will be mailed Friday, and another says says no later than Friday- does anybody know for sure about this?

  • 240. LynnJ  |  March 19, 2013 at 7:56 pm

    All, I have a question about the tiers. I know what they are, but how do the schools actually apply them when selecting students for the open spots?

  • 241. cpsobsessed  |  March 19, 2013 at 8:04 pm

    @nervous; my assumption is that they build in a timing cushion. Friday is their internal deadline for mailing the letters. If everything goes well, they might get some/all out the door earlier than that.

    High school letters were mailed early in the stated week I think. The elem letters usually seem to go out late on the friday of the stated week.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 242. Esmom  |  March 19, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    @235, I don’t think divorce was the reason the child was asked to leave. I think he was asked because he was residing at a different address than what he provided to CPS, which was outside the neighborhood attendance area. I know the situation was more nuanced/complicated than that but maybe not in CPS’s eyes.

    On the flip side, there was another family where the kids lived with their mom and stepdad and their dad was remarried living in the suburbs. I don’t think the kids living with the mom in the city could use their dad’s address to attend his suburban school if they chose, could they? Seems like there’s a parallel.

  • 243. Portage Mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 8:37 pm

    @240 The schools receive wait lists by tier so there are 4 separate wait lists, one for each tier not to mention the wait list for proximity. In order for your child to receive a spot other children from your tier must decline the spots. My daughter was wait listed when we applied for K. Our wait list number was 5 which I thought gave us a chance. We were told initially the chances weren’t very good for her to get into the magnet school because there were only two K classes and one class was pretty much taken because of the sibling priority. We did get in for K so you never know what can happen and each year is different. We didn’t have to wait for summer and received the offer the first day after decisions were due from parents on accepting or turning down spots at schools. I found out later, the school went as high as number 12 off the wait list for Tier 4 over the summer. Incidentally, the school in question is Disney II

  • 244. LynnJ  |  March 19, 2013 at 8:48 pm

    @243 Portage Mom, now I get it. I pray to God when our turn comes, our child gets into a school that we love. No neighborhood options. We complete the application by this December 2013. I’m a basket case already reading these post. Parents in my daughters Pre-K class are patiently awaiting their letters. Goodness, it’s hard to decide which school to apply to. I have a list of schools that I’ve ranked on different variables and that is how I’m determining which schools to apply to. But, I think I’m going about this all wrong. I feel confused and stressed already!

    This process is just, WOW. I have no words!

  • 245. frank  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    244. LynnJ | March 19, 2013 at 8:48 pm—-To quote another parent in another thread, get off the crazy train while there is time.

  • 246. frank  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:10 pm

    @ “we witnessed a teacher yelling at a student, and she didn’t stop at all when she saw the tour group passing through. Chilled my heart.”

    Sorry, just like parents, you hate to do it but sometimes yelling works. I am ok with a teacher yelling as long as it’s warranted, not all the time, and the teacher has other tricks up his sleeve as well. At times teaching is like parenting, what works for one kid might not work for others.

  • 247. Crazy Train  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:12 pm

    @245: “while there is time…” Because once you’re in CPS they won’t let you leave? I believe there is always time to re-evaluate down the road, no?

  • 248. frank  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:37 pm

    @247- a gentle play on words, tongue in cheek

  • 249. LynnJ  |  March 19, 2013 at 10:38 pm

    @ Frank, a crazy train indeed! LOL

  • 250. SN mom  |  March 19, 2013 at 11:03 pm

    Hso and # 160 my dd got into SN and got lasalle II and we are in the boundary of Ogden, so I guess it does happen, keep up with your hope! And good luck to everyone.

  • 251. Portage Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 12:01 am

    @244 LynnJ I understand how you feel. Spots do open up. I felt stressed when I was playing the waiting game to see if my child would get into a decent school. Parents cast a wide net because they’re so scared and apply to schools that from a logistics perspective probably wouldn’t work out for them anyway. I know that’s what I did. My daughter got into a great neighborhood school in Bucktown but the commute would have been brutal. I think once the reality sets in, you determine what will work out best for your family and set the insanity aside. I gave up the spot at a good school because I was worried about the commute. I think this happens for a lot of families. You apply to many schools because that’s what you think you should do and when you get some of your choices, you turn them down because committing to do the commute for 7 to 9 years is tough. Once the dust settles and families make their decisions, spots open up. Schools are calling families even after school has started to fill openings. I think the uncertainty is what drives families nuts.

    I agree this is all very crazy but given there was a time when no sane parent would send their child to CPS and would opt to go private or move to the burbs, all this is a step in the right direction.

    Once my daughter got into a good school, I thought about where she would go for high school and it appeared the only good options was the Selective Enrollment Highschools which are very hard to test into. There is a move by CPS to provide more options for high school. We found out late in December, Disney II Magnet received approval for a high school. You just never know what can happen but the waiting and wondering is what makes it hard. I’m sure there were many students looking for a good high school that didn’t get into any school. I can understand parents wanting to flee to the burbs so they don’t have to stress out about schools.


  • 252. Portage Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 12:09 am

    @244 LynnJ – I forgot to add that I prayed every day my daughter would move off the wait list. I told my daughter about the wait list and about my prayers and she suggested we pray once in the morning and once in the evening which we did. I figured it couldn’t hurt. I’m not overly religious but once we got the call, I kept thinking there must be something to the power of prayer. I’m only half kidding.

  • 253. FirstTimer  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:33 am

    Is there anyone else out there like me that didn’t successfully make it to all of the school open houses? Like others, in the end, I ended up casting a much wider net than I had ever planned, and for many reasons, I just couldn’t get to them all. Being a first timer, I also wasn’t initially aware at how few open houses some schools have and just flat out missed some.

    I think that’s the main fear I have at the moment. Like some others, I (possibly naively) feel strongly that something is going to work out – we’re going to get into somewhere that’s a good option for my family. But I fear it’s going to be a school I haven’t personally toured and I’m going to have to make my decision by driving around the school and peeking in like a creepy person 😉

    Has anyone else accepted a school without ever having visited it (and basing it solely on public opinions)?

  • 254. Chicago School GPS  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:41 am

    Many SEES schools have an additional open house between when the letters come (probably 3/23) and the first round deadline (4/12). Unfortunately, CPS spring break falls next week so the time is really less than 10 days in April.

    Some schools also have regular tours that continue through May.

    Check out our calendar for dates as well as CPSOAE’s calendar, or just call a school you are interested in.

  • 255. Also Wondering  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:42 am

    I’ve definitely heard of people accepting on the basis of reputation alone, especially in later rounds where you don’t have much time to decide. Some schools will have/allow tours before acceptances are due.

    I am a total slacker on the touring front — I do think something will work out, but given the tiny chance of making it into any particular school, I just couldn’t justify the cost of a sitter and taking time off work for tours. I’m hoping to be able to get in if we’re lucky enough to get accepted somewhere!

  • 256. Chicago School GPS  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:42 am

    Here is CPSOAE’s calendar: http://cpsoae.org/apps/events/index.jsp?id=0

  • 257. SJ  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:06 am

    I didn’t tour any of the schools that we applied to. We just happened to get one magnet offer and they had an open house after the acceptances were sent out. I think that’s typically what happens

  • 258. momof3boys  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:30 am

    We never visited the RGC or SEHS until after the acceptance and that was just prior to the school year

  • 259. sharon  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:34 am

    I’m just a grandparent and wondering something….is the letter that is coming out actual test results or is it any offer from schools that you may get. I thought there would be 2…one with test results and standings and another with actual offers from schools.
    please advise. thank you

  • 260. FirstTimer  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:37 am

    Thanks for the great advice! And I’m glad I’m not the only one. As with all steps in this process, you hope you are doing enough but often feel like everyone else is a million steps ahead of you. Back to the glass-half-full view, I have to assume that there will be some opportunity to view a school that we actually get into before sending my child off on their first day. Thanks for confirming!

  • 261. cpsobsessed  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:40 am

    Every year there are people who come on here (usually later in the process) who’ve gotten an offer from a school they know almoost nothing about, except good reputation. I assume some are accepting the offers in the short response time they’re given but it prob depends on their other offers.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 262. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:40 am

    Ditto the others. I didn’t bother touring any of the schools and based our application solely on reputation, statistics and geography. Before spending time on this site, I honestly figured that my son’s chances of getting an offer were slim to none since we’re tier 4, so didn’t feel the need to invest too much time into the process. (We’d been planning to send him to our neighborhood school before he was even conceived.) Now that I’ve heard so many success stories, I’m feeling a little more optimistic regarding the outcome and will definitely become a stalker like First Timer given the opportunity 🙂

  • 263. LPparent  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:59 am

    @250, 160

    Edison RGC, LaSalle, and Lincoln were all possible for our kid. Oh yeah, –and we were offered a spot at Hawthorne from the wait-list about a week after letters came out. We really did feel good at the time, but it wasn’t until later that I knew how lucky we were. I guess we won the CPS Lottery that year.

  • 264. Ttime  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:19 am

    @263, LPparent, do you mind sharing where you ended up sending your child? Thanks.

  • 265. cpsobsessed  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:45 am

    OAE said they’d be able to share the numbers on how many kids applied to each magnet but they are currently focused on getting the letters out the door this week, so I’ll follow up after they go out. Should be interesting!

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 266. Chgojen  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:52 am

    CPSO @265 – That would be some fun number crunching…would love to see those numbers!

  • 267. RealMarchMadness  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:53 am

    @CPSO – Wow, that would be interesting!!

  • 268. Waiting preschool mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:56 am

    CPSO@265–Can you ask for it broken down by lottery (sibling, proximity, and tiers for entry grades, and then sibling v. general for others)? If we can get this level of detail, I will crunch data and report back!

  • 269. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 10:01 am

    To those who may receive offers from schools they have never toured – Be aware that most schools do host a tour for offered families during the time frame between results letters arriving and when acceptances are due. However, some schools do not necessarily advertise this tour so if you have interest in setting foot inside the school before you accept, be sure to call the school’s main office to ask if they will be having a school tour for families who have received offers. We received three offers last year and all three schools did host tours for offered families. The extent to which this tour information was shared varied greatly. One school sent out invitation emails and letters to offered families. One school simply shared the information on various blogs/message boards but if you did not follow any of those sites you would not have been aware. The third school only gave the information to families who called the main office. The tour was an abbreviated version of the tour they gave in the fall, but it was an opportunity to get into the school and to ask the principal some questions. Good luck, everyone!

  • 270. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 10:07 am

    Also, I do know people who had lower wait list numbers and were also able to attend these tours, even though they were not officially offered, so this could be an opportunity for some of you who have low wait list numbers to get into the schools so that you are not going crazy trying to make a decision within the 24 hours (or even on the spot) if and when that wait list call arrives. This way you can make the decision beforehand and be able to give the school’s office an answer when they call. And, it will save you some hair and delay some wrinkles. 🙂

  • 271. SJ  |  March 20, 2013 at 11:50 am

    OAE website is now saying letters will be mailed no latter than the 22nd.

  • 272. SJ  |  March 20, 2013 at 11:51 am


  • 273. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  March 20, 2013 at 12:20 pm

    @226 @227, The quoted rule is for children who are not living with someone with legal guardianship (parents or others). So, if your grandma lives in Lincoln Park, your parents would need to transfer your legal guardianship to her if you wished to live with her to go to Lincoln. If you live with a legal guardian (parent or not), you go to the school where you reside. So, if your dad has primary custody, you go to the school where your dad lives. You would only have a choice, I would imagine, if your parents had truly joint custody (e.g., one week with mom, one with dad).

    @ 165 Leggy Mountbatten, because Mayer is a “magnet school with a neighborhood attendance area”, even if you were admitted via neighborhood residency, you are a student at a magnet school. If you move outside the ‘hood, you can still attend because you are a magnet school student, regardless of the source of entry.

  • 274. SouthSideDad  |  March 20, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    I didn’t expect this…

    But I got a letter for my DD, 2nd grade next year, from CPS this morning. It was sent out yesterday.

    -Disney : offered
    -Disney II : wait listed general 157
    -Mayer : wait listed general 3
    -Lasalle: wait listed general 95
    -Lasalle II: wait listed general 24
    -Jackson, A : wait listed general 173
    -Hawthorne: wait listed general 95
    -Galileo: wait listed general 51
    -Franklin: wait listed general 9

    Probably won’t take any offer. Because DD is happy with current RGC and also we are waiting for another letters of magnet and SEES for my younger son who will enter K next year.
    If you have siblings, it gets more complicated.

    Good luck to everyone.

  • 275. SouthSideDad  |  March 20, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    The letter also says…

    “If you also applied to magnet cluster or open enrollment schools, a separate notification letter will be mailed May 17,2013, regarding the status of your application to those schools…”

    It’s going to be long process…

  • 276. abc123  |  March 20, 2013 at 12:41 pm

    If someone here has received the magnet schools letter, then does that mean SEES letters must be out too????

  • 277. chefkim  |  March 20, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    got our magnet letter today – shocked to see it. offered @ disney & stem. stem would be a really long commute – i know there’s been a lot of chatter about it on this site – i will (when i have some leisure time) go back & re-read past posts. but i’m just if it would be worth the long drive?

  • 278. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  March 20, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    @260 Try calling the school as soon as you get the letter. Some might offer special tours to those who are accepted. Also, call the schools now; some may have tours not listed on the OAE calendar.

    Better yet, go to the school at pick-up or drop-off and introduce yourself to parents. Ask them their views. Or go to an LSC meeting for the school, which will certainly occur between now and May, and do the same.

    I can give you data for Mayer, Suder, and Drummond for the past three years (not, I repeat, not for the current round). These are applications for all grades:

    Mayer 2012: 2111
    Mayer 2011: 1596
    Mayer 2010: 1289
    Drummond 2012: 2618
    Drummond 2011: 1901
    Drummond 2010:1511
    Suder 2012: 1548
    Suder 2011: 1108
    Suder 2010: 788

    For all but Suder and Mayer in 2012: the plurality of applications were for kindergarten; the 3-year old grade had the highest for Suder and Mayer in 2012.

    Acceptance issues get more dicey, because many people are admitted between the 1st round letters and the start of school. People are admitted during the school year.

  • 279. chefkim  |  March 20, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    also – anyone have any info on movement on wait-list at stone last year? at 18 for our tier, i’m thinking snowball’s chance – but just asking. thanks

  • 280. JLM  |  March 20, 2013 at 12:54 pm

    Thanks for the heads up, SouthSideDad. I had trained myself not to care about the mail until Saturday, but now it looks like all bets are off!

  • 281. CPS mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    We didn’t get our letter today, and neither did a friend. So don’t get your hopes up too much.

    @279 Here’s the data that I collected from CPSObsessed and NPN from last year on Stone wait lists. Numbers could have gone higher with people who didn’t report. 18 looks like you have a decent chance!
    Tier 2 – #23
    Tier 3 – #19
    Tier 4 – #20

  • 282. Bridget  |  March 20, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    No letter at my home today. Rushed home and just some junk mail.

  • 283. IB obsessed-tired  |  March 20, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    Could people posting about waitlist numbers also post the grade they are for? Were not all applying for K. Thanks.

  • 284. HS Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    @273 – when in doubt, look it up

    From a couple of different legal websites

    “All Illinois children have the right to finish the entire school year in the school he or she lawfully started at, even if they move to another district. A child does not have to stay at the same address every minute or day of the week and eat all their meals at that location in order to be a resident.”

    ” If a child lives with only one parent or does not live with a natural or adoptive parent, then the residency of the person who has “legal custody” is the child’s residence.”

    “The situation can become more complicated if you have joint custody, or if you and the other parent were never married, but informally share custody of the child. The Illinois school statute does not seem to have contemplated such modern beneficial living arrangements. After all, if your child splits their time between parents, how do you prove which home is your child’s real nighttime abode? Fortunately, in situations with joint custody, you are generally allowed to make an election once a year as to which residence controls for school purposes. If you have no formal custody arrangement, the situation can become more problematic. You may still have to prove which parent’s residence should control.”

    So, if you want to use ex spouse’s address, ideally you would need to have joint custody and show that the intention is for the child to live there.

    Sorry to interrupt – on with the school acceptances!!! Best of luck to all.

  • 285. NowWeWait  |  March 20, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    So just magnet letters so far, right? No SEES?

  • 286. So Over It  |  March 20, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    I just got our first letter in the mail today and I am a little confused about our wait list status for one school. We are on the general list this year, but last yer we were on the proximity list. Has the radius for proximity changed?

  • 287. west rogers park mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    @286- I believe proximity and tiers are only for entry level years.

  • 288. Waiting preschool mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    @286. Proximity is only used for the entry-year, which is usually KG (but is at 3YO for Suder, Drummond and Mayer).

  • 289. Also Wondering  |  March 20, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    @286, proximity and tier only apply for the entry year (K for most schools, age 3 for the Montessori schools), after that it’s just a straight lottery other than for siblings.

  • 290. LPparent  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:00 pm


    Edison. Great fit for the child in question.

    Of course, we deliberated because an “in” at either Hawthorne (especially) or LaSalle meant that we could live virtually anywhere in Chicago and the other sibling(s) would be effectively guaranteed a good, quasi-North Shore-type public education education (i.e., a really good one) at no extra cost to us (apart from normal taxes –‘there’s no such thing as a free lunch’, right?). Then again, our neighborhood school is Lincoln, so we’re all good –apart from the fact that we can’t move out of the area until the youngest starts 8th grad.

    I know. Boo hoo. We’re not complaining. .

    Good luck to all..

    I know this is out of nowhere, but I was just shopping at Marshall’s this morning and I met a lovely woman who checked me out (single A-A mother, clearly a ‘good’ person).. Her daughter lives in SF, fraduated from Stanford (She was so proud), went to neighborhood CPS elementary until HS (Payton). A good education that will give your kids every opportunity in life is possible with CPS –I hear so many stories like this one.

    Chin up, everybody. It can happen. Don’t give up (and yes, I understand that from my previous story there will be many that will be like ‘Yeah, that’s easy for YOU to say –you had good OPTIONS.’ True. True, but still).

  • 291. ruthie60607  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    We only applied to Suder for pre-k and we got in; this is completely unexpected. I spoke to my postman and he said parents have been accosting him all morning for their letters….

  • 292. Also Wondering  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:12 pm

    Interesting — so far everyone who has reported a letter has had good news, here and on NPN.

  • 293. Kelly  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    We got two identical letters for one of my kids, but nothing for the other one, which is strange. I suppose I could weed through last year’s comments to see, but can anyone give me some sense of how much movement there is on waitlists for 1st grade (as opposed to, say, K)? We are #16 at LaSalle II for 1st grade but I honestly have no idea if this means anything at all. Last year, for K, my one kid’s wait list numbers were well into the many hundreds pretty much everywhere, so we obviously got no calls.

  • 294. Edgewatermom  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:24 pm

    Applied for K, Tier 3.

    Disney – waitlist at 313
    Hawthorne – waitlist at 30
    Stone – offered

    We only applied to a few magnets, focusing most of our search on neighborhood schools where we thought we’d have a chance of being accepted. We also limited the geographic radius of our search, since we didn’t want to have a long commute. I know some families are fine with this, but wasn’t the right fit for us.

    I am shocked (but also very excited) aboute Stone..And of course, it’s one that I didn’t tour! I got a little burnt out towards the end (plus was very difficult to juggle with my work schedule). I checked the CPS website and it says that Stone only offers tours in the Fall. Has the school in the past offered tours in the spring for accepted families? I am hoping that I didn’t miss the boat on this one.

  • 295. Levski  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    Just received Magnet letter, in @ Thorp for K, sibling though

  • 296. window  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    we were offered drummond (sibling)
    waitlisted in the 200s for mayer
    and 100s for suder

  • 297. Christine Whitley  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    @294 Even schools that only offer tours in the fall frequently have a special tour for accepted kids before the acceptance date. I would call the school to find out for sure. Don’t rely on the website.

  • 298. Future Prom Queen  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    When I was in grad school at Northwestern, and then later at U of C, I was surprised at the varied backgrounds and varied undergrad schools from my peers. None of them seemed to have an academic deficiencies that they didn’t quickly address.

    On top of that, my current boss went to the Navy instead of college and is phenominally successful. And brilliant.

    This is more like waiting to see if my movie wins an Academy Award or I get voted Prom Queen than something that is going to have a long term impact. Nonetheless, I think this is very stressful. I so want to be an Academy Award winning Prom Queen!

  • 299. Twinmom  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    In at Disney for twins who will be in second grade in the fall. Wait listed in single digits in general pool at Lasalle, wait listed 50 and 51 at Lasalle 2. Kind of in shock now.

  • 300. CPSAppalled  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    Funniest post I’ve read today! Thanks for the laugh!

  • 301. BuenaParkMom  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    Applied for PreK 4
    Suder #132
    Drummond #40
    Mayer #283
    Inter-American – accept!

    Inter-American is probably the only school that could make me think about leaving our private since I am so big on the immersion language thing. Except that it is a half-day program and my kiddo is used to a full-day program AND I need full day coverage for work. I’m just shocked we pulled it since there are only 25 seats for each language every year. I think I may just keep it to myself and not even tell my husband. *wink, wink*

    BTW, they sent me 2 copies of the same letter. Very odd…

  • 302. Erwin  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:40 pm

    @294 – waitlist for HAwthorne at 30. I’m new to this, but how far down the waitlist is ‘good’?

  • 303. FirstTimer  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    Agreed! Wish I could “thumbs up” Future Prom Queen 🙂

  • 304. RealMarchMadness  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    @ 302.Erwin – 1 or 2

  • 305. JLM  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:49 pm

    @BuenaParkMom – you’re probably in proximity for Inter-American, so you were a shoe-in. They have very few proximity applications. Also, they have before/after care – I believe it’s through JCYS.

  • 306. Third time's a charm  |  March 20, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    @302. Erwin. We were listed at #11 for La Salle II (Tier 4) two years ago and did not get in.

    Applied for 3 magnets for my K and 2nd grader. 3 SEES for my K. Hope I’ve a letter waiting at home!

  • 307. Dunning Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 3:12 pm

    Mail came, but no letter. >:-{

  • 308. HSObsessed  |  March 20, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    This is a random post and I don’t mean to interrupt the flow of the thread, but if I understand it correctly from this OAE link, there are 11 charter high schools and 41 charter elementary schools who are still looking for applicants for next year. So, I guess the days of “Waiting for Superman” and the nail-biting lotteries to get in are over?? I don’t think we should be opening any more charters, if this is the case.


    OK, back to stalking the mail delivery people!

  • 309. BuenaParkMom  |  March 20, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    I know we’re in proximity but my understanding was that they always had many, many applicants, even in proximity but that most of the proximity applicants were native English speakers. I did their tour 2 years ago and was left with the impression that they had around 500 applicants in proximity every year. I’m probably going to make someone very happy and decline the spot although it is sorely tempting to hold onto it just in case financial turmoil would happen over the summer. Knock on wood that never happens. I really love his current school and he does too. We’re there for the immersion but the program is really top notch and there is just so much more access to the arts, physical education, and all those extras that make for a well rounded kid that CPS really struggles to provide. And then there is that whole class size thing 16 vs. 25 in the magnet. And I would assume they have had to increase their class size since 2 years ago given the current politics in CPS.

  • 310. albanyparker  |  March 20, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    Last year our letters came a day or two after what seemed to be the critical mass. I’m not sure whether to “blame” that on a last name that starts with W or on our mail delivery. Or maybe OAE just sends out a lucky few the first day, just to see the reaction on cps obsessed.

    Those who received letters, are you all early in the alphabet? This is only half tongue-in-cheek. Wish I could blow off work and go home and check the mail, but not in the cards today.

  • 311. BuenaParkDad  |  March 20, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    @301 My 4-year old is just wrapping up his first year at Inter-American. I have to admit that when we applied last year, it was primarily because it was so close (we are also in Buena Park), and we thought it would be great to have something locked up in advance in case things didn’t go our way this year for entrance into K.

    After the year that he’s had, we could not be happier with his time there, and we are pretty sure that no matter what results we get this week, we will probably leave him there.

    I can not believe how quickly he has picked up Spanish – they told us that he will be fluent by the end of 2nd grade. Pretty remarkable.

    There are some things that make us uneasy in the long run. All math is done in Spanish, and there will be signifant parts of American History that will be brushed aside in order to discuss Latin American and Spanish history as well. That’s obviously not a bad thing, but we are unsure if that will put him at a disadvantage once he goes to High School and is reintigrated with kids that have learned a vastly different cirriculum.

    They will be getting a new principal next year, so there is some uncertainty in the air. But the parent support at that school is amazing, so I expect things to continue moving in the right direction.

  • 312. Impatient  |  March 20, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    I bet, if there is any rhyme or reason to the order the letters go out at all, it is based on CPS ID numbers. But they probably just divided up a batches of letters to stuff and it’s dumb luck when yours goes in the mailbox.

  • 313. Leggy Mountbatten  |  March 20, 2013 at 3:41 pm

    #273 – thanks for that bit of info – I’m wondering when mayer will kick the magnet label and just go neighborhhod. From the looks of those numbers you posted, it may be soon.

  • 314. BuenaParkMom  |  March 20, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    Good to know BuenaParkDad. I’m sort of had already felt we won the lottery with the current school which is also convenient in terms of commute :). They expect the kids to be bilingual fluent by kindergarten there and I agree it is amazing how quick the language acquisition is, clearly there is an advantage to starting so young. I think I would have some of the same concerns as you do. I do remember the thing about the history bugging me. I don’t mind my kiddo learning world history and in fact I would encourage it, but they shouldn’t skip parts of American History to do so (although I admit any school is leaving big chunks out). I seem to remember there being a “social justice” slant to the school and that’s a topic that I would rather be discussed at home because I think it is one that is clearly complicated and takes many discussions. And of course the testing in CPS concerns me. The sheer number of tests is just ridiculous. It’s amazing that the teachers have any time to teach at all with all that testing!
    We have a friend with a child there but I assume she applied as a native Spanish speaker since she was already bilingual going in. They have been overall happy but I think they worry about the high school picture which is also something we don’t have to do keeping him at the current school. And yes, I realize that now it possible for people to figure out where he is going having said that!
    I’m 99% sure what I need to do, it’s just that 1% doubt that kind of messes with a parent :).

  • 315. MayfairMama  |  March 20, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    We’re at the beginning of the alphabet with a C last name and applied for 2nd grade magnet and SEES. No letter for us today.

  • 316. BuenaParkMom  |  March 20, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    I think my waitlist # for Mayer last year was in the 600’s if I remember correctly for PreK 3

  • 317. ConfusedMom33  |  March 20, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    Got offered a spot for my 3 year old at Oscar Mayer. No letter for my son who will be in K. Last name begins with P.

  • 318. Also Wondering  |  March 20, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    We haven’t had anyone say that they struck out, right? That makes me think that they mailed out a batch of acceptances.

  • 319. Bridget  |  March 20, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    @318- I’m rather confident but have been wrong before on an offer or not…but Is it possible they mailed by tier? I’m tier 4, last name H

  • 320. NMayfairMom  |  March 20, 2013 at 4:10 pm

    No letter for us either…I have two applications out there for magnet schools (entering K and 2nd grade). The few people I know who got their letters today did get an offer…so I don’t have high hopes right now!

  • 321. stassi  |  March 20, 2013 at 4:18 pm


  • 322. stassi  |  March 20, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    CPS isn’t sophisticated enough to group them in any order. I don’t think.

  • 323. Ttime  |  March 20, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    No letter for us today either 😥 Tier 4, last name start with S, applied for Kindergarten @ 3 magnets and 1 SEES.

  • 324. JLM  |  March 20, 2013 at 4:24 pm

    @BuenaParkMom – that’s funny. I toured last year, and the principal said that it is much more competitive for English speakers than Spanish speakers, but that they get very few (less than 10) proximity applications each year.

    We applied last year in proximity and got in but turned it down. I was also tempted, but had concerns about some of the issues discussed above, namely math in Spanish and the fact that, per the tour, there is a focus on the history of oppression of Hispanic peoples. We’re non-Hispanic white, and thought could lead to some uncomfortable discussions with other children that I would much rather have at home.

    @320 NMayfairMom – yeah, I too noticed that everybody getting letters today is getting acceptances, and that trend certainly can’t continue.

  • 325. AP Mama  |  March 20, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    @281 CPS Mom – did you compile similar data for the other magnets? I would be interested in the breakdown for Disney II…

  • 326. CPS mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    @325 AP Mama. I have data on 19 schools. I was watching for Disney II, but I didn’t ever see posts from anyone on either forum. I did hear through the grapevine that they got to 6 in proximity.

  • 327. Lucy  |  March 20, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    Hi all. We got the magnet letter today, nothing yet for SEES. Applying for KG. We got one offer — at O.A. Thorp, proximity lottery — which we will accept (whew!). We had the following wait list numbers:

    Mayer, general, 634
    Disney II, proximity, 202
    Drummond, general, 89
    Wildwood, general, 415

    We actually have not toured Thorp yet, but obviously will do so ASAP. Anyone have any insight to share on Thorp?


  • 328. CarolA  |  March 20, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    Just got an email from BBB today and she said that $$$ will be available to upgrade the welcoming schools for students who come from closed schools. She said they will all get air conditioning in every classroom, upgraded technology, etc. HMMM.

  • 329. MayfairMama  |  March 20, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    Lucy – My friend’s daughter goes to Thorp. She seems very happy with it overall.

  • 330. AnalysisParalysis  |  March 20, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    @328, that’s very interesting and useful info. I suppose it’s something to negate the resulting larger class sizes.

    We are applying to K, tier 4, last name B, no letter yet.

  • 331. WLMom  |  March 20, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    Got the letter today. Woohoo! 5 offers! Franklin, Sheridan, Beasley, Newberry, and Disney. We will choose Franklin out of those 5. But we’ll wait for the SEES letter for the final decision. Good luck everyone!!

  • 332. Gobemouche  |  March 20, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    Holy Cow, WLmom, you hit the jackpot! Franklin and Newberry and Disney…

  • 333. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 5:52 pm

    Just a suggestion that when everyone posts their results that they also post their specific tier or proximity and grade applied for. Otherwise there are going to be a zillion posts with question asking those specific questions. Good luck, everyone!!!! Although, looks like some of you no longer need it!

  • 334. Dunning Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:05 pm

    Getting nervous…are there a lot of families who don’t get any offers at all?

  • 335. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:09 pm

    @334 Dunning Mom – I think it really depends on how wide people catch their net and which and how many schools they apply to. Then again, there are some people who just get really super lucky and some who do not.

  • 336. cpsobsessed  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:10 pm

    @getting: there are usually quite a few families who don’t get an *initial* offer. But a lot changes as the wait lists are worked through over the next couple months.

    No letter here. I put down a couple magnets to see what happens…

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 337. JLM  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:11 pm

    Yes, I believe there are a slew of families who don’t get any initial offers. Not sure of how many of those ultimately get called off the wait list, whether it be in April or in late August.

    No letter here today. 😦

  • 338. FirstTimer  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:17 pm

    Got our letter – applying to K, Tier 3, Last name L, no siblings.

    LaSalle II

    Wait Listed:
    Franklin (77)
    Disney II (74)
    Jackson (134)
    Disney (113)
    LaSalle (48)
    Drummond (350)
    Hawthorne (144)
    Mayer (79)

    I’ll of course need to do a lot more research on LaSalle II (I think I thought it was closer in standing to LaSalle I when I put them on the list – I actually made it to the tour at LaSalle I). It looks better than my neighborhood school, but I will need to research more to see if it fits my family well enough to leave our beloved Montessori (as much as I love the idea of language immersion).

    Our numbers look too high on the rest so we’ll see if we have better luck when SEES comes out (and of course begin obsessively researching LaSalle II in the meantime)!

  • 339. anonymouse teacher  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:22 pm

    @328, Hi Carol! So what do you think? How much you want to bet that AC and tech upgrades will NEVER go through, get forgotten, or whatever as soon as the uproar dies down? I’ll believe it when I see it, like everything else in CPS.
    @331, My friend taught at Franklin and she really liked it. I hope you do too.
    Can’t remember who asked, way up above, if anyone had ever accepted a spot sight unseen. I did this for my kids based not on reputation among parents, but based on reputation among other teachers and principals in the system. Kids aren’t in CPS any longer, but it was a good choice back when we made it.

  • 340. Also Wondering  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    Last year I remember that a fair number of people got initial offers from some of the up and coming neighborhood schools, especially Peirce. Since those schools are out of the running for now, I’m expecting more people than usual (including us!) to get nothing at first. Hoping that it all works out in the end though.

    We have friends with children at Thorp, and they like it. They have a comprehensive gifted track I think.

  • 341. Sheridanmom  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:29 pm

    Got – 2 identical magnet letters for acceptance at Sheridan ( sibling ). We didn’t apply to any other magnets, now just waiting on SEES letter.

    Our last name is way way down in the alphabet.

  • 342. Skinny Pete  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:37 pm

    Applied for K, received an offer from Franklin. Wait-listed at all other schools (tier 4 queue unless noted):

    Wildwood 414 (general)
    Lasalle 147
    Lasalle II 267
    Newberry 261
    Thorp, O 115
    Stone 142 (proximity)
    Disney II 226
    Drummond 671 (general)
    Hawthorne 483
    Inter-American 8 (general E)
    Disney 278

  • 343. WLMom  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:37 pm

    By the way, we were applying for K and we are in Tier 4.
    @339: Hi, why did your friend leave Franklin if she really liked it? We got to go check out the school as I heard rumors that some schools around that area might be closing and Franklin might be the welcoming school???? But I also heard many good things about this school. I’m a big fan of Fine Arts and I know this school has very great fine arts curriculums for kids to explore which not many CPS schools can provide that. Their test scores are excellent too according to the greatschools.org. We are so happy and feel like we have won the lottery! Thank you God! I wish everyone here best of luck.

  • 344. NMayfairMom  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    @334 – We’re on our 3rd year now and haven’t gotten into any of the schools we applied for.The first year we did get a call from Stone about 5 weeks into the school year, but having been new to all this and not having seen Stone, I just couldn’t make the decision in the short window I was given. Of course I now know I should have just said yes 🙂

  • 345. CPS mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:48 pm

    @338 Congrats on the LaSalle II offer! We are there for K now, and love it. If you’re looking at test scores, they are low because when they closed the low-performing neighborhood school Anderson that’s attached to LaSalle II, the kids in the upper grades were brought into LaSalle II. If you look at the breakdown in test scores, the scores in the lower grades are much higher, but the overall score is an average.

  • 346. FirstTimer  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    That’s great to know about LaSalle II! And yes, you are right – the first thing that hit me were the test scores and lower greatschools score (though still a million times better than our neighborhood school). And I really do love the idea of a language-focused school (I almost majored in French but dropped it down to a minor – have always loved languages). I also love the idea that our youngest will have the opportunity to be in the same school in a few years. That’s exactly the type of word-of-mouth feedback I’m going to begin pouring through now. Do you mind sharing if your child got your first choice language? On the tour at LaSalle I, I know they stressed that they really try, but not everyone is going to get their first choice.

  • 347. Momof2  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:55 pm

    Don’t know how true this is, but someone told me that so far the letters going out are for siblings of kids already in CPS. Those who received letters is this true?

  • 348. LynnJ  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:56 pm

    #291 @ruthie60607 consider yourself blessed. we were 10 on the list last year for pre-k and no none gave up their spot. Take it and run. Your kids will have a spot til 8th grade as you are aware. Congrats.

  • 349. LynnJ  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:57 pm

    Can someone please tell me what NPN is? Many references here to this acronym. Thanks.

  • 350. EdMom  |  March 20, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    No letter here. Tier 4, early in the alphabet last name, older kid already in CPS. Has anyone gotten a letter that wasn’t accepted somewhere? Makes me think acceptances got mailed first. Who knows!

  • 351. OutsideLookingIn  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:03 pm

    LynnJ – NPN is northside parents network.

  • 352. Tara  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:05 pm

    Did anyone get an acceptance letter from an AC program? I’m waiting for the 8th grade ones.

  • 353. anonymouse teacher  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    @343, She lucked into a suburban district and that’s kind of a no brainer choice. But she really did like Franklin a lot. She always looked happy whenever I saw her!

  • 354. Leaving RGC  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    CPS Obsessed I relate with you completely…my son is much like yours it seems. I am pulling him from a coveted RGC to attend magnet. Incoming ‘gifted’ parents….there will be times when your child will feel completely stupid in the gifted class. There will be a couple of off the charts kids in your class…and even if you get one of the coveted spots…that’s 26 out of thousands of applicants…your child will probably be one of the bottom ten and it will make them feel like they are dumb. If that still sounds okay, don’t consider having your child become a cmpetitive athlete. School needs to be The Thing for you and your child. Really – not much time for play, sports, extracurriculars for the bottom half of the class. Plus the three hours of home work some nights (not an exaggeration) will drive you insane. Think carefully before you make your decision…I gave it several years and it just doesn’t allow for a well rounded life for a kiddo who is really smart – as good as it makes you feel that your child got in.

  • 355. cpsobsessed  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    @Lynn: http://www.npnparents.org/
    There is a fee to join but the message boards are very good for school info, nanny info, preK info, and other random things like plumbers and hairdressers.
    The audience tends to have younger kids (babies and pre-schoolers) so there is often a lot of discussion about schools for Kindergarten.

  • 356. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:11 pm

    LynnJ – NPN is actually now the Neighborhood Parents Network. It used to be the Northside Parents Network but in more recent years has gone citywide and thus the name change. You will find though that it is still overrepresented by Lincoln Park, Lakeview and surrounding area families, because it has a longer history in those neighborhoods. However, there certainly are families from around the city who belong and they do now host some events on the south side as well as downtown and on the north side of the city.

  • 357. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:13 pm

    Ooooooppps…I just saw the CPSO just sent you the link. I would not have replied had I read that first. It is a very useful tool for parents living in the city. You can get discounts on services as well for being a member and they host some good free seminars.

  • 358. WRP Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    @Tara, it sounds like only letters for magnets have been received. Last year, we got our magnet letter 2-3 days before the SEES letter which was nerve wracking since we, too, were trying for an AC and the magnet letter had no initial offer, just wait-list numbers.

  • 359. BuenaParkDad  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:24 pm

    My wife called me as I was leaving work to say we got the letter, but I made her wait until I got home to open it – she was really mad! Fair is fair!

    We got offers at Hawthorne (Tier 3) and Disney (proximity) – here are our waitlist numbers:

    LaSalle 108
    Newberry 40
    Stone 96
    Franklin 124
    Disney II 271

    We are currently enrolled in Pre-K at Inter-American and thought Disney was probably our only realistic shot, due to proximity. We weren’t sure what we were going to do if we got it, but now that we got offered Hawthorne, I think it’s a no-brainer.

  • 360. HSObsessed  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:33 pm

    @343 – Although there will likely be some rearranging of schools in the general Old Town/Lincoln Park area, I’m sure that Franklin will not be a receiving school, given that it’s a controlled enrollment school that is at capacity.

  • 361. Pie Chart Professor  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    Got our letters today…I’m a mom of twins applying for KG.
    Galileo: offered (both kids)
    Hawthorne: 389, 390 (tier 4)
    LaSalle II: 9, 10 (tier 4)
    LaSalle: 239, 240 (tier 4)
    Mayer: 649, 650 (general)
    Newberry: 282, 283 (tier 4)
    STEM: 79, 80 (tier 4)
    Disney: 151, 152 (tier 4)
    Franklin: 173, 174 (tier 4)
    Andrew Jackson: 113, 114 (tier 4)
    Drummond: 248, 249 (general)

  • 362. LynnJ  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:48 pm

    Thank you for the NPN info!!!

  • 363. DIImom  |  March 20, 2013 at 7:57 pm

    Cant wait to hear how many families will be coming to DII. We are a current family and I help organize our new family program at DII.

  • 364. Pie Chart Professor  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    Forgot my question for other parents with more knowledge than me. South Loop is my neighborhood school. We were offered Galileo in the letter received today. Is there any significant reason to consider Galileo over SL? Is the math and science part of Galileo that significant? Is it really better?

  • 365. Iheoma  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    I called the OES (or whatever it is called now) today asked specifically about AC letters. I was told that some magnet letters went out today and that AC letters would be mailed “later this week – by Friday”. She specifically said that no AC letters had been mailed out yet. No other information.

  • 366. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:05 pm

    @313 That’s a decision for OAE and the BOE; the schools have no say in the matter.

    @getting: there are usually quite a few families who don’t get an *initial* offer. But a lot changes as the wait lists are worked through over the next couple months.

    This is important for people here to remember. Wait-list offers are made all the time from the now until at least Dec.

    Be sure to check on your wait-list schools before you get the call, or you will be like @344. This is the reason that CPS says to only list schools that you know you want to send your child to; you won’t have time to research them if you get called off the wait-list.

  • 367. anotherlogantwinmom  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    From reading these boards last year, I thought the SEES offers and Magnet offers came in the same letter. Was that true? Doesn’t seem to be the case this year. No letter for us today, I have twins applying for Kinder, no older siblings, applied to SEES and Magnet. Good luck everyone!

  • 368. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    @364: As a fellow SL resident, I personally like SLS much more than Galileo. In fact, I didn’t even bother applying to Galileo b/c I knew that I’d turn down an offer there. I’m friendly with a family whose kids attend Galileo and their mom, who actually works for CPS, is hoping to transfer them. Sorry for the negativity — it’s just one person’s perspective.

  • 369. LynnJ  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:09 pm

    I don’t see anyone listing Burr (Magnet Cluster) or Pritzker on their lists of choices. I actually visited Burr and loved the tour and the information that was presented. Although I was a bit bummed that Spanish nor French was part of the language program. I have not visited Pritzker, so I’m only going on what I’ve heard from others. Thoughts? Perspective?

  • 370. Elsa Diaz  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:09 pm

    I just received my letter of acceptance for magnet schools. My dd number is #46 for Sheridan elementary. Did anyone else receive there letter?

  • 371. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    @291 Take @348’s advice. You have a worse chance of getting in after 3yo/PS grades. Last year, there were no open seats at Suder for 4yo/PK or K in March, but over 300 people applied for each of those years.

  • 372. Elsa Diaz  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    Application for Kindergarten

    Murray 17 tier 1
    Lasalle II 71 tier 1
    Owen 17 tier 1
    Sheridan 46 tier 1

    Gunsaulus offered
    Saucedo offered

  • 373. tier 3  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    entering K, tier 3 (tier 2 until the changes this year) offered at Disney, Thorp, Stone, and STEM. We were proximity lottery for STEM, but we have an older child on the north side. Will wait for the SEES letter and then make a final decision…

  • 374. Edgewater parent  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:22 pm

    Lynn J @369 – Todays letters are reflective of magnet schools only. Magnet Clusters/neighborhoods like Burr’s & Pritzker’s acceptances won’t be known until May while the SEES/options portion of Pritzker in the next round of letters shortly. That’s why there’s not any comment(s).

  • 375. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    Speaking of Pritzker, does anybody have any experience there? I ranked the RGC on our SEES application for K, but know very little about it…

  • 376. ChiMom  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:30 pm

    Bummed. No letter for us today. Applied to magnets only. Last name starts with M. No older sibling. Hopefully tomorrow…

  • 377. BuenaParker  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:31 pm

    Entering K. Tier 3.

    Disney (proximity) offer
    Stone 17
    Newberry 104
    Franklin 208
    LaSalle I 283
    LaSalle II 15
    Hawthorne (proximity) 209!!!!
    STEM 40

  • 378. southshore  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:34 pm

    No letter today, Tier 2( Last name close to end). Applied to magnets and sees…. Hopefully tomorrow!

  • 379. Levski  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:34 pm

    Sorry if this has already been talked about. If I were to accept the offered spot for K at Magnet school will I be able to go to RGC/Classical school, if offered next week in round 1, will RGC/Classical offer in next to first rounds if we accept the magnet, letter head a deadline by 04.12 to decide.

  • 380. cpsobsessed  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    @379: The magnets operate separately from the RGC/Classicals so you can accept a magnet and then still decide about the selective schools.

    Ultimately you can only register at one CPS school so when the time comes you’ll have to decide.

  • 381. Levski  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:40 pm

    Thanks, so unless offered 1st round at RGC/Classical I must accept the magnet spot then. Cannot wait for next rounds if the deadline is 4.12

  • 382. momof2  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:45 pm

    My son is going to be in K and got into Hawthorne. Does anyone know the class sizes there for K? Also would you choose Hawthorne or Burley? I know either is not a bad place to be in.

  • 383. LynnJ  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:46 pm

    @ Edgewater mom, yes totally get why everyone is talking about the magnet schools. I am asking purely on experience and reputation of the schools mentioned (Burr & Pritzker). Thanks.

  • 384. MayfairMama  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:49 pm

    Levski – You can accept the magnet spot and if you get a call from a RGC/Classical later, you can change your mind and accept that. You’re not locked in if you accept the magnet offer until your child registers/attends there.

  • 385. Levski  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    384, thanks, so there is a difference between register and the 4.12.13 deadline listed on today’s letter with the magnet spot offer? To me it seems it’s the same deadline, I was thinking we will not get RGC at 1st round, and after reading all the posts above I see people get offered late, summer, even fall, sop I guess that is post the 4 .12 deadline ion the letter and it is for people with no offers.

  • 386. ruthie60607  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:58 pm

    @371 and @348, thanks for the advice! Although this should be a no-brainer, we are stressed out about whether we should send our child to Suder. We never actually thought we would get in, and now that we are confronted with the option, it is not as easy as I thought it would be. We need to stop thinking about the short-term consequences and focus on the long-term benefits.

  • 387. momclueless  |  March 20, 2013 at 8:59 pm

    We applied for KG and offered a spot at Disney. As well as wait listed whole bunch of schools. I’m just wondering if we accept the offer at Disney, are we still keeping the spots on those wait lists? While I think Disney is fine, our first choice is Stone, which we live in proximity, but our number is 146. Any insight?

  • 388. cpsobsessed  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    @387: Yes, you can accept Disney and you’ll be on those other wait lists. Then if you get Stone you then accept that (and actually I’m not sure how you make sure you are removed from the Disney list.)

    Does anyone know if that happens automatically? When you register at a new offered school, does CPS un-enroll you at the previous school?

  • 389. MayfairMama  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    @Levski, If you don’t accept the offer you have by the deadline, you will lose it. But if you do accept, you can still be offered other spots and RGC/Classical spots later in the process.

  • 390. Levski  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:04 pm

    389 great news, thanks

  • 391. Momof2  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:04 pm

    Ok conspiracy theory here, but does it seem that the people that received letters also got offered spots? Oh gosh I’m not feeling too great about not receiving a letter today!

  • 392. MayfairMama  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    @Momof2, I honestly don’t think CPS is organized enough to have any kind of plan. It seems pretty random to me. Try not to worry. You’ll likely get your letter tomorrow.

  • 393. cpsobsessed  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    I agree – probably random and people who get in may be more likely to post. Granted it is surprising that literally everyone so far has had at least 1 magnet offer. Is anyone going to be left in the neighborhood schools? Is it possible that CPS inserted a secret algorithm into the process that gives people 1 magnet instead of some people getting 6? Were there fewer applications this year? More spots somehow? The next few days should be interesting.

  • 394. luckylakeviewmama  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:15 pm

    CANNOT believe it–but…

    Hawthorne–offered (!!!!)
    Disney–offered (proximity)

    Lasalle 485
    Newberry 65
    Disney II 143
    Franklin 84
    Thorp 10

    Tier 4, last name R, no siblings.

    Feeling so lucky today…I had totally convinced myself we would get an all-waitlist letter.

    Even if we get into a SEES, we’ll go Hawthorne–2 more kiddos to get into schools and I cannot handle multiple schools!

  • 395. cpsobsessed  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:19 pm

    Wow, congrats!! That is really defying the odds!

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 396. nervousmia  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    Tier 2– Last name “B”

    Offer- Newberry
    waitlist Tier 2
    Hawthorne- 59
    Jackson 51
    Mayer- general 39
    D- 121
    Dii- 89
    Franklin 81
    Galileo 47

    What do you all know about Newberry??
    Thrilled to have an offer.

  • 397. Allison  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:34 pm

    We got our letter today – tier 4 entering kindergarten

    Thorp – offered
    Drummond 34 (general)
    Hawthorne 341 (tier 4)
    Mayer 579 (general)
    Stone 38 (tier 4)
    Wildwood 134 (general)
    Disney II 43 (tier 4)
    Disney 395 (tier 4)

  • 398. Lucy  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:38 pm

    @396 — Friends of ours have a 2nd grader at Newberry and they just love it. Feel like they hit the CPS jackpot.

  • 399. Levski  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:38 pm

    397 same here

  • 400. momof2  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:40 pm

    @luckylakeviewmama have you toured hawthorne yet? if you have what were your thoughts? we are trying to decide between hawthorne and burley. i have heard hawthorne k has a full time assistant teacher in their class. thanks for any insight.

  • 401. Wondering Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 9:45 pm

    Wow!! All of the people who got their letter today have gotten offers. (that posted here) Has this happened before?

  • 402. logan square dad  |  March 20, 2013 at 10:19 pm

    @ 369 – Burr School. My daughter is in the kindergarten at Burr and we are very happy. A very active parents group and great afterschool programs which includes languages. The test scores are going higher every year and smaller class sizes than other schools. My daughters class has 22 kids.

  • 403. Mom22boys  |  March 20, 2013 at 10:20 pm

    No letter today – very very disapointed and now expecting the bad news since there seems to be only offers her today.

  • 404. LynnJ  |  March 20, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    @ logan square dad. Thanks. I got a great feeling from my visit. The parents that conducted the tour were so passionate and it was very genuine. Thanks for the confirmation.

  • 405. ChiMommy2  |  March 20, 2013 at 10:27 pm

    Anyone know much about Newberry??? Tier 2 got an offer @ Newberry. Waitlisted in the 30’s for LaSalle II, Disney II and Franklin. High waitlists for other schools.

  • 406. SJ  |  March 20, 2013 at 10:28 pm

    Hawthorne is amazing. I have a daughter in K this year and one that will be there next year. 32 kids in each K class, but there is a full time aide in each class. The kids are also separated into small groups for reading, writing and math. The staff is wonderful and incredibly nice. Mr. Pietrini is everything you would want in a principal.

  • 407. Another LaSalle II Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 10:50 pm

    @338 FirstTimer: We also have a child currently attending kindergarten at LaSalle II. Our experience there has been quite positive. Our child loves school and we are amazed at the progress our child has made this year. There is a reading specialist who works with children who need the extra attention and while the foreign language program is not immersion, it is certainly more foreign language instruction than a child would get at most non-world language schools. The kindergarten students receive language instruction three times per week (for a full class period). That goes up to four times per week in first grade. Our child loves language class! I believe they also learn about the other cultures, even though each student is only learning one foreign language. We did get our first language choice although like LaSalle I, LaSalle II does not guarantee you will get your top pick. You do rank the languages in order of preference though. When you look at scores, keep in mind that this is only LaSalle II’s fifth year, although the school does now go all the way through 8th grade. Last year’s 3rd graders were the first class to be at the school since kindergarten. Last year was their first time being tested. This year those students are 4th graders but I am not sure when the 2013 ISAT scores are released. We find the parent community to be very down to earth and friendly.

  • 408. Nervousmom  |  March 20, 2013 at 11:01 pm

    Finally got our letter!!! My daughter is currently enrolled in K at Galileo. Wasn’t my choice of school but it was the only one we were accepted to. Wasn’t happy so we went through the nerve wrecking process again…

    Out of all the magnet schools we got an offered to Disney (tier 4) for 1st grade. We are accepting the offer but keeping our fingers crossed for RGC/Classical.

  • 409. Waiting preschool mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 11:03 pm

    No letter here, either. And, I wonder if the delay in letters is more of a USPS issue than a CPS issue. I leave near Old Irving, and I know several others who did not receive letters today, either. (Although one report of a letter in in Portage Park.)

    Could location explain it, rather than last name, sibling, etc.? How many NW-siders got a letter today, and if so, what is your neighborhood?

    As for the better admission rate, I like the “algorithm” idea CPSO mentioned. But, I wonder if CPS is a bit less competitive this year, than in the past couple of years? This is the first year (for KG) that there was a reduction in the birth rate due to the economy. And, maybe some have been scared off by this last year of turmoil in CPS. (Of course, I can think of reasons why there might be more applicants to CPS, so who knows?)

  • 410. EK  |  March 20, 2013 at 11:05 pm

    We got our letter today: for K, Tier 3:
    Disney II – offer
    Lasalle – #255
    Franklin – #193
    Hawthorne – #54
    Stone – #5
    Wildwood – #49 (“general” vs. “tier 3” waitlist)
    Disney – #281

    One question – our guy is currently in PreK at a magnet cluster school that we are not in the boundaries – and we applied there. The letter says you have to let the school that your child is currently enrolled in about your acceptance at a different school so they can “transfer” the child – but we’re still waiting until May to hear from the school he’s in, so don’t want to take him out of the running! Kind of confusing. Do you think we can just not tell them for a while?

  • 411. FirstTimer  |  March 20, 2013 at 11:10 pm

    Thank you so much, LaSalle II Mom! That’s exactly the type of real world experience and information I am hoping for :-). As I assumed would happen, I’ve spent all evening obsessed with finding as much online info. as I can – but overall, it’s not much since the school is still so relatively new. But what I have found has been overly positive which is great. I’m going to call and find out about a possible tour for accepted families (we missed the fall one) and have really moved this into strong consideration. I also have to remind myself that the decision to leave our beloved Montessori is going to be hard at any stage, but starting at a newer school with a very involved community and a school we can continue to grow with through 8th grade (with likely younger sibling acceptance in a few years) is very appealing.

  • 412. Another LaSalle II Mom  |  March 20, 2013 at 11:44 pm

    @411 FirstTimer – They did host a tour for offered families last year during the period between letters arriving and acceptances being due. If you call and the office staff cannot tell you anything at this point I would suggest calling back again after spring break (which is next week). I seem to remember that when I called they knew they would be doing something, but did not at that time have a date or time finalized.

  • 413. Chicago Mama  |  March 20, 2013 at 11:47 pm

    @410 – w00t -you are the first d2 acceptance that I know of. Our principal hasnt gotten the list from CPS yet.

    The transfer students are just for K-12. PK is not really in the system yet, so the transfer thing doesn’t apply.

  • 414. AnalysisParalysis  |  March 20, 2013 at 11:50 pm

    Question: My neighborhood school’s registration starts on April 12th. Would “registering” at my neighborhood school take me out of the running for the later rounds for magnets/SEES?

  • 415. Also Wondering  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:29 am

    I really think they sent out only acceptances on Tuesday. I’m hoping that they didn’t send out all the acceptances, because we didn’t get a letter, but I don’t think that any rejections arrived yesterday. People might be more likely to report good news but I’m pretty sure that at least a few people would shared that they got wait-listed everywhere.

    CPS did this once before I think, can’t remember if it was elementary school or HS.

  • 416. SN and B Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:30 am

    Man, we never applied for the magnet program for our kids and I am glad–this “random luck” part is scary! Some people get 2-3 magnet offers and others get zero or waitlisted into oblivion? That’s crazy!! There HAS to be a better way of rationing out these magnet offers more equitably, CPS! Good luck, guys!

  • 417. CarolA  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:24 am

    I know several teachers at LaSalle ll. it’s a great school with tons of resources. Info provided above from parents is accurate!

  • 418. Iheoma  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:34 am

    I notice that there are no responses yet(I think) from south side families or those with kids applying for 3rd grade or higer. Am I correct?

  • 419. Sheridanmom  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:47 am

    @418 , nope I am a Southside family and we got our letter of acceptance for a magnet school yesterday. And we are way south. I don’t think there is a lot of southside families on this blog, seems a lot more Northside.

    And our letter was for K .

    It really does seem like only acceptance letters were mailed yesterday. After about 5 years of watching this blog, this is the first year that one day #1, I saw nothing but “happy” families posting their results.

  • 420. Iheoma  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:48 am


  • 421. cpsobsessed  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:50 am

    Often more southside families post about the RGC and classical choices there so we may see that in a few days.

    And the higher grade parents tend to be less obsessive. :). So they don’t obsess online.

    All the people I’ve known who applied in the higher grades did it more as a backup or “what if.”. As you see from other posters here, most families end up being happy where they land ( which is encouraging.)

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 422. Iheoma  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:11 am

    Thanks Sheridanmom. I’m really looking out for the AC letter(7th grader) and magnet as a backup because my dd school only goes to 6th grade. That said I’ve got friends whose kids are awaiting magnet info as their only choice. Really stressful times for families so any positive vibes are great.

  • 423. WRP Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:25 am

    Magnet offers for upper grades many times don’t come right away. They have to see who is leaving first.

  • 424. DIImom  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:50 am

    Also, DII will have openings for up to 50 kids in 7th grade, which will be announced once a high school location is determined.

  • 425. luckylakeviewmama  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:02 am

    @momof2–no, we haven’t toured Hawthorne–honestly, I thought it was SUCH a long shot that I spent time touring more “safety” schools….but based on others perspectives and feedback, we will accept. Our neighborhood school is not great and although Disney I would be fine, I think Hawthorne is obviously the way to go…

  • 426. Nervousmom  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:30 am

    Does anyone know when they will be mailing out test results for RGC/Classical?

  • 427. momof2  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:34 am

    @sj thanks for your response. great to hear. do you know anything about their early drop off or after school programs?

  • 428. Also Wondering  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:34 am

    So far all we’ve heard is no later than March 22nd, although some people have reported being told that they’ll be mailed on March 22nd. I hope they mail them all at once!

  • 429. RPMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:37 am

    Does anyone know how far Stone moves down their lists?

    Tier 3, 1st Grade
    Disney – offered
    Stone – 25 (general)

    Like many, still waiting on SEES letters before we make a decision. We are happy with our current school, but wanted options for next year. As relative newcomers to the city, we felt completely overwhelmed with the K process. Hopefully this year will go more smoothly!

  • 430. FirstTimer  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:45 am

    For anyone accepted into LaSalle II, I called the main office and they plan to schedule an “accepted families” visit prior to the final decision cutoff. They are talking about it internally today and she said I should check back in after Spring Break.

  • 431. AC and waiting  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:49 am

    CPSO, us upper grade parents still obsess, but there are way fewer spots to obsess over for 6th IGs and 7th ACs. I guess we do it more internally. But I think I’m not alone watching this thread for any AC news and watched the whole HS play out a few weeks ago, silently and anxiously.

  • 432. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:55 am

    I’m right there with you AC and waiting 😉

  • 433. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:03 am

    I think I was obsessed when my child was in 6th grade and we were awaiting an AC letter~we only applied to one school~AC and nothing else. I’ll be obsessed when my next child applies…come to think abt it~I’ve always been obsessed, but felt blessed and fortunate that we have had such wonderful neighborhood schools. Good luck to every1 waiting!!

  • 434. Jill W.  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:05 am

    So preschool options are going to be delayed because CPS is not able to make timely decisions on the Preschool for All RFPs (programs were newly required to fill out a lengthy application for last fall). I guess a new bureaucractic system for deciding where Prek slots go + closing over 50 schools = can’t do things on time or well. So much for any stated intent to prioritize early education.

    This system is “Good, fast, cheap — pick none”

  • 435. SallyB  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:09 am

    I don’t know any NW side families who have gotten letters yet (we are Lincoln Square). I think this has more to do with the post office than CPS.

  • 436. CPSAppalled  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:09 am

    Yes, I am also waiting to hear about AC acceptances. For an incoming 8th grader, I realize it is a shot in the dark. It is very difficult to escape the anxiety of CPS at any age level….

  • 437. CPSAppalled  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:12 am

    Hi Fellow Food-Allergy-Parent:

    I am interested in your group, but don’t do Facebook. Do you have an email contact or a website for your group? Thanks.

  • 438. cps alum  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:19 am

    no letter yet here. I’m on the far NWside, and I think it must be a USPS issue. I always receive things a day or two after my friends/family do.

  • 439. Third time's a charm  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:21 am

    Old Irving Park – 2 kids – K and 2nd – no letter

  • 440. AP Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:22 am

    @409 & 438

    I am also a far NWsider (Albany Park). No letter yet! Hoping we get ours today…

  • 441. ChgoMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:30 am

    Applied for 1st grade

    Offered: Disney


    Hawthorne – 426 :,((
    Jackson – 277
    Lasalle – 403
    Lasalle II – 32
    Stem – 38
    Wildwood – 69
    Disney II – 435
    Franklin – 211

    My child is currently in K at a RGC on the southside, but the hubs and I want to move back to the northside. Probably would not give up her current RGC for Disney…I would have done it for Hawthorne though. Will wait to see what luck we have with SEES this year.

  • 442. SutherlandParent  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:42 am

    Anonymouse, @353 you mentioned someone lucking into a suburban district. Could you say anything more about that? I know you were talking about elementary schools, but I’ve heard that some suburban high schools will take Chicago residents who are willing to pay the tuition, which tends to be a lot cheaper than private and parochial options.

    Sorry for getting off topic…

  • 443. Mayfair Dad  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:44 am

    @ 424: Watch your email this morning. Good news coming.

  • 444. SJ  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:50 am

    Hawthorne’s earliest drop off is at 7:30 and after school programs are provided until I think 6pm.

  • 445. AP Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:52 am

    email from who???

  • 446. NearWestMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:54 am

    Tier 1, K

    Sheridan – offer
    Hawthorne – 14 (Tier 1)

    Can anyone tell me about Sheridan? I’ll be honest – at the end of the application I just chose schools that were nearest the top of the “Chicago Magazine Top Elementary Schools” list. (Please don’t ever tell my child this 🙂

  • 447. Ron  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:54 am

    CPS obsessed, could we have an ‘ask me anything’ about each magnet school? Like on reddit an expert indulges all questions for a set period of time?

  • 448. nonya  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:58 am

    @414 – your neighborhood school’s registration may open in a couple weeks, but you don’t need to register this early. You can show up on the first day of school and register if you want.

  • 449. Mamajess  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:59 am

    FWIW, I also live in the AP and we didn’t get ours yet either, but a friend in Lincoln Square got hers. I blame the P.O. on Lawrence. They are truly awful. Also @ 429: My LS friend got accepted at Stone but must decline because they are moving. So you may be heading up the list if all the other factors are in your favor! Good luck!

  • 450. RealMarchMadness  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:06 am

    Q: If we receive an offer, what is latest date to accept/reject?

  • 451. anotherchicagoparent  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:16 am

    Mayfair Dad Does your message imply that Disney 2 High school has found a location?

  • 452. tired  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:17 am

    @442 I believe Anonymouse was referring to a teacher leaving Franklin not a student. See @339.

  • 453. Impatient  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Conspiracy theorists – I work for the city, not CPS, but I guarantee you from experience that there is no conspiracy and no system to the order you are getting your letters. I’m sure it has to do with the mail system and the random order in which the letters get stuffed into the envelopes. I haven’t gotten my letter yet either and know you need something to occupy your brains, but it’s just not that organized.

  • 454. Gobemouche  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:24 am

    Mayfair Dad (or anybody), can you explain the DII 7th grade situation to me. They are adding 100 seats, yes? 50 will be new students? If so, when/how did those kids apply? Was it on the Magnet app this year?

  • 455. Bridget  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:25 am

    @453 …laughing.

  • 456. Ron  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:30 am

    It is human nature to find order in chaos. Ha.

  • 457. Portage Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:30 am

    @451 I was thinking the same thing. Parents receiving offers for DII should keep in mind, current students of Disney II will automatically get a spot in the new Disney II Magnet High School.

  • 458. AP Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:36 am

    We just got our letter in the mail a few minutes ago. Waitlisted on all – sigh. Our neighborhood recently went from tier 3 to tier 2, so I was hopeful, but that didn’t help us at all.

    Tier 2:
    Stone #36
    Thorp, O.A. #34
    Lasalle II #8
    Hawthorne #19

    Disney II #155

  • 459. SutherlandParent  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:40 am

    @452, as the kids would say, “oh, barnacles.” Thanks!

  • 460. AP Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:43 am

    re: post 458 – we applied for K

  • 461. NW Chicago Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:46 am

    “…but I’ve heard that some suburban high schools will take Chicago residents who are willing to pay the tuition, which tends to be a lot cheaper than private and parochial options.”

    Is this true? I would TOTALLY pay to send my kid to Niles North HS and it would keep our lives sane without moving. Can anyone verify? I thought that suburban schools were doing residency audits.

  • 462. sharon  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:49 am

    @458…letter for AC?

  • 463. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:53 am

    @461…I have heard stories of this being true. I live near Norridge and know of a few parents who looked in to sending their children to Ridgewood High School. I do believe that it is much cheaper than a Private/Catholic School option as well. If I were you I would call the school and see what they can do for you. I don’t know if all schools do it, but some do. And it probably is dependent on what their current enrollment is as well and whether or not they are able to house more students. But it certainly can’t hurt to call!!

  • 464. DIImom  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:55 am

    Yes there will be 50 spots available. They would be able to apply through CPS. It would be a lottery situation. It wasn’t on the application this year.

  • 465. Bridget  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:01 am

    @461 NW Chicago Mom, we live close to Norridge and had sent our kids to their preschool (which was excellent) at Leigh. Residents and non-residents paid, although it was cheaper for residents. We could have stayed for K-8, but it would have cost us, I believe, around 8 grand a year but free for residents.
    I think I have heard Niles North does allow this as well, but I’m sure it’s very expensive costing more than most privates. Please share however if you find out more information. Thanks

  • 466. westsidemom  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:03 am

    Tier 2

    Jackson #75
    LaSalle II #46

    Any SEES sightings yet?

  • 467. Gobemouche  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:08 am

    464 DII mom – So you are saying there will be a separate application period for 7th grade DII spots that is still to come?

  • 468. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:15 am

    @466 westsidemom…
    I don’t think anyone has reported on getting a SEES letter yet. I would be willing to bet we don’t see those until Saturday’s mail.

  • 469. Chicago Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:17 am

    Just want to clarify that Disney II HS is not a NEW school, it’s an EXPANSION of the the school to higher grades. Currently, the school goes K-6 with a gradual expansion planned for 7&8. Next year, the expansion will be K-7 and 9, with a gradual expansion planned for 10-12th.

    There will be a new application window to open once the location for the expansion is sited, which I anticipate will be at the same time that CPS releases its school actions. There seems to be a lot of misinformation and conjecture floating around. I recommend checking the DII site for clarification.

  • 470. mom22boys  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:18 am

    Am I seeing it right – so far no acceptance today? Please tell me this isn’t true.
    Our mail doesn’t get delivred until 4PM!

  • 471. Leah  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:23 am

    Friends said they got letters yesterday but I havent

  • 472. Sam  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:24 am

    You seem a little tense. It will be ok. I know I have a sibling acceptance coming but I haven’t gotten it yet.

  • 473. AP Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:31 am

    @462-sharon. No, it wasn’t for AC, it was for K

  • 474. albanyparker  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:42 am

    Another Albany Parker with no mail yesterday. I blame the NW side mail delivery as pps have hypothesized. In fact, we got no mail yesterday. Not even junk. Just a few copies of Hoy thrown on our front porch.

    Also willing to bet that the SEES letters go out Friday (all at once) along with a positive press splash in hopes of distracting attention from today’s closings announcements (as someone else had suggested far above)

  • 475. Sheridanmom  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:44 am

    My children have been going to Sheridan for over 7 years and we love it. The principal is a great, very hands on. The teachers are all long-term and very engaged with their kids. The kids are very challenged, and a lot move on to SE High Schools.

    The only negative I ever had about Sheridan, is the 30 per classroom, but that is all CPS schools, so cannot get away from that unless you go private or to the suburbs. In the younger grades, especially K, there is always a teacher, plus an assistant to handle the 30 kids. They also break the kids out in smaller learning groups, to focus on their unique needs.

    With the extra money they got for the longer day last year, they spent the time and money, on a special enrichment period were small groups of kids ( about 7 – 9) with a teacher, focused on the skillset that they needed the most help with. So they would group the kids, by their level of need. Loved it!

  • 476. Leah  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:45 am

    Do you have a link to the closings announcement?

  • 477. Dunning Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:46 am

    @458 – Do they get to #8 at LaSalle II? #8 seems like a reasonable chance, right?

    Is it the case that if you get all waistlist numbers that there is at least one reasonable number? Or does it happen that you can get all waitlist numbers in the hundreds, and be totally out of luck for getting in anywhere?

  • 478. AP Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:51 am

    @477 – I will call today to check, but yes – I think that 8 is a reasonable #. I guess that I should be happy that one is low enough to stand a chance.

    Since it is all random, I am sure that some do get all numbers in the hundreds.

  • 479. ChiMommy2  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:52 am

    @477 – yes #8 is a good number. is it proximity or tier? i know someone who got in last year as #9 proximity. the numbers move – so don’t fret!!! i also know someone who got into a school with a number over 45. like prior posts have mentioned, there will be tons of movement in the coming months leading up to the start of school (and even after). with that said, i think it is fair to say that a few schools do not go too far down the waitlist – i.e. hawthorne.

    also, i know someone last year that received no offers and the lowest waitlist number was 200+.

  • 480. momof2  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:54 am

    I think it’s true that acceptance letters were received yesterday. We just got our letter for K, tier 4, and all waitlisted. My letter was postmarked yesterday, the 20th. I think one of the PP who got an acceptance letter said it was postmarked the 19th.

  • 481. Amy  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:56 am

    Old Irving Park…Applied for 7th grade WY,Lane, and LPIB. No mail today!!

  • 482. MayfairMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:57 am

    Our mail just came. No letter again today. 😦

  • 483. KB  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:58 am

    Applied for 1st grade, no siblings in CPS, currently at an independent/private school.

    Applying was for safety and curiousity more than anything else. You never know when your financial situation might change and always nice to have a back up since our neighborhood school is not an option. Here were our results:

    Stone – 13
    Franklin – 70
    Newberry -92

    And everything else over 100.

    For those who are curious, for K, our best waitlist numbers were Stone – 20 (tier 3) and LaSalle II – 21. We received a call from LaSalle II in August. Never heard from Stone, I believe they stopped at number 19 for Tier 3 last year.

    We declined LaSalle II, we are in Rogers Park and the commute would have been a nightmare. I actually would have never applied, but I had the address for the school wrong, of course it is the only one we got a call from. 🙂

    We were shocked and felt lucky to get a call from the private school we had applied to in May last year. We are insanely happy there and probably wouldn’t have moved him anyways. We are waiting on the SEES letter, but I don’t anticipate that to change our situation either as we have a 3 year old that we have to think about and they have sibling preference at the private we are at.

  • 484. lisa  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:01 pm

    An earlier post mentioned inter-american being half days for pk4 – I don’t believe that is correct. Can anyone confirm that. I think they go the full day just like everyone else.

  • 485. ZanesDad  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:03 pm

    @476 – closings being tracked here:

  • 486. ZanesDad  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:05 pm

    @476 – also check #cpsclosings on Twitter.

  • 487. Dunning Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:12 pm

    By the time I finally get this letter I think I will be too terrified to open it! Yesterday I was feeling so positive as it looked like everyone got in at least one school. But now…ugh. I haven’t even gotten a letter yet and I am already panicking that we will not be able to afford to move.

  • 488. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:14 pm

    this is also live updates for closings ~just keep refreshing to make current http://www.suntimes.com/19008230-761/cps-schools-that-sources-have-confirmed-are-closing.html

  • 489. Ttime  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:14 pm

    Just got our letter. All whitelisted and all were proximity 😥

    Franklin 32
    Newberry 77
    LaSalle 105

    With Franklin only having 1 K class, I don’t think any of these will happen. I was really hoping for LaSalle, but oh well.
    Still waiting for SEES letter for Skinner North.

  • 490. Leah  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    Thanks! We are zoned for brenneman in uptown and can’t figure out if it closes where we will be zoned

  • 491. KB  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    Out of sheer curiousity, does Sibling placement also work in reverse. For example, if next year I apply my now 3 year old (will be 4 year old then) to K and he is accepted at a magnet, and I choose to send him there for K, the following year can I apply my private school attending older child to the magnet the younger got in to and at least get sibling preference (of course it will depend on how many leave from the older class, but if they do give siblings preference, maybe??? Just curious.


  • 492. Dunning Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    @491 – wondering same thing. We will be going through all this again next year when lil’ sis applies for K. Is it automatic if one of them finally gets in somewhere, that the other will get in the following year, assuming there in an opening in that grade?

  • 493. Mayfair Dad  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    It’s official: Disney II High School will be located in the current Thurgood Marshall building (3900 N. Lawndale Avenue) as a co-share with TM Middle School.

  • 494. Momof2  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    I’m thinking my guy feeling was correct that only offers we’re received yesterday and the rest of us still waiting will all be wait listed! Hate to be a pessimist, but not one who received today was offered.

  • 495. cm  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    we live in albany park…neighbors got their letters today (for both of their children) and we didn’t get any letter….sigh.

  • 496. NearWestMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    @ 475 – thanks so much for the info on Sheridan. I am breathing a sigh of relief.

  • 497. mom22boys  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:36 pm

    @Momof2 – I am there with you. I think that is exactly what happend. I haven’t yet heard from anyone that got a letter today and had an offer. I am impatiently waitinfg for a positive post today of acceptance and my mail.

  • 498. ZanesDad  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    @493 MD Dad – source?

  • 499. Searching for a spot  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    If a current student unexpectedly leaves a magnet (or, say, their sibling ends up attending a SEES school) does that open spot go first to the proximity waitlist or to the general waitlist?

  • 500. 60618 Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:41 pm

    Letter arrived! We applied to 4 magnets for K but got nothing. I like it that the letter shows which waitlist (they call it Queue) we are part of. It’s interesting although it doesn’t change anything. Our results:

    Lasalle – waitlist – tier 3 queue – #327
    Wildwood – waitlist – general queue – #243
    Disney II – waitlist – proximity queue – #51
    Hawthorne – waitlist – tier 3 queue – #244

  • 501. anotherchicagoparent  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    MD is on Disney’s LSC if I remember correctly?
    thanks for the info Mayfair Dad.

  • 502. Peter  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    cm, where are the neighbors sending there kids?

  • 503. Mayfair Dad  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    @ 498. Barbara Bennett-Byrd 🙂

  • 504. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    Got our letter today and, per the pattern, we didn’t receive any offers. (tier 4, KG, no siblings). Our numbers are pretty high up the wait list, except for Disney II at #22 and Jackson at #34. Does anybody have wait list stats from last year on either of these school? I’m thinking that #22 is within the realm of possibility…

  • 505. Chicago Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    @491 – yes, it works that way also.

  • 506. Third time's a charm  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    @495 cm – Did you neighbors get any offers or all waitlists?

  • 507. cm  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    haven’t asked them…too afraid to!!!

  • 508. Jen  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    No letter here in out of district land.

    Concerning suburban districts, I asked how much out of district tuition is in Lake Forest and it’s $100 a day. Which, at 180 days of school, is cheaper than some private schools of course.

  • 509. CPS mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    @504 Sticking with the pattern, we got our letter today with no offer. Only applied to Disney II for 1st. #482

    The only movement I heard for Disney II last year was #6 for proximity.

  • 510. SutherlandParent  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    @463, yes on this: “And it probably is dependent on what their current enrollment is as well and whether or not they are able to house more students.” That’s the real issue, from what I’ve heard. If they have space, it’s almost all extra money for the school district.

    Tuition probably depends on the per-pupil funding at the district level, which is all over the board in the suburbs. I should look it up, but I’m assuming that tuition at New Trier (just as an example) would probably be a heck of a lot more than, say, Oak Lawn Community HS.

    From the very limited actual research I’ve done, the only difference in attending out-of-district high school is that those kids can’t play sports for their suburban high school.

  • 511. CPS mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    A friend that got her’s yesterday got acceptances for Disney in proximity and Stone Tier 1 for K.

  • 512. mmdemom  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    @498 Congrats on a location. What is the projected size of Disney II High School? Is this considered temporary or set for future?

  • 513. Chicago Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    @504 – probably not. I’m not sure they pulled anyone from WL last year, and I think there may be multiple WLs – one for each tier.

  • 514. UptownMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:02 pm

    I can see the postman out front taking a smoke break. The suspense is killing me! (Although at this point just hoping for a reasonable waitlist number and reminding myself that the open enrollment notifications are still to come.)

  • 515. Mayfair Dad  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    @ 512. We received confirmation on the location to coincide with the announcement of the school closings. This is the permanent home of the 7 – 12 program, walking distance from the current PreK – 6 program. The building can accommodate 975 students. No additional information given on the future of Thurgood Marshall except to confirm we will be co-sharing the building this Fall. Information on the enrollment policy, programming, application process will be rolled out over the next few weeks. I will share what I know the moment it goes public.

  • 516. RealMarchMadness  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:16 pm

    $488 – Am I reading this correctly, “Stockton is closing and Courtenay is moving to Stockton Elementary School building”.

    Isn’t that newly reconstructed building with BOA as investor?

  • 517. Waiting preschool mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    Applied to 12 magnets–NO OFFERS. KG, tier 4.

    Disney 1-145
    Disney II-145 (proximity)
    LaSalle II-200

    So sad. I’m guessing Sheridan is the only possibility for a WL call (and even then, unlikely).

  • 518. EdMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    Still no acceptances received today? Not looking so good for those of us who didn’t get letters yesterday.

  • 519. ChiMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:27 pm

    I’m interested in and confused about Stockton too. Courtenay is taking it over. But, isn’t Courtenay a magnet school? If Stockton was someone’s neighborhood school, what will their neighborhood school be going forward?

  • 520. Chgojen  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    I think you may be right about acceptance letters arriving yesterday…I just checked with a friend who applied for K along with her neighbor friend who applied for K.

    Her neighbor got letter yesterday with a seat at Hawthorne.
    She got letter today with all waitlists, no offers.

  • 521. LTACMOM  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:35 pm

    I have a child at LTAC. The director of LTAC, in an email today, said letters for Academic Centers will be mailed tomorrow.

  • 522. Chicago Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:35 pm

    MD – do we KNOW it’s the perm home of 7-12?

  • 523. Chgojen  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    Question for a friend:

    PreK-3 Drummond…waitlist 1 and 2 for twins. Are her chances good to get both in?

  • 524. Chris  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:42 pm

    “I’m interested in and confused about Stockton too. Courtenay is taking it over. But, isn’t Courtenay a magnet school? If Stockton was someone’s neighborhood school, what will their neighborhood school be going forward?”

    Seems they will be co-located, but with combined leadership/office staff. So, Stockton remains an attendance area school, with a class per grade of magnet (kinda like Bell, which 1 class of options), and the Principal, etc for the whole thing are the folks currently at Courtenay.

    Question is if they will retain (after the fall) or phase out the magnet program.

  • 525. mmdemom  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:43 pm

    @521 thanks. I was about to email her to ask. Hate this waiting.

  • 526. PublicServiceAnnouncement  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:45 pm

    Just a note to those saying it’s okay to sign up on the first day of school for your neighborhood school …

    It’s not. Please don’t wait that long. It is extremely disruptive to neighborhood schools that count on each and every student (for funding or for trying to figure out class sizes and teacher assignments) to have an influx of last-minute students.

    Think about it. The magnet schools know EXACTLY how many kids in each class. Our school got upwards of 35 new kids in the week before school. Thirty-five. Imagine having to re-juggle everything at that last minute.

    Obviously, you have to wait until you’re sure. But when you are certain you are registering for your neighborhood school, please do so right then.

    We will be signing up our youngest the day registration opens.

    “This public service announcement was brought to you by your neighborhood schools. Try us. We’re not so scary after all.”

    : )

  • 527. Parent of 3rd grader @ a CPS charter school.  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:50 pm

    Haven’t seen any feedback (acceptance or wait listed) regarding Skinner West. My daughter tested (going into 4th grade for Fall 2013) and I don’t know what’s the status. I’m mostly seeing Northside schools being discussed on this blog.
    Has anyone applied for Skinner West? Any feedback is appreciated.

  • 528. 60630 parent  |  March 21, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    Applied 1st grade
    Thorp 98
    Disney II – 250+
    Stone 388

  • 529. window  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    What tier?
    523. Chgojen | March 21, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    Question for a friend:
    PreK-3 Drummond…waitlist 1 and 2 for twins. Are her chances good to get both in?

  • 530. ChiMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    All WL #’s today so far, it seems. No offers. I don’t even want my letter to arrive now.

  • 531. Also Wondering  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    @527, I don’t think anyone’s heard anything about the selective enrollment schools.

  • 532. Emily  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:01 pm

    Just got our letter.
    Was just applying to Inter-American for Prek4 and are number 44 on the Tier2 English wait list.
    I’m guessing they didn’t come close to this number last year.

  • 533. UptownMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    Well, waitlisted everywhere, as expected:

    LaSalle 259
    Hawthorne 81
    Stone 142
    Newberry 120
    Disney 53
    Franklin 156

    Back to the wait for May open enrollment.

  • 534. UptownMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    Should add that was for K, tier 3.

  • 535. NearWestMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    Left work at lunch today to check the mail. No SEES letter yet. Next week, I guess. (But I’ll probably sneak out tomorrow at lunch again just to make sure).

  • 536. AnalysisParalysis  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    Got our letter. Applied to K. Tier 4.

    No good news. All wait listed 😦 😦 😦

    Closest numbers are
    Galileo 39
    Lasalle ll 55
    Franklin 75

    Rest all in 100s.


  • 537. FirefighterDad  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    Ok,question. is there any rhyme or reason on which they prioritize the acceptance? I understand that sybling is priority first but do they go through proximity before general, per se?and if the Tier is listed next to it what does that mean? hopefully someone can explain, plz.

  • 538. cpsobsessed  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:06 pm

    I remember galileo had a lot of movement last year.
    Def a possibility if your number 50 or less.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 539. Chgojen  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    @529 – I believe she’s in Tier 3.

  • 540. ChiMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:11 pm

    @490 – Leah: For whatever it’s worth, I just read in the comments of a SunTimes article that Stewart Elementary is closing and that its students will be moving to Brennemann. So, I assume that means Brennemann is staying open. I can’t confirm any of this, though – just something I read.

  • 541. mom22boys  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    I can’t just believe that they sent acceptance in one batch day prior to WL. That is just mean!!! Now I don’t want my letter any more.

  • 542. Nikki P.  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    3YO Preschool, Tier 1

    Drummond – 32
    Mayer – 17
    Suder – 14

    I’m sure the information is here somewhere, but I can’t figure out how the tiers work. Does this mean to get into Drummond, 32 tier 1 kids need to decline before we get called?

  • 543. FirefighterDad  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    ok, just read more on the website about it…they take sybling first and then the next 40% is accomodated by proximity. so my next question is what if they don’t exaust the proximity list, do the remaining kids on that list get first shot in your tier?

  • 544. Chicago Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    @542 – Yes.

  • 545. NMayfairMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:21 pm

    Year 3 with no luck. Neither my daughter (entering K) nor my son (entering 2nd grade) got in anywhere. Not even a reasonable wait list number to where I could hope for something to change later in the year. So what is one to do? I guess it is the suburbs after all…at least I won’t have to worry about the HS lottery then 🙂

    Good luck to everybody who hasn’t gotten their letter!

  • 546. Open Minded Parent  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:21 pm


    For entry year, siblings in first. Then, of remaining seats, 40% to proximity and 15% to each of the tiers. Anyone who does not get a seat in first round is put on one of 5 waitlists (proximity + each tier). Supposedly, as students turn down, the waitlist chosen is the one of the student that turned down. So proximity offer turns down, #1 on proximity waitlist gets offer. Not sure what they do if a sibling notifies that they are not coming. Probably doesn’t happen very often.

  • 547. ugh!  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:24 pm

    Got it today! Also following the pattern… Waitlisted at all 6 magnets to which we applied.

  • 548. window  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    hard to say on drummond … last year, all spots were initially accepted, but there was some movement over the next couple months. i was in a similar situation last year and did get in, but not until may. each year is totally different, though, all you need is for two tier three people to choose a different school … which could happen in theory.

  • 549. DoneWaiting  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    All waitlists – tier 4 – k
    best spot – lasalle – 3
    worst – wildwood – 292

  • 550. Chgojen  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    @548 window –
    Thanks. I will let her know. I’m sure those pre-k seats are highly desirable, since they guarantee a seat through 8th grade.

  • 551. Chicago Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    @543 – I’m going to use Disney II because that’s my school so I know how it works. For K, there are 50 slots. Siblings get preference, so that’s 24-27 slots filled with siblings. 40 percent of the remaining 23-26 slots (so 9-10 slots) go to kids in the proximity lottery. Then the remaining 14-16 slots are distributed evenly among the four tiers, So 4 kids from tier 1 are accepted in the general lottery; 4 kids from tier 2, 4 kids from tier 3, 4 kids from tier 1, 4 kids from tier 4. If a kid in the general lottery from tier 1, for example, doesn’t accept the slot, they call the #1 holder on the tier 1 WL.

    As far as I know, you cannot be entered into multiple lotteries for the same school. So if you apply in the proximity lottery, the tiers don’t matter. But if you apply in the general lottery, the tiers are considered. Also, this is only for K as I don’t believe they run proximity lotteries above the entry year.

  • 552. Another mommy  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:29 pm

    Acceptace letters for siblings at Hawthorne arrived yesterday. Not sure about other schools.

  • 553. DoneWaiting  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:30 pm

    what’s the difference between a tier queue and a general queue?

  • 554. Open Minded Parent  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    @543 I think this is what you are asking. . . A kid is either proximity or his tier. . . not both. For example, a Tier 4 proximity kid is considered a proximity applicant. If he does not get an offer through proximity, he goes on to the proximity waitlist. He does not get a second shot for Tier 4 slots.

  • 555. sharon  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    has anyone received anything from any academic centers?

  • 556. Momof2  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    Ok hoping for good news, have any Far NW side parents received any letters yet? Good or bad? Thinking/hoping its just proximity to CPS headquarters that I have not received an offer letter yet.

  • 557. RogersParkMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    Got our letter today – Tier 3, entering 2nd grade

    Waitlisted at all four magnets to which we applied with numbers ranging from 82-190. We are happy where we are at, but I’ll still be stalking the postman for the SEES letters 🙂

  • 558. chicagomommy  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    any idea how much the disney ii waitlists moved last year?

  • 559. BDubya  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:42 pm

    KG waitlisted:(
    hawthorne-tier 3 299
    mayer 397 general
    stone-tier 3 90
    wildwood- general 402
    newberry- tier 3 #7, hoping we have a shot, any thoughts?
    disney II-proximity 116
    drummond- general 78
    franklin- tier 3 62

    C’mon NEWBERRY!!!

  • 560. Ron  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    Far NW side. Got our letter. Good news.

  • 561. ZanesDad  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    @519 and 524: Courtenay is not a magnet, it’s an open enrollment school with no attendance boundary. Courtenay’s students and Stockton’s students will be integrated in Stockton’s building. Courtenay’s administration will run the school and Stockton’s administration will be gone. Not sure whether Courtenay will inherit Stockton’s attendance boundaries.

  • 562. MissHavisham  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    Add us to the waitlisted. Applying to K, Tier 4:

    Disney II –37
    Lasalle II –107
    Newberry –243
    Lasalle –256
    Jackson, A –181
    Hawthorne –362
    Franklin –291

    We are not in proximity for any of the schools. So I guess this means we will have to hope the Tier 4 waitlist at Disney I moves down to 10.

  • 563. Sense?  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    anyone waitlisted for Wildwood…they don’t even have room for neighborhood kids for K next year. Would make tons of sense to send all Wildwood K students to Edgebrook’s new facility.

  • 564. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    Does anybody know if the WLs for LaSalle historically move much, if at all?

  • 565. JenK  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    Disney II doesn’t move much, especially proximity. A couple of people turn down the K spot each year.

    FYI regarding the high school, I haven’t heard that we have firm numbers for 7th grade; planned for 100 (including 50 current d2 6th graders) but now that we are sharing a facility, that could change due to a smaller space.

  • 566. Iheoma  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:49 pm

    Wait listed at Murray for 7th grade. It was the safety if no spot was offered for an AC. Still waiting for AC letter. I was told that proximity lottery only exists for entry grades. Is that true ?

  • 567. SJ  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    I got my acceptance today.

  • 568. BDubya  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    does newberry move at all on waitlist? we are #7 tier 3

  • 569. RealMarchMadness  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    Yes, we received letter today and I cannot stress enough level of disapoinment, despair and hate I feel towards whole process, CPS and that are telling here that CPS is not capable of “this&that”. Not a single one acceptance today!? Well, they are not maybe capable to pull the letters out, but they are surely capable to pull names out before lottery even start. Why do I think/feel this way, here is why (we applied for 10 Magnets):

    Tier3 waitlisted:
    Lasalle II – 83
    Thorp – 87
    Newberry – 88

    Other 7 up to 203!

    We didn’t expect to get jackpot right away, but according optimistcs here @ least one of 10 to be within 20 waitlisted spots. Instead we have best 3 in 80’s!!!!! Well you know what, this is a CHARADE!

  • 570. Lisa  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    @BDubya I think you may be okay. We were hoping for Newberry last year for K with a waitlist # of around 23. They never got to us, but I know they got to the upper teens on the tier 3 list because I kept calling and bugging them

  • 571. db  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    Most of the waitlists will move! Plus once the SEES letters and the magnet cluster/neighborhood letters come out, there will be more options. Honestly, most people end up with a good option by September.

  • 572. grr!  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    Got our letter today. Only wait listed, no offers.

  • 573. Pritzker Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    We got our magnet letter:

    STEM (tier 4) 116
    LaSalle (proximity) 22
    Newberry (proximity) 75

    I really do wish they had sent the SEES letters early enough to have been received before spring break. I guess I’d rather deal with the disappointment of not getting in anywhere than deal with another week of waiting…..

  • 574. karet  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    @556, I have a friend in Portage Park who got an offer for Thorp yesterday (proximity, K).

  • 575. BuenaParkMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    490 – Leah – I have from a pretty decent source that Brennemann will not close.

    533 – Uptown Mama – The 53 at Disney will probably get you in. You’re in proximity for it and I don’t think they’ve yet had a year where everyone on the proximity wait list didn’t get an offer although they don’t go through it as quickly as they used to. I think there will eventually be a year going forward where they don’t exhaust the list, especially depending on what happens with Stewart, Stockton, and Brennemann.

    Stockton is going to be overtaken by Courtney and it is not clear whether it or not it will have any attendance boundary component to it or be solely a magnet. That one sort of blindsided me and I imagine the Principal at the school. It’s not at all what I think anyone thought was going to happen by a long-shot. I may know more about the situation in a day or so after my 46th Ward School Friends have a meeting regarding the Stockton garden project.

    Which brings me to my final comment. If you are in the 46th Ward please consider visiting http://www.46thwardschools.weebly.com/ and getting involved in the Friends of the 46th Ward Schools. Some of you old-timers may remember an old post asking “What can a community member and an alderman do to help their CPS schools?” This group is the result of that initial thought and is now an officially recognized 501(c)(3). Currently three mothers with young children and full-time job are the primary force behind it and we are going to need more help. If you’re not in the 46th Ward and still want to help we would be glad to have you too. We’re currently recruiting people to help with building a library at McCutcheon. We have 1,000 books now (thanks to Books First, another grass-root effort founded by an NPN mom, https://www.facebook.com/BooksFirst) and we need help shelving them!


  • 576. chisjf  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    3 year old got into Suder, no to Drummond or Mayer yesterday
    4 year old – no letter yet
    6 year old (1st grade next year) no letter yet

  • 577. McDadeMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    Hyde Park Mom, Tier 3

    ALL Waitlist, Counting on SEES

    My 1st grader got right into McDade and all wait list 2 years ago and then got calls from Sheridan, Newberry, and others into late August.

    Current Wait list:

    Murray (proximity) 42
    Owen 52
    Vanderpoel 43
    Sheridan 28
    LaSalle 96
    Jackson 284
    Hawthorne 100
    Newberry 168
    Wildwood 385
    Franklin 80
    Thorp 63

    Still biting my nails…

  • 578. emilyjrivera  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:04 pm

    Sorry if it’s already been covered but why do some wait list numbers coming back as tiered and others as general?

  • 579. db  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    @578 – Tiers only apply to entry years, so mostly Kindergarten.

  • 580. Iheoma  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:08 pm

    @577 – McDade Mama – is there a proximity lottery for kids entering any grades higher than K? Called OES today and was told that there was only a proximity lottery for “entry” grades. I never heard that before and don’t think it’s right.

  • 581. Also Wondering  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    Got my letter today and we got wait listed everywhere. Tier 3, K entry.
    Best numbers were:
    LaSalle: 34
    Disney II: 17
    Thorp: 53

    Highly unlikely that any of those schools will get that high on the list! And the rest are in the hundreds with the worst being 274 for Drummond. Crossing fingers for selective enrollment/magnet cluster spots…

  • 582. iluvchicago  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    My 4th grader at Lenart tested for magnet and gifted this year again. Long story. Just got a letter from magnet, she is wait listed at Suder (21) , Sheridan (80) and Stem (82). We are towards the end of the alphabet.

  • 583. UptownMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    @575 Thanks for the info and great to hear about your work with 46th ward schools. I’ll definitely look into it.

    We’re on the northwestern edge of Uptown and actually just out of proximity for Disney (by a few buildings!) so in the tier three pool. Sigh. Seems high, although maybe not entirely impossible given a quick scan of last year’s boards.

  • 584. iluvchicago  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    BTW we are Tier 3

  • 585. Sheridanmom  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:18 pm

    Curious, why you are looking to leave Lenart?

  • 586. Bo  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    3 kids, 3 denials. We wanted to help but CPS year after year CPS doesn’t give us the opportunity.

  • 587. Whateverworks  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    @McDade Mama – I know that you mentioned your 1st grader got right in at McDade when you applied, but do you happen to know of the experience of others. We are sending 2 kids to a very expensive private that is really going to be more than a stretch for us, but we’re going to do it so that we can preserve those spots in the event that we don’t luck out with the CPS lottery, et. al. We really like McDade based on what a friend has told us about it after having 3 kids go there. It’s not mentioned as much on this site or others…I’m assuming due to location, so I’m curious as to how fierce the competition is there.

  • 588. SallyB  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:41 pm

    Waitlist all around. Our highest was
    Drummond tier 4 #11 for PreK and
    Suder general #13, LaSalle tier 4 #25 for Kinder

    Do we have any chance at all? Is there any point taking a tour or these?

  • 589. BDubya  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:41 pm

    Lisa-thanks for the hope:)
    Is that the protocol to keep calling them to find out where they are in the process or do I put down my deposit for our local parochial school? I am nervous about that as well…

  • 590. LynnJ  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    Received letter today. Waited listed, general (56), PK4, Suder. We were waitlisted 10 last year for PK3 and didn’t get a call. Not expecting a call this year either. Well, will do this all over again in December in preparation for K!

    Regarding proximity…. For the sake of this process, what does CPS consider “proximity”? living within a 3 mile, 4 mile, 5 mile radius, etc. of the school you applied to?

    I understand the boundary lingo for determining if someone stays within certain boundaries of a neighborhood school, but cannot get my arms on what CPS deems proximity.


  • 591. ForestglenMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:56 pm

    Tier 4.

    Offered for Thorp
    #1 wait list for Wildwood
    Wait listed in the hundreds for our top choices…

    Not too bad, though.

    We already decided to move to the burbs since we needed to move anyway. So good luck to everyone!

  • 592. Lisa  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    @BDubya I have no idea if calling actually helps, but they are extremely nice over there. I would call and explain your situation. See if they think it is a good idea for you to tour the school, etc.

    I was calling because I was panicking because we had no offers at that point and also I wanted to them to know how interested I was. I probably called 3 times over the course of late spring to mid summer.

  • 593. McDadeMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    @lheoma #580 My 1st grader is at McDade, I am waiting on my 5 year old entering K. The proximity information was accurate.

  • 594. ForestglenMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    To 590
    It’s 1.5 miles the school locator on the CPS website is set to that and will let you know which schools are proximate to your home.

  • 595. db  |  March 21, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    @590 LynnJ – “Proximity is defined as living within 1.5-miles of an elementary school or a 2.5-mile radius of a high school.”

    Source: http://www.cps.edu/News/Press_releases/2009/Pages/11_10_2009_PR!.aspx

  • 596. Iheoma  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    Thanks for the info

  • 597. LynnJ  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    @ ForestglenMom. Thanks.

  • 598. nwside mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:01 pm

    is there any info online or anywhere about how far down the waitlist schools have gone in past years?

    Just got our letter
    #14 for disney 2
    #38 for thorp
    proximity for both, K

  • 599. SutherlandParent  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    @585, I’m curious if something’s going on Lenart, too–we’ve had at least two kids this year transfer from there to our school, and that’s a lot of movement from an RGC to a neighborhood school.

  • 600. Kate  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    I applied to 13 schools for my son 8 years ago and only got into 1 school outright. All the rest waitlisted from #3 to 360.

    The problem is CPS is not willing to do what it takes to fix schools to make as many as humanly possible schools that you want to go to. Ideally no one should be in “3” performing below standard IF every school had the resources they have been asking for.

    School closings will not help this situation, and they have not considered overcrowded schools on the periphery of the city, nor have they considered land value etc or normalized tax distribution.

    If you are #30, never say never, and you have a great chance and you should call and nicely express you continued strong interest in the school. It helps. I do know people who did get in by being polite and interested. Keep in mind people get multiple acceptances and do turn down or come off lists which is why it pays to call or stop in.

  • 601. HumboldtParkMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:05 pm

    Tier 2, applied for prek3
    Waitlisted at Drummond #63 – proximity
    Suder #13 – proximity
    Mayer – #83

  • 602. DIImom  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:05 pm

    Last year, it went to 10 on the waitlist

  • 603. Southloopmom  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:05 pm

    For Kindergarten
    Lasalle II 124
    Sheridan 19
    Jackson A 44
    Galileo 17
    Lasalle 484

  • 604. Kate  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    and before someone says there isn’t enough money to fix schools, I say nonsense. Nothing is more important to our future society than educated people. It is more important than roads, festivals, flowers and parks, and public art and alderman pay raises and new furniture for city buildings, new paint etc. The money is there and should be targeted to sped, social workers, getting books on time and preparing our kids, and there needs to be a big voice for it.

  • 605. cpsobsessed  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:09 pm

    This is the elem thread from last year. If you do a search on that page for a certain school you may find info.
    It’s hard to track the waiting list info because that happens up through September…


  • 606. LynnJ  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:09 pm

    @DIImom, what school went to 10 on waitlist?

  • 607. McDadeMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:11 pm

    @587 Whateverworks. I assume it is location that precludes many of the south side schools. McDade is a great small (194 kids) close knit school. The Kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Boncy is a God-send. We could not love her more. She took pictures the first day of school and at K graduation included them in a slideshow that left us all in tears. The coursework is rigorous, so get ready to have homework, but the results are well worth it. Many of my friends and colleagues have children there too. They did science projects and Black history projects in K. They have smart boards and make good use of the resources. The school is not terribly diverse, but each class seems to be changing that. Bottom line, we are proud dolphins 🙂 The hard part is waiting to hear about my little one. Once you meet the “selective percentile”, I do not understand why you cannot have sibling preference. Oh well…

  • 608. Waiting preschool mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    OK, does the Jackson wait list move, really? KG, Tier 4, No. 25. Is that even a possibility. Does anyone have any info on how the KG list has moved in the past?

  • 609. DIImom  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    Sorry 606- Disney II went to 10 on the waitlist

  • 610. Avondale Dad  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    Applied for 3-year old Pre-K for our twins

    Got General waiting list #1 and #2 at Drummond.

    Since they only accept approx 36 kids, and there are only 4 CPS schools that offer 3-year old Pre-K, I’m not getting my hopes up. Not even sure how far down #1 and #2 on the “General” waiting list really is….

    Does anyone know how far down the waiting list Drummond normally goes?

  • 611. Lenart parent  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    I think there is some turnover at Lenart in any given year, but I do no know of anything in particular which is driving turnover this year. Last year, at least three kindergarteners left the class as their parents wanted to move them to a different environment. There is also an outflow of 6th graders who end up going to an academic center in 7th grade.

    There is a new principal and asst. principal at Lenart this year, and I think they have improved the school. They strike me as much more progressive, collaborative, and eager to bring in new thinking, compared with the previous administration that I would characterize as ossified and arrogant.

  • 612. WRogersMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    Got our magnet letter today. Wait list numbers:

    Thorp, O.A. (tier 3) 9
    Wildwood (general) 227
    Stone (proximity) 187
    Hawthorne (tier 3) 199
    Disney II (tier 3) 217

    #9 on Thorp Scholastic is good, right? Does anyone have any opinions on this school? It looked good from the research, but we don’t know any families with children there.

  • 613. Morgan  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    Tier #1 Pre-K 3
    Drummond 7
    Mayer 26
    Suder 26

    Looks like we might as well continue with our private school montessori plan with Humboldt Park Montessori.

  • 614. LynnJ  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    607@McDadeMama. We are looking at McDade for the SEES process for K for 2014-2015. The only thing is living in Bronzeville and doing a reverse commute, then driving back downtown to get to work on time. Was trying to look at schools that are near north and west for both the Magnet and SEES process. I have a pretty good list and will be visiting schools like crazy. No options in my neighborhood.

    You speak highly of McDade which is great.

  • 615. staygold  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    Thanks McDade Mama!!! Yeah, the lack of sibling preference is what’s really making us apprehensive about the CPS process overall. We really don’t want to have children in two different schools and quite possibly on two different sides of town….it would be a logistical nightmare for obvious reasons for working parents.

  • 616. Chgojen  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:29 pm

    @610 Avondale Dad:

    Hi friend…check out @523 and @548…didn’t know you’d be on here, and I already asked the same question for you! Haha. Good luck!!!

  • 617. McDadeMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:34 pm

    @614 and @615, We understand the transportation challenges, I am in Hyde Park and work downtown. There are private transportation options and many of us make it work because it is worth it. I think many of us count on people that turn McDade down in spite of its consistent performance. I feel like my little one picked up a lot from mere exposure with her sister, so our fingers are crossed.

  • 618. leah  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:41 pm

    my neighbor is desperate to find out- have the gifted letters been sent? coonley/edison/skinner etc? thanks!

  • 619. cps alum  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    @608– I don’t know if Jackson’s waitlist moves much, but we are tier 4 and have KG #1 for that school. If we get a call we aren’t going to accept since we got a school closer to home. So now only 23 people are in front of you.

  • 620. Col  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    For prek3 tier 2:
    mayer 73
    drummond 62
    suder 6

    Any thoughts on the possibility of us getting into Suder? Any thoughts on Suder?

  • 621. Chicago Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:57 pm

    @609 Amy, which wait list?

  • 622. LynnJ  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:57 pm

    @McDadeMama. Looking at Murray for a Magnet and Ray for Magnet Cluster. Thoughts? Been hearing conflicting info on Ray. Were these schools ever of interest for your child given you live in HP? I have called these schools multiple times for open house info and no luck. Especially Ray… I am always directed to read the HP Hearald! I am really turned off by that. But Murray already has an open house in October 2013 on their calendar and I will be there with bells on. 🙂 Looking forward to Lenart and McDade visits whenever they may be. 🙂

  • 623. Impatient  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:58 pm

    Okay, I take it back. Maybe they did mail all acceptances first. Got our letter today and we were wait-listed at 10 magnets for K, Tier 4:

    Hawthorne Tier 4 88
    Inter-American General E 27
    LaSalle I Tier 4 425
    Mayer General 450
    Newberry Tier 4 155
    Stone Proximity 41
    Disney Tier 4 101
    Drummond General 43
    Franklin Tier 4 141
    Suder General 386

    Can anyone offer me hope on my numbers? I had high hopes we’d get into Peirce through the proximity lottery, but with Trumbull said to be on the list of schools to be closed, I am no longer feeling as optimistic. Bummed to have to wait until May for the rest of the news. Maybe we’ll get lucky re SEES.

    I’m also confused – why are some general and some tiers?

  • 624. sara  |  March 21, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    For PK3 –
    Drummond- Waitlist #53 (proximity)
    Mayer – Waitlist #240 (Tier 4)
    Suder – Waitlist #87 (Tier 4)

  • 625. cpsobsessed  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:01 pm

    @623 Impatient: Ack, that IS confusing. I believe you are in the General lottery for the years that are not entry-level for that school. The montessoris and Interamerican (so dummond, suder, mayer take kids in preK years. since you’re child is entering for K (right?) there are no tiers applied. It is just one lottery for everyone.
    I’d say IA or Stone are your best bets.

    Can I inquire what your neighborhood school is?

  • 626. LynnJ  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    @620 Col. My child was waitlisted last year for preK3 at Suder, #10. We did not get a call. I started calling them in August and kept calling til October. To my knowledge no one gave up their spot. At least that is what I was told.

  • 627. klm  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    @Everybody who’s stressed:




    It’s only kindergarten, not do-or-die time for our kids’ entire future happiness and well-being. If they have the kinds of parents that blog here, the “kids are alright.”

  • 628. j  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    Knew it was a longshot wl for 2nd grade at hawthorne. we applied via proximity lottery, but next to it says we are in ‘general’ queue? Shouldn’t that say ‘proximity’?

  • 629. j  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:14 pm

    Oh and when do we find out about gifted? Applied to 2nd grade (again know it’s a long shot) gifted programs at bell, coonley, etc? New to cps but thought that might be in the same letter?

  • 630. Reagan hanneman  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:18 pm

    @620. We were #5 tier 1 last year at Suder and got in midsummer.

  • 631. Lincoln Square Parents of 2  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    Adding to the Disappointments today, all wait listed.. 😦

    1st Grader:

    NewBerry general 62
    Lasalle general 154
    Hawthorne general 52
    Mayer general 58


    Mayer tier 4 69…..

    Hoping the SEES have some good news.

  • 632. Dana  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    @LynnJ I went to Murray and would still be proud for my little lady to go there. We are on the proximity wait, so probably won’t happen. I have not heard great things about Ray since they became a neighborhood school.

  • 633. Lincoln Square Parents of 2  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    I dont know if this is another redundant question,but what is the difference between a tier and “general?” Is general proximity? Thanks in advance.

  • 634. Waiting preschool mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    @619–Thank you CPS alum. So only 23 more people to track down . . .

  • 635. Kermie  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    Twins wait listed for Pre-K 4:

    Suder- 250+251
    Drummond- 466+467
    Inter-American- 45+46(Tier 3, English)
    Mayer- 353+354

    Pretty bummed but those are their numbers. Our neighborhood school only accepts preschoolers that qualify for Head-start, and private/tuition-based isn’t an option. The scramble for a half-day/preschool for all begins.

  • 636. CPSteacher&mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    I just received the letter for my soon-to-be 3 year old.

    Drummond: Wait Listed #4
    Mayer: Wait Listed #127
    Suder: Wait Lister 30

    Does anyone think we actually have a chance at Drummond?

  • 637. JLM  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    I am unbelievably pissed at CPS right now – they TOTALLY DID mail the acceptances out a day earlier than the waitlists. Such a crappy thing to do. Anyway, applied to 9 magnets, no offers. Tier 4 waitlist unless otherwise stated:

    LaSalle: 488 (do I get the prize for worst/highest number?)
    LaSalle II: 47
    STEM: 106
    Stone: 89
    Franklin: 280
    Disney: 33 proximity
    Disney II: 72
    Hawthorne: 100 proximity
    Andrew Jackson: 13

    @Waiting preschool Mom – we’re kind of far away, so not sure if we would take it or not. Do you know how far down the list they got last year?

    Any twistable body part is now crossed that the SEES letter goes better.

  • 638. Col  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    @630 Thanks for your reply. Did you accept and if so, are you happy with your child’s experience at Suder? THanks, again!

  • 639. Impatient  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    @625 Thanks for the info. Our neighborhood school is Hayt. (We’re in Edgewater Glen.) It’s fine, but don’t think it will be challenging enough or provide enough extra-curriculars for our liking. Also, no “friends of” organization – big indicator for me.

    Just saw that Trumbull is proposed to fold into Chappell, McPherson, and McCutcheon, so maybe there is hope for us yet at Peirce. Peirce was pretty much our first choice, so I should calm down and settle in for a wait. Thanks.

  • 640. DoneWaiting  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    Not that I have this choice, but let’s play what if…
    if you had a choice between Thorpe, Belding & LaSalle, which would you choose?

  • 641. SJB  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:50 pm

    Hello – We received our letter today.

    PreK3, Tier 2
    Suder 34
    Mayer 75
    Drummond 89

    I am assuming there is no hope here…. sigh.

  • 642. GiftedTeacherMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    This is just as bad as “Waiting For Superman” in New York! I’m on my fourth kid who tested for a gifted/classical kindergarten entry. His older 2 siblings went to Poe Classical. The 3rd baby is at a RGC (got that call the day before school started last year for KG). Now this. No mail Monday or Tuesday. Not home yet today. I’m too old for this!!! I can’t believe it’s the same struggle 12 years later to get our kids in a school that is rigorous with an outstanding learning environment. It’s just horrible!!!! I wish I had the 24K to just send my kids to private schools.

  • 643. Chicago Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:54 pm


  • 644. Dunning Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:56 pm

    This is so bad. We don’t have any place to send our child to kindergarten. We are absolutely devastated. We applied to 20 schools and didn’t get in anywhere. Our highest waitlist number is 45.

    Our neighborhood school is not an option as it is far too overcrowded and serves a primarily non-English speaking population. Private is not an option as my son has special needs. There is nothing to say except that this feels really, really horrible and we have no idea what we are going to do.

  • 645. Switch from classical to Disney II ?  |  March 21, 2013 at 5:57 pm

    waitlisted no. 2 for Disney II, for 2nd grade

    Our child is currently happy at an excellent classical school, also has a younger sibling

    Do any of your Disney II parent know, if there have been openings for 2nd grade in the last few years?

    IF the list moves, for some reason, and we do get a call, I have a question:

    Has anyone on this blog ever transferred their kid from Classical/RGC to Disney II because of the younger sibling being guaranteed a spot later?

    Also, it is much closer to our house and the high school option down the road is very appealing.

    I would seriously like to speak to someone that has done this and how challenged their child is at Disney II.

  • 646. o  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    letter for magnets arrived today. no offers. best was WL 19 at lasalle 2, tier 4. the letter mentions that there would be an enclosed form with offers, so it would seem if your envelope has more than one page, you have an offer. can anyone who had an offer attest to that? very disappointing.

  • 647. DIImom  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:09 pm

    @645- there is one opening due to a child

  • 648. Sam  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:09 pm

    Accepted at Hawthorne (sibling)

    Wait list #7 LaSalle II (proximity)

  • 649. cps mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:13 pm

    Just got our letter for K for the younger one. All in tier 4.

    Franklin: 12
    Hawthorne: 454
    LaSalle: 356

    Our older child is in a magnet cluster school so we will have a spot.

  • 650. logan square dad  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:24 pm

    @644 I was in the same situation as you last year with the local school not being an option and with a child who has special needs. We stressed out until we got a call on the waitlist of one of the schools we applied to.

  • 651. ruthie60607  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:24 pm

    @630, I second what @638 said. Can you offer any insight into Suder? Since we got accepted, I would love any first hand information possible.

  • 652. IB obsessed-tired  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    7th grade
    Stone (proximity) 1
    LaSalle 37 General
    Wildwood 39
    Hawthorne 86

    I know I should be pleased with Stone, but my kid won’t want to go there. Was hoping for a low wait list no, at LaSalle where she can continue her language.

    But all those Decatur kids ahead of us on the LaSalle waitlist will get accepted at ACs and decline their spot. Right? Of course this will not happen for months……

  • 653. logan sq dad  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:27 pm

    All wait lists (for K) and none close. I wonder if acceptances for SEES will also be mailed on a different day than rejections?

  • 654. Name (required)  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:33 pm

    So are we the only ones yet to receive anything?

  • 655. southloopmom  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:35 pm

    4th grade
    STEM – 1st on wait list !!
    LASALLE – 142
    JACKSON – 232

    Now, I’m reading through the Stem blog on this site. Many parents unhappy with the rigidity of the school and their interactions with very young teachers. (Zeros on HW w/o names in KDG … no named papers tossed in the trash … that kind of nonsense makes me crazy.)

    Multiple comments on the principal lacking interpersonal skills. …. I’m a little nauseous.

  • 656. MayfairMama  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    @654. No. I haven’t received a letter yet for magnet either.

  • 657. Cps mom 4  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:39 pm

    @ 655, asking a child to put their name on a paper is pretty basic. Sorry, got to agree with the teacher on this one.

  • 658. edgewater mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:44 pm

    Wait listed #3 for Franklin and #27 for LaSalle. Any hope on those numbers? Any thoughts on Franklin school?

  • 659. edgewater mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    Sorry Tier 4 for @658

  • 660. Cps mom 4  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:48 pm

    @652, why doesnt your kid want to attend Stone?

  • 661. GiftedTeacherMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:53 pm

    Well add me to your statistics. Just got my 2 letters out of the mailbox. Both of my kids were wait listed at 9 magnet schools. Really? #2 Turner-Drew (not), #8 Beasley (probably not), #5 Owen (hmm), and #12 Murray (a definite fight for this one). Very very very disappointed. I wanted Jackson bad. Oh yeah, and I’m a Beverly mom, tier 4. May as well go to Kellogg. Keeping my fingers crossed for the SEES.

  • 662. LynnJ  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:56 pm

    @southloopmom I have STEM on my list. Your comments make me nervous! Can you elaborate on diversity?

  • 663. OIPA preschool mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    @637-JLM. Thanks for your input. I’m working on it. Trying to find people to share their Jackson wait list experience. I will report back on whatever I find (even long after this post falls from the top of the screen).

    Do you think the office workers are friendly enough to tolerate regular calls to check on the status of the wait list?

  • 664. waiting preschool mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:00 pm

    Sorry that was me at 663.Different name.

  • 665. CoolDad  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:05 pm

    @658: I think #3 is a pretty good chance @ Franklin. What’s your tier?

  • 666. Third time's a charm  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    Got letter today…

    Disney II (proximity)…251
    La Salle II (tier 4)….205
    Thorp, O (tier 4)….1

    2nd Grade
    Disney II (general)…297
    La Salle II (general)…48
    Thorp, O (general)….86

  • 667. Whateverworks  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    @GiftedTeacherMom/642 – that’s really messed up and was also our biggest fear (not having an option at all) and the reason why we chose to consider privates at the preschool level just to make sure we could have guaranteed spots somewhere. We only have 2 and got both in to a good private. We can afford one, but 2…..we are literally pulling out all the stops to make sure we can keep them in if need be. We’ll be doing the SEES and magnet lottery next year, but we really cannot have 2 kids in separate schools. We did this for daycare last year and it was insane and stressful. It won’t work with our work schedules and we don’t have enough familial help to rely on people running all over the city to get and keep kids. The neighborhood school is not an option and from what I’m hearing will most likely be on the final closure list. It’s really sickening that there aren’t enough viable options to go around in every neighborhood

    I also find it somewhat disheartening that people are getting calls off of waiting lists the day after school has started and beyond. I understand that’s better than nothing, but after finally figuring something out and then having to rethink, recalculate, regroup AND snatch your kid out of a school…geez.

    Best of luck to everyone still waiting!!!

  • 668. Disappointed  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:10 pm

    I think I win with the highest waitlist # that I’ve seen so far (or been brave enought to post HA)
    Mayer (general) – 590
    Drummond (general) – 506
    but we did get an offer from Murray. Can anyone provide any insight on Murray? Honestly it is a little farther south than I remembered when I applied but I remember the test scores seemed pretty good.. Thanks!

  • 669. anonymouse teacher  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:10 pm

    @644, what is your neighborhood school?

  • 670. CarolA  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:13 pm

    @644 DunningMom: If you live in the Dunning neighborhood, why isn’t your neighborhood school a choice? I know of a couple of good schools around there. I agree, they are overcrowded. But just because the population is mainly Hispanic, does not mean they are teaching in Spanish. Did you look up the scores for your neighborhood school? Just curious.

  • 671. Annie Cue  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:15 pm

    Definitely believe that all acceptances were mailed out day before.

    Got ours today – tier 3 for K.
    Best chances are proximity: STEM 10 & Jackson 25 (but highly doubting that one. Been living in the hood for several years and always heard that proximity list does not move for Jackson)

    Galileo – proximity – 70
    Hawthorne – 70
    Disney II – 99

    And remaining over 100 with 501 being the highest for Mayer! (really, do we need to go to 500+?? – CPS should go through 60 or something & then just say “no chance” or something of the like)

  • 672. candycane  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    I am waitlisted, proximity to Lasalle, 41 and Newberry, 57. Does anyone know if these are any good? Manierre, which is folding into Jenner is my home school and isn’t an option. I’m panicking….

  • 673. cpsobsessed  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:24 pm

    Well, my numbers are for 4th grade (general so no tier);

    Stone 23
    STEM 79
    Hawthorne 85

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 674. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    @Dunning Mom, what are your neighborhood schools? I’m a dunning resident and have been incredibly happy with our neighborhood school! Only looking at the AC because I am NOT going to send my daughter to the neighborhood high school.

  • 675. anonymouse teacher  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:28 pm

    @442-Sutherland Parent-I wasn’t referring to a student who lucked into a suburban school. The parent asked “if your friend liked Franklin so much, why did she leave?”
    My friend taught there and as much as she liked the school, she didn’t want to stay in CPS and the suburban school she moved to offered her a better overall environment.

  • 676. HS Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:29 pm

    @657 – Getting the name on the paper can be an issue for a child who has a 504 because they are distracted and unfocused.

  • 677. Confused  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:32 pm

    how do they measure distance for bussing? I know if could all change next year, but is the 6 mile max for magnets driving distance, or straight line distance?

  • 678. Cps mom 4  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:34 pm

    @ 676, but that would be written in the IEP or 504 plan, right? As a general policy for the rest of the kids, I agree with it.

  • 679. southie  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    With closings, it looks like Ray will have its hands full of new kids.

  • 680. GiftedTeacherMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    Anyone have any feedback on Kellogg?

  • 681. HS Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:37 pm

    Yes – poster mentioned that her child had a 504 maybe under another thread.

  • 682. HS Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    The concern being that a 504 can not possibly contain every potential issue and it’s really up to the teacher to make the appropriate accommodations. Some schools/teachers are better with this than others.

  • 683. IB obsessed-tired  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    @660 kid wouldn’t want to Stone because she wanted LaSalle because it’s in the neighborhood where many of her current private school friends live; it’s an upscale, cool location to her. So, for no reason of any substance.

  • 684. tiptoemole  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    Tearing my hair out because we STILL haven’t gotten our magnet letter! I’ll be bald by Monday if our SEES letter is this late, too.

  • 685. Fred  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:41 pm

    So does being 10 general mean I will be the 10th overall selected for that school? Is general better than a tier? And what is the difference between general and general E? Sorry, my first time doing this.

  • 686. RL Julia  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    @680 – good friend’s child just started kindergarten there this year and they can not say enough great things about Kellogg. Love that it is small, love the teachers and the principal, love the community. Definitely worth checking out.

  • 687. newtocps  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:48 pm

    0 offers for us as well. The letter is postmarked yesterday.

    The best 3 WL numbers for k:

    Franklin- proximity – 2
    Newberry – proximity – 19
    Lasalle II – T2 – 1

    (Everything else >62)

    Does anyone know if Franklin proximity WL moves at all? How about Newberry proximity list movement?

  • 688. nervousmia  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:51 pm

    Does anyone know anything about Newberry?

  • 689. WesLooWorkingMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 7:56 pm

    Keeping with the trend: Letter postmarked yesterday. No offers for K. Hoping for movement over the summer or SEES or magnet cluster.

    Best wait list numbers:
    Newberry 17 (tier 4)
    STEM 66 (proximity)
    Frazier 9 (tier 4) (can’t remember how that school ended up on my list)
    Jackson 17 (proximity)

    Other schools–waitlist numbers in the 100’s or 200’s. Yeah, right!


  • 690. wanna be CPS parent  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    no offers. tier 4. lowest wait list number lasalle at 43. Hawthorne (proximity) 187. franklin and disney 11 in the mid 200’s. Crossing my fingers for SEES….

  • 691. Erwin  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:40 pm

    WL’d for preK – Drummond, Mayer, and Suder, numbers were about 150, so I don’t see how they are even relevant.

    For our K, received offer for Galileo, 72 proximity for Sheridan, 86 proximity for STEM……

  • 692. FranklinParent  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    @687: I think you will have a pretty good chance getting into Franklin with #2 on WL. Last year, our child was placed in 20’s on WL and got a call end of August. We took the spot. Hope you will get a call after 4/12. Our child really like the school. The K teacher is AMAZING!

  • 693. Pre-K Papa  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:48 pm

    Is there one magnet school that nearly everyone agrees is the best to get into? I’m following the board this year as we are planning our first K enrollment next year, and a couple of names seem to stand out more in these discussions, but I’m just not sure. Taking driving distance out of the equation, is there a definitive “best-in-class” school?

  • 694. Cpsmomandteacher  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:53 pm

    Seven years later, and here we are worried about kindergarten again. We are wait listed at Hawthorne for K and that is it so far. We are Tier 2, #13. What does the tier have to do with the wait list number? Anyone want to take a guess at our chances for a positive outcome? Thanks!

  • 695. newtocps  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    @692 FranklinParent. Thanks for sharing your experience with Franklin. May I ask if you were in the proximity WL as well? Also, do you know if they have an after school program, as well?

  • 696. Barbara J  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    We are going to sacrifice some and send our daughter to private school. If NONE of the CPS schools were good enough for Obama’s kids or Rahm’s kids they are not good enough for our kid.

  • 697. Irving Park Dad  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:58 pm

    PreK Age 3. No siblings. No proximity. Wait listed all.
    Mayer 127 (tier 3)
    Drummond 34 (tier 3)
    Suder 15 (tier 3)

  • 698. Angie  |  March 21, 2013 at 8:59 pm

    OT, but parents may want to know: The reason for magnet cluster and neighborhood letters delay:


    “While each school targeted for closing has a designated “welcoming” school for displaced students, parents can apply to other schools that have open space, parents were told Thursday.

    CPS is reopening the application period this week and students seeking a different school than the “welcoming” institution must submit an application by April 19, according to documents sent home with students.”

  • 699. waiting for Burr  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    I am hoping to get my daughter into kindergarten at Burr so my wait continues until May, but here are wait list numbers for Magnets

    Tier 2 unless otherwise stated
    Franklin 99
    Disney 170
    Disney 2 70
    Hawthorne 72
    Drummond (general) 824****I think this wins as highest so far:)
    Lasalle 2 (proximity) 69

  • 700. mscontinental  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    Received our letter today, no offers for my son. We’re Tier 4
    Stem 34
    LaSalle II 40 (proximity)
    Galileo 44
    LaSalle 54
    The rest are all 100s-400s.

    I’m looking for a ray of sunshine.

  • 701. FranklinParent  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:06 pm

    @newtocps: I was in tier 3. (so my chances of getting in were lesser than yours). They do have a after school program which is provided by Right at School. It’s the same vendor which also providing after school program for LaSalle, Hawthorne, Burley, and many other good magnet schools.

  • 702. SouthShore  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    No offers today on our end. I believe cps did send all acceptances yesterday and denials today. Tier 2 ( Hawthorne 114 and Lasalle 115)
    Holding out hope for sees letter. I cannot stomach anymore denials. I’m sure with those numbers, we’ll never get a call!

  • 703. cpsobsessed  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:13 pm

    Just a reminder that this a good place to look to see how parents and teachers rate the school on some important areas:


    Test scores are availiable on cps.edu (find a school)

  • 704. Angelica  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:22 pm

    Tier 1
    Applying for kindergarten
    Franklin 10
    Stone 6
    Sheridan 3
    Is there any hope of being called from any of these schools?

  • 705. Chicago Mama  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:26 pm

    @645 – Families don’t generally leave D2 unless they move out of state or to the suburbs. That does happen, but it’s not reliable or predictable. For next year, I know of one spot in 2nd and one spot in 1st.

    I think the academics at Disney II are as rigorous as they are at some SEES, although I cannot really compare as I haven’t had kids in the SEESs. It also probably depends on your child and what kind of support or challenge s/he needs.

  • 706. newtocps  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:29 pm

    @FranklinParent: Thanks again for your response. Franklin sounds like a great option for us. It is also very conveniently located. We are crossing our fingers for a call from them.

  • 707. southie  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:30 pm

    @680. GiftedTeacherMom:

    I’d say Kellogg would be just fine if your family gets very involved with the school and child throughout her time there. You can also aim to transfer out to an AC for 7th grade.

  • 708. Dunning Mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:33 pm

    @669, 670, and 674 – Our neighborhood school is Bridge. Last year zero kids from Bridge were accepted into selective enrollment high schools. Our neighborhood high school is Steinmetz, (2 out of 10 stars on greatschools.com), so getting our kids academically prepared for selective enrollment high school is important to us. We don’t need them to be geniuses, but to at least be given a fighting chance.

  • 709. operamom  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    Offer at Disney I, best other waitlist numbers are in the 29-35 range. I doubt those will come through. But I am sort of scared that at Disney, my daughter will end up staring at a computer screen and playing educational video games all day, every day – or at least that’s what their promotional video looks like online. But apparently that’s one of the (many) types of questions the principal doesn’t respond well to…

  • 710. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:55 pm

    @Dunning Mom…agreed, Steinmetz may not be the way to go. I don’t know a lot about Bridge, but the little I have heard about it hasn’t been positive. When we were looking to buy a house there was a house we really wanted but wouldn’t put in a bid because it was in Bridge’s boundaries. We are at Dever and love it! And I’ve heard positive things about Canty as well.
    Like you, I refuse to send my daughter to Steinmetz which is why we are going the academic center route. That, and she is intelligent and needs more enrichment than the neighborhood school is able to provide for her.

  • 711. NMayfairMom  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:59 pm

    @668 – I can beat that with wait list spot #855 for Drummond entering K 🙂

    Entering K

    Thorp,O – tier 4 – 80
    Wildwood – general – 282
    LaSalle – tier 4 – 398
    Disney II – proximity – 74
    Drummond – general – 855

    Entering 2nd grade

    Thorp, 0 – 79
    Wildwood – 73
    LaSalle – 170
    Disney II – 181
    Drummond – 4
    (all general)

    Any thoughts on the possibility that something might move on the Drummond spot #4 for my 2nd grade entry?

  • 712. SutherlandParent  |  March 21, 2013 at 9:59 pm

    @675, thanks for the clarification–I obviously wasn’t reading closely enough. Or maybe it was wishful thinking 🙂

    @680–ditto what @686 said about Kellogg. I know people who are happy there and like the new principal. Very active group of parents and community members.

  • 713. What to do with #2  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:19 pm

    Lucky me, kid one is already a student at Skinner North. Now stressing about kid two as we have no acceptances to the magnets.

    Good waitlist positions at some, but not too sure how quickly the list will move.

    (Tier 3)
    Newberry – 18
    Sheridan – 19
    Suder – 19
    Lasalle – 31

    Any idea the odds of getting into Lasalle with this number?

    Waitlist number for Franklin Fine Arts is 209. No chance.

  • 714. cps mom  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    @713 You’ll definitely get a call from Newberry. I think they reached into the thirties last year.

  • 715. anonymouse teacher  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:38 pm

    @ Dunning mom, yeah, I don’t know that much about Bridge. Good luck in your search.

  • 716. jpark  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:47 pm

    We got lucky. Got a kindergarten offer. Feeling grateful. Tier 4. Now we don’t have to move. Our neighborhood school is good, but very overcrowded.

    Disney 2 offer
    Wildwood general 454
    Thorp proximity 66

    We are just wondering if there is bus service available for Disney 2. The website says no. Also, does anyone use the after school care at the Irving park ymca? I am also curious about Disney 2’s tech and art integration.

  • 717. Neil J  |  March 21, 2013 at 10:53 pm

    Proximity #11 at Stone. Perusing the archives suggest we have little shot; most of the neighborhood kids who are admitted take the spots. Anyone with experience last year?


  • 718. cpsobsessed  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:02 pm

    Just a little plug for the neighborhood schools – using test scores and where a school sends their 8th graders can sometimes be misleading. I fully believe that in most cases, these measures are more a reflection of the school demographics than anything.

    Many of the now very well-regarded north side schools had poor test scores and likely very few grads headed to SEHS. Cut to 5 years later and schools with changing demographics start looking a lot better on paper. In many cases virtually nothing in the school changed except some parent involvement and the demos of the kids attending.

    Obviously not every school with crummy scores is a hidden gem, but it truly is worth a look with some other local families if you’ve got no other choices (or even if you do have other choices.) Get together with a couple other families and see if the principal will meet with you. If they will, and you like what they have to say, think about giving it a chance.

    When you see all the people on here raving about the schools they love, take it as a sign that there are probably other schools in the city that are just as lovable, they just don’t happen to the have the obsessive parent stamp of approval yet.

    Okay, I have to mention that every year because I know I fuel the fire of obsession.

  • 719. Gobemouche  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:19 pm

    I wouldn’t hold out for Pierce. Even though at first the CPS release says Trumbull students are being assigned to McPherson, Chappell, and McCutcheon, note the following paragraph from the Transition plan:

    “The geographic boundary currently associated with Trumbull will be reassigned to Chappell, McPherson, McCutcheon, and Helen C. Peirce Elementary School (Peirce), located at 1423 W. Bryn Mawr Ave. This means that Chappell, McPherson, McCutcheon or Peirce, depending on the student’s home address, will be the new neighborhood school for students living in the Trumbull boundary who are not currently enrolled at Trumbull.”

  • 720. Gobemouche  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:21 pm

    Link to transition plan:


  • 721. cpsobsessed  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:26 pm

    @719 – that is a very good point about Pierce. That might be my little few blocks they’re talking about. It appears that almost nobody sends their kids to Trumbull (thus the declining enrollment.) If families are suddenly able to attend Pierce, they may decide to enter CPS rather than private. Maybe… hard to say, it is such a private-schooly neighborhood as far as I can tell.

    But yeah, that could increase Pierce’s population.

  • 722. cpsobsessed  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:27 pm

    I AM sort of curious when they’ll update the CPS online tools where you can find your neighborhood school. I guess when it’s all a done deal. At this point I’m in limbo about what my neighborhood school will be.

  • 723. Gobemouche  |  March 21, 2013 at 11:48 pm

    Yeah, I’m curious about the school locator, too. Also, these transition plans say that affected families will be allowed to apply to other schools – a new application period for them. There is a link in the letter to the OAE, as if families could start applying now. However, I don’t see anything up on OAE about it yet. I really feel for these families right now.

    Did anyone apply to Courtenay? Any acceptances, etc? That would be interesting info, given the announcement.

  • 724. Chicago Mama  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:00 am

    No school bussing at Disney II. Most people use the after care at the school and before school care at Irving Park Y.

  • 725. NW Chicago Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:45 am

    All rejections:
    Wildwood – general – 145
    Hawthorne – tier 3 – 262
    Jackson – tier 3 – 83
    LaSalle – tier 3 – 254
    Newberry – tier 3 – 34
    Thorp – proximity – 85
    Disney – tier 3 – 43
    Disney II – proximity – 105
    Franklin – tier 3 – 39

    Restarted our suburban house search within moments of opening our letter, especially as it seems VERY unlikely that any slots for previously desirable open enrollment or magnet cluster schools will be open to children in schools that are not affected by school closures.

    If anyone knows anyone dabbling with the idea of selling a 4br that feeds into Niles North HS for under $400k, I’d love to hear from you. The inventory is totally awful right now — not at all much on the market. Fingers crossed that suburban realtors advise their clients to list their properties the week after CPS letters go out. Soooooo hard to give up our amazing house and neighborhood.

  • 726. NW Chicago Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:54 am

    @ 612. We are in proximity for Thorp and I toured last week. I was impressed with the students who gave me the tour and the principal’s responsiveness. They have a high number of students go to SEHS. They crowded — 29 kids in K-2; 31 in higher grades right now — in small classrooms, but this is pretty much the story at most CPS schools and people seem to accept it. They do not have a playground (it seems like they are getting some traction on getting this built in the next year or two), but do have window A/C. Amazing auditorium. Seems like an okay line-up of activities. Seem to track students in the upper grade to ensure they are challenged academically. It would be a haul if you’re in Rogers Park though…wow.

  • 727. Stacey Nichols  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:28 am

    I thought I was confused when I did the whole application thing last year.
    So we’ll get a letter for some schools (which ones? This week? And then another letter for other schools (which ones then?) In May?

  • 728. CarolA  |  March 22, 2013 at 6:39 am

    @708: Here’s something to think about: Send your child to Bridge and supplement at home (or step forward to help form an after school club for high achievers), save tons of $$$$. Then at the high school level….move or pay for private ( paying for only 4 years instead of 9). (Also, saving tons of $$$ in house taxes compared to suburbs). Another idea….check out Smyser or Dever. You are not in the area, but could request to be accepted. They both have great programs and high scores with a core group of parents who are quite involved. Just ideas.

  • 729. Also Wondering  |  March 22, 2013 at 6:40 am

    @Stacey, magnet letters went out on Tues or Weds, so if you are still waiting for one, it should arrive soon. Gifted/classical letters will go out by the end of the day today. The neighborhood schools/magnet cluster schools won’t go out until May.

  • 730. Stacey Nichols  |  March 22, 2013 at 6:58 am

    Thanks for reply.

    What is the difference between magnet and magnet cluster?

  • 731. Bebe  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:01 am

    Just found this blog. I am the mom of four children, the oldest of which is a freshman in college, and the youngest is a sixth grader. Between our 4 children, we have been involved 6 CPS schools. 8th grader just got into her 1st choice SE. 6th grader is waitlisted (#2) at Sheridan. Still waiting for RGC/Classical and AC letters for him. His current school is good (all four kids have attended in lower grades) but not enough academically in the higher grades for the more academically-inclined children.

  • 732. Bebe  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:07 am

    @692 and other folks re Franklin: Our oldest went from Murray 6th grade to Franklin 7th grade about 5 years ago and I love that school. Great teachers. The principal then has retired but I think the current principal is doing well too.

  • 733. Also Wondering  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:07 am

    A magnet is a school that is open to anyone in Chicago and all admissions are by lottery. A magnet cluster is a neighborhood school that has an extra teacher position or two in a subject like art, music, or technology. Quite a few neighborhood schools are magnet clusters. If you’re in the boundary, you get in automatically, and if they have space they will accept non-neighborhood students via the lottery.

  • 734. Stacey Nichols  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:16 am

    Thanks again.
    I don’t know if we have any clusters here. The closest school is Lloyd. I don’t want her going there. Haven’t seen/heard much good about it.

  • 735. Bebe  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:17 am

    @622: I’m in HP too and have had kids at Ray (K) as well as Murray. Ray’s current principal is not working well with the parents, possibly not well with the teachers as well. And with the school closings, they will have to take some new kids. It will be challenging, I’m sure. Murray has always been much better K-3 than in higher grades academically, at least for the past 14 years (yes, I’ve had at least one kid at Murray for 14 years straight.) I would rank McDade and Lenart over both of these. My 8th grader is at Lenart, and pretty much everyone has gotten into their first or second choice Selective Enrollment or their top choice private school (including Lab, St. Ignatius, Chicago Academy for the Arts).

  • 736. Iheoma  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:34 am

    My 6th grade daughter has been at Ray since 1st grade. We declined spots at Murray and South Loop when she was in 1st for her remain there. Ray has had a really strong parent community a successful language and enrichment programs in the past. Academically it’s been really good for her. That said it’s like a tale of two cities in the school – best of times and worst of times. If your kid is in a smaller cohort ( like mine) she/he will have a great experience. For example – she has never had more than 27 kids in her class -ever 1st -6th grade. She has had excellent teachers- not good- excellent. Her current. 6th grade pre-algebra class is accelerated and on par with what her peers at an SEES or private school would take. Same with science. Many Ray alum attend the SEES /AC of their choice or private – Lab, St. Ignatious, ect. However, if you’re kid does not have this experience Ray has huge problems. Large classes with grade splits(2/3 or1/2) and inconsistent language instruction. Many, many of the current issues with grade splits and language instruction are the result of the new principal. The good thing is that Network Chief(John Price) and down have been actively involved with parents and teachers to correct the course of the school. I think that the school is seen as a south side gem in CPS’s eye and the U of C’s eye and the community is committed to it. My hope is that people consider it before assuming that Murray is the only HP option

  • 737. hliddle  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:37 am

    I’m new to all of this, and I just got my letter. We were offered a placement at Disney, but I haven’t visited there. Thoughts? Also, we were wait listed at 25 for Hawthorne for Tier 3, but all the other wait lists were marked “general” or “proximity.” What does this mean for our chances at Hawthorne? Thanks!

  • 738. Confused  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:45 am

    Quick question. Currently have my 2 older children enrolled in a good neighborhood school. If my youngest gets accepted at Disney II (good # on the waitlist), can my older two transfer there as well due to sibling acceptance? Or does that only apply to younger siblings?

  • 739. DIImom  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:48 am

    @738- it wouldn’t be the first year that they get in but as long as there are openings siblings get first priority, for Kindergarten and up.

  • 740. HSObsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:52 am

    @725 NW Mom- I think you have a very good chance of getting an offer from Disney and Newberry. If you don’t mind my asking, since many NW side schools are pretty good, what is your neighborhood school?

  • 741. Confused  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:54 am

    @739 thanks for the info. Are openining usually available in the upper grades…. 3rd and 5th grades for example?

  • 742. chefkim  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:58 am

    just looking at the disney website and it says:

    We have a limited enrollment window on Wednesday, March 20 through Friday, March 22, from 8:30am until 12:00 noon.

    the way i’m reading this if i’m going to accept the spot offered at disney i need to get there today before noon with:

    acceptance letter and completed confirmation form you will need to bring your child’s original birth certificate, parent identification, utility bill (or other proof of address), and your child’s medical forms (if you have them). Parents of registering Kindergartners will need to bring their child/ren with them.

    Is that right?

  • 743. Waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:08 am

    Is there anywhere to find info on how far down wait lists various schools got last year?

  • 744. chefkim  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:08 am

    nevermind . . . . reading cps stuff before coffee is not a good idea. i called disney & i “can” register today, but don’t have to.

  • 745. Stacey Nichols  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:08 am

    For Disney, is that the one in on marine or II that you mean? And for pre or k?

  • 746. Stacey Nichols  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:11 am

    I’m waiting and hoping for a Disney ii acceptance

  • 747. Another mommy  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:17 am

    @737- 27 is too high of a number for Hawthorne. The highest number I’ve ever heard was 11 (in K this year, a sibling), and they got the call literally a couple of weeks before school started.

  • 748. Maggie B  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:52 am

    Question for Albany Parkers – anyone actually send their kid to Haugan? That is our neighborhood school, but we are within 1.5 miles of Waters – can I just enroll there for kindergarten? I’m confused.

  • 749. cps mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:54 am

    @748 – You can only enroll in your neighborhood school.

  • 750. IBobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:04 am

    I suppose I should know this after years of reading this blog, but I’m confused. Is true that there is no proximity lottery for grades past K?
    They fill only from a general lottery wait list if you are apply to say, 7th grade?

    And I’ve read here that you can accept an SES offer and later get another SES offer, but it that true for magnets? If you offered a spot off a magnet waitlist and accept it, can you still get offer from your other waitlist schools?

  • 751. cps mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:05 am

    @750 – Proximity and tiers are only used for entry level years which in most cases is Kindergarten.

    Once you accept an SEES offer, you can not get another offer. With magnet/magnet cluster schools, it’s different. You can accept an offer and get other offers later because each school manages their own waitlists.

  • 752. ChiMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:11 am

    @719 & 720 – Gobemouche: Thanks for the link to the Trumbull transition plan. Do you (or does anyone else) have a link to the Courtenay/Stockton transition plan?

  • 753. schoolmom  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:13 am

    @601–how can you be in the proximity for both Suder and Drummond? we live in Smith Park–close to Humboldt Park, but closer to Suder than that…confused bc we are in general for both

  • 754. Chgojen  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:25 am

    @719 and @720

    Looks like in the transition, only current/returning students will be split among the three schools McPearson, Chappell and McCutcheon. And, only new students will be split four ways between those three and Peirce…depending on home address. This seems odd to me, what if a returning student falls into the new geographic boundaries (whatever they are) for Perive – they don’t get to attend there? Hmmm.

    Like @752 – if you have the Courtenay/Stockton transition plan, that would be hugely awesome of you to post for everyone to read!!!

  • 755. Bebe  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:26 am

    @736:Iheoma, we know each other IRL. 🙂 Glad that your 6th grader’s experience has been good. My oldest (now a freshman in college) had the best K teacher at Ray. She’s still there! Murray has been hot and cold for us. But then we are old hands at CPS, with 4 children at 4 different schools most of our time with CPS. I’m personal friends with some CPS/CTA officials and used to tell them that our family is their best customer!

  • 756. Jen K  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:27 am

    @716 regarding D2 – as Chicago Mama says, most people use the after-school program at school, and use the Y before school. There is no bussing at all. As far as art and technology integration, it’s incorporated into the curriculum seamlessly, both within the classroom and as a dedicated “special” several times per week. I have a K student there now (as do several other D2 posters here). Absolutely love it.

  • 757. cps alum  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:32 am


    the above link allows for search of all the transistion plans

  • 758. HS Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:35 am

    @728 Carol – that is the best advice I’ve seen yet. Plus, there are so many options now in addition to SE (including a new HS at Disney) that basing the quality of a school on how many kids get into SE is almost irrelevant. Keep your kid challenged and working to their potential. I can’t tell you how many people, including myself, had to supplement education from high ranking magnets.

  • 759. UptownMama  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:36 am

    @719, 720, 754

    Does anyone have any idea when the new maps will be released? We’re in the Trumbull district and had hopes of getting into Chappell or Peirce for K. I’m worried we’ll get mapped into McCutcheon but Chappell and Peirce will be full….

  • 760. newtocps  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:38 am

    @Bebe (re. 732). Could you comment on which high schools Franklin students typically attend after grade 8th? Thanks!

  • 761. tania  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:39 am

    Wait listed for PK3 – Drummond 77, Mayer 17 – tier 3
    Wondering if we have a possible shot at Mayer? Seems unlikely

  • 762. Bridget  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:42 am

    @728 and @758 – To supplement, for years, we utilized the SEP (Saturday enrichment) program at Northwestern University. It was outstanding. Kids need to be tested in if they don’t have ISATS scores yet and if they do, need to submit their ISAT scores of 95% or higher. The summer sessions they offer are week long and pricey – but the school year classes are fantastic and reasonable. Older kids can earn high school credit there depending on class.

  • 763. ZanesDad  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:42 am

    Note on the link @757, you generally have to search for the school being closed, but in cases of relocation you can search for either school, so searching for Stockton or Courtenay will bring up the same information.

    @754 – That is an interesting point. I’m sure that will come up at the hearing.

    Also, it’s not clear from the transition plan if only the students of closed schools are eligible to take part in the re-opened application process for magnet cluster and open enrollment schools, or if students in the receiving schools can apply for openings as well.

  • 764. Peter  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:45 am

    Peirce already has over 1000 students. It’s not struggling for enrollment.

  • 765. Mom22boys  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:46 am

    Got our letter yesterday. As expected we are waitlisted to all but we have 2 decent numbers- I think. We are tier 4 , kindergarten got :
    Newberry # 7
    Drummond # 8 – general since this isn’t entry.
    I will appreciate any feedback on these – any chances?

    Also we have WL for per-k to Suder #3.

    thanks in advance for any feedback !

  • 766. NW Chicago Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:47 am

    @ 740. It’s Gray, which is not a terrible school academically. In fact, it has some very good teachers (like most CPS schools). We do not plan to use Gray for environmental reasons (school climate/leadership/family life stuff, not safety issues), but other people might really like it as a back-up option or even a first choice. I don’t want to slam the school, it’s just not for us. Long story short, when I described what I was seeking in a school the principal told me straight-out, “We are not the school for your family.” I appreciated her candor.

    The issue is partly one of timing. There could be some movement on some of the waitlists over the summer (or even until, you know, December, crazy CPS) where we might eventually get a call, but we have an acceptable offer on our house now (not great, but we can afford to leave) but we have no idea where to go with such little inventory that meets our needs. We have to make a decision sooner than CPS craziness will permit. We’ve got three kids and two FT jobs, so we can’t do the split our kids up amongst several schools thing. Hats off to families who can manage that, but it’s not us.

  • 767. Just show me the testscores  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:50 am

    Offered Disney II
    Wildwood something like 330
    some other school 31 near montrose and Austin

    Is Disney II a good school?

  • 768. Stacey Nichols  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:52 am

    I’ve heard nothing but good things about Disney ii and it’s in excellent standing on numerous sites.

  • 769. Chicago Mama  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:55 am

    @767, are you serious?

  • 770. r_u_sure  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:55 am

    Hawthorne waitlist #5
    Stone waitlist #120

    Tier 3

    How likely to get a call for Hawthorne?

  • 771. Stacey Nichols  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:58 am

    What do the tiers mean?

  • 772. Mayfair Dad  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:58 am

    @767: say YES to Disney II and thank God for the blessings bestowed on your child. Top performing magnet school program that includes grades 9 – 12. Congratulations!

  • 773. Mayfair Dad  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:01 am

    @ 771 Newbie:

    In a nutshell – everything.


  • 774. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:03 am

    Here is an explanation of the tier process:


    The city is divided into 4 socio-economic tiers. selective and magnet schools aim to balance part of their enrollment by the 4 tiers. This creates different test cutoffs for each tier for selective schools and 4 separate waiting lists for magnet schools.

  • 775. RCheli  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:04 am

    Are we the only ones who are still waiting for the letter? Nothing in the mail Wednesday or Thursday.

  • 776. Also Wondering  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:05 am

    @767, are you in Tier 3? Terrible school. Just awful, Run, run! Just kidding, everyone loves Disney II and now that it goes through high school, it is truly like winning the lottery to get in.

  • 777. Just show me the testscores  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:07 am

    Yes I am serious. Our kid is in catholic preK now and her little brother will be following soon. So tuition is about 7k per year. Public school for boths tots mean we get to save about 182k through high school. That is not an insubstantial sum. However, I am willing to spend this money if it means a better and safe education for my kids. I am very ambivalent about CPS. I just want a school that kicks out the troublemakers and challenges my kid.

  • 778. HS Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:08 am

    @762 – more good advice. These types of opportunities or those that can be done at the kitchen table will make a difference when it comes to high school.

  • 779. SR  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:12 am

    All the Uptown school changes have resulted in neighborhood enrollment boundaries that make even less sense than they used to. For example, a person living next door to the Stockton/Courtenay preschool will have to cross Montrose, Broadway, and Sheridan to get to their neighborhood school Brennemann. Is there a CPS department that residents should direct their requests for redistricting to? We will also approach our Alderman, but not sure how effective that will be.

  • 780. mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:13 am

    tier 4, spot at Franklin

  • 781. Peter  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:13 am

    Disney II very likely provides a better education than most Catholic elementary schools.

  • 782. mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:21 am

    What about Thorp? Does it provide a better education than most Catholics?

  • 783. another mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:21 am

    Franklin rocks. Excellent fine arts and piano. It also has a very active parent group that raises tons of money for AC, ipads, text books, library books, etc. The kids just placed in the Math counts competition, are going to state for a chemistry competition, etc. It’s a small school. I think Linda Lutton’s (wbez) kids go there. The AP became the principal. She’s good, she cares and her kids go to Franklin so she has extra incentive. There are some issues surrounding the neighborhood as someone was shot and killed down the block in a gang retaliation a few months ago but it didn’t involve people/kids from Franklin. It had to do with the two gang infested neighborhood schools that are being consolidated: Jenner & Manierre.

  • 784. Lefty  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:26 am

    I’d just like to echo CPSO’s comments above about considering your neighborhood school. My neighborhood school is Coonley — when my oldest (6th grader, private school, applying to AC) was a preschooler NO ONE had Coonley on their radar screen. Neighborhood kids went private or tried for a Magnet, Classical or RGC. Fast forward 8 years, throw in a bunch of TIF funds, a new principal, addition of a RGC, and a committed Friends Of organization, and now we’ve got people tripping over themselves to get in the school. Similar changes have taken place at Waters, and groups are doing the same at Ravenswood and others. It is possible to make your neighborhood school into the school you want, but it does require work, a committed group of parents, and support from your alderman.

  • 785. DIImom  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:30 am

    @777- we have a family that is in kindergarten and their older sibling is in a local catholic school. Her son who is at DII is doing things a year plus what the catholic schools are doing. You may be paying for a Catholic education but it doesn’t mean it is good. My kids go to DII and I can’t believe some of the things they do for the kids. Top school in CPS. There were over 3k applications with only 24 spots available for kindergarten if that tells you anything. If you got in- you should buy a lottery ticket because people are dying to get into here. Quality education, state of the art learning

  • 786. Switch from classical to Disney II ?  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:39 am

    @Mayfair Dad, would you please weigh in on my previous post about switching from classical to Disney II? You seem to know the school really well. Does much differentiation happen in the classrooms? I think the school does not have a comprehensive gifted program? Thank you. Also happy to talk by email in depth.

  • 787. Wondering Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:39 am

    Sees letters should have been here before all the schools close for spring break. This way we could call to see about tours. Has anyone that is waiting for Sees letters gotten their mail today?

  • 788. westsidemom  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:51 am

    Just got my mail. No SEES letter.

  • 789. cpswhy  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:52 am

    @justshowmethetestscores — Just because “everyone” is dying to get into Disney II does not make it a fantastic school or the right choice for you. It is all relative when you are talking about CPS vs private/Catholic schools. Parents on these forums who have no other choice but to send their kids to public school of course want to believe that Disney II, Hawthorne, etc etc is “better” than any private or Catholic school in the city but that is just not true. If money was truly no object would they really be sending their kids to CPS? They don’t even know what Catholic school you are talking about. Even the absolute top CPS schools are still defined by CPS culture, extensive testing, and a lack of respect for parents as shown in this whole process. There is no “kicking out” bad kids either – it is a lottery. Anyone can apply and anyone can get in. Make the decision that’s right for your child based on all the facts and visiting the school.

  • 790. Jen K  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:05 am

    D2 is a fantastic school. Kids are challenged at varying levels within grades, it’s very very safe, very involved parents and an amazing Principal who, every year, manages to make the school even better. Honestly, it’s better than i ever could have imagined. You won’t get a second chance to get in, and you could always go back to private if your priority is getting a religious education (not judging, some families do want that). Educationally, you won’t be disappointed. My family has been there since the beginning, now K and 4th grades. The Principal would be more than happy to discuss any concerns you have.

  • 791. hliddle  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:05 am

    Hearing a lot of great things about Disney II on this feed, but what about Disney? Anyone willing to share their knowledge or experience?

  • 792. WaitingChicagoMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:07 am

    We also received our letter yesterday – all waitlisted:
    STEM Tier 3: 174
    Disney I Tier 3: 164
    Disney II Tier 3: 68
    Andrew Jackson Tier 3: 214

    We were given a deadline of today to accept an offer and provide deposit at a private school in the suburbs (1 hour commute) or else the spot will be given to someone else on the waiting list. Which kind of sucks since it looks like we will not get the SEES letter until tomorrow.

  • 793. Peter  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:10 am

    @789, that’s why I said most Catholic schools. Most Catholic elementary schools are poorly funded with teachers who can’t get hired by a public school. There are always exceptions. I have a lot of experience with Catholic schools and public schools.

  • 794. movedtodosomething  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:14 am

    Has anyone ever organized to march downtown at CPS HQ with our wait listed letters in hand? There are enough of us to make a statement. Could get the news to cover this atrocity. Bring some attention to our suffering in this great city of ours.

    It wouldn’t take much, say the Monday when classes resume we head down after school time (3:30/4PM).

  • 795. Iheoma  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:15 am

    @755 🙂

  • 796. Stacey Nichols  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:21 am

    Mail came today. Nothing yet 😦

  • 797. Sam  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:23 am

    Does anyone know how far LaSalle II went down the proximity wait list last year?

  • 798. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:24 am

    @784: We also live in the boundaries of a well-regarded neighborhood school (South Loop), where our kids will likely attend. I love the sense of community the school provides, whereas magnet/SEES draw kids from across the city. Just for the hell of it, however, I submitted CPS applications for our soon-to-be kindergartener. Now that I’m knee deep in the process, I’m saddened to the point of despair that we didn’t get a magnet offer and our WL numbers don’t have a snowball’s chance. Being the competitive person that I am, I’ve convinced myself that the other schools are better than ours (which I know isn’t necessarily true). There’s something about “winning” a spot that makes you feel superior, IMO. I never thought I’d be THAT parent who wants bragging rights.

  • 799. Mayfair Dad  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:25 am

    @ 789. Money is always a consideration unless your last name is Pritzger. That’s why it’s a gift when you are presented the opportunity of sending your child to a top performing and highly coveted magnet school like D2, who by the way, has just added grades 9 – 12. I guarantee you it stacks up academically to Sacred Heart or any other Catholic school in the archdiocese (looked at many of them for my own kiddos). Do the research.

    Think of all that tuition money that can now be applied to the college fund. Call the office at D2 and arrange a tour. See for yourself. Trust your own eyes and your own instincts.

  • 800. Christine  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:25 am

    To all new parents, there is still hope. My son was not accepted into his school until June 22. There is a lot of shuffling around since students may have been accepted both to SES and magnet schools. Also, parents have to move and such. For the older grades, schools may not know what seats are open until transfer requests come from other schools.

  • 801. ZanesDad  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:27 am

    @794 – I’m sure you can see how well that tactic worked for parents of schools on the chopping block who packed the closing hearings and got plenty of news coverage. CPS central office exists in a vacuum.

  • 802. Chris  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:31 am

    @789: “Parents on these forums who have no other choice but to send their kids to public school of course want to believe that Disney II, Hawthorne, etc etc is “better” than any private … school in the city but that is just not true.”

    That’s a strawman. I’ve not seen anyone claim that CPS Elementary (as opposed to HS) is a clearly better *academic* experience than the ‘name’ privates.

    Social issues, different story, but that’s also too kid/family specific to accurately dispute.

    @779: Not that I doubt you, but where are the new boundaries available? Would like to see.

  • 803. Mom22boys  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:32 am

    We are tier 4 , kindergarten , WL to all, most well above 200s

    Any hope on these?

    Newberry # 7
    Drummond # 8 – general since this isn’t entry.

    I will appreciate any feedback on these – any chances?

  • 804. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:38 am

    If memory serves me well, I believe Newberry tends to see some movement and #7 could be a decent shot.
    Drummond probably not, but stranger things have happened when one’s number is 10 or lower.

  • 805. Basketball Jones  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:39 am

    @725 NW Chicago Mom. All I can say is “see ya.” After seeing the waitlist numbers for little Johnny or Jane, it is obvious that your kid is probably a happy, normal kid who would do just fine at the neighborhood school with all the other happy, normal neighborhood kids. By your own admission, you live in an amazing house and neighborhood, but because you can’t tell people your kid goes to a magnet school you decide to take your ball and go home. Or should I say go looking for a new home. Running away does not solve anything. Perhaps if you got involved with other neighborhood parents, you could help turn your neighborhood school into one where others would want to attend. Also, if you can afford a $400,000 house, you can afford private tuition. It’s people like you who take from the system but give little back.

  • 806. W Rogers Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:40 am

    @726 thank you for all the great info on Thorp! We are in West Rogers Park (West Ridge) so the commute is not as bad as you suspect. No playground is concerning. I have a very active boy. Aren’t all CPS schools supposed to have some sort of recess?

  • 807. Mama in the AP  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:42 am

    Just got the mail. Nothing yet. It’s killing me because since submitting our SEES application, my 1st choice pick has changed. We are across the street from an RGC so we picked that, but hearing about 3 hrs of K homework every night makes me think again. I’m praying for a 2nd or 3rd choice now. I wonder how much money CPS spends on this whole process. Wouldn’t it be easier to just put that money into making all schools great? I know, pretty naive, right?

  • 808. Jen K  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:45 am

    @806 doesn’t Thorpe have a big outdoor grassy area? I just drove by there the other day. No playground, but a wide open space.

  • 809. Mayfair Dad  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:46 am

    @ 802 and others. Final enrollment policy, application process, attendance boundaries for the Disney II expansion have not been made public. Our expanison plan was approved by the Board of Ed back in December and the location was confirmed yesterday. My hunch is nothing further will be released until after Spring Break, giving impacted school communities a chance to digest the information. Then more hearings about closings and other school actions. It may be May? until the details are publicized but that is up to CPS not us.

  • 810. FirefighterDad  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:46 am

    Entering K

    Thorp -78 (proximity)
    Stone- 67 ( tier 4)

    UUUUUGGGGGGHHHH!!!! Do we even have a chance???

  • 811. Jen K  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:47 am

    @805 I’m pretty sure she gives back in property taxes like the rest of us.

  • 812. Christine  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:47 am

    @807 The reason for these special schools is because our children have been classified as gifted. They need special education that regular classroom teachers don’t have the time to teach. In a subruban school, your child would have been pushed up a grade or have behavior problems.

  • 813. UC Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:47 am

    Only child, KG, Tier 3. We were waitlisted at all magnets to which we applied, but here are the best numbers we received:

    STEM #2 (proximity)
    Franklin #19 (tier 3)
    Galileo #26 (proximity)

    We probably have a good shot at getting an offer from STEM. Does anyone have any insight as to whether we have any shot at all at getting a WL call from Franklin?

  • 814. CPS mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:49 am

    @797. LaSalle II went to at least 6 on proximity. May have gone farther but I do not have that info.

  • 815. SNNMS  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:50 am

    @803. we were a couple of spots behind you in tier 4 last year and offered in late may. your child should get an offer. stay on top of the school though since the schools don’t always contact everyone on their waitlist even when it’s your turn.

  • 816. W Rogers Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:51 am

    @808 A big grassy area is all my kid needs! Thanks! We just haven’t had a chance to go look at Thorp.

  • 817. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:53 am


  • 818. NW Chicago Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:53 am

    Yes, Thorp has a big grassy area. There are plans for the playground/field construction, but it’s not there yet.

  • 819. NW Chicago Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:55 am

    I called Franklin this morning and they said they got to #23 on Tier 3 last year. I have no idea if that was August or last month, but #23. We are about 10 spaces behind you in their waitlist.

  • 820. Mom22boys  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    @813 Thanks SNNMS!
    did you accept? Which school?

  • 821. Momof2  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    So I guess CPS is a bit more organized than we thought, sending or acceptances a day before all other letters.

    1st grade-tier 3

    Pre-k3 tier 3
    Drummond-29 any hope?

    Ughhh not too worried about 3 year old, but the 1st grader should be ok at her current school(portage park) until about 3rd grade and then I’m convinced they turn into hoodlums! Anyone else at portage with kids in older grades? Would love some feedback.

  • 822. Chris  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:10 pm


    Thanks, but I (at least) wasn’t asking about D2 boundaries, but asking about the re-jiggered Uptown Elem boundaries that 779 said would result in kids across the street from the Stockton bldg not getting to go there.

    So, question for anyone: Where are the proposed new attendance boundaries available? For some or all of the 70+ affected schools? TIA!!

  • 823. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    I have a question…how are the wait list numbers determined? Are they based on how well your children did on the test? I am waiting for a SEES letter for 7th grade academic center, and it never even occurred to me to look for gifted or magnet schools when my daughter entered school. Instead I based my decision on the neighborhood school and the atmosphere of the community. Going so far as sitting on the playground prior to moving in and observing how parents and children interacted with each other. But I am curious as to whether or not the super high wait list numbers indicate that your child didn’t perform well on the test? (of course it’s relevant to how many children took the test, I get that)

  • 824. Jen  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    Going into 4th grade, waitlisted 1 at Jackson, next number is 45 at Drummond, 76 at Mayer, 94 at Lasalle II, everything else above 100 up to 197 for Disney II.

    No SEES letter.

    I’ll be taking a closer look at Jackson now that it’s a possible option for us.

  • 825. BuenaParker  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    Re: Stockton. Kids currently at Stockton will not have to go to Brenneman. The transition plan says that Courtenay will be moving into Stockton and taking over Stockton’s attendance boundaries. So really, all that’s changing is the name and likely lots of administration and teachers, but it will continue to serve as the school for that neighborhood, as well as Courtenay’s students.

  • 826. BuenaParkDad  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    @825 So maybe I’m just a little slow, but how are they going to fit two school’s worth of kids into one building?

  • 827. BuenaParker  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    @826 Probably because Stockton wasn’t at capacity and Courtenay doesn’t have that many students. Stockton is a pretty big building.

  • 828. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    @826: I believe Courtenay is really small and Stockton is under-utilized so hopefully it all works out.

  • 829. xyz  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    Just called OAE to find out about the SEES notifications and I was told that some have been mailed out yesterday and the rest would be mailed out today….Does that mean the acceptances were mailed out yesterday, keeping up with the trend of the magnet schools? I am totally freaking out! Can’t imagine myself opening the letter to see what’s in there!!!!!

  • 830. SR  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    @802/822 – Sorry, I didn’t mean to be confusing. There are no new enrollment boundaries that I know of. I just meant that the current boundaries make even less sense now that Stewart is closing. The Courtenay/Stockton preK on Magnolia is across the street from its own enrollment area, so people who live on the east side of Magnolia now have a neighborhood school of Brennemann, which is almost a mile away, rather than Stockton, which is two blocks away.

    I realize it may be a futile pursuit, but I would hope that even CPS can see the logic of having a school’s own preK within that school’s enrollment boundaries.

  • 831. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    @823: The wait list numbers so far are just pure lottery – no testing or ranking involved!

    When the gifted/classical scores come out, people get a score but they don’t know where they are on the ranked wait list.

  • 832. FranklinParent  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    @819. NW Chicago Mom: That’s right. I think that #23 was me! We got a call the week before the school starts.

  • 833. FrankE  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    @823 (not-so)patiently waiting

    Waitlist numbers have nothing to do with SEES or testing. They are for the magnet schools which are determined by lottery. Your waitlist number shows how lucky (or unlucky) your lottery draw was.

    SEES scores come from the testing. You will receive a letter stating the score and whether or not your child got a spot to one of your choices. There are no wait list numbers assigned for SEES.

  • 834. CPS Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:33 pm

    @806 – cps is supposed to, but it’s principal discretion i think. our school keeps the kids indoors during inclement and not-so-inclement weather. makes for a very long day for students and teachers; no time for fresh air or to blow off steam. very clear behavior issues this year because of it.

    i drive by thorp every day and their kids are out enjoying their grassy area (which has a walking track around it) unless the weather is raining or snowing. the kids seem to make great use of it – i see them walking, kicking a ball, etc. so envious! 🙂

  • 835. NMayfairMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:35 pm

    @794 – Good idea!

  • 836. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:39 pm

    @833 FrankE
    Thanks for the info. I know it has nothing to do with the SEES. I was just wondering how the wait list numbers are determined. Didn’t realize that it was a lottery that determines your spot!! Like I said, I didn’t look for magnet or gifted centers with my little one entering school so I am clueless when it comes to that process. Putting all your eggs in a lottery basket seems like a huge gamble though!!

  • 837. MayfairMama  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    No letter again today. This is getting old. sigh…..

  • 838. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:43 pm

    @836: It’s definitely a gamble. I always tell people now to think about where they live before they even have kids. Having a solid local backup school take the risk out of it.

    Easy for me to say now — I didn’t take schools into account at ALL when I bought a house long ago. And, I sort of just did it again in regards to high school. I guess hope springs eternal and I’ve come to accept that there really is a place for most kids to get a decent education in the city if you keep an open mind and/or work with other parents to make it happen.

  • 839. Chris  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    825-828: ” I believe Courtenay is really small and Stockton is under-utilized so hopefully it all works out.”

    I looked at it and posted something in another thread–from memory (so not exact): Stockton currently has ~400 kids, and an ‘ideal capacity’ of ~1000; Courtenay has under 300 kids. So, even with all of them in the Stockton building, it will not be ‘full’, even accounting for the possibility that ‘ideal capacity’ is a BS number for Stockton.

    So, yeah, Courtenay small, Stockton lots of space. Hopefully it works out well.

  • 840. Hoping for SE  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    Any Tier 2 people willing to share 4 yr old SE test results from past couple of years?? Anyone know where that might be posted?

  • 841. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    CPSO I completely agree. We were moving when my daughter was 2 and my friends thought I was crazy for looking at schools. But it just made sense to me…and I am a teacher, so it seemed a no brainer. Unfortunately, a couple of years after we moved in the boundaries for the high school changed. Which is why I need the academic center now. Otherwise, we would have been a neighborhood school family for the duration of my daughter’s 12 years!

  • 842. PPMom11  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    To everyone asking about DII-
    You really should call and set up a tour at DII. I went in the late fall and loved it so much that I didn’t want to leave. Everything is bright and cheerful, kids were happily working in all the classrooms we visited, state of the art resources, books everywhere, etc. Hawthorne might have better test scores, but I don’t think you can beat the learning environment at DII, at least based on the 20 schools I toured.

    Too bad we are 200 + on the waitlist. 😦
    I’l continue to apply every year!

  • 843. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    I will add about DII (not like they need more PR) but I got to interview the principal there a year or 2 ago when they were becoming a Pioneer School for longer day and she was incredibly impressive. Had real vision for the school, for all students across levels and socio-economic tier as well as high expectations for all. right from the start she was like “yeah, I need a longer day and here’s why and what we’ll do with it.” it was very compelling.

  • 844. BuenaParkMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Here is the link for Stockton/Courtenay.
    Courtenay will no longer be a magnet and will take over Stockton’s attendance boundary. Current teachers at Stockton will have to reapply for their positions and are only eligible if they have a good or excellent rating I believe.


    No word on the boundary lines splitting Trumbull’s old area. I will say that McCutcheon has a new Principal this year and she is really great. Lots of partnerships, including one with Latin School and lots of plans being implemented there to enhance the curriculum including adding a foreign language component for all grades. More middle class families from the immediate area were already enrolling kids in the school this year. They were already working on re-opening their annex and there are plans for a very cool birth to K preschool center at the school.

  • 845. Iheoma  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    I called OES and was told all AC letters were mailed today. I don’t know about elementary SES programs. Just want to decrease (if possible) the stress for the parents waiting for ACs – at least from what I was told.

  • 846. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    #838~CPSO~I completely agree w/you. Ppl should look at houses in the area they want their children to attend school. Having really good public schools in your area adds value to homes/community. In our area, we do a lot w/our parish schools~they come to our events, we support theirs~our kids all play and hang around together. I think it’s important to have a good fall back school. Although I didn’t go SEEM bc our n’hood school is fantastic~but will def NOT go n’hood high school.

    It wasn’t until I started reading your site (abt 5yrs ago) that I even know that not all n’hood schools received the same education and that some provide better than SEEMs.

  • 847. Peter  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:08 pm

    Courtenay has only 200 students. CPS can easily sell that building for good money. Trumbull as well, is likely worth quite a bit.

  • 848. AC and waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:08 pm

    Thanks for the AC verification. Now we hope the letters are received tomorrow, as was the case with most of the SEHS letters or it will be a very, very long weekend.

  • 849. Waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:14 pm

    Any chance of Thorpe WL #37? Tier 4 K.

  • 850. BuenaParkMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    Oh and I was Tier 3 #4 for Drummond last year for PreK and never got a call.

  • 851. FirstTimer  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    For anyone interested, I called LaSalle II to check again if they are going to schedule a visit for newly accepted families before the decision deadline and she said there are no plans as of yet but to check back after Spring Break.

  • 852. DII  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    DII will be sharing building with Marshall middle school.

  • 853. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:27 pm

    Thanks Iheoma!! Praying that it gets to my mailbox tomorrow before I head out of town!! Maybe I will make a deal with my mailman today and tell him to run by my house first 😉

  • 854. mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    So with DII opening a high school, any chance they will move 7-8 grade there and add a K class or two this fall??

  • 855. LPmom  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    Just checked my mail, and no SEES letter today. I sure hope it doesn’t mean that acceptances went out yesterday, and the rest are being mailed today.

    Also, for those interested, I called Franklin and was told that last year they got to #6 on proximity lottery. so, no hope for me 😦

  • 856. Sunny  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    Tier 4 Hawthorne wait list #25 1st grade. Still no mail for SEES.

  • 857. Third time's a charm  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    @849. Waiting – I’m #1 on the tier 4 list and am most likely not taking the spot if and when offered so you’ll be one closer!

  • 858. anotherchicagoparent  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:37 pm

    LPmom with SE High School letters this year both acceptance and non acceptance letters were mailed out on Friday.Most in my circle received the high school letters on Saturday.Take a breath relax. 🙂

  • 859. Angelica  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    Tier 1 parents! Where are you?

  • 860. DIImom  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:46 pm

    @854- they only have two classes per grade level with 25 in each class. The high school location will be adding kids but we haven’t got word on how many.

  • 861. Switch from classical to Disney II ?  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:50 pm

    Does DII have 25 kids per class even in older grades? Or just K?

  • 862. DIImom  |  March 22, 2013 at 1:57 pm

    @861 all grades have 2 classes of 25 kids in each class. –

  • 863. I might sue my mail carrier!  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:06 pm

    Nothing in the mail here.
    This has been a long few months! I’m going to see the new Tina Fay movie tonight just to make myself a little more crazy.

  • 864. Rups  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:21 pm

    How can we get #60 and #61 on the proximity wait-list for Sheridan, does anyone know? Surely there aren’t even that many kindergartners within a mile, let alone however many they let in already? Do people lie about their address on these things?

  • 865. I might sue my mail carrier!  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:22 pm


  • 866. Waiting preschool mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    IF SEES acceptances were mailed out yesterday, don’t you think we’d have reports of SEES letters being received already?

  • 867. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    No SEES letter here. I’m betting that they were all mailed today, so we should see them Saturday or Monday. Back to biting my nails…

  • 868. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    @Rups, I think proximity for magnets might be more than a mile. Anyone know?

  • 869. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    @866:based on previous years “went out yesterday” sometimes mean “put in the outgoing mail late yesterday.” Based on the timing it seems like it probably didn’t hit the post office until today…

  • 870. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:30 pm

    Proximity is 1.5 mile radius, meaning a 3 mile diameter circle, which in the city is pretty big:

    Proximity lottery: conducted at magnet schools only. This lottery is for applicants who live within a 1.5 mile radius of the elementary magnet school. (Note: If more than 50 percent of the entire student body is comprised of students within the proximity, and if more than 50 percent of the student body is any one racial or ethnic group, no proximity lottery will be held for that school. The proximity preference is for entry-grade levels only. For most elementary schools, this is kindergarten. In the three Montessori magnet schools – Drummond, Mayer, and Suder — the entry-grade level is the PreK-3 level, and in Inter-American Magnet School, the entry-grade level is the PreK-4 level. There is no proximity lottery at non-entry-level grades.)

  • 871. Caroline Pollock Bilicki  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    Off topic, but it makes me nuts that CPS misuses “comprise.”

    > >

  • 872. Waiting and waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    Checked mail… No letter for SEES…. Tick tock… Tick tock….

  • 873. NearWestMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    After reading 829’s post (some SEES letters possibly being sent out yesterday) I raced home to check my mailbox. No letter. Rats!

  • 874. NW Chicago Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    Proximity is 1.5 miles for CPS.

  • 875. mscontinental  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:40 pm

    No Sees letters here either. I met the letter carrier on the corner (*embarrassed*) I did see CPS letters in her cart, but none were for me.

  • 876. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    @Mscontinential: You should have grabbed them and started running down the street shouting “they’re here! they’re here!”

  • 877. NearWestMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:42 pm

    @875 – I DID get a CPS letter today, but it was only to notify me of the closing of my neighborhood school. I thought for sure it was the SEES letter…. psych!!

  • 878. Bridget  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:44 pm

    @865 Hilarious clip

  • 879. mscontinental  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    @876 – Perfect idea, I’ll do my best Steve Martin impression from The Jerk “The new phone books are here!”

  • 880. jeffmom  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    @810 Last year we were high on the proximity wait list for Thorp and something like 70 for Stone. We eventually got a spot in Stone about a week before school started. The commute was AWFUL. It took me at least 40 minutes to get there (I’m at Austin and Montrose). Granted, the city went under massive construction in Sept. but I was spending at least an hour in a half in the car each way – 3 hours total a day. The day after the strike was over I got a call from Norwood Park offering a spot there. I forgot I applied there! We took the spot just for the shorter drive. Now my drive is 8 minutes. So, yes, there is hope. But, the drive killed me.

  • 881. Waiting preschool mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    @866-CPSO–Of course! CPS-speak. We’re so glad you are here to translate.

  • 882. CPS MOM of 2  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    I have a son in Disney I in K – accelerated program and while there are 30 kids to a class with no TA, I will say he has flourished. He loves his teacher, classmates, the school and learning. The homework can get overwhelming but that’s probably the pressure we apply, because his teacher says not to worry if we can’t get it done. He has 10 spelling words each week, writes simple stories and has fun playing math and money games. A lot of the parents have gotten together and volunteer to help the teacher. My son is not bothered by the open pod concept – from his low perspective it looks like walls. I also like the principal and the assistant principal Mr. Norcross can’t be beat. He’s supportive of the kids, caring and sharp. Many of the kids in the class are advanced readers. Bottom line, I know its hard not to worry, but the school option will work out for each of you. It works out because ultimately if you are supplementing and involved they will succeed and BE HAPPY! Promise.

  • 883. Sheridanmom  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    @864 There was only about 11 seats available for proximity for K at Sheridan. Sheridan has 2 – K classrooms, but there was about 32 siblings this year, leaving only 28 seats for the lottery, then you have to do 40% of that number for proximity, and the rest for the tiers.

  • 884. JLM  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:58 pm


    Check out this link: http://www.cps.edu/schools/find_a_school/pages/schoollocator.aspx

    Type in the address of the magnet school you’re interested in and set the distance to 1.5 miles – then you’ll see what neighborhoods get proximity lottery to the school by looking at what falls within the shaded circle. Looks like Sheridan pulls in Bridgeport, Chinatown, parts of South Loop, parts of Pilsen, and whatever neighborhood hugs the lake south of 55 (that I thought was Bronzeville, but apparently is not). You can also just look at how many elementary schools fall within proximity and assume that parents from all those schools might be throwing their hat into the ring.

  • 885. Angelica  |  March 22, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    Sheridanmom, this is exactly what I was told. I think there are only 5 seats for Tier 1. I am number three in the waiting list. Hoping I can get in but I don’t think I will 😦

  • 886. Magnet Madness  |  March 22, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    What do they do if there are more siblings than offers in K? Do they add more seats or do they do the lottery of those siblings and no proximiity and tiers lotteries?

  • 887. Chgojen  |  March 22, 2013 at 3:08 pm

    @886 – they will have a separate sibling waitlist (which probably means they do a sibling lottery and anyone not offered will be put on the waitlist).

  • 888. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    Cpso – would it be possible to start a new thread for SEES letters?

  • 889. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 22, 2013 at 3:17 pm

    #888: OMG, I was totally just going to ask the same thing! This thread has gotten so incredibly long.

  • 890. Matt  |  March 22, 2013 at 3:18 pm

    @770: We were Tier 3 waitlist spot #3 for Hawthorne last year, and we got a call around early to mid April.

  • 891. MayfairMama  |  March 22, 2013 at 3:18 pm

    I called the OAE since I haven’t received a letter for magnets yet. They told me that the letters have been going out in batches, SEES as well. She said to call back if I don’t have it by Thursday! Ack!

  • 892. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    Ok, as soon as an SEES letter hits, I’ll start a thread for it. FYI, March 26th last year was the most CPSObsessed visits ever in one day. We’ll see if this year beats it, but possibly not since the letters are spread out.

  • 893. Restless  |  March 22, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    We go on vacation tonight and don’t come back until the Sunday before school starts again, how soon can I call OAE to find out if my son got in an AC. I’m going to drive myself crazy while we are gone.

  • 894. Asking for a friend  |  March 22, 2013 at 3:53 pm

    Any idea how far STEM made it down on the K wait list last year?

  • 895. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    @893 Restless…I would have a neighbor check for you!

  • 896. DadWhoHasADaughterAndWantsHerToGoToAGoodSchool  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    We received our letter for Magnets. We queued #1 General E for Inter-American. We’re confused as to what General E is, as everything else was Tier 4.

    We also are #13 for Lasalle II. Anyone have an idea how far down they reached last year.

    Thanks all and good luck!!!

  • 897. AnalysisParalysis  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    Any idea how far Lasalle II made it down the wait list in tier 4 last year?

    I’m at #55. Any chance?

  • 898. Third time's a charm  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:12 pm

    @896 – general because it sounds like you entered for K. Inter-American entry point is pre-k so there is no proximity or tiers after that.

    @897 and @897 – We were La Salle II (tier 4) #11 in 2011 and did not get in. We were #3 on the wait list by the time they were done/I last called.

  • 899. Jaded neighborhood Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:15 pm

    Hate to be a damper on the Disney high school news, but lest see, Disney is co-locating with Thurgood Marshall middle school (96 % low income, mostly hispanic, and a level three school). YEAH, this should work out great. I anticipate a lot of problems, Marshall kids feeling squeezed out of their own school and Disney 2 parents nervously reacting to the Marshall kids and families. If it comes down to it obey I can guess which school and kids will always get the benefit of the doubt if issues arise.

  • 900. Jaded neighborhood Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    Oops….if it comes down to it I BET…..(sorry auto correct)

  • 901. DadWhoHasADaughterAndWantsHerToGoToAGoodSchool  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    @898 You’re right. We entered for K. I’m just confused as to what the ‘E’ in General E represents. Is there General A, B, C, etc. or is it General S for Spanish speaking children and E for English? Big difference in where we stand.

  • 902. HS Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    @899 – having had my child in the Old Irving “Kid Watch” daycare until he was 3, zero contact with Marshall. Even if there was, why would anyone “nervously react” to Marshall kids.

  • 903. teachermom  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    I really appreciate the stories of good news coming through during the summer months and even into the school year. Keeps those stories flowing!

  • 904. Tara  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    Anyone call about the AC letters? I think earlier in this thread it talked about them being sent out today, but does anyone find not getting any mail kinda weird?

  • 905. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    Thank you, CPSO!

  • 906. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    Tara, I’m waiting on AC results, too. I don’t think anyone has received them yet. Good luck!

  • 907. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    @904: I think the letters going out late on a Friday is pretty par for the course on the selective schools. It’s just always been that way it seems. It’s a LOT of letters to organize…..

  • 908. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    @897- I heard that it was in either the teens or low 20’s last year but your best bet is to call the main office and see if they are willing to give you a feel as to your number. Perhaps if you do not receive a call during this school year, call right before school lets out for the summer and see where they are on the list?

  • 909. DIImom  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:54 pm

    @899- as a DII parent I am not nervous about sharing space. Marshall students are people- just because they go to Marshall doesn’t mean they aren’t good kids! Seriously, sounds like someone doesn’t look at the big picture. DII families look forward to the challenge of expanding.

  • 910. LSII mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    @897 – We were @ 16(?) in tier 3 and were called in mid June. Not too sure about tier 4. #55 may be a bit difficult, sorry.

  • 911. Jaded neighborhood Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:57 pm

    @ 902 –” having had my child in the Old Irving “Kid Watch” daycare until he was 3, zero contact with Marshall. Even if there was, why would anyone “nervously react” to Marshall kids”…………………,Having a kid in a nearby daycare is not the same as sharing a building with 12-15 year olds, sorry if this is not what you want to hear.

  • 912. Jaded neighborhood Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    @909 ” DII families look forward to the challenge of expanding.”……….I am glad you speak for the Dll families

  • 913. DIImom  |  March 22, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    @911 you really have no idea- Kidwatch is already sharing a building Marshall? Please get your facts straight.

  • 914. Jaded neighborhood Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:00 pm

    Before you bash my comments about the new Dll location do me a favor on April 1, when the kids come back from spring break observe dismissal at TM Middle school. That is all you need to do.

  • 915. DIImom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    @914- actually I have because I have picked up a friend’s child at Kidwatch. Thanks for your concern- the DII families will be just fine.

  • 916. Jaded neighborhood Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    Once again Dll mom, how middle school kids react to a baby (3 year old), and how they react to other 12-15 years olds is DIFFERENT. that’s my POINT. I am sure some parents will appreciate this opinion as they make high school decisions. If you don’t like it fine, but all I am saying is that parents need to be informed.

  • 917. Jaded neighborhood Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:04 pm

    @dll mom, You have spoken to all the Dll families and potential high school families? Aren’t you wonderful.

  • 918. HS Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    Sorry Jaded but the daycare shares the same building as Marshall. It was awesome to see how excited the kids were at graduation photos on the steps etc. The daycare uses the building/outside extensively with the little kids – again zero problems. Fortunately many people who are not jaded.

  • 919. BuenaParkMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:07 pm

    901 Inter-American has and English waitlist (E) and a Spanish waitlist (S). So for the kindergarten and on they possibly have four waitlists: General English, General Spanish, Sibling English, Sibling Spanish. For their Entry Point (PreK 4) there are 12 waitlists: Sibling Spanish, Sibling English, Proximity Spanish, Proximity English, Tier 1 Spanish, Tier 1 English, Tier 2 Spanish, Tier 2 English, Tier 3 Spanish, Tier 3 English, Tier 4 English, Tier 4 Spanish.

  • 920. Jaded neighborhood Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:09 pm

    @918 Well I have had direct negative interactions, not sure why Dll mom felt the need to personally invalidate my interactions. if you two had happy and warm fuzzy interactions beautiful BUT My goal is to provide info like everyone else commenting there is good and bad. Sheesh……..

  • 921. lisa  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:10 pm

    901 – E is for English

  • 922. Jaded neighborhood Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:11 pm

    Once again Dll mom, how middle school kids react to a baby (3 year old), and how they react to other 12-15 years olds is DIFFERENT. that’s my POINT. I am sure some parents will appreciate this opinion as they make high school decisions. If you don’t like it fine, but all I am saying is that parents need to be informed.

  • 923. Chicago Mama  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:12 pm

    @ Jaded – I’m not speaking for all Disney II families; only for myself.

    I’m not sure what your point is. Are you concerned that Disney II families will freak out about the culture of TMMS /TMMS students/families? Are you concerned that Disney II families will add to the traffic around the St. Alvernia building? Or are you a would-be Audubon HS parent?

    I’ve heard both from the building’s neighbors at various times. Truthfully, as a neighbor of the building myself, I have been more inconvenienced by the daycare peeps than the invisible population of TMMS. Even during dismissal times, of which I’ve seen quite a few. Yes, kids are rowdy and swearing. I’ve yet to see a HS/MS at dismissal time that was calm and cool. Even the Disney II dismissal can be a bit rowdy as older kids are just dismissed into the ether

  • 924. FirstTimer  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    I fear a very helpful thread of over 900 postings is moving downhill fast. Can we quell the DII discussions and get back to general letter results? And then hopefully a brand spankin’ knew SEES thread will be started tomorrow and we will begin reading many, many positive result postings!!!

  • 925. @922  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:14 pm

    How would you like it if someone spoke about your child and his/her school the way you are speaking about the TM students?

  • 926. SkinnerMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:16 pm

    ” having had my child in the Old Irving “Kid Watch” daycare until he was 3, zero contact with Marshall”…….but Disney ll high school kids will have contact with Marshall kids, right? The experience might be different than comparing it to a daycare. I Hardly think a middle school kid would even look twice at a preschooler. I looked up the stats on TM Middle and wow, does not look good. Had not thought about the co-share until jaded mom mentioned it. I would be lying to say it does temper some of my excitement. Something to think about.

  • 927. SkinnerMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:21 pm

    @924 the Disney ll location was mentioned earlier in the thread several times and since it is part of the whole drama of where we send our kids to school, sort of feel the comment was appropriate. The blog is about information, good, bad, and ugly. Jaded had a bad experience and Dll a good experience, both comments are valuable and helpful to me as a parent dealing with the whole cps drama :). Thank you jaded and Dll mom, I appreciate BOTH viewpoints.

  • 928. 10littletoes  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    Ugh!! We have not received a letter yet! Annoying.

  • 929. nervousmia  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    Um, as someone that has been obsessively reading this for the last 2 days… ENOUGH about D2 or WHATEVER you all are calling it at this point. Exchange email addresses, take it outside our WHATEVER. You sound obnoxious, and sophomoric. Now, can we get back to the serious matter of when the heck the next mail delivery will be here?????

  • 930. Frank  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:25 pm

    I love a peacemaker skinner mom. I won’t comment on the Dll location because those who know my viewpoints know i tend to side with the neighborhood schools. I do wonder how the TM Marshall families feel about the co-share, wonder if they were asked for their input or opinion? Just a wondering……..

  • 931. Frank  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    @929….. Shame Shame, no personal attacks on people. “You sound obnoxious, and sophomoric”

  • 932. Cps mama  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    @929……never understood why one comment or opinion is more valuable over another. Listing your wait list number is more important that actually discussing the schools we are applying to?

  • 933. nervousmia  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    Hey, I was trying to be funny and bust up what looked like a couple of people seriously at odds. Chill for heaven’s sake.

  • 934. Cps mama  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    Frank, I love your wondering.

  • 935. Gabby  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    Do you have an alert on your blackberry that goes off when people start bickering back and forth? 🙂

  • 936. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    Sigh. No…..

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 937. HS Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    @926 – Will they have direct contact? Currently the daycare has it’s own entrance and hallways blocked off. I assume they will be relocating to accommodate the new plan. Maybe some DII families in the know will have better information on how the transition will be made. I don’t think any assumptions about the plan should be considered valid until announced.

  • 938. teachermom  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    Not sure if it is a good parallel, but I know Edison RGC parents and Albany park parents whose children share a building, and I have heard nothing but positives about the building share. Like CPSO said earlier, a school(students) on paper can be one limited glimpse sometimes. I am optimistic and thrilled that more high schools options are opening up in the area.

  • 939. Chicago Mama  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    Frank, I’m sure that TMMS, like Disney II, wasn’t asked about a co-lo. They were told. It’s not like CPS is overly transparent about their processes. Also, I went to BOTH o’Hare network community meetings and the only people who showed up from TMMS were staff. A teacher spoke at meeting #1, the principal came but did not speak at meeting #2. What is kind of the untold story in this is that TMMS is not really a neighborhood school in the way we generally define them to be. It is physically located at Lawndale and Byron, but its feeder schools are all outside the neighborhood. If you look at the CPS map, there’s no overlay with the independence park neighborhood at all. TMMS students come in and leave on busses. http://littleshoulders.blogspot.com/2013/02/utilization-meeting-round-two.html?m=1

  • 940. cheezie  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    @ 894 , was tier 2 WL #12 last year and no call

  • 941. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    Suggestion – so I don’t need to turn the car around because you kids aren’t talking nicely to each other….

    Opinions about schools are welcome. Just try to state them as your own opinion and not speculating or representing what a larger group thinks. Ie: “I wouldn’t feel comfortable sending my kids to school xyz because….” Rather than “northside parents think xyz.”. People may not agree with your opinion, but ultimately it’s your own.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 942. HS Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 6:16 pm

    @938 agreed. Also Ogden and LaSalle II

    @939 interesting info. If this is not really a neighborhood school, how will it work. Will there be any neighborhood component to DII HS.

    @899 “I anticipate a lot of problems, Marshall kids feeling squeezed out of their own school and Disney 2 parents nervously reacting to the Marshall kids and families”

    Maybe 12 and 13 yo’s need to be “nervous” about high schoolers. Maybe no one needs to be “nervous” about anyone.

  • 943. BuenaParkMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    “Mom, he’s on my side of the line!” 🙂
    Just kidding 🙂

  • 944. Jen K  |  March 22, 2013 at 6:40 pm

    @942: D2 is a magnet school K-12 with 2 locations; both still lottery. No known neighborhood component at this point although at least one neighborhood group has requested it.

  • 945. Iheoma  |  March 22, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    It’s so clear that people are really stressed. I hope that with the coming weekend people can get a bit of a break and take a breath from all of this.

  • 946. Stacey Nichols  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    Another mom with a child in my daughters pre k class said she got a letter yesterday. The only magnet she applied him to is Disney ii and he is #17. Does he even have a shot?

  • 947. local  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:30 pm

    It’d be great for CPS to move the Disney II principal to a “failing” school so she could create something great there too! Just keep replicating her success. The southside needs her.

  • 948. Inter-American Dad  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:49 pm

    @896 I would assume that as wait list #1 for English at inter-American, you will have no problem getting in. Does your child already know some Spanish? Speaking as someone with a pre-k English child there now, I’m shocked at how much Spanish he already knows after less than one year there, and how far behind he would be if he started in K with no Spanish knowledge.

    For what it’s worth, we’ve really loved it there, but we got a spot at Hawthorne for K and plan on transferring. A least you know there will be one open spot!

  • 949. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:16 pm

    More D2 musings…I wouldn’t think that in this situation the two schools could be walled off from each other. Too much of the building will need to be used by both schools…a middle school and high school share seems way different than a couple of Pk rooms attached to a middle school.

    The ERGC and APMA share is probably the closest comparison we have to go on that I can think of on the north side. But even that is pretty different since ERGC has little ones and APMA does not. I can say that the schools function just about as separately as can be expected without being walled off from each other. Computer labs, science labs, and even the art spaces are separate. Start time, recess times, and end times are different. Library, gym, and cafeteria are shared, but not at the same time. Obviously the hallways are shared. Older students from both schools use the top two floors, while K through 3 are on the first floor. Generally, the share has been fine. The APMA kids are respectful and supportive of the little ones (example: even though their school is only 7&8th grade, they come out into the halls to watch the little kids in their costumes during the Halloween parade and cheer them on just like the ERGC upper grades do). As for the kids who are the same age…I think they basically just ignore each other. There haven’t been fights or bullying or anything like that. One kid’s comment was just that the APMA kids curse a lot 😉

  • 950. Newberrymama  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:44 pm

    There have been a number posts asking about Newberry. I have a current 4th grader at Newberry and we love it. I received my acceptance letter for my younger son – entering K for next year. My understanding in talking with famlies here, there were more than 30 Newberry siblings applying for K. Since there are two K classes at the school with 28 kids each – this means there was less than one class full of kids accepted in K other than siblings. I think this is a higher number of Newberry siblings entering than in years past. Those families are more likely accept the school which may have an impact on how far down they get down on the wait list this year. The school is having several open houses after Spring Break and I would encourage any families who have been accepted or have a low wait list number to attend the open house.

  • 951. Portage Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:46 pm

    @946 You never know. A wait list number of 17 seems high. Every year is different so it’s hard to tell how far they will get off the wait lists We had a wait list of 5 for K entry in 2011/2012 school year and were told our chances weren’t good yet we did get in. They were going based on past years experience and based on past years, we wouldn’t have got in. I spoke to another parent who had a wait list number of 12 for Tier 4 and her daughter got in over the summer.

    Every year is different given some parents even when offered a spot, will continue at private, or move out of the area or choose a selective enrollment, another magnet/neighborhood (if given multiple offers). I know having gone through the process before, you want information on prior years results just so you have some hope that your child might get into a good school. I remember being told on the NPN board, that a neighbor had #1 on the wait list for proximity and never received a call because no one had turned down their spot. Each year is different.

  • 952. HS Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:48 pm

    @949 – just as an FYI the daycare is pretty big. It goes infant to 5 years and when we were there years ago there were 2 corridors of classrooms, infant/toddler facilities and offices.

    I can definitely see that some facilities like gym would need to be shared.

    I thought that DII is proposed to take over the building eventually – similar to Ogden or LaSalle II.

  • 953. junieb  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:06 pm

    Suder-General 314
    Hawthorne-Tier 1 39
    LaSalleII- Tier 1 23
    STEM- Proximity 14
    Galileo Tier 1 73
    Jackson Tier 1 134

    How likely is STEM? any one know how far they got down the list last year?

  • 954. WRogersMom (and Dad)  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    @834 – Thanks for that great information about the field at Thorp! It’s a relief to hear that there is some space (and time) for physical activity. We can’t imagine keeping these kids cooped up for a whole day. That must get *really* crazy! We’re keeping our fingers (and everything else) crossed while we wait for the SEES letters over the next several days. Good luck to everyone out there!

  • 955. Mom22boys  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:22 pm

    @950- thank you very much for the info. We don’t have acceptance but we are #7 – tier 4. We are hopeful for the call. Or were hopefull based on last few years WL numbers. With what you said it might be difficult :(.
    We heard great things about Newberry and would love to land there.

  • 956. Jen  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:43 pm

    Does anyone have any experience of a later grade entry into Jackson? I’m a little concerned about my daughter going into 4th grade and any potential language delay. She’s been learning Spanish since age 4 but I see they teach other languages too. Who chooses what language they get, and are the 4th graders at a level I can help her catch up to (Mandarin and Japanese are the only two I don’t speak but I could learn)?

  • 957. Wildhundreds  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:54 pm

    PK3 Results. Wait List. Tier 3:

    Drummond 19
    Mayer 24
    Suder 36

    We have DD in a great private preschool now, so we weren’t really looking to move her yet. I was just curious to see what our outcome would be.

    A couple of people have made a reference to the lower the tier, the better chance a family has of getting off the wait list. How can this be if they pull from all the wait lists equally? Or are people arguing that families from, say, tier 1 are more likely to turn down spots (because . . .?) which means that their list moves faster?

  • 958. EK  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:55 pm

    I know the conversation has been a little dominated by the DII/TMMS talk, but I dropped off my form for DII today for K for my child who was at KidWatch (daycare in the TMMS buidling) since he was 3 months old…and I asked the admissions coordinator at DII about the situation. First of all, everything is “proposed” at this point, and nothing is 100% certain. Secondly, the entire top floor of TMMS is apparently unused, so that’s the proposed space for the DII expansion. The neighborhood organization would like to make sure it has more neighborhood acceptance (i.e., from Murphy), and that KidWatch isn’t affected – KW is on the first floor, with a separate entrance. There might be some auditorium/gym/cafeteria sharing (as far as I know, only 1 of each of these in the building), but I think the idea is to have separate facilities when they can. I guess my point is that at DII, they are really emphasizing that the details are being worked on, and nothing is in stone yet. So, I feel comfortable personally with a wait and see approach – although I really hope they don’t bump KidWatch, as it’s a GREAT daycare…

  • 959. Waitlisted  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:12 pm

    Yesterdays letter was, as we expected, “waitlisted” even before it was stamped. Meaning,
    T3 for K:
    – Wildwood 36,
    – LaSalle2 56,
    – D2 – 64

    Seven others getting dizzy of high numbers. What a waste time and energy. After first wave of acceptance letters, I was hoping to have at least one reasonable shot on 1 out of 10 Magnets we apply. Just to have “silent” hope for a later. No, “after this point leave all your hope behind”. Good thing I was reading CPS application process where they say “it is very important to consider your child’s need/talents, etc, etc….what a hypocrites. I have only one advise to all poor people that are waitlisted within first #20. Do not listen optimists on this blog, or anywhere else. They based their “ther is a hope” according to previous years. But this one is DIFFERENT. Before, all school letters were going out together. Now, we have to wait until May 21st. Until then everything will be decided (99% I am sure), so it would be – take it, or leave it! This year us different, because they are closing @ least 25% of schools, meaning less available seats for outbound kids, meaning NO movement.
    So, optimists, please don’t give us false hopes, because our chances to get accepted are at least minimal.
    Off course, SEES letters are coming (hopefully tomorrow) and we all wish our kid scored great. But, what if not great enough?

  • 960. Chicago Mama  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:22 pm

    @959 – there is always hope. This is just the first communication. When my oldest was going into K, I applied to 29 schools. He got into 0 of them and didn’t even get WL #s at many of them.

  • 961. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:23 pm

    I forgot to add our WL numbers. Received letter on Friday. Wasn’t planning on leaving our school at all, we just always apply because with CPS you never know what’s coming next.

    3rd grade entry, tier 4, but all general waitlist since it’s not an entry year:

    Thorp 24
    Lasalle II 31
    Hawthorne 83
    Jackson 20
    Disney II 90
    Franklin 55
    Lasalle 25


  • 962. Pie Chart Professor  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:28 pm

    If (you) had to choose between South Loop Elem and LaSalle II, what are some pros and cons? Just weighing my options in case I get a call from LaSalle II and want to make a more informed decision.

  • 963. Portage Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 12:08 am

    A good source to find some overlooked schools that have good scores or they have made significant improvements is to see which schools received IL honor roll awards. Disney II won an award for excellence. You see some of the typical schools that you would expect. I took a look at some of the schools which had very impressive results yet I had never heard them mentioned here or on other forums.


  • 964. ap mama  |  March 23, 2013 at 12:10 am

    Supreme court justice Thurgood Marshall must be rolling in his grave with all this Marshall/D2 talk! He served as a member of the supreme court when it ruled against school segregation in ’69! If they can’t wall off the 2 schools, maybe they can just install separate water fountains & restrooms for the marshall kids! When you choose to reside in the city, diversity (be it race, religon, socioeconomic class) should be a part of what you are choosing, embracing, etc…

  • 965. CPSAppalled  |  March 23, 2013 at 12:18 am

    Thank you, AP Mama, for a dose of needed reality. So true.

  • 966. NW Chicago Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 3:19 am

    @805. Comments like yours are the ones that make me saddest about the state of the system. The “school chance” not “school choice” system that CPS uses puts people in great competition for scarce benefits and works very well to incite nastiness and jealousy amongst people who would otherwise be terrific advocates for education together. It also helps make people more accepting of things that should not be okay (oh…I got into X highly-coveted school, so I dare not question the fact that 34 kids in a 1st grade class held out in a hallway, or shuttling multiple children to several schools all over town, might be a legitimate frustration).

    The system grants some families a top-notch education worth hundreds of thousands of dollars (yay for them, truly! I am glad these schools exist), while far more are excluded. The consequences of that for the most vulnerable children are tragic. While it’s hard to feel too bad for parents who have the ability to make a different choice, it’s also a lost opportunity. If all the people mad about their waitlist numbers here on CPSObsessed could band together and do something about it, wouldn’t that make a core group for an awesome school? I’d love my kids to go to school with the kids of other geeks who care enough about education to spend their time on a school blog. But the current system makes that very hard for us to do unless all the kindergarten rejects decide to move en masse to the same “underutilized” school zone. 🙂

    A neighborhood school with a track record of producing 16% of kids on track for college by 8th grade that doesn’t probe how to improve that number in their LSC meeting, like ours, does not cut it for someone who expects their children to go to college, but it may do a solid job in other areas. In some neighborhoods, parents can rally together to make a Coonley/Nettelhorst transformation happen, and that’s great, but that’s not possible in many other areas. So yes, we are privileged in that we can afford to make a choice that will improve the likelihood our children can succeed in college, but it will come at the expense of tremendous financial and personal sacrifices in the form of doubling our mortgage/taxes and our commute and making college savings nearly impossible. While I feel fortunate we can do this with a lot of belt-tightening, it makes me sad that CPS was not in our future.

  • 967. Mama Jess in the AP  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:10 am

    Right on, AP Mama! Thank you!

  • 968. DIImom  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:39 am

    @AP mom- thank you. I think people are making issues where they are not. We live in the city for a reason and I want my kids to not look at a child differently because where they live, what they look like, or how much their parents make etc. Marshall is on academic level 3 but is that the kids fault? Is it the teachers, I don’t know? I hope people get their child into the schools of their choice and if not, get involved in your child’s school. I have the ability to volunteer up to 3 times a week in my child’s class, so I see first hand that making a difference at your school does impact test scores, the overall morale if the school.

  • 969. EK  |  March 23, 2013 at 7:44 am

    @AP mom – yes. Totally agree with you. My post was just talking about the facts (or not, as I heard them) from the DII office. From my experience going to the TMMS building every day for 3 + years for daycare drop off and pick up, there was never, ever any reason for me to be concerned at all. Never even occurred to me. I think if DII and TMMS have enough space in the building to coexist, it can totally work. Can’t see why it couldn’t.

  • 970. Formerly working mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 8:20 am

    Parents of kids interested in STEM:

    STEM Website
    The STEM Magnet Academy website is up and running. For the latest information on our school, please visit us at http://www.STEMMagnetAcademy.com.

  • 971. CPSAppalled  |  March 23, 2013 at 8:38 am

    Amen, sister! I too feel the pain and frustration of all the parents on this site who were left holding an empty bag. “The ‘school chance’ not ‘school choice’ system that CPS uses puts people in great competition for scarce benefits”–I couldn’t agree more. CPS has put an unbeatable system into place whereby parents fight over scarce crumbs instead of asking, why isn’t there more cake for all the children? This really seems like a case of the emperor’s new clothes…..

  • 972. FirstTimer  |  March 23, 2013 at 8:42 am

    Not to wax too philosophical, but we’re reading “The Little Prince” at home – a few chapters a night – and we just read this section which felt very appropriate with some of this thread’s recent banter:

    Grown-ups love figures. When you tell them that you have made a new friend, they never ask you any questions about essential matters. They never ask you, “What does his voice sound like? What games does he love best? Does he collect butterflies?” Instead they demand: “How old is he? How many brothers has he? How much does he weigh? How much money does his father make?” Only from those figures do they think they have learned anything about him.

    Here’s hoping we all keep our sanity throughout this process and remember that in the end, within all the neighborhoods and boundaries and commutes and magnets and selections, there are just a bunch of kids who will soon have the opportunity to meet a lot of new friends.

  • 973. Chicago Mama  |  March 23, 2013 at 8:44 am

    Jaded has done a very good job of injecting doubt and fear into the Disney H.S. conversation where there wasn’t any. My sense is that few current Disney II families share her concerns, but of course none of us can accurately predict how other families (whose students are admitted under the magnet lottery as the school expands) may feel.

    I think TMMS’s academic failing has little to do with its administration and education quality and more to do with how behind its students are when they arrive. If you are looking to “blame” someone, blame the administrations for TMMS’s feeder schools: Volta, Barry, Falconer, etc.

  • 974. Mama Jess in the AP  |  March 23, 2013 at 8:45 am

    What a beautiful reminder. Thank you.

  • 975. Jen K  |  March 23, 2013 at 9:04 am

    @973 Agreed – I’m not aware of any D2 families on this blog who have posted concerns about our children co-locating with TMMS.

  • 976. mommy gigi  |  March 23, 2013 at 9:58 am

    Once again we applied for our dd but this time to K and yet again without any offers. I applied to 10 magnet schools. I’m still waiting on 8 magnet cluster schools, 1 charter and 1 school that I had to apply at the school. I don’t really understand the tiers. So each school takes a few in from each tier?
    Best on the waiting list: tier 3
    Lasalle II – 2
    Thorp O – 51
    Lasalle – 73

    All the others are three digits, drummond being the worst in general with a number of 851. 😦
    I’m hoping lasalle II calls me back and we should wait until may for the other letters!

  • 977. HS Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:05 am

    My last comments on Disney, if it is useful to anyone

    @973 – totally agree.a 6-8 stand alone school would only reflect scores of the incoming population. There would be no opportunity for teachers to work on building scores. I think this would be another argument against this type of school format.

    @969 – yes, this was my experience too. I think that it’s a very good indication that the environment is safe when people entrust the security of their babies to this school.

    Lastly, between the daycare and the empty space, this building is vastly underused for it’s purpose as a school. I’m glad that Disney will revitalize the space this way. So, looks like another Von Steuben type arrangement???? I think it’s a good idea.

  • 978. local  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:13 am

    @ 964. ap mama | March 23, 2013 at 12:10 am

    If placement decisions are simple, then all parents/guardians could just send their kids to the neighborhood schools. Right?

    My dream, of course, is a completely integrated society.

  • 979. local  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:23 am

    My own experience in elite schools showed me how students and their families wind up clustered (frequently) by class and race (to a remarkable extent. These “separations” seem to increase as the child moves from primary school up through, oh, maybe into college. It’s always interesting to ask oneself: Whose living room am I hanging in? FWIW.

  • 980. local  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:27 am

    @ 966. NW Chicago Mom | March 23, 2013 at 3:19 am

    Thank you!

  • 981. HS Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:28 am

    @956 Jackson tutors kids who enter language later. If your daughter has had Spanish they will probably put her in there so that she doesn’t need tutoring. The Japanese teacher is awesome.

  • 982. Uptownz  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:39 am

    Got our letter this week for Pre K.

    Waitlisted for Tier 1:

    Drummond #1
    Mayer #45

    Are the odds good at Drummond that the list will in fact move?

  • 983. JLM  |  March 23, 2013 at 12:59 pm

    @981 HS Mom – Did your child(ren) attend Jackson? Any thoughts? And any idea how deep they go down the waitlist? We’re tier 4, #13.

  • 984. Newberrymama  |  March 23, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    @955 I still think there is a shot for people on the waitlists – particularly with a number under 10. I am reading older posts of people who were accepted to 5 magnet schools (Newberry included) and they can’t attend all of them. (Those people really need to go out an buy loto tickets! What unbelieveable luck.) Make sure that you contact the school and let them know of your interest. Make sure that they have all your best contact info – correct cell/email etc. so that as they are getting rejections, they don’t miss you because they only give 24 hours to respond before calling the next family on the list. Good luck. I would love to welcome you to the Newberry family next year and attend K with my son.

  • 985. HS Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    @983 – JLM – we did go to Jackson and got in first round under the old system. Unfortunately, there is not much movement in their lists. If they make it to your number, don’t hesitate about accepting. It’s really a nice school. Great diversity. The teachers are exceptional and do all that they can to support the kids (like the language tutoring).

  • 986. lakeviewmama  |  March 23, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    Mail carrier just came and went: how can it be that we have still not received our letter? This is cruel to have to wait until it Monday… Our friends, neighbors, and preschool playmates, all seem to have heard re: Kindergarten magnets. Anyone else,out there still waiting? Should I call OAE if no news in Monday’s mail?

  • 987. Stacey Nichols  |  March 23, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    Mail came for today here to and no letter. I’d be worried that CPS doesn’t have our new address except I did get a questionnaire for inter American a few weeks ago.
    Waiting till Monday…

  • 988. luvchicago  |  March 23, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Have a question. I have to admit I’m a bit unfamiliar with CPS but threw my hat in the ring anyhow for my pre-K son for next year. Prefer private school but the cost savings with CPS is tempting. Son got into Disney II but is #7 for Disney I. Waitlist for others are not worth mentioning. Should I:
    1. Enroll him at Disney II
    2. Take a chance and wait for Disney I.
    3. Send him to St.Ben’s but have to pay the tuition.
    I’m pretty stressed ’bout this so any direction would be appreciated.

  • 989. Waiting  |  March 23, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    PreK at Disney II is great. Love Mr. Manasis (I know I spelled that wrong, it’s been a few years) and all the other teachers. I’d jump at it. I’m assuming TBPK – I don’t know anything about PFA.

  • 990. DIImom  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    My daughter went one year to another CPS PreK & the 2nd year to Disney II PREK. It was like night and day. At Disney II, it head of the game. They start reading in the second year and as a regular volunteer in the kindergarten class, you can tell which kids attended DII and the ones that didnt.
    You will definitely be impressed with Ms Wang who is the PreK teacher. She is amazing with the kids.

  • 991. luvchicago  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:03 pm

    Just to clarify, this is for Kindergarten.

  • 992. LynnJ  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    @Bebe, HP Mom and others, thanks for the feedback on Ray, Murray, Lenart, and McDade.

  • 993. DIImom  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:10 pm

    I know first hand about the kindergarten program at DII. My son was in Mrs. Girard’s class last year and my daughter is in Mrs Callaghan’s class this year. Both the kindergarten teachers are top notch. Both of my kids excel in the program there and they are completely different. If you are interested in talking more, let me know. I could get some of the other kindergarten moms together and talk to you about the program.

  • 994. cpsobsessed  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:10 pm

    @lovchicago – I’d write out the list of cons (cost) and pros of st ben’s.
    I know it’s a well regarded school, but I don’t know the cost. And only you can decide that personal tradeoff. Do you or will you have another child in school? A lot of people I’ve known start off gung ho about private but when they start having to pay for 2 kids it becomes more painful.
    How has tuition risen there? Some schools jack it up a lot each year.
    How much do you value the religious aspect?
    Location? Diversity? Hours??
    Sounds like you have 2 good options so be assured whatever you choose you can’t really go wrong.
    I will point out – st ben’s will always be there – how hard is it to get in later?
    This is probably your one shot at a top magnet.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 995. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:11 pm

    @991 luvchicago If this is for kindergarten, you can accept at Disney II, even register, and if they get to your number at Disney I they will call you to see if you want the spot, even if the school year has already started at Disney II. If you prefer Disney I over Disney II then be sure to be checking in with the school every now and then to see where they are on the wait list. Also to let them know you are interested. But, Disney II is a fine school. Have you toured both?

    People do seem to like St. Ben’s as well but personally I’d go for Disney II or Disney I, but that is just me. I’m not crazy about the idea of spending money on parochial or private school if one can get into a good public school. But, others prefer what Catholic school has to offer. I guess it just depends on what you really want in a school for your child. Try to tour any of the three that you have not already toured before the acceptance deadline. Disney and Disney II will likely have tours that they can tell you about if you call.

  • 996. Jen  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:13 pm

    Thanks for the Jackson info, I think I will call them once spring break is over to get more info on the tutoring, assuming there isn’t a SEES offer in our future…

  • 997. Also Wondering  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:28 pm

    Disney I usually gets pretty far into their wait list because they have so many classes. I would think you’d get a call pretty early in the process if that location is a better fit for you. Definitely a good idea to tour both DIsneys.

  • 998. ChicagoMomofBoys  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    I truly don’t mean this negatively, but what is it about Disney II that makes it feel like sorority rush? Whenever it’s mentioned on this board, current parents appear out of the woodwork to begin the initiation process. I’ve never seen anything like it in my life… well, except for college.

  • 999. LynnJ  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    @chicagomomofboys I visited Disney 2 last year and the school would not be a good fit for my child and family. It did not feel inclusive and warm to me. When u know something is right it feels right and i did not feel “it” when i visited. Just my experience so please D2 fans don’t jump all over me.

  • 1000. tier 3  |  March 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm

    FYI: called STEM about open house scheduling; they’re going to notify families who were offered spots with info on tours soon, “definitely before April 12th”. The person who answered the phone mentioned they thought acceptances would be sent in May so weren’t prepared with open house dates.

  • 1001. FormerStemFamily  |  March 23, 2013 at 5:14 pm


    Our Review of STEM Magnet Academy

    We voted with our feet, and it was the best decision we ever made.

    STEM was terrible in so many ways that we were happy to go through the awful CPS application process again and take our chances. I will refrain from posting the abuse I have witnessed and endured at this school as it seems there are some overzealous commenters ready to discredit any negative postings.

    We fully embraced this school, its vision, and all of its policies. We meticulously followed all the rules and accepted harsh penalties without complaint. Despite this, we never experienced any success in the classroom or with the administration. If anything, our alacrity was met with suspicion and our child regarded as a nuisance.

    Life with STEM was incredibly stressful, provided little benefit, and brought active harm, both intellectual and physical. I am not the only one who feels this way; teachers and students have been leaving STEM in large numbers since its inception.

    Though some characterize these problems as growing pains, I am unwilling to sacrifice my family to participate in their fumbled experiment. The entire system is replete with failure, from the dismal curriculum to the misguided penal system. I don’t doubt that STEM can grow into a better school, but your angry, uneducated children will be the stepping stones to this glorious future.

  • 1002. FormerStemFamily  |  March 23, 2013 at 5:48 pm

    STEM Thread:


  • 1003. Sped Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:37 pm

    We had our eyes opened when we had to transfer our child from a Catholic grade school to the neighborhood CPS grade school, in terms of cost. We spent the same amount for each.


    Due to hours of operation, our Catholic school tuition plus on-campus aftercare = CPS nebe school before- and after-care from private provider.

    We had naively assumed that a year in public school would be “free.” Nope. It cost the same.

    BTW, this is a two-career household with 9-to-5 working parents.

  • 1004. Still a STEM mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    @ 1001 I don’t doubt that you had a bad experience at STEM, but teachers have not left in large numbers. The science teacher left. (According to him, to work with older kids, but who really knows?) All of the homeroom teachers, the gym, technology, art, engineering, reading specialist, social worker etc. remained. I know of one family that left. There may be a few others, but certainly not the large numbers you’re talking about. You’ll have a lot more credibility if you stick to the facts.

    On another topic, it’s nice to be staying put this year and experiencing the lottery vicariously through cpso. I’ve had enough CPS mailbox watches to remove about ten years from my life!

  • 1005. Chicago Mama  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:40 pm

    @998 – hmm, I didn’t realize that the D2 parents were coming across that way. I think there is a lot of excitement around the school and a real desire to welcome new families into the school. I remember feeling very lost and nervous when my son entered PK at an RC school and I always felt like an outsider in the school community. I would hate for someone to feel like that at Disney II, and I’m sorry to read @LynnJ that you have.

  • 1006. Portage Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:45 pm

    @998ChicagoMomofBoys , 999Lynn J – We all have to go with our gut feeling about what would work for respective families. This is only my opinion, I do feel Disney II is inclusive. I never toured the school before I accepted the spot at Disney II. I didn’t bother touring any of the schools because in some ways what would it matter given the lottery process so I waited to see what school if any my daughter could get into for K. I did all my research from this blog and information I could obtain from NPN. I kept looking for more info on DII and couldn’t find much compared to the other schools. This was the only place we got an offer from within CPS and so I took it. The PTA organized several incoming K playdates over the summer which helped me get to know what the school like. I wasn’t sure if DII would be a great fit given I’m a single parent whose chiid’s dad is not in the picture. I have met several parents who are in similar circumstances at DII which didn’t seem likely at first glance.

    If current parents are rushing to answer questions about DII, my thinking is we remember what it was like to be looking for information and finding so little about DII. That’s my guess anyway. If that compares to rushing for a sorority, I wouldn’t know since that wasn’t anything I ever contemplated joining during college. I also know that everyone is entitled to their opinion about a school. What works for some doesn’t for others.

    My daughter has made a lot of friends at school. Interestingly enough so have I which is unusual since my circle of friends tend to be small but now I have an additional 14 mom friends from my daughter’s school. Actually there maybe more. My old friends think it’s weird and maybe it is but I guess I like weird. This is only our second year at DII and my experience so far has been good. Perhaps DII is not for everyone, I can respect that. The school has been a good fit for our family. I will leave it at that.

  • 1007. West Andersonville  |  March 24, 2013 at 8:54 am

    Our letter came Thursday.

    Tier 4 waitlist: Franklin 274
    Disney 298
    Disney II 47
    LaSalle 449
    LaSalle II 227
    Jackson 199
    Hawthorne 37
    Newberry 186
    General waitilist: Wildwood 220
    Inter-American E 75
    Proximity waitlist: Stone 183

    Does anyone see any glimmer of hope on this list? I don’t. The lowest #s we have are for Hawthorne(37) and Disney II(47), which, from what I understand, have some of the least movement. Well, hopefully our results can make someone out there feel better for their lot:)

    Our neighborhood school is Trumbull, which is on the closing list. Geographically, it appears that we will be redirected to Chappell, which based on test scores,doesn’t look great, but does anyone have any real life experience there?

    Would love to hear any input!

    BTW, thank you for this website, CPSO and all parents who give input. It has been invaluable for us while navigating this web of insanity!

  • 1008. Stacey Nichols  |  March 24, 2013 at 9:04 am

    What info/thought/etc does anyone have on Lloyd? Besides what I’ve been able to find online (great schools, cps, etc)
    It seems it’s not a very good school, low academic standing, on probation. And from what I’ve learned, it’s my daughters only option if the many schools (magnet, gifted, etc) that i applied her to end up falling thru whenever the letters get here.

  • 1009. cpsobsessed  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:26 am

    @ West andersonville:
    I would take another look at the Chappell test scores.
    It is a level 1 school with scores well above the CPS average, despite not being one of the “hot” schools among the gentrified set (yet.)
    Also very good ratings from students and teachers here:

    I haven’t been in the school yet but have heard great things about it. I will likely be having that as my new neighborhood school as well. I think it’s definitely worth a look.

  • 1010. WLParent  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:38 am

    @1009: Chappell is a good school. We can’t expect all the kids are smart and do well on the test. The bright kids usually got a spot in SEHS. My friend’s daughters graduated from Chappell and they all went to Northside College Prep.

  • 1011. anonymouse teacher  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:39 am

    Lloyd lost their incredible principal last year. The LSC ousted him and the implication was that he wasn’t Latino so they didn’t want him.(he was Asian, but spoke fluent Spanish) I can tell you I interviewed with him and this is what he said: (paraphrased) “Working at Lloyd is not for the faint of heart. We are here to serve and help and to get results. There’ll be long meetings and collaboration and you’ll give your life away here. You won’t have much of a life outside of work if you take this job. We’re going to look closely at what we are doing to see if it works, and where it doesn’t, it is up to us to change our methodology.”
    I was offered a job there and would have taken it because I loved his commitment to children but it was for an upper grade and I only like working with younger kids. The school itself is underperforming, but the area is low income so that isn’t surprising.
    Without him, I’d say this is not an option. They did seem to have some really good teachers there though, so if private or moving is not possible, you could do it for one year. I will tell you they had 39 kids in their kindergarten rooms (and of course, no aide) until November that year, when the BOE finally approved another teacher to reduce the total kindergarten numbers so that there’d only be 30 or so in each room.

  • 1012. teachermom  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:47 am

    I am a bit relieved and comforted by the Disney 2 posts. I still have lots of questions about the school but I will just save them for school events, etc. Thank you to those sharing on the blog though. It’s really appreciated! I am thrilled my son will be attending there in the fall. It’s unfortunate our neighborhood school was not an option (42 in each K class for over half this school year). We do love the staff at our neighborhood school, but that is just way too big.

  • 1013. Stacey Nichols  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:47 am

    Unfortunately we just moved here a few months ago. We were in a bad situation at the old place (by Henry school) and had to take the first place that was big enough that we could afford.
    She is in pre k now (about 20 kids in the class) and if she doesn’t get in at the ones I applied, I’d wish she could stay there but they don’t feed into the kindergarten classes.

  • 1014. Chicago Mama  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:51 am

    This is the last thing I’ll add about D2 and that is that I’m happy to answer questions about the school offline – cpollicki at gmail.

  • 1015. cuemomof2  |  March 24, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    I saw your comment & wanted to hear a little more about your experience at STEM. Also if you knew how far they go into their waiting lists? My daughter entering K is 10 on proximity & we’re keepin our fingers crossed! I enjoyed the school tour but don’t have much else to go on aside from cpso threads I’ve been reading, mostly positive, but the negatives are pretty bad. I did feel the principle was a little short in her presresentation, like “take it or leave it” but I did get a good feeling from to other teachers: gym, art, science (was a woman?) and engineering. Any feedback you have would be grateful.

  • 1016. westtown mama  |  March 24, 2013 at 4:53 pm

    My DD is waistlisted #3 at Franklin: #6 at Newberry- Tier 2 for kindergarten. Any insight on any of the schools? I understand that there is no after care for K @ Franklin. Any suggested resource? Thanks in advance.

  • 1017. Keynn  |  March 24, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    My daughter was offered a seat at Disney and really high numbers on the other wait list. Does anyone have suggestions for before and aftercare in that area?

  • 1018. Franklin Parent  |  March 24, 2013 at 6:25 pm

    @1016 westtown mama: Franklin has after school programs for K-8. The service is provided by Right at School. But you would have to pay for that. Franklin is an excellent school. It’s relatively small – about 360 students total. It’s a great community. Basically, everyone knows each other. The K teacher is superb! My child is currently in K. We really like the school a lot!

  • 1019. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 24, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    #1013. Stacey Nichols | March 24, 2013 at 10:47 am

    If your child doesn’t get into any of the schools that you applied, I would call Lloyd and ask for a tour or may be just pop in and talk w/the new principal ~ see what his/her vision is for the school. You may like what you hear!

  • 1020. Newberrymama  |  March 24, 2013 at 8:04 pm

    @1016 westtown mama. Newberry also has Right At School programs for after school in the school building and JCYS after school programs across the street. Both are paid programs. Franklin focuses on Fine Arts and I think has approximately one class per grade. Newberry focuses on Math and Science and has roughly two classes per grade (some have 3). I am very happy with Newberry – my second child will be in the entering K class there this year. Both schools are good choices and I would encourage you to tour both schools – I think that really helps get a feel for the school environment. Newberry tour dates are posted on the front page of the school’s website: http://www.newberryacademy.org.

  • 1021. westtown mama  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    @Franklin Parent&newberrymama, thanks for the insights. We definitely have some touring to do!

  • 1022. HydeParkSAHM  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:11 am

    We got our letter on Friday for prek3…we were waitlisted at all three Montessori schools and are on the tier 3 queue.

    Suder – 54
    Mayer – 52
    Drummond – 5

    I entered the lottery just because these were the only three schools available for prek 3 kids and I wanted to go through the experience of the OAE website and process. I live in Hyde Park and sit on the LSC of our neighborhood school, which is 95% low income and African American…it’s a really cute little school in a beautiful location and I’ve been working to try to get more neighborhood support from middle income parents who might take a second look at the school…with mixed results so far. (I think there are two white families in the kindergarten class now.)

    I feel like Montessori is the best version of CPS because it’s not the typical test-prep crazed school that so many others are forced to be and it’s not just accelerated curriculum like many of the SE schools are. I personally don’t think a gifted and talented program should just be one or two grades above level…it should be way more robust and multi-faceted than that.

    I just don’t know if I’m ready for my 3-y.o to got a five-day, full day preschool program but I also don’t want to miss out on a great opportunity to get into an excellent school. It’s a really tough call. i’ve alreayd put in a $250 deposit at a local private pre-school with a 3-day half day program but if I get a call from Drummond, I’m not sure what I will do! Would love to hear feedback from anyone whose kids attend Drummond.

  • 1023. MayfairMama  |  March 25, 2013 at 8:59 am

    Still anxiously awaiting our Magnet letter. If it doesn’t come today, I think I’m going to blow a gasket.

  • 1024. Stacey Nichols  |  March 25, 2013 at 9:05 am

    I’ll have to schedule a meet at Lloyd. I hope it’s something great I hear and there is something already in the works by other parents that I can become a part of, if she doesn’t get into somewhere better. Man I hope there is some luck out there for us and an acceptance to one of the many I applied her to.

  • 1025. tiptoemole  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:30 am

    Right there with ya, MayfairMama. Really hoping to get a letter or two today!

  • 1026. local  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:56 am

    @ 1022. HydeParkSAHM | March 25, 2013 at 1:11 am

    While it wasn’t at Drummond, I did have a child in an excellent extended-day Montessori program at age 3. It was great. The kid loved it & developed well.

  • 1027. Stacey Nichols  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    Still no letter in the mail today

    How do I make sure they have our new address? We moved mid Dec. I did receive a letter with a questionnaire from inter American here. Does that mean that CPS has our correct address? Was changing it with usps and giving her current pre k teacher the address enough?

  • 1028. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    #1027~Sometimes w/USPS change of address there is a delay. Call CPS OAE and ask if they sent your letter to the correct address. (773) 553-2060 I’m not sure any1 is there since it’s spring break.

  • 1029. Megan  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:24 pm

    We applied to 20 elementary schools and got into NONE! So I am hoping to a gifted or classical seat. Do anyone know when the letters go out for classical/gifted letters are mailed? Other than that, we have no options.

  • 1030. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    Megan~what is your neighborhood school?

  • 1031. Stacey Nichols  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    Thank you so much. They do not have our new address. The woman said if te mail is not forwarded where we receive thre by thurs then I can call then back and can email it to me.

  • 1032. Stacey Nichols  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    How do I submit a form to change the address?

  • 1033. Parent of 3rd grader @ a CPS charter school.  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:11 pm

    We moved also. From a Tier 1 address to a Tier 3. I think I have better chance with the T1 address, that’s why i didn’t update with CPS. Do they automatically just use the current address on file with the current school the student is at.

  • 1034. Lloyd  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:05 pm


    I am a teacher at Lloyd. Like anonymouse teacher said, we have a new Principal and for the most part, the school’s focus (this year) has been on raising our ISAT scores to improve our Level 3 status. We finally have 3 monolingual Kindergarten rooms with about 22 students in each room. I would recommend calling Mr. Thompson and requesting a visit. Ask to visit all of the Kindergarten rooms because instruction/classroom management varies from room to room. A few teachers’ kids attend Lloyd, but to be completely truthful, I wouldn’t send my child there. Our teachers are extremely hard-working and dedicated to improving their craft but the harsh realities that our students face often impact the classroom learning environment.

  • 1035. K-Mom  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:12 pm

    This comment undoubtedly shows my lack of knowledge, but out of curiosity, what are the “top” scores for the gifted and classical tests? Like, if the kid didn’t miss anything at all? I keep hearing people say their kid scored X or Y but it means nothing without knowing what the perfect score would be.

  • 1036. cpsobsessed  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    @K-Mom, 160 for gifted is the highest I’ve seen, but I think someone was told it could go higher theoretically (sort of like IQ I guess.)

    The classical tests go up to 99.9%.

  • 1037. ap mama  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    Anyone know if the 6 mile bussing limits are “as the crow flies” like proximity or actual driving distance?

  • 1038. Mom22boys  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    I have a question on the process. If I get a call in Apr or May and accept a WL spot at a Magnet, will I still receive letters for Magnet cluster in late May and will I be able to accept those if I get in where I want?

  • 1039. ap mama  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:56 pm

    @mom22boys – Yes, you will still receive letters in May and be able to accept if you want to.

  • 1040. Mom22boys  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    Thank you

  • 1041. Chgojen  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    I am also curious about busing limits, as @1037 asked…I wish the CPS maps would also show the busing radius used for each of the schools that offer busing. I know it’s 1.5 to 6 miles, but it’s impossible to know if that’s just straight-line or driving distance, since the CPS site is soooo vague. Anyone know?

  • 1042. AP Mama  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:21 pm


    I agree, map would be awesome!

    It is determined by city blocks. Call transportation if you want them to check it for you: 773-553-2860

  • 1044. Marie  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:26 pm

    #5 for the general waitlist (second grade) @Hawthorne…Any thoughts???

  • 1045. Deng  |  March 25, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    I need help.

    My daughter was offered a spot at Skinner North for K. She was also offered a spot at Hawthorne (sibling).

    I truly love Hawthorne and I’m honestly a little scared by SN. Am I nuts for passing on a classical school?

  • 1046. Christine Whitley  |  March 25, 2013 at 8:27 pm

    Wow, you have two really awesome choices there. If you truly love Hawthorne why no go with it? I love Skinner North, we’ve been happy there. But if it “scares” you then it’s 100% OK to go with Hawthorne. Really I think your child will be fine — great — either way.

  • 1047. Cool Parent  |  March 25, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    @Deng: Congrats on both very good offers. If I were you, I would send my daughter to SN. One simple reason. She got tested in. That means she’s smart. Hawthorne is a very good school but it’s a magnet school. Any random kids can get in. It doesn’t give you the bragging right. People will look at you differently if you say your child goes to SN. Trust me. That’s the reality. =) If your daughter doesn’t like SN, she will have a pretty high chance getting back into Hawthorne next year since her sibling is already there. Deng, I’m sure you already know which school you wanted your daughter to go. Skinner North! Good luck!

  • 1048. Hopeful  |  March 25, 2013 at 8:59 pm

    1st grade
    Tier 4
    My child is wait listed #31 at Stone. Any chances since parents are accepting offers from RGC/Classical now?

  • 1049. AP Mama  |  March 25, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    @Deng- Well if “Cool Parent’s” words didn’t scare you out of SN more, I don’t know what will! I wasn’t aware that our kids were status symbols, I thought that they were human beings.

    You need to choose what feels like the best fit for your child and your family. They are both great schools, so it boils down to preference.

  • 1050. Cool Parent  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:09 pm

    @Deng: I’m not trying to scare you out of SN. I’m just telling you the truth. If I were you, I would choose SN. People look at your daughter differently too if they know your daughter goes there. It’s the perception. I don’t like to refer that as a “status symbol.” But in reality, everybody looks for the best. People criticize. As you can see on this blog, many parents brag. People like to be on the top. Let me ask you this. Why did you have your daughter take the classical test at the first place?

  • 1051. Deng  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    To make sure I had a back up option in case something went wrong with her Hawthorne application- which initially happened. Hawthorne scores almost identically to SN while taking “random kids”. SN teachers are dealt smart kids from the start. Makes me feel as though maybe, just maybe, Hawthorne has the better teachers. P.S. – No one looks at you any differently because your kid goes to SN. It’s still CPS when it comes down to it.

  • 1052. AP Mama  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:46 pm

    @Deng – sounds like you have a good head on your shoulders and you will make a good choice. Best of luck to you!

  • 1053. Deng  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Thanks AP mama. I think SN needs more parents like you and Christine. 🙂

  • 1054. Cool Parent  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:52 pm

    @Deng: SN has more % exceeds than Hawthorne in terms of scores. And Hawthorne school has less low income students so maybe that’s why it does so well. Statistically, schools with less low income students tend to do better. “No one looks at you any differently because your kid goes to SN.” Maybe. What do you mean by “It’s still CPS when it comes down to it.” ? What’s wrong with CPS? SN is #1 elementary school in Chicago. Every parents want there kids to go there!!

  • 1055. Deng  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:00 pm

    Where do you see that it’s #1? As far as I can tell its usually ranked below Decatur and Edison. And no…not everyone wants their child to go there.

  • 1056. Not bragging  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:04 pm

    SN has ranked no. 1 elementary in Illinois this year. Chicago Magazine.

  • 1057. Cool Parent  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:14 pm

    @Deng, don’t lie to yourself. =) Of all the SEES, you chose SN as the back up option. That speaks for itself. I’m not trying to scare you out of SN. Make the decision wisely. Choose what’s best for your kids and your family. If I were you, I’d choose SN. (disregard all other things I said). You said you need help so that was just my opinion.

  • 1058. Deng  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:15 pm

    I’m not seeing it. Did they just rank the schools again? The 2012 issue of Chicago magazine had SN ranked as #3- behind Edison and Decatur

  • 1059. Deng  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:19 pm

    I didn’t choose it as the first back up option…in fact I think it was my 3rd choice.

  • 1061. Deng  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:25 pm

    That’s not Chicago Magazine. I’m not arguing the fact that its a gray school. It’s on the top of the sun times list but not at the top of others. It might be a fit for us and it might not be. It’s a good problem to have.

  • 1062. Deng  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:25 pm

    Great school… Not gray

  • 1063. Stacey  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:34 pm

    I’m new to all of this & fairly lost. What happens if we accept a wait list offer to a Magnet school & then find out we were accepted at a Magnet Cluster or Open Enrollment school in May? Can we make a change or are we committed once we accept a spot at any CPS school?

    And is it really true that you have 1 day to decide? If you say yes to one & then get another call from a different wait list, can you make a change?

    Help please!

  • 1064. Open Minded Parent  |  March 26, 2013 at 1:12 am

    Deng, I know a family that has their oldest at SN first grade and second at Hawthorne in K. I think the mom is the room parent for one of the Hawthorne K classes this year. Since you are at Hawthorne, maybe you can track her down. I’m sure she could give you some good perspective.

  • 1065. Mama Jess in the AP  |  March 26, 2013 at 8:06 am

    Am I the only person who hasn’t received a Magnet letter yet? Got an offer from SEES, but I just want to make sure I know all my options. Think I should call?

  • 1066. NW Mom  |  March 26, 2013 at 8:13 am

    Any thoughts on Wildwood? I’m Intrigued by the IB program.

    We’re #4 on the wait list for 2nd grade.

    Thanks and good luck to all!

  • 1067. Thorp?  |  March 26, 2013 at 9:25 am

    Does anyone know where to find information about how much wait lists move for various schools? I’m specifically interested in Thorp, TIer 4, non-proximity. We have wait list #36 – any chance?

  • 1068. NC Mom  |  March 26, 2013 at 11:02 am

    @1065 I haven’t receive magnet letter also. I got my SEES letter yesterday but no offer. Keeping my fingers crossed for good news today.

  • 1069. Stacey Nichols  |  March 26, 2013 at 11:12 am

    Same here, SEES came today, really good scores but no acceptances. Waiting for magnet.

  • 1070. EdParent  |  March 26, 2013 at 11:46 am

    Got SEES letter. 92 on the RCG. Seems to be the lowest I’ve seen, though I’ve seen 2 others reported.

  • 1071. Citizen Brain  |  March 26, 2013 at 12:41 pm

    We are Tier 4

    Child #1 PK4
    Suder 256
    Drummond 275
    Inter-American 60E
    Mayer 88

    Child #2 Grade 3
    Hawthorne 172
    LaSalle 185
    LaSalle II 99
    Stone 65
    Franklin 24

    I didn’t really inte

  • 1072. MayfairMama  |  March 26, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    We haven’t gotten our magnet letter either. I called yesterday and they told me if we haven’t received it by Thursday, call them and they can email it.

  • 1073. GroganSon  |  March 26, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    Having gone through the process of trying to get a pre-K son into the CPS magnet/gifted school system I’d like to make a few observations: For parents that feel bummed about not getting their young one into the school (or any school) of your choice remember that you are in the majority and not in the minority. Particularly for those denied access to a gifted school please don’t take the denial as any indication of your child’s intelligence. Why? From what I can see that CPS process of student selection is non-transparent. An incredible amount of resources go into the process yet no outside auditor is involved. Why aren’t student assigned anonymous numbers along with the criteria that describe each applicant (i.e. area where they live, test scores etc). The anonymous #’s could then be posted for everyone to see and compare so that there is some satisfaction your child was given a fair chance. Why are principals still involved in the selection process? The financial implications of getting chosen for a magnet/select school are enormous why should any subjectivity be involved? Like many of you I’m from Chicago and there are probably a large % of us who suspect that the CPS selection process is not on the level. I believe in the past that this has been shown before. Finally, if all the resources and money that went into magnet/select schools (including the selection process and the cost of shipping kids to all corners of the city to the school of their choice) went to improving all CPS schools maybe EVERYONE would be better off? Why would millions be spent on Disney II when there are schools nearby that falling down?

  • 1074. InterestedInInter  |  March 26, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    Anyone have any feedback on Inter-American?

    I know there’s a new principle search. The curriculum seems to be what we were looking for to challenge our daughter. She’s been in Private Montessori for 2+ years.

    We were fortunate enough to be wait listed #1 Gen E, K.

    We also are #13 tier 4 at LaSalle II, but not sure if we’d take their offer over Inter-American (if we even were offered a spot)

  • 1075. Portage Mom  |  March 26, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    @1067 Thorp? Your best bet is to call the school and ask about last year’s wait list. I will tell you from my own experience that each year is different from the previous years given wait list movement is highly dependent on what parents do (move, opt for a private school, select another SEES or another magnet) and the number of siblings . We were wait listed #5 for Disney II and told in past years, they never went past 2 or 3 on the wait list and yet my daughter was able to get in to the school. The other thing that you don’t know is how many parents scared their child wouldn’t get in anywhere applied to schools that were so far, the commute would have been terrible. They end up giving up a spot due to sanity kicking in when it came time to accepting the spot they were offered. I believe that’s how we got our spot. I have no way of knowing this for sure but I remember reading on this blog about some south side tier 4 parents who gave up spots at Disney II. We received the offer from Disney II the day after acceptances were due to CPS.

  • 1076. I thought I was smart  |  March 27, 2013 at 9:03 am

    I’m sorry if someone has already answered this question, but does anyone know what happens to our positions on the gifted and neighborhood (not my district) wait lists if I accept at a magnet (good school, but not as close to our home)?

  • 1077. Oipfamily  |  March 27, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    Still haven’t got our magnet letter… Mail came but nothing. This process is painful enough- but this totally blows.

  • 1078. MagnetCommuter  |  March 27, 2013 at 4:45 pm

    We have a K student at STEM this year. I have seen a lot of posts here asking how far they got in the wait lists and while I have no hard facts I don’t think they got into double digits for any tier for Kindergarten. And as the grades increase each year (next year will got through 5th) there will be fewer open spaces after the sibling preference…

    We have mostly been very happy with the school this year, though Kinder is not warm and fuzzy here – it is rigorous and strict and I wish the K teachers were more gentle and sweet! But my child has learned tons and made great strides and says he loves school and his teacher at STEM. I am going to post the pros and cons from my POV on the stem thread later when I have some more time.

    Good luck everyone

  • 1079. Agupat  |  March 27, 2013 at 10:03 pm

    Hi all ….We received an offer from Galileo. Can someone share their insight about this school? Our neighborhood school, a viable option is Ravenswood but don’t know much about Galileo.

  • 1080. Even One More CPS Mom  |  March 27, 2013 at 10:19 pm

    @1079 Agupat – If your neighborhood school is Ravenswood we must be somewhat close neighbors……..Galileo is quite a hike, no? I am looking at my CPS schools map right now. One thing to consider is how that commute or bus ride would be day after day and year round, potentially for multiple (many?) years. Unless perhaps you are considering a move. Then a different story. I cannot comment further on Galileo other than in regards to the location versus where you currently live. We had to decide a year ago whether or not a drive to Division St. was worth it for us. We decided it was (while we live very near Ravenswood, it is not our neighborhood option). We do not regret that but there are certainly days when I think it would be awfully nice to be at school in 10 minutes or less.

  • 1081. Pie Chart Professor  |  March 27, 2013 at 11:06 pm

    Hi there…looking for experienced advice and comments on separating twins for K. Anyone have older twins? Did you separate them? How’d it go? Would you have done things differently?

  • 1082. CPS Mom with Questions  |  March 27, 2013 at 11:38 pm

    Is there anyone here who has personal experience with BOTH LaSalle and LaSalle II? Parent, teacher, administrator? I have some questions but they are best answered by someone who truly has some decent first hand knowledge of both schools, not just what one sees in the reports. If you are willing to answer some questions for our family, I can be reached by email at cpsmomwithquestions at gmail.com Thank you!

  • 1083. Bsmoresmom  |  March 28, 2013 at 10:16 am

    Just posted to read comments for round 2 after April 12.

  • 1084. LPmom  |  March 28, 2013 at 10:55 am

    Alcott and Alcott High are having a state of the school address on April 3. I for one will be there since my son got into D2 and I’ll have to be persuaded that Alcott’s high has a future. Anyone interested should go.

  • 1085. Stacey Nichols  |  March 28, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    Got our letter emailed today. My daughter is waitlisted at all. #9 at Sabin, #21 at Thorp and #58 at Disney ii. The rest are #100 something.
    They have us listed at our old address, we moved in Dec, which is tier 3. we are now in tier 1.

  • 1086. MayfairMama  |  March 28, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    Finally got our Magnet letter emailed to us today.
    Going into 2nd grade –
    Stone 66
    Disney II 178
    Thorp 20
    Hawthorne 203
    Wildwood 13
    Anyone want to guess what the chances are of Wildwood getting to #13 for 2nd grade?

  • 1087. BronzevilleMommy  |  March 28, 2013 at 3:48 pm

    I’m waiting on an e-mail after no delivery again today. The OAE was fast and friendly in their reply to my request. It seems like they have a challenging job — and this is their busy season — but I appreciate that they sent me a human reply.

  • 1088. lakeviewmama  |  March 28, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    As of this morning, we had not received our magnet school letter, so I called OAE and was told to request that an email copy of the letter be sent to me. Just received it. We are in Tier 4, going into Kindergarten.

    Franklin #4
    Hawthorne #231 (proximity)
    LaSalle #158
    Disney II #318

    Hawthorne was our first choice (would have taken a spot there over a classical or gifted school, but didn’t get in to one of those either). However I’m ecstatic about the possibility that we might actually get in to Franklin. I really liked the principal and the parents we met when we toured the school, and our child is a great fit for a fine arts emphasis.

    With only one Kindergarten class entering Franklin this year, I wonder if being #4 on the tier 4 waitlist even has a chance. I figure that out of 32 incoming kids, half of those spots might be taken by siblings, so that leaves just 4 kids from each of the tiers for the class, right? Also, we are quite lucky to have Nettelhorst as our neighborhood school – am I crazy to plan on choosing Franklin over Nettelhorst if we do get in off of the waitlist?

  • 1089. North Center Mom  |  March 28, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    @1088 It might be good to make a decision with your end game in mind. What I mean is, where do you hope your child will go to high school? Is it possible to get a list of where Franklin’s and Nettelhorst’s 8th graders were accepted to high school this year? That may inform you about the type of education their students are receiving.

    Anecdotally, I do know two families that left Nettelhorst (one for private, one to another cps) because they were dissatisfied with things there. And another family we know with 3 kids were early to try Franklin when it became a magnet school: they went on to Payton, Lane, and Whitney Young. Of course, these examples may not be typical.

    Good luck.

  • 1090. NC Mom  |  March 28, 2013 at 5:47 pm

    Still did not receive Magnet letter…called the office this morning and they say it will be emailed the latest tomorrow. Checked email….still nothing…waiting n waiting. Does it really take that damn long to send an email!!!! I can’t wait another day…it’s bothering me. Can’t believe they are putting the parents through this…….

  • 1091. Stacey Nichols  |  March 28, 2013 at 6:01 pm

    I called this morning, was told 48 hours but had the email about 4 hours later.

  • 1092. WLMom  |  March 28, 2013 at 9:30 pm

    @1088 and 1089: I’ve seen somewhere on this website that posted a link which consists of the number of students from different CPS magnet schools whose got accepted to which SEHS last year. I remember that many Franklin 8th graders got accepted into SEHS and the majority went to LPHS. There were a few went to WY and Lane. The ratio of Franklin’s graduates getting into SEHS was pretty high. And I also know that some kids went to ACs before they graduated so I think Franklin is a fantastic school. I’m so excited about this school as my child got an offer for entering K this year.

  • 1093. Kaylea  |  March 29, 2013 at 2:35 pm

    Got my Kinder Magnet letter in e-mail — no offers.

    For anyone keeping score:

    Sheridan — tier 3 113
    STEM — tier 3 58
    Murray — proximity 124
    Jackson, A — tier 3 319

    I don’t expect we’ll get any calls based on this list.

    I did not really understand this system until I had to apply into it. So many hopeful parents and kids, so few slots. I don’t know how to make it better.

  • 1094. mommy gigi  |  March 29, 2013 at 3:10 pm

    Ok so my daughter got a acceptance letter to the only charter school I applied, the Uno galewood. It just opened up in september so it’s new. Building is beautiful but there is no test scores or anything for this school. She got in through the lottery system and they want a response by april 12. I know Uno hasn’t been doing so good. Charters schools in general but this is a new school and I’m hoping this one is different. I didn’t get any offer through the magnet schools except my daughter is in the waiting list for lasalle II, kindergarden, tier 3, number 2 so I’m pretty sure she will get a call back but what if she doesn’t? The tests scores are good. Not the best but it’s a world language school in wicker park with a level 2. Oh I should add that this new uno school is 5 minutes away. Lasalle II is 25 minutes away and I’m hoping they will call me back and there is still the magnet clusters schools I’m waiting on. So does anyone have any insight on uno charter schools.? Anyone know anything about this galewood school that opened up on september. Very confused parent here.

  • 1095. cpsobsessed  |  March 29, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    @1094: Mommy Gigi: I looked at a spreadsheet I made that ranked the schools by overall test scores for Meets/Exceeds (including ELL – English language learners) and the UNO schools vary a lot. 2 are in the top 20% of schools, and none are in the bottom 20%, so that’s good. But they do range from high test scores, to average, to lowish. So it’s hard to anticipate the new campus and how it’ll do. I also recall seeing that UNO pretty much meets the test scores of CPS overall for Hispanic kids.

    So I guess I’d say it’s like starting any neighborhood school in Chicago – it could be good, it could be below-average. Does their admin sound good to you? Does the way they talk about the school appeal to you? It could be worth a shot if they sound good. It probably depends in part on the other families who take the leap as well – hopefully education-minded and involved parents. That can make a big difference.

  • 1096. anonymouse teacher  |  March 29, 2013 at 3:28 pm

    @1094, In interest of full disclosure, I am not a supporter of charters in general. But UNO is pretty universally known as the worst charter operator of them all. At #2 for LaSalle II, you are highly likely to get a call. And the commute, imo, is worth it. Run as fast as you can away from UNO. Or, as a back up, if you really really dislike your neighborhood school, you could enroll in UNO and then when LaSalle II calls, you are under no obligation to go to the charter.

  • 1097. mommy gigi  |  March 29, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    Thanks! I have more research to do. The neighborhood school is not an option. And no I don’t mind the commute. I’m looking for a good school so whatever it takes. I’m going to try to see if I can go to a open house or get a tour for both these schools.

  • 1098. WesLooWorkingMom  |  March 29, 2013 at 11:30 pm

    This has probably been covered, but I can’t read every post…

    As I listen to parents who received multiple offers and to parents who received no offers, I can’t help but think that “school choice” is more of a choice for some parents than others. Parent “A” gets multiple offers and has the luxury of choosing between different schools. Parent “B” gets no offers and gets no choice of public schools. The magnet school process should work like the SEES process: after a parent receives an offer, the parent cannot receive another offer unless s/he rejects the first offer.

  • 1099. ASouthLoop Mom  |  March 30, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    Hello! I am thankful that I have found this blog and for all the posts that I have read. My son will be going from private preschool to kindergarten at Jackson Language and Academy Elementary school (magnet school). We are wait-listed for all other magnet schools we applied for. Our other option is our neighborhood school, South Loop Elementary. Does anyone here have any insight on these schools? Does Jackson have after-school options? We received our letter just at the beginning of the CPS spring break and the orientation for this school is not until April 8th. In the meantime, I have been trying to find out as much as I can about them. Any help here would be greatly appreciated!

  • 1100. Concerned parent  |  March 30, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    I am new to this website. My son is in third grade and has always attended a private catholic school. We have just been accepted to Franklin Fine Arts. Does anyone have any thoughts or information on this school?

  • 1101. Katherine  |  March 30, 2013 at 1:27 pm

    Jackson has some afterschool activities but no bona fide after-school every-day-of-the-week program. There has been a push to start one but that is liability and money is required to pay for staff etc. They have an “afterschool all stars” and some before school activities (clubs) but again, not regular everyday guaranteed.

    There are several afterschool programs that contract with Gallileo and Jackson to drop off kids to School before school (so kids get dropped off at the program offsite), then they pick up kids after. Most of these programs start after 630/7AM and kids must be picked up at 6pm or face fines/removal from program. These programs are not part of CPS so you make arrangements with them yourself.

    If you are sure you are going to Jackson (highest ranked non-SE school, open to all in lottery) then I would get on a waiting list ASAP for aftersschool if you must have afterschool options (call school and ask for a list of programs and you have to call them yourself). Afterschool programs vary in price.

    if you can get home by 4 the bus takes about 30 min to get to your part of town, but kindergardeners I am almost sure are not permitted to ride bus alone.

  • 1102. ASouthLoop Mom  |  March 30, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    @1101 Katherine,

    Thank you for the information! I will definitely call the school Monday and request the list of after school programs. We will definitely need it for the latter part of the work week. Thanks again!

  • 1103. HS Mom  |  March 30, 2013 at 2:12 pm

    South Loop Mom – best after school program is LADS (Laurence Armour Day) associated with Rush. They bus direct from Jackson.

  • 1104. Inter-ested  |  March 30, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    Looking for any advice and feedback on Inter-American. Looks like the only magnet school we have a chance getting a call back on. I’ve read the test scores etc. The curriculum seems appealing. Thanks!!!

  • 1105. FarSS mom  |  March 30, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    My daughter was offered a spot for kinder @ Disney. Are there any Disney parents out there that can tell me how their experience has been? We are on the far south side and are considering the commute. Will it be worth it?

  • 1106. cpsobsessed  |  March 30, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    FYI, here is another test prep company that emailed me recently:


  • 1107. Stacey Nichols  |  March 30, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    I wish we had even a shot at either Disney, she is #58 at Disney ii and #280 at Disney. Ugh

    Our only shot might be Sabin.

  • 1108. Roger  |  March 30, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    What’s your neighborhood school?

  • 1109. Stacey Nichols  |  March 30, 2013 at 4:53 pm

    Unfortunately, Lloyd

  • 1110. Portage Mom  |  March 30, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    @1104 – I don’t have direct experience with Inter-American but I have a mom friend who has been sub at that school a few times and she raved about the place. She loved the fact the kids were fluent in both English and Spanish from a very early age. She said she would have loved to have her children attend that school. She’s happy with our school but she was quite impressed with Inter-American.

  • 1111. EK  |  March 30, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    Hi. I have a question and can’t seem to find the answer anywhere else…we (meaning I, as my husband is pretty tired of the topic – ha) are thinking about options.

    My guy got into a magnet for K, and we’re probably accepting the spot; but he’s currently going to a neighborhood school for Pre-K where we are out of boundary. We really like it though (it’s Waters)! We don’t know if he will get a spot for K in his current school, but if he does, it might be tempting. However, he has a little sister (only 1 year old now). The magnet has sibling preference. If we were in boundary for the neighborhood school, that would be a definite “in” for her too there. But, we’re not in boundary, so I have NO idea if that would work out for her if (IF) he got a spot at the neighborhood school! Additionally, if we DID choose the neighborhood school and moved, would be still be locked in or would we lose a spot since it’s a neighborhood school?

    We’re most likely going to move him to the magnet school, but I always look at all options – even if it’s just theoretical. Ha. I know if he gets a SEES offer (none yet), there’s no sibling preference – but what about out of boundary neighborhood acceptances? A little confusing! Any help would be awesome.

  • 1112. cpsobsessed  |  March 30, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    @1111 EK: If you’re out of boundary for Waters, it doesn’t matter if you move to another out-of-boundary address. Is that what you’re asking? I would talk to the principal to see what the deal with younger sibling preference. I guess the trouble is that the school has gotten so popular that they have to first allow neighborhood kids in and then younger siblings. Grr, such a shame. I was just driving through there today and was marveling at what a great neighborhood it is.

    So I guess for sibling consideration, a magnet is your best bet but ask and see how it’s been going for younger siblings.

  • 1113. cpsobsessed  |  March 30, 2013 at 5:41 pm

    On a side note, as I drove through Ravenswood Manor today (area around Waters, which had an influx of parent involvement about 6 years ago) I realized the importance of having a good neighborhood park to help parents mobilize to try to get involved with their local school. In many cases, it’s started when the kids are toddlers and the parents meet on the playground (ie the Nettelhorst story.)

    My current neighborhood school, Trumbull, which is on the closing list doesn’t have a good park nearby. I really think that can help swing things. More parks/playgrounds!

  • 1114. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 30, 2013 at 5:51 pm

    I think there is def a correlation btwn parks & schools~in my area (w/in 2 miles) are 8 parks that parents meet at during the toddler yrs, at moms’ clubs, all taking abt schools. Of course, once our kids got into their school yrs, the parents started meeting at coffee shops (so more coffee shops too~ 🙂 )

  • 1115. Inter-ested  |  March 30, 2013 at 6:35 pm

    Thanks Portage Mom. It’s reassuring to hear that!

  • 1116. local  |  March 30, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    @ 1114. SoxSideIrish4 | March 30, 2013 at 5:51 pm

    Remember the 9-5er ladies! 😉 You won’t find them at the parks or coffee houses except on weekends. They need to find other means of networking.

  • 1117. EK  |  March 30, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    CPSO – yes, regarding the boundary and future moves – that’s what I was wondering. Our neighborhood school is okay but we’d like to go with a better one because I don’t care for the neighborhood around the school (gang stuff), so we’re looking elsewhere. I’ll have to ask about the sibling preference. Of course, I’m thinking of all this, and he’s not even IN Waters yet – have to wait until May with all the other neighborhood/magnet cluster lottery results come! When we got the PreK spot it was emphasized that we were not guaranteed a place, but…

    I agree – a good playground is a must – and I like Waters’ play area, and Ravenswood Manor’s park a bit north is awesome!

  • 1118. asouthloopmom  |  March 30, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    Thanks so much! I will check into LAD on Monday!

  • 1119. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 30, 2013 at 9:46 pm

    1116. local | March 30, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    True, but in my neighborhood of abt 1 mile (and speaking of my friends and the friends of my kids’ mothers)~there are more sahm than 9-5ers. But I realize, every1 must find a way to network.

  • 1120. Mom22boys  |  March 30, 2013 at 9:48 pm

    Does anyone have experience with Suder? I’d appreciate any feedback. Thanks

  • 1121. Kat  |  March 30, 2013 at 11:45 pm

    I would wait til Tuesday and call at 1045 am or 130pm at Jackson.

    Laurence Armour is part of Rush and there is likely a waiting list but get on it as spots can come up unexpectedly. There are other programs that pick up kids in a bus and the office can let you know.

  • 1122. ASouthLoop Mom  |  March 31, 2013 at 7:53 am

    @1121 Kat,

    Thanks for the advice. I will definitely call the office at Jackson on Tuesday or Wenesday. It would be great if the after-school programs would be there though. I am a little nervous about my 5 year old being bused to an after-school program, but I am sure other parents went through it and dealt with it, so hopefully I can too 🙂

    ASouthLoop Mom

  • 1123. Mommy_of_1  |  March 31, 2013 at 8:44 am

    @1122 …I’m in a similar situation as you. I would be very interterested to hear parents experiences with putting their kinders on the cps bus and/or aftercare transportation for the first time. It may be the route I’m going as well, and I would appreciate stories from parents who have went through it to alleviate my anxieties. If this is in another thread please let me know.

  • 1124. Confused  |  March 31, 2013 at 8:47 am

    Last year applied to 23 magnet schools for kindergarten…wait listed for all with the lowest number around 130. Tried it again this year for 1st grade thinking we’d have a good chance. Applied to 10 magnet schools this time around and once again did not get into a single one. The lowest wait list number this time is around 40. I don’t understand what gives here. Is our luck that bad? What’s the secret to this “lottery” based system? Money? Some sort of clout?

  • 1125. cps mom  |  March 31, 2013 at 8:52 am

    1124- I feel your pain, a commentor on another thread (Angie) suggested that people can get into good schools they just have to be motivated….blah….blah, you and I both know that isn’t the case for most. There are not enough seats and cps is not ready to make the committment to make all schools “good” school.

  • 1126. Pritzker Mom  |  March 31, 2013 at 10:32 am

    DD has taken the bus since K. We drove her the first day and then she started taking the bus.

    The bus can be a bit chaotic the first week or so of school. The driver is likely still learning the route & the parents are still trying to adapt to the new schedule. You should be prepared for an erratic schedule for a week or so until things stabilize.

    We have only had minor problems on the bus – the annoying 9 year old boy variety. The principal was quick to help out when we let her know & asked one of the older girls to be DD’s bus big sister.

    At least at Pritzker, there is slightly better supervision for the bus kids in the morning because CPS sets the schedule & the school provides some supervision for early arrivals.

  • 1127. Mommyof1  |  March 31, 2013 at 10:35 am

    Thanks Pritzker Mom!

  • 1128. Skinny Pete  |  March 31, 2013 at 9:52 pm

    @1088. lakeviewmama: we plan to decline our offer to Franklin (K, tier 4). Although it’s a fantastic program from everything I’ve read, our kid got an SEES offer to a nearby school. Best of luck!

  • 1129. RMD  |  April 1, 2013 at 9:48 am

    Is anyone going to Lenart next year from Hyde Park/Kenwood area?

  • 1130. Susan  |  April 1, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    @1100 – I have twin boys in the 2nd grade currently at Franklin …..if you have any questions about Franklin you can contact me at spynetorres@gmail.com. Congratulations on getting into Franklin, it’s a great school, we have been there since kindergarten and love it.

  • 1131. lakeviewmama  |  April 1, 2013 at 10:00 pm

    @1088, and 1128

    Thanks, Skinny Pete, for taking the time to share your plans re: declining the Franklin offer. Your post definitely brightens my glimmer of hope that we just might be walking into the classroom come Fall. Congrats on getting into an SEES! How wonderful to have more than one top school from which to choose.

    @1130, and 1100

    Susan, your positive comments are yet another reason why I’m hopeful that we too will be accepted at Franklin. In addition to fielding a few questions from Concerned parent, would you be receptive to hearing from a hopeful parent (me – 4th on wait list)?

  • 1132. Another LaSalle II Mom  |  April 1, 2013 at 11:04 pm

    Mommy Gigi – We have a longer drive to LaSalle II as well and feel it is well worth it. In our experience so far, it is a solid school with lots of positive things to offer. If you are concerned about test scores make sure you take a deeper look at scores by grade as the overall averages do not really reflect what the school will be in even a couple years. Several upper grades were added in the past two years so the upper grades are not reflective of students who have been at the school for their elementary careers but reflective of students who came over from other schools. The school was very recently a solid Level 1 and my understanding is it is expected to return to Level 1 again soon. The big changes with adding so many new grades at once affect what you see as the big picture on paper. There is a PTO meeting this Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. You could attend to get a better idea as to what is happening with the school. Maybe that would help you decide which direction you would like to go. Good luck!

  • 1133. Franklin Parent  |  April 1, 2013 at 11:09 pm

    @lakeviewmama: I hope you can get an offer from Franklin. Franklin is an excellent school. Their fine art classes are so fun and creative. Our child is doing great and learning a lot in K now. The K teacher is awesome. She is so smart and energetic. The K class also have a very good teacher assistant as well. The parent involvement is unbelievable! We’ve been loving it so far and we plan to stay there for another decade (if everything goes well) since we want our second kid to go there as well. Our wait list was in 20’s and didn’t get a call until late August. We were in Tier 3. Hope you hear something soon!!

  • 1134. mommy gigi  |  April 1, 2013 at 11:29 pm

    @Lasalle II mom. Thanks! I called them early this morning and they told me on Wednesday there is a open house at 3 so I will definitely be there! I also told them I was on the waiting list for tier 3, number 2, so they gave me hope that I will be getting a call back after the 12th. So I really do hope so and I can’t wait to go check out the school on wednesday with my daughter.

  • 1135. Jen  |  April 2, 2013 at 2:07 am

    Does anyone know if Jackson is having an open house? We’re number 1 on the wait list for 4th grade so I’m hopeful we’ll get a call, but I’d like to check out the school if possible.

  • 1136. FirstTimer  |  April 2, 2013 at 9:50 am

    For those accepted to LaSalle II, they are offering 2 tours prior to the acceptance deadline.

    Tomorrow (Wednesday) April 3rd at 3:00 PM

    Friday April 12th at 11:30 AM

  • 1137. LasalleIItoo  |  April 2, 2013 at 10:22 am

    Would love to do a tour of LaSalle II, but not sure if we’d get in at 13 on the wait list.

    Does anyone have a gauge on whether or not we have a chance at 13th for LaSalle II Tier 4.

  • 1138. LaSalle II mom  |  April 2, 2013 at 11:22 am

    @1137 We got the call at #18 Tier 3 from LaSalle II in mid-June last year, so you have a good chance at #13.

    There is also a LaSalle II PTO meeting tomorrow (Wednesday, April 3) at 6:30pm in the gym if you can’t make it to either tour.

  • 1139. NotSureNow  |  April 2, 2013 at 12:59 pm

    Is it worth to take Hawthorne over Edgebrook? I am debating myself, sounds Hawthorne is better, but I have to travel far and it starts at 8am.
    Any inputs?

  • 1140. Chgojen  |  April 2, 2013 at 1:11 pm

    @1139 – my kids are only in prek now, but if I had to choose between attending Edgebrook (close to home) or Hawthorne (far from home), I would personally choose Edgebrook. Not only due to the commute and early start time for Hawthorne, but more for keeping my kids in a more local school where they can create friendships with local kids – friendships that may be easier to maintain based on proximity. Both are great schools, so it really comes down to all the other factors in my mind. I’m not familiar with the after school programs that each school has to offer, so that may be a good thing to research.

  • 1141. Cool Parent  |  April 2, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    Edgebrooks is a really good school. Why do you think Hawthorne is better than Edgebrook? Based on the ISAT scores? Your kids will be fine in either one. The most importance is what’s best for your kid and the family. Every school (good or bad) has students exceeded the ISAT scores. What does that mean?

  • 1142. Dang  |  April 2, 2013 at 1:25 pm

    That was nice to hear CoolParent. That’s why we took our spot at Hawthorne over SN today. It’s just a better fit for our family. @1139 Hawthorne is great but if you have a grat neighborhood option then save yourself thei misery of a long commute. If our neighborhood school was good at all I’d go there in a heartbeat.

  • 1143. ASouthLoopMom  |  April 2, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    #1135 Jen,
    I stopped by Jackson today and the office lady said they do open houses in October. Maybe you can call the school and arrange a visit?

  • 1144. Cool Parent  |  April 2, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    Dang: You are comparing apples and oranges here. I would pick SN over Hawthorne if I were you. You still have time to change your mind until 4/12 though. =). Sorry, I’m just playing with you. I’m sure you make the right decision for your family. You are very fortunate that you had two great offers and you still have to struggle/debate to make the decision. Can you imagine the families that had no offers and the ones that are still waiting and waiting? I wish we could have more good neighborhood schools like Edgebrook, Linicoln, Burley and South Loop so we don’t have to go through this crazy process for the SEES/magnet. Good luck to you and all other parents here!

  • 1145. NC Mom  |  April 2, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    Does anyone know what are the chances of getting a call from Franklin?
    Tier 2 Wait listed at 36. That’s the closest we got for all the schools applied.
    Also thinking of moving close to a good neighborhood school but still close to the loop as I am working around there. Ogden vs Skinner West vs. South Loop. Any insights anyone?

  • 1146. Jen  |  April 2, 2013 at 2:23 pm

    1143 SLMom thanks, I keep meaning to call them but haven’t got round to it yet. I pretty much listed any school I’d heard of as being good, not expecting to ever get this close to a place at one of them!

  • 1147. Cool Parent  |  April 2, 2013 at 2:30 pm

    @NC Mom: Honestly, I don’t think you will have a chance for that WL#. There is only one K class in Franklin. Someone from the previous posts said half of the class has already been filled by siblings. There are 30 kids in K class. So, there are 15 left for proximity and tiers (6 and 9 respectively). Therefore, it’s about 2 or 3 slots left for each tier. Franklin is getting so popoular now as I’ve heard from the people on this blog. WL#36 is pretty high. I heard some Franklin parent said they got call in late August and their WL# was in 20s. But I don’t know if they got the last slot or not though. Based on the schools you mentioned, if I were you, I would move to a SW neighborhood as the area is pretty accessible to many nice restaurants and stores. Needless to say, the school is great and diverse.

    schools you mentioned,

  • 1148. 60625 Mom  |  April 2, 2013 at 3:11 pm

    We had waitlist numbers all higher than 55 and did not receive any offers for SEES either. We are headed to our neighborhood school, McPherson (in Lincoln Square) and are excited about the good things happening at this school.

  • 1149. Yadi  |  April 2, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    anyone have any insight on Belding School on the north side? what about CICS Irving Park??

  • 1150. IBobsessed  |  April 2, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    Anyone else discover you are outside the boundaries for bus service? Want to moan and groan with me? Missed bus service by 3/10s of a mile. It might be a deal breaker if we get the call for where we are waitlisted #1.

  • 1151. Andrew  |  April 2, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    Is there another round of neighborhood/lottery or other selections. I listed about 17 schools but only got replies for 8 of them–Waitlisted 13 at thorpe is best chance so far. Are some neighborhood/lottery schools on a different timeline than pure lottery?

  • 1152. FirstTimer  |  April 2, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    I believe there’s a May date (maybe the 21st? I’ve seen it somewhere) for those final neighborhood schools.

  • 1153. Chicago School GPS  |  April 2, 2013 at 4:59 pm

    According to CPSOAE’s website, the magnet cluster and open enrollment notifications will be mailed the week of May 19 (which probably means closer to end of week).

    These are notifications for people who are NOT in these school’s boundaries but the school has space projected so they can accept out of boundary families.


  • 1154. NW Mom  |  April 2, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    Any thoughts about Wildwood? From LSC notes on the website, parents appear concerned about overcrowding. We’re looking for 2nd grade. Thanks!

  • 1155. LasalleIItoo  |  April 2, 2013 at 10:35 pm

    Thanks LaSalle II mom! Awesome to hear you got a call at a higher # … and congrats to you too! I’m assuming you’re happy with the school.

  • 1156. Portage Mom  |  April 2, 2013 at 10:58 pm

    @1149 Yadi- I had heard good things about both Belding and CICS. I applied for K at Belding for my daughter. We didn’t get a call until after school started. If my daughter didn’t end up getting a spot at DII, I would have accepted Belding. There was a lot of information on the school on Neighborhood Parents Network a few years back. I had mainly subscribed to the site to get info on schools. I liked CICS too but the only negative I remember is after care seemed rather expensive. this site provides a lot of useful info and it is free. NPN is good too but there is a yearly fee. I thought it was worth the price for the info it provided.

  • 1157. Another LaSalle II Mom  |  April 2, 2013 at 11:06 pm

    @1155 LasalleIItoo – I am not LaSalle II mom but a different LaSalle II mom and I can tell you that we have been quite happy with the school. Good luck to you!

  • 1158. mom22boys  |  April 3, 2013 at 9:01 am

    Do you know if Suder has after school care/program?
    They don’t mention it on thier website and I can’t find that info anywhere. Any Suder parents here that can provide some feedback? – Thanks!

  • 1159. a mom  |  April 3, 2013 at 9:13 am

    We know someone at CICS – the aftercare is phenomenal because they go to 6:00 and actually tutor kids and offer homework help. Worth every penny.

  • 1160. Andrew  |  April 3, 2013 at 9:20 am

    Thanks @1152 and 1153.
    I thought they mailed something saying a later date but when I looked I could not find it.

  • 1161. NotSureNow  |  April 3, 2013 at 10:11 am

    @1140 – You made a good point. I think Hawthorne has onsite after school programs.
    @1141 – Hawthorne is ranked higher than Edgebrook, and from greatschools.net, edgebrook is sliding, and it was what I have concerned, plus I have another child at SEES ending at 6th grade, through sibling lottery I have a backup for 7/8 grades.

  • 1162. cps alum  |  April 3, 2013 at 10:31 am

    I’m choosing Edgebrook over a magnet… for many of the reasons specified above–close to home, community etc. In the end I don’t think that the difference in the schools is significant enough to warrant a 8.5 hour day (including commute time).

    FYI- the principal at Edgebrook just announced her retirement. Hopefully a new principal will address some of the concerns of the parents.
    Hopefully a new principal will address some of the concerns of the parents.

  • 1163. Cool Parent  |  April 3, 2013 at 10:47 am

    @1161: To me, Edgebrook and Hawthorne are pretty close. They both are great schools! In my opinion, the travel time is a big factor. It would be losing my quality time for other things I can do. Although greatschools.org has a lot of good information about a school, I wouldn’t make my decision based on their rankings. Edgebrook is 9 and Hawthorne is 10. To me, they are pretty much the same. Their ISAT scores are all over 90%. Edgebrook might be just 1 or 2 % less than Hawthorne on certain grades. So what? Please keep in mind that the # of students taking the exam would impact the % of the score. There usually 1 or 2 not-so-bright student didn’t meet the standardized exam in almost every school (even for SEES). If the class size is smaller, the score will hurt more if 1 student didn’t meet. Hope you get that concept. Also, it would better if you can take a tour on each school and make the comparison. Talk to the parents and teachers if you can. See if the kids are happy with their school. Try drive to Hawthorne in the morning to see how long it will take you to get there before 8am. Most importantly, see if it’s a best fit for your kid and your family.

  • 1164. Cool Parent  |  April 3, 2013 at 10:56 am

    @1161: Please keep in mind that sibling doesn’t have a guranteed spot for magnet. The sibling will get a higher chance to get in if he/she is entering for K. I heard that Andrew Jackson can’t offer all the seats to the siblings last year. I am not sure if it’s true or not.

  • 1165. Concerned parent  |  April 3, 2013 at 11:11 am

    Does anyone know how the neighborhood school closings will affect Franklin?

  • 1166. Thelxinoe  |  April 3, 2013 at 11:30 am

    Just declined a seat at Andrew Jackson for K (tier 2) as we decided to accept an offer from Edison. Best wishes to everyone!

  • 1167. Peter  |  April 3, 2013 at 11:36 am

    Greatschools is crap. I would not rely on it for anything.

    There is almost no difference between Hawthorne and Edgebrook.

  • 1168. NotSureNow  |  April 3, 2013 at 11:37 am

    Thank you Cool Parent and CPS Alum.
    It is so true there is not much difference for a given individual, within the good schools.

  • 1169. Impatient  |  April 3, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    When do they start making offers off the magnet wait lists?

  • 1170. Christine Whitley  |  April 3, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    @ 1169: After April 12th.

  • 1171. Bsmoresmom  |  April 3, 2013 at 4:52 pm

    How long will they continue to call from the waitlist? will they continue to call beyond the first week of school? during the school year? You don’t keep the waitlist the following year correct?

  • 1172. Bestofmyknowledge  |  April 3, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    From what I’ve gathered:

    Schools will continue to call into the forthcoming school year. Although, I’m not sure exactly how long. I did read several posts regarding parents getting calls late September.

    I believe the wait list reset and there is a new lottery every year.

  • 1173. Franklin Parent  |  April 3, 2013 at 7:30 pm

    @1165: As far as I know, Franklin didn’t get any impacts by the neighborhood closing schools yet. Manierre students will be going to Jenner school.

  • 1174. IB obsessed  |  April 3, 2013 at 10:10 pm

    @1156 Another opinion on NPN- I was a member recently for 3 years and found very little frank discussion on quality/culture of individual schools. Daycare/preschool info galore, but not regarding elementary schools. Not worth the membership fee IMO, if this is what you are seeking. Most of the members are parents of preschoolers.

  • 1175. Chicago School GPS  |  April 4, 2013 at 6:38 am

    @1174, NPN (Neighborhood Parent Network, npnparents.org) caters mainly to the Pregnancy to Preschool set, and while founded almost 30 years ago to help families gather school info (and their annual Preschool/Elem Fair has grown to over 1400 attendees), they have grown into a source for any topics of interest to that set.

    They have recently formed an “Elementary Parents Group” with programs geared to middle school families, so they have a few things for upper grades but I find CPSO is the best source for only school related info.

    If anyone does want to join NPN, you can receive $5 off membership when you enter: ChiSchoolGPS5Off
    at this link to join: https://secured.npnparents.org/signup

  • 1176. soon2becpsmom  |  April 4, 2013 at 7:13 am


    I needed some opinions on selecting between Pritzker gifted vs. Franklin vs Newberry for K. (I have a younger child too). All these schools are ~1-2 miles away, so commute is not a huge issue.

    Any help would be much appreciated.


  • 1177. KIPP???  |  April 4, 2013 at 8:23 am

    Any opinions on KIPP? Applied earlier this year and got a wait list offer of 2. I know in other cities KIPP is the place to be. What about here in the city?

  • 1178. mom22boys  |  April 4, 2013 at 9:46 am

    I don’t have a child in either yet but here are my 2 cents. Franklin and Newberry are magnet schools so if you have younger siblings you might have a better chance of getting them in there as well when the time comes. Franklin is Fine Arts school while Newberry is more Math and Science oriented. If you have a choice look at you children – what are they like – what is the best fit for them. Newberry is having an open house today morning and another on Monday. I will be there Monday. We are waitlisted for Newberry and I am hoping we can get a spot there. Our Franklin WL number is 51 so I know we don’t have a chance there. For my son, if I could ( I wish ), I would choose Franklin as he is happier doing theater, music, art projects, etc than math – although he loves doing science kits projects .
    Good luck with your decision, I know it is not easy as it impacts your children and your family a lot!

    I do on the other hand need to decide between Newberry and Suder and I am having very, very hard time. I really like Montessori education but Suder’s neighborhood scares me a bit ;(
    Any feedback will be greatly appreciated.

  • 1179. mom22boys  |  April 4, 2013 at 9:49 am

    ooops, my above comment 1178 is to @1176. soon2becpsmom

  • 1180. CandyCane  |  April 4, 2013 at 11:02 am

    How do you know if your preschooler is better at fine arts or math? My (young for his age) 4 year old loves to drive in toy cars, watch Barney, touch all of my things, and jump in puddles. He likes to look for the moon each morning to say hello, he likes fire trucks. He’s in PREK now, and he’s behind everyone. I have been WL’d to all schools but think I may have a chance at Franklin, Newberry for proximity and I’m a 23 at Disney 2 for Tier 2. I guess he’ll go wherever he is accepted but how do people know what thier preschooler is all about?

  • 1181. mom22boys  |  April 4, 2013 at 11:10 am

    That is a very good question. I don’t know what he will be like in few years. I know today at 5 years old, he doesn’t like math, he doesn’t like numbers, he can’t do a puzzle that his 3 year old brother does in 2 minutes. But he is extremely verbal, great memory and vocabulary. He loves his weekly theater classes – doesn’t want to leave and waits for them like it’s the most important thing for him, He loves his piano lessons and does well practicing… that’s what I base my observations on. Maybe I am wrong and he might someday grow to love math – I do hope so!

  • 1182. ruthie60607  |  April 4, 2013 at 4:10 pm

    I dropped off our Suder acceptance today… The school gave me a packet of information to fill out in preparation for the May 1st registration event happening at the school. Apparently May 1st is the only day that parents can register; is that common? Fortunately we are able to make the event, but I wonder about parents that do not have the luxury.

  • 1183. Peter  |  April 4, 2013 at 4:12 pm

    @CandyCane, they don’t. People like to brag though.

  • 1184. Franklin Parent  |  April 4, 2013 at 4:57 pm

    @1180 Candy Cane: It’s too young to know if they are better at fine arts or math. Kids love to play at this young age. Let them explore. I’m sure Newberry has fine art classes too. Although Franklin has rich fine art programs, they also have strong programs on writing, reading and math. So, I think most CPS schools have many different curriculums for kids to choose. Don’t worry too much… Our child didn’t like arts but we send them to Franklin because we want them to get the exposure of the fine arts so they would appreciate them when they’re older.

  • 1185. Dis  |  April 4, 2013 at 7:25 pm

    We will not be accepting our Disney I offer for 1st grade

    Went to the open house this morning. I don’t want to say anything negative about the school because it really does seem like a good school; but the open classroom does not feel like the right environment for my daughter. To me, the noise level would be way too noticeable for MY kid to focus.

    The amount of technology in that building is awesome, though.

  • 1186. WLMom  |  April 4, 2013 at 8:46 pm

    @Dis: Same here. We will decline Disney as well. The technology there is great but we already have all kinds of electronics at home anyway and the open classroom concept was not a right fit for my child too.

  • 1187. Mvmom  |  April 4, 2013 at 11:04 pm

    We accepted our spot at Disney today after the tour. We loved what we observed and were not bothered at all by the open classrooms. For such a big school, they seem to do a great job at containing the grade levels and making it feel much smaller than it is. We were very impressed with the technology/fine arts resources because they truly are providing things we are not capable of teaching our kids at home (i.e. digital instruments hooked up to computers to teach kids to layer tracks of their own music). The diversity of the student population is amazing. We feel very lucky to have been offered a spot here.

  • 1188. Teasdad  |  April 5, 2013 at 1:03 am

    @Mvmom – sorry for asking, what is your neighbourhood school?

  • 1189. JacksonMV  |  April 5, 2013 at 9:54 am

    MV mom – you should feel fortunate. If you got your kid in through the “process” its like winning the lottery. Unless you followed the unofficial channels that are used to acquire a spot. I’m glad the sky high property taxes I pay 2 blocks away will benefit you. Meanwhile my kid will be sent to the dump on the other side of Addison.

  • 1190. LSMom  |  April 5, 2013 at 10:09 am

    @JacksonMV, if you are in proximity then there’s a very good chance you’ll get in during one of the later rounds. I think they’ve usually made it through most/all of their proximity list at Disney I.

  • 1191. Chicago Mama  |  April 5, 2013 at 10:37 am

    @1189 – what unofficial channels are those?

  • 1192. frustrated  |  April 5, 2013 at 11:09 am

    I feel too like I am doing something the “wrong” way. This is our third year applying and third year high WL numbers everywhere.
    Can my luck be so bad?

    Kindergarten , tier 4:
    STEM 83
    Disney 196
    Disney II 327
    Lasalle II 87 ( proximity )
    Mayer 505
    Lasalle 267
    Hawthorne 145
    Suder 14
    Drummond 8
    Jackson 82
    Franklin 51

    Do we have a chance anywhere with those numbers? I doubt it.
    So what do we do now? I can’t afford 2 Private School tuitions on top on my very high taxes that seem to be going up each year… I guess we need to put our house on the market and maybe we will have more luck there. I am very bitter and frustrated about this whole process.

  • 1193. MV mom  |  April 5, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    @1189 – We definitely got in through the normal lottery process…applied to 26 schools (including Sees) and got one offer from Disney (waitlisted in the hundreds for all other schools). I am unaware of any other way to navigate the process. Sounds like you are in proximity to Disney, so hopefully you will get in on one of the later rounds. Based on the two posts above mine, it sounds like people are declining spots (which sparked my need to post because I suddenly feel a sense of school pride for my child’s future school). Best of luck to you!

  • 1194. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 5, 2013 at 1:16 pm

    The recent posts here remind me of what this process ends up really being about for families and that is making the best school decision for their specific child and their specific family in the context of the realities of their life and of course being based on what their ‘real’ presented options are (meaning what their neighborhood school is, lottery offers if any, SEES offers if any and parochial or private offers if any.) People make all kinds of decisions for lots of different reasons. Heck, I know one family that turned down a very top SEES school AND a top magnet that would have been within walking distance of home in order to keep their child at a decent, but not top ranked/top in demand parochial school because that specific situation fit their specific family needs/life and child’s needs/life the best. Surely there are people who would say they were crazy for doing this, but if most of those people truly knew the details of the reason for the decision they would likely have understood, even if it was not the decision they personally would have made. This family’s decision to turn down those schools doesn’t mean they didn’t think they were good schools, it just means that they felt the other option suited their child’s and family’s needs better at that moment in time, and for them that trumped all. Of course, another family may have made an entirely different decision. Doesn’t mean any of the decisions would be wrong, as long as they were the best decision for that family/child.

  • 1195. Angie  |  April 5, 2013 at 2:12 pm

    @1192. frustrated: “I feel too like I am doing something the “wrong” way. This is our third year applying and third year high WL numbers everywhere.”

    You’re applying to very popular schools, and competing with a lot of people. If your neighborhood school is completely unacceptable, cast a wider net.

    IIRC, last year, Peirce accepted everyone who wanted a spot. The year before, people were turning down Hamilton left and right, so they went pretty far into the waiting list. Hamilton has become more popular since then, so that’s not going to happen this year, but they still have spots in upper grades.

    Same with selective enrollment schools. It looks like this year, a Tier 4 kid needs to score 147 to get into Edison, but only 138 would get them a spot at NTA.

    You still might get in somewhere when they have the magnet cluster and neighborhood school lottery in May. Last year, they even had a second application period for less popular schools that wanted to fill seats, and there were some decent choices on that list.

  • 1196. tiptoemole  |  April 5, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    Do we have a shot at a call from Disney II with a Tier 3 waitlist number of 21? I don’t believe they get very far into their waitlists. And does anyone have any anecdotal information on later-round offers from SEES schools? What are the lowest scores for Tier 3 admissions you have heard of?

  • 1197. Peter  |  April 5, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    Angie, from the tone of frustrated’s post, my guess is nothing but the “best’ is good enough for little frustrated.

  • 1198. frustrated  |  April 5, 2013 at 8:05 pm

    @Angie- thank you for your suggestions. I think I have missed on some of theses schools that I should have applied to. Maybe because I had a choice of 20 I picked the ones I considered the best and closets to Wicker Park. Many I picked were magnet cluster that we dont’t have answers for yet, but looking back at the magnet lottery results I am not too hopeful

  • 1199. frustrated  |  April 5, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    @ Peter – Really? Did you have to say that?
    And yes – I only want the best for my kids and I don’t think there is anything wrong with that… I’d think that most parents do, don’t they?

  • 1200. Cps mom of two  |  April 5, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    Siblings are guareenteed spots at magnet schools- just an FYI for those who asked. With regards to Hawthorne it is an unbelievable school with amazing teachers! That is what really makes a school successful, the teachers. Everyone should make the best decision for their family, we turned down a gifted spot for Hawthorne, and I have no regrets. The education these children receive is top notch. But by no means is Hawthorne the best school for everyone. Take into consideration commute, high school placements and ask about speciasts- we have both reading, writing and math specialists at Hawthorne- pull out for enrichment as well as extra aid- this works well.

  • 1201. WLMom  |  April 5, 2013 at 8:26 pm

    @frustrated: I hope you will get something soon.. I give you some of my luck.. I know how frustrated it could be.. God bless!

  • 1202. Momof3  |  April 5, 2013 at 10:24 pm

    We accepted a K spot at Disney after yesterday’s open house. I can see some hesitation about the pod system, but I think it lends itself very well to collaboration amongst the classrooms. As we went to the upper grades the noise level in the pods went down considerably. I liked the fact that they do walking reading, and have a gifted program. The diversity of the school is exactly what we are looking for, though I wish there were similar options on the south side.

  • 1203. Dis  |  April 5, 2013 at 10:56 pm

    Momof3 – Sheridan Magnet would be a similar option on the (near) south side. Very diverse and great test scores

    I’m glad you were happy with Disney. Like I said, it did seem like a good school, just not the right fit for my child.

  • 1204. frustrated  |  April 5, 2013 at 11:00 pm

    @WLMom – Thank You, very very much for your kind words.

  • 1205. Beth  |  April 6, 2013 at 12:13 am

    Accepted our PreK spot at Inter-American today. Still not quite sure about the school yet, and we are 20 minutes away…thoughts?

  • 1206. Chicago School GPS  |  April 6, 2013 at 7:55 am

    If your neighborhood school is any school listed on this list: http://www.cps.edu/qualityschools/pages/schools.aspx , then you are eligible to apply to up to 20 schools for Fall 2013. Deadline to submit a Standard Elementary School Application is April 19th.

    In other words, even if you never considered sending your child to your neighborhood school, but it is listed as a proposed closing or welcoming school (i.e. Trumbull, McPherson, Chappell, Stewart, Ray, Manierre, etc), you are eligible to cast your net again. You can only apply to the open enrollment and magnet cluster schools (ie. neighborhood schools with possible space available) listed on the Standard Elementary list (see next post).

  • 1207. Chicago School GPS  |  April 6, 2013 at 7:57 am

    The list of schools you can submit an application for is here:


    If you need an application, email oae@cps.edu to tell them you need a Standard Elementary Schools application. Deadline is April 19th.

  • 1208. Bsmoresmom  |  April 6, 2013 at 8:23 am

    Where is this written on there site?

  • 1209. Bsmoresmom  |  April 6, 2013 at 8:31 am

    @Chicago Schools Gps—please post link with information. I see my school is on the list but link that says of a second chance.

  • 1210. Bsmoresmom  |  April 6, 2013 at 8:55 am

    So if apply to the ones only listed on that list. Would it decline the first time we applied in October for some of the schools listed that are neighborhood schools?

  • 1211. Chicago School GPS  |  April 6, 2013 at 8:56 am

    This is from cpsoae.org- not exactly easy to find, either. It just had the tagline: “Impacted by Proposed School Actions?”

  • 1212. Chicago School GPS  |  April 6, 2013 at 9:23 am

    @1210- you can confirm with an email to oae@cps.edu, but since I think you can list 20 schools, and you can only list open enrollment/magnet cluster schools, then perhaps just use all 20 spots with the ones you wrote the first time and new ones?

    I actually haven’t seen the latest version of the Standard Elementary School Application yet so I am not sure how many schools you can apply to, however.

  • 1213. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 6, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    For LaSalle 1st Grade – Wait listed at 12. Anyone care to take a guess at what the chances are for getting a call with that number? Wondering how hard we should be thinking about whether or not to consider a school change if offered.

  • 1214. FirstTimer  |  April 6, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    On the LaSalle school tour in the fall, I believe they said something like they only accepted 22 non-siblings last year for K. That was 5 months ago so brain may be a little hazy, but something around 20 really stuck out. And you could be one of 5 #12s since each tier plus proximity has its own waiting list. That said, I feel like #12 might be tough – though I really am not an expert – this is my first one going through all this.

  • 1215. cpsobsessed  |  April 6, 2013 at 5:09 pm

    Is that LaSalle 1? If it’s comparable to hawthorne I’d say pretty slim, unfortunately.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 1216. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 6, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    Yes, LaSalle 1. First grade so tiers are not in effect. Thank you to both of you for replying! I appreciate it!

  • 1217. Concerned parent  |  April 8, 2013 at 2:49 am

    Can someone recommend a tutor for writing and math?

  • 1218. Momof3  |  April 8, 2013 at 8:33 am

    Can someone please explain the difference between wait listed by tier versus wait llisted by general?

  • 1219. Chicago School GPS  |  April 8, 2013 at 8:37 am

    Tiers are only considered for “entry years” of programs (typically K for most magnets, but PK for 4 Magnet schools). After entry years, the wait lists are no longer broken down by Tier and are just “General” because the spots you are vying for are greatly reduced.

  • 1220. Momof3girls  |  April 8, 2013 at 8:41 am

    What are my chances with a wait list #14 at Disney 2? Any thoughts?

  • 1221. Chicago Mama  |  April 8, 2013 at 8:44 am

    @1220 – for what grade?

  • 1222. Momof3girls  |  April 8, 2013 at 8:48 am


  • 1223. PatientCPSMom  |  April 8, 2013 at 2:24 pm

    @1206 and 1207
    “If your neighborhood school is any school listed on this list: http://www.cps.edu/qualityschools/pages/schools.aspx , then you are eligible to apply to up to 20 schools for Fall 2013. Deadline to submit a Standard Elementary School Application is April 19th.

    In other words, even if you never considered sending your child to your neighborhood school, but it is listed as a proposed closing or welcoming school (i.e. Trumbull, McPherson, Chappell, Stewart, Ray, Manierre, etc), you are eligible to cast your net again. You can only apply to the open enrollment and magnet cluster schools (ie. neighborhood schools with possible space available) listed on the Standard Elementary list (see next post).”

    I wanted to share this with you. I just called OAE for the standard application mentioned in the post, my school is Jenner (though we don’t go here) and I was told I would have to be currently enrolled at Manierre or Jenner to get the application. I was told you have to be enrolled in the neighborhood school that is affected to submit a standard application for another neighborhood school. Just checking on what is suppose to actually happen.

  • 1224. Bsmoresmom  |  April 8, 2013 at 4:52 pm

    We are entering Kinder and were allowed to add 4 more schools to our application. We had applied to 16 including magnets so we were able to add 4 to the application.

  • 1225. Chicago School GPS  |  April 8, 2013 at 5:55 pm

    @1223- with CPS I’m not surprised about miscommunication but that doesn’t make ANY sense that they wouldn’t allow someone whose neighborhood school is affected to resubmit an application. How do they know that you weren’t planning to send your child there next year for whatever reason? They don’t know that for incoming K families so they also can’t be certain for higher grades.

  • 1226. TwinsWithTripletChoice  |  April 8, 2013 at 7:56 pm

    LaSalle II, Galileo or South Loop Elem? Is Galileo’s emphasis on math/science that much more helpful? Is the whole push for a second language all that it’s cracked up to be at LaSalle II? Is SLoop all it’s cracked up to be…listing in Chicago Mag, etc.? It’s very difficult to compare scores for them, seems like a lot of fluctuation from year to year.

    Also, how does parent involvement compare? It almost seemed like there was less involvement by parents at Galileo, tons of parent involvement at SL, and lots of parent involvement at Lasalle II. Am I getting the true picture of things?

  • 1227. FirstTimer  |  April 8, 2013 at 8:21 pm

    I took the tour of LaSalle II last week and the language element did seem pretty robust. They promise proficiency (not fluency) by 8th grade, but they go about it in some fun ways.

    For example, pen pals with students at another language school, or a field trip to Mom Ami Gabi with the “test” of ordering in French, etc. And they are finally able to follow LaSalle I’s model of having the children travel to a country where the language is spoken in 8th grade (you have to pay of course). But I was definitely impressed it was culture as much as the language. You even get a copy of Rosetta Stone to use at home.

    I don’t have any first hand experience with Galileo or South Loop, but I would say the language component definitely seemed legit at LSalle II.

  • 1228. albanyparker  |  April 9, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    Anyone go on the Ravenswood School tour today? I had to miss it because of work. Feedback? We’re thinking of moving there (for K).

  • 1229. WaitListed parent  |  April 9, 2013 at 4:02 pm

    Does anyone know when schools start moving down their waitlists? Is it shortly after 4/12 ( the acceptance deadline ) ? I’d think that they should know if they have any availability post 4/12 but not sure how much time they need to do any paper work related to that – if any 🙂
    Thoughts – anyone?

  • 1230. Stacey Nichols  |  April 9, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    I was told by a school we are waitlisted at that they should be calling people on Monday or Tuesday since those already accepted have till Friday to register.

    At someone’s suggestion on here I called our neighborhood school about a tour cuz I really don’t want to have to send her there cuz they have low standing and all I’ve heard from, even a former teacher who posted on here, that it’s not a good school. The woman told me they don’t offer tours and said registration is this Saturday and next Saturday and said “I guess we could show you around a little when you come register”. Not giving me any reason to want to have my daughter go there.

    I know it’s been said, but just to clarify…if we do get called for the magnet school and we accept, we’ll still get a SEES offer if picked, right? And then we can change our minds?

  • 1231. Stacey Nichols  |  April 9, 2013 at 5:47 pm

    Just curious what anyone’s thoughts are on Sabin?

  • 1232. local  |  April 9, 2013 at 5:48 pm

    My buddy has just thrown up his hands for his little guy (3rd grade) with CPS (WL in 100s for Murray) and is starting a search for a good private school. He’s a bit overwhelmed. Not sure what to tell him.

  • 1233. Pie Chart Professor  |  April 9, 2013 at 5:52 pm

    Has anyone seen scores for schools with neighborhood program separated out from gifted program, or are school scores listed only as a combined score?

    For example — South Loop Elem has a gifted program (phasing out) and a neighborhood program. Is there a listing somewhere to say “here is the school’s score for the neighborhood program” and “here is the school’s scores for the gifted program”.

  • 1234. Gabby  |  April 9, 2013 at 6:34 pm

    Sabin is very close to my home. The teachers look very nice. When I see them leaving the school and they always smile and say hi to my children. Their scores are considerably higher than your home school. I would go for it when you get the call.

  • 1235. Stacey Nichols  |  April 9, 2013 at 6:38 pm

    Thank you for the info. I’m hoping we get a call. I like what I saw and heard on the tour and the principal seems nice enough with a good vision.
    It’s likely the only shot we might have, unless we get a sees offer but that’s not till May I think.
    Do you know? If we do get Sabin and accept, will we still get a possible sees offer?

  • 1236. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 9, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    You can accept a magnet spot and will still remain on the SEES lists. You are only removed from SEES lists if you accept another SEES spot, or of course, are offered and turn down that SEES’ school’s offer. No danger of losing a potential gifted or classical offer by accepting a magnet (or magnet cluster or neighborhood program) offer though.

  • 1237. Stacey Nichols  |  April 9, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    Thank you for clarifying

  • 1238. Jen  |  April 9, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    I really hope I get a call sooner rather than later, I have to turn in a check to our current school by May 3 if we want to stay for next year and I really don’t want to stay…

  • 1239. NW Mom  |  April 9, 2013 at 8:30 pm

    Looking for feedback on Wildwood. Waitlist #4 for 2nd grade – any thoughts on our chances?

  • 1240. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 9, 2013 at 8:37 pm

    @1239 – We are Wildwood wait list #2 for 1st grade. I am thinking we probably will not get a call being the school is so overcrowded but you never know, they might run into a situation where they need one or a couple more kids in order to get another teacher or something along those lines.

  • 1241. WLMom  |  April 9, 2013 at 8:38 pm

    We accepted our offer at Franklin. Therefore, our other offers will be at large. They will start callng parents on Monday since Friday is the deadline. Good luck eveyrone!

  • 1242. NW Mom  |  April 9, 2013 at 8:59 pm

    @1240. Thanks. I have read that the school is overcrowded. Have you toured? Best of luck to you!

  • 1243. HSObsessed  |  April 9, 2013 at 9:13 pm

    @1233 – I don’t think CPS has ever provided the breakout test data when there’s an options program within a neighborhood school.

    Here’s an article with interesting stats about something many of us have wondered: How many applications are from a proximity radius v. general citywide? This article says that Jackson had 59 kindergarten spots and 32 went to siblings. They had 195 proximity applications for 10 spots, and 1,082 citywide applications for 16 spots.


  • 1244. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 9, 2013 at 9:15 pm

    @1242 – I have not toured but spoke with the principal about a year and a half ago and was very impressed. Of course, it is one of only a handful out of 25 schools that I did not tour so that means we probably will get a call! She had told me at that point that acceptance for kindergarten would not happen (at that time we were applying for the K lottery) but that it was possible for other grades. I don’t know at what grade starting exactly though. Frankly, I don’t think we’ll accept if offered. I had included the school on my application as there was some possibility of a move for our family out in that general direction but it doesn’t seem like commuting that way would make much sense for us any more as it now looks like that will not happen, at least in the near future. You never know though. Hard to tell the future! Most likely scenario is we keep our child where they are as it is turning out pretty well so far.

  • 1245. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 9, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    @1242 – And good luck to you too!

  • 1246. FirstTimer  |  April 9, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    After hours and hours (and hours) of internal debate, we’ve opted to release our LaSalle II offer and have accepted a Coonley RGC spot.

    So if you are Tier 3 and low on the waiting list for LaSalle II, you should have a good shot at getting in!

    The most difficult part of our decision has been moving down a path where our children may never be in the same school, however we’ve decided to focus on what we feel is the best option for the specific child in question and will afford our youngest the same focus and consideration when it’s her turn in a few years.

    We feel blessed to have been afforded a choice and are looking forward to officially jumping onto this crazy train called CPS.

    Go Cougars!

  • 1247. questions, questions, questions...  |  April 9, 2013 at 9:46 pm

    Opinions — is there a possibility that schools who have a neighborhood component AND gifted component have higher/elevated scores because of the high-IQ kids in the gifted program? (and that the neighborhood program isn’t as great as the numbers say?)

  • 1248. cpsobsessed  |  April 9, 2013 at 9:52 pm

    Well statistically the neighborhood numbers won’t be as high as the overall school numbers because you have the gifted scores bringing the overall scores up.
    Standalone schools like decatur and edison have meets/exceeds scores that are close to 100 percent. So if you can determine what percent of the school is gifted you can back out the numbers.

    What school are you looking at?

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 1249. Pie Chart Professor  |  April 9, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    South Loop Elem.

  • 1250. cpsobsessed  |  April 9, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    based on my verrrry rough estimate (I am assuming that rgc is 40% of the population at south loop in grades 3-8) I’d guess that the meets/exceeds for the neighborhood is 90% and exceeds is around 30%. this includes ELL. I’m assuming that exceeds for gifted is 75%.

  • 1251. Portage Mom  |  April 9, 2013 at 10:50 pm

    @1220 Momof3girls – I don’t know what happened last year but the year we were applying (2011/2012) for K, D2 went as high as 12 on the wait list . The parents were notified over the summer that a spot had opened. I know in past years they had never gone past #2 or #3on the wait list for Tier 4. You never know. Every year is different given progress on the wait list depends on the number of parents who turn down their spots for various reasons. I know having been on the wait list before for D2, you look for any positive signs your child has a chance to get off the wait list. I wish you the best of luck and hope your child is offered a spot. The whole process is just so stressful.

  • 1252. Pie Chart Professor  |  April 9, 2013 at 11:01 pm


  • 1253. Chicago Mama  |  April 10, 2013 at 12:58 am

    @1247 – I always assumed the was the case with gifted/neighborhood composite schools. CPS is very open about the fact that it doesn’t break out RGC scores from neighborhood scores at schools with both. However, I think some schools – especially those with gentrifying or already arrived local populations likely have higher scores anyway,

  • 1254. cpsobsessed  |  April 10, 2013 at 1:00 am

    I think some would be strong neighborhood schools on their own. Then you also have a lot of siblings of kids in the gifted program which probably helps the scores a bit.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 1255. cpsobsessed  |  April 10, 2013 at 1:04 am

    In other discussion of gentrification, I found out that my old neighborhood school which had an influx of gentrified parents 6 years ago just got several of them placed in academic centers for 7th grade. This same school had lower test scores 6 years ago. Some stuff in the school has changed, some has stayed the same.
    But it was a clear indication to me that kids of educated parents have the ability to excel is cps schools that may not look impressive at the time of entry. The socio economic level of the families is a big impactor on test scores.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 1256. realchicagomama  |  April 10, 2013 at 1:38 am

    @CPSO – Indeed. Bell and Coonley show that, whereas schools in ungentrified areas (Carnegie, Orozco) don’t have those scores. Then there are schools like Pritzker and Pulaski that are becoming more popular.

    I think what is generally great about education in Chicago now is that there are SO MANY more parents willing to invest time in their neighborhood public schools and in CPS in general. I used to think my kids were going to get a sub-par education because they didn’t get into Hawthorne or Decatur. Now I can see that’s not true. My neighborhood school is not where I would want it to be, but it’s better than I had found it 5 years ago.

  • 1257. cpsobsessed  |  April 10, 2013 at 7:04 am

    @realchicagomama: you made me want to clarify that I DO think that parental involvement and expectations helps raise the bar at a school when parents start asking more of the admin and ask for more active communication from teachers.
    It was a 2 way street at this school.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 1258. realchicagomama  |  April 10, 2013 at 7:46 am

    CPSO – Of course. I don’t think gentrification is the reason some schools become better within the system, but that gentrification can indicate a willingness to invest time and effort into making individual schools better.

  • 1259. WaitListed parent  |  April 10, 2013 at 11:27 am

    Could you help me out and rank these for me? Top=best


    I am interested in your oppinions. Thank you

  • 1260. Jen  |  April 10, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    @1243 HSObsessed Interesting article about Jackson. Do you think there’s a chance CPS might try to limit sibling entry if it gets to a certain level in future years?

  • 1261. HSObsessed  |  April 10, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    @1260 – I vaguely remember that there WAS a sibling cap of 50% or something near that, when all the change happened to the tier system, but at some point, that apparently was eliminated, and there seems to be no cap. I understand both sides of the argument: Families want all their kids in one school, and if one kid gets in, younger siblings should be guaranteed a spot. On the other hand, having only 27% of spots open for non-sibling, non-proximity applicants (in the case of Jackson) just feels “unfair”, especially to someone who lives within the proximity area of zero magnet schools. It’s tough.

  • 1262. Cool Parent  |  April 10, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    @1260 and 1261: C’est la vie. Life is unfair. It’s unfortunate to the non-sibling, proximity and non-proximity applicants for a very good magnet school (Jackson, in this case) CPS should realize if the sibling ratio is that high, they should open up a new class. I can’t think of any good ways to resolve this issue. The best is to build more good neighborhood schools.

  • 1263. candycane  |  April 10, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    Coolparent, I agree about C’est La Vie except I think it should be for families that have to send their children to different schools. It’s really awful that “families” win the lotto, not just children. Every child should win a spot…and if you, as a parent, don’t like sending your child to different schools, then send them to the neighborhood school and all your children can go together. My neighbor has 4 children, and one is in SEES, one is neighborhood, two are in private. She’s making it work–other parents can too.

  • 1264. AskingForAFriend  |  April 11, 2013 at 9:02 pm

    Is there any chance Hawthorne will get to wait list number 9, Tier 1?

  • 1265. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 11, 2013 at 9:27 pm

    @1264 – I don’t know for sure but less than 10 sounds potentially promising to me, even for a very high in demand school. Your friend could call the school every couple weeks to see where they are on the wait list and to make sure that they know #9, Tier 1 has serious interest. Also, they should always be sure to answer the phone for 773 area codes. If that is a problem for your friend perhaps they could call the school and let them know that sometimes they cannot answer the phone (due to work or whatever reason), but that they are definitely interested and will return voice mails as soon as possible. Some schools may start making wait list calls next week since the deadline for initial acceptances is upon us. Also, there is the chance that they may not get a call until late in summer or even into the school year, but you never know. That is why it might be good to keep on top of where the school is with their Tier 1 calls, if that is info the school is willing to share. Some will, some won’t. Good luck!

  • 1266. Angelica  |  April 11, 2013 at 9:40 pm

    I am Tier 1, Sheridan wait list #3 Is there a chance?

  • 1267. manor mom  |  April 11, 2013 at 9:57 pm

    Did anyone go to the Disney open house today? Any thoughts to share on your experience?

  • 1268. Gabby  |  April 11, 2013 at 10:20 pm


    I hate to say it but probably not a good chance this year to get that far down any tier.

  • 1269. Dana  |  April 12, 2013 at 8:28 am

    Is anyone declining a proximity seat at Murray?

  • 1270. IBobsessed  |  April 12, 2013 at 9:33 am

    Does anyone know WHY elementary magnets do not have principal discretion for a % of admissions? What justifies giving SEHSs PD, but not elementary magnets? Some elementary magnets have specialized curriculums for which some students will be better suited than others, especially when transferring to them in the upper grades. I’m thinking of the language academies especially. Are there others?

  • 1271. 60660  |  April 12, 2013 at 9:38 am

    @1270 IBobsessed – Elementary magnets did have principal discretion until a few years ago and it was horribly abused.
    There are so few spots available at popular magnets and the program should be good enough to serve all their kids well.

  • 1272. WaitListed parent  |  April 12, 2013 at 9:51 am

    @1270, I agree with you and can think of few more.
    Montessori schools, upper grades should only take in Montessori transfers as it is different way of teaching and is bound to fail, if not implemented in early years. Another would be Math and Science Academies, for the same reason as Language.
    There used to be Principal Discretion in Magnets not too long ago; I know a family that into one of the magnets through that. I am not sure why they removed it.

  • 1273. HS Mom  |  April 12, 2013 at 9:55 am

    1271 – I was about to say the same, having witnessed the abuse. The reasoning behind the decision was that magnets are a lottery system open to all – not based in anyway on tests or academic standing. There is no reason for preferential treatment. Sound reasoning I would say.

  • 1274. IBobsessed  |  April 12, 2013 at 10:03 am

    @1273, there will always be abuse, not sure that’s a reason not to have it when oversight can be used. Is it not abused at the SEHSs? Have the principal justify in writing why a student was admitted, citing specific factors. Limit PD to the upper grades when the relevant criteria matter: eg. the student transferring will have no difficulty adjusting to the Montessori method, having come from a Montessori school, or the student has studied the language

  • 1275. H  |  April 12, 2013 at 10:12 am

    I’d rather they just got rid of PD at the SEHSs as well. I understand the rationale for having PD. Just tend to think it’s more likely abused than not.

  • 1276. HS Mom  |  April 12, 2013 at 10:14 am

    @1274 – What would your criteria be for a magnet school with open admission based solely on lottery?

    The abuse limited everyone’s chance at such a school. There was not a kid that got into these schools in the upper grades who wasn’t connected, whose parents (aunts and uncles) weren’t supporting financially or volunteering at the school or who wouldn’t contribute positively to the school ranking.

    If those things are eliminated, then what is the justification of accepting kid A vs. kid B? That they know a language? Not sure I would agree with that.

  • 1277. 60660  |  April 12, 2013 at 10:16 am

    I suspect that there are still loopholes in the ES system and yes the stakes are so high – $100k high! – that I’m sure there are at least attempts to abuse principal discretion at HS level. Maybe when my kids are hitting that mark I’ll have similar stories to tell.

    Extra criteria for admission – for example only allowing Montessori educated kids into Montessori magnets – would only further exclude less privileged kids who already are less likely to get into the best programs.
    If could pay for my kid to go to a bunch of courses/camps at SAIC and then ask the principal at Franklin to put her at the front of the queue because hey check out the wonderful work she has produced and all she has learnt? Honestly I’d do it.

  • 1278. IBobsessed  |  April 12, 2013 at 10:44 am

    @1276 for lottery magnets with no specialized curriculum, there is not much to base an argument on for PD. There IS for the language academies. The specialized curriculum supposedly is a feature that causes families to choose to apply. You enter there, you better want to study a language for 8 years or it is not an appropriate school. Furthermore, if you transfer there in say 5th grade with NO previous experience with the language, you will struggle, and it will be difficult to be successful. Therefore, previous experience with the language is a relevant PD consideration.

  • 1279. HS Mom  |  April 12, 2013 at 11:03 am

    The language component of even a language academy in elementary school is about experiencing the culture and is only the initial stages in learning a language. There are kids who are fluent in language because they speak it at home and others who have no concept or aptitude toward language. The school has different expectations for kids that enter the school in later grades and they work with them to bring them up to speed. Many kids will not even place out of an honors level 1st year HS course. In some cases, kids may not be able to continue the language at all if the high school does not offer it.

  • 1280. 60660  |  April 12, 2013 at 11:11 am

    @1278 why not just test then?

  • 1281. IBobsessed  |  April 12, 2013 at 11:42 am

    @1279 Do you have experience at a language academy? I’m wondering what your source is for this info. No snark here, it’s just that I was told differently by an administrator at a language academy regarding providing help to bring them up to speed and having different expectations for those transferring in, plus the typical transfers success at the language when you are with those who have multiple years of study when you have none. I agree with you that it is also about learning a culture, but by junior high level my impression is that it is beyond the initial stages . or geginning level.

  • 1282. IBobsessed  |  April 12, 2013 at 11:46 am

    “beginning” intended, not ‘geginning’. I type blind in the comment box after about the 6th line due to causes unknown!

  • 1283. HS Mom  |  April 12, 2013 at 11:50 am

    @1281 – yes I do. The experience at our school was how I described. There were many transfers in at higher grades, so of course they needed to be accommodated. The emphasis at our school, like others, was in core subjects particularly in upper grades. I guess if they administered an ISAT in French, that might change (OK, that was snarky).

  • 1284. HS Mom  |  April 12, 2013 at 11:53 am

    Also to add, a number of kids continually leave after 6th grade for academic centers so they would not necessarily be replaced with kids who knew a language.

  • 1285. IBobsessed  |  April 12, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    @1284 -and it is those kids I was told struggle and are not successful, maybe just at the language, but when that is the unique mission of the school, the school is not pleased with that. They want to be known for producing speakers/writers of French etc.. Could we go offline so I can ask you what school you are speaking of? It could be very helpful to me. mwmairead@gmail.com

  • 1286. LG  |  April 12, 2013 at 12:12 pm

    Stone vs Disney 1 opinions please! Our daughter is currently in K at Stone, but we have a good wait list number for Disney and think we may be offered a spot for 1st grade. We toured Disney, and while we thought it was a good school we were not blown away by it. Test scores for both seem to be about the same. We’re in Albany Park, so neither location is ideal for us, although Disney is slightly farther away. We generally like Stone, but our concern is the academics in upper grades. The specials are roughly the same, both have music, art, gym, library, computer lab, except Stone has Spanish and Disney has dance. Does anyone have experience with both schools, particularly in upper grades that can offer some insight? Thanks in advance.

  • 1287. WaitListed parent  |  April 12, 2013 at 12:30 pm

    “Extra criteria for admission – for example only allowing Montessori educated kids into Montessori magnets – would only further exclude less privileged kids who already are less likely to get into the best programs”

    OK, I just have to say this, and I expect that my comment might offend many so please accept my apologies, please do not be upset. I just need to say this because that’s how I feel:
    I am no rich by any means; I cannot afford private school tuition for my two children for the next 9 years so I they are going to CPS. My husband and I are working very, very hard to have our ends meet every month to send our kids to Montessori daycare/preschool because that is what we believe is best for my children. If someone told me few years ago that I would do that, I’d think they were crazy, no way I would afford that; but we do that now – somehow. A lot of hard work and sacrifice. If we can do it, many (I am not saying all ) others could – only if they want to. So I don’t see anything wrong with accepting Montessori kids in upper grades to Montessori schools.
    Also, knowing how Montessori works, I would not transfer my kids to the Montessori school in upper grades once they learn the school system the traditional way.

  • 1288. oldtown  |  April 12, 2013 at 12:36 pm

    Waitlisted parent, I know of several kids who transferred from CPS into Near North Montessori School at 6th and 7th grades. The kids did great and were accepted to Selective Enrollment schools and private schools (Parker, Latin, Lab, Fenwick,etc).

  • 1289. ASouthLoop Mom  |  April 12, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Hi Everyone,

    I just went to the open house for kindergarten at South Loop school this morning and I was impressed overall. I am fortunate that my son got picked in the lottery for Jackson, but my husband and I are torn on which way to go. EVERYONE we talk to says that we cannot possibly turn down a Magnet school spot. Although Jackson is held in very high regard, we are trying to look at all the benefits of either school. Jackson has no real after school program onsite for kindergarten and is further away. South Loop seems to have many options for after school programs, a strong sense of community involvement, and their standing seems to be comparable. Can anyone share their experiences with South Loop as a choice vs. Magnet OR anyone who was in a similar dilemma and what did they eventually do? Thank you in advance . The comments on this blog have been helpful in many ways.

  • 1290. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 12, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    @1289 – Good luck to you! Just want to say that this is such a difficult question for anyone else to answer for you as it is such an individual question. Perhaps making a list of what is most important for you in a school and then ranking them would help. Then you can write which of the two schools best fits the bill next to each category and see what your list looks like? Perhaps one of the two will really stand out? Some of things you could consider and rank how high or low on your list they are might be: distance from home, how many years you expect your child to attend, test scores, foreign language instruction, style of commute to school (walking, car, bus, CTA?), where the 8th graders go to high school, extra curriculars, after care, “specials”, building situation (overcrowded? room to grow? do they have a cafeteria? auditorium? does it even matter to you?), diversity, athletic programs, clubs….etc…….you would obviously have your own categories of importance to rank. Perhaps one will dominate the top of your list? Just a suggestion. I know this can be a tough decision. For us, we went with a further away magnet but our neighborhood school is not so fabulous so it wasn’t as difficult a decision.

  • 1291. PatientCPSMom  |  April 12, 2013 at 2:04 pm

    @1264 our number last year at Hawthorne was Tier 2 #4 and never got called.

  • 1292. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 12, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    @1291 Patient….That would have been maddening for me! Hawthorne was my top choice last year (our number was waaaaayyyyy to high to even think about though.) If we were #4 I would have been staring at the phone all summer. Good gravy.

  • 1293. Jen  |  April 12, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    I think that with PD at the high school level, it is supposed to be the child that has to justify why they should be reconsidered, and it has to be for some unusual circumstance. With elementary it’s really more about the parents, at least for the younger grades. I would have loved the opportunity to provide test scores for my own child that proved her CPS testing wasn’t an accurate representation of her abilities, but a lot of the other parents may not have the same access to the testing we were lucky enough to be able to pay for.

  • 1294. WaitListed parent  |  April 12, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    Hello, can anyone explain the magnet acceptance process to me? Here is my concern:
    Assuming I got an offer to school A and accepted, later during the summer I received an offer for my top choice school B that I was WL at.
    If I accept school B, will I automatically be un-enrolled from school A or will I need to call to decline?
    If later – do parents call to decline or does the school only finds out 1st week of school that some kids are out?

    Any ideas or experince?

  • 1295. cps mom  |  April 12, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    @1294 – If you get a call from the waitlist but you have already accepted a spot elsewhere, then you will need to call them and decline the spot.

  • 1296. Sheridanmom  |  April 12, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    @1266 , I think you have a chance. We were almost getting calls every other day last week and earlier this week, if we were taking our sibling spot. So it seems they were eager to start moving down the wait list. And besides the sibling spots, I am sure there is always movement within the tiers. Good luck!

  • 1297. waitlisted KG mom  |  April 13, 2013 at 1:42 pm

    @1296-Sheridan Mom–

    We are 20 on the Tier 4 wait list for KG. Do you think we have a chance? Even later in the summer?

  • 1298. Sheridanmom  |  April 13, 2013 at 9:08 pm


    I think #20 is pretty high within the tiers to get a call. Let me explain. There are 60 kindergartners, about 32 went to siblings, leaving 28 spots. So 11 for proximity, and then about 4 spots each per tier.

    Seems like they have the experience of not all siblings accepting their spots, hence the repeated phone calls to get me to turn in my acceptance form for my child way before the 12th.

    So lets say 5 siblings decline, when siblings decline those are new seats for the proximity/tiers to give out. But then within the tiers since there are possible multiple offers for a magnet, I am guessing out of the 4 original tier spots, at least 1 declines the offer. So that is why I felt pretty comfortable saying @1266 with a tier waitlist #3, will get a call.

    But for a tier #20, that would be a lot of churn to get to that number, when there are only 4 spots right now per tier. BUT never say never. Wishing you luck! It is a great school and we feel very blessed to have our children there.

  • 1299. Angelica  |  April 13, 2013 at 11:32 pm

    Thank you for your response Sheridanmom, I really hope to get a spot at Sheridan it is definitely my first choice. I spoke to the principal a couple of weeks ago and he said to call him again the 15th. I hope to hear good news.

  • 1300. S.W.  |  April 15, 2013 at 10:01 am

    what if you changed your mind about going to the magnet school, Jackson (after already registered) and decide to register at the neighborhood school instead (South Loop)? Does the neighboorhood registration cancel out the previous magnet registration?

  • 1301. Jen  |  April 15, 2013 at 10:40 am

    If you have definitely decided to go to South Loop please call Jackson to let them know you’re not taking the spot. There are many many parents waiting to hear if they may get that spot who would rather hear sooner than later!

  • 1302. S.W.  |  April 15, 2013 at 1:32 pm

    Thank you for your response. It is not an easy decision to make for us and we want to make the best choice for our family and our child. We know how coveted the spots at Jackson are. As soon as we are sure in our choice, we will call them if we decide to decline.

  • 1303. Some Parent  |  April 15, 2013 at 1:38 pm

    Has anybody received any calls today?

  • 1304. Angelica  |  April 15, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    I actually called Sheridan, principal asked to call him next monday. Tier 1- #3

  • 1305. waiting  |  April 15, 2013 at 2:01 pm

    I called Thorp to see if they could tell me if anyone had declined. I was told they are busy registering this week and will start calling next week. I guess some people accept and then don’t show to register.

  • 1306. candycane  |  April 15, 2013 at 2:04 pm

    I hope 42 people don’t show up to register at LaSalle….

  • 1307. Don't know what to do.  |  April 15, 2013 at 2:07 pm

    Can somebody tell me which school they would choose between Franklin and Newberry? We’re on #2 on the waitlist. We live in the Pilsen area.

  • 1308. Stacey Nichols  |  April 15, 2013 at 5:04 pm

    How does the waitlist work exactly? Do they call one from each tier for each empty spot until they are filled? Like if a school had 7 spots, would they call #1 for tiers 1, 2, 3 & 4 then #2 for tiers 1, 2 & 3 and then the 7 spots are filled if they all accept? And if someone doesn’t accept then they go on to call #2 on tier 4 and on to #3 for each tier?

  • 1309. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 15, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    Stacey – I believe that they call down the same list from which the person who declined would have belonged. Therefore, if a tier 3 spot opens up, they call down the tier 3 list until someone accepts. If a proximity spot opens up, they call down the proximity list until someone accepts. ETc….

  • 1310. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 15, 2013 at 5:44 pm

    So in other words, if you are on a wait list, it doesn’t matter how many decline on the other wait lists, it matters only how many decline on your specific wait list.

  • 1311. mommyofboys  |  April 15, 2013 at 6:40 pm

    @1310. Yup….. You could have someone tier 1 get called and be waitlist number 30 and tier 4 waitlist person number 6 never gets a call.

  • 1312. Gifted Teacher Mom  |  April 15, 2013 at 11:04 pm

    Murray called me today. I declined because I accepted a seat at Poe Classical in the first round. Had we not received a selective enrollment seat I would have lunged at the opportunity to go to Murray! I wish the call had been for my sibling, but it wasn’t.

  • 1313. Glass half full?  |  April 15, 2013 at 11:20 pm

    Are any parents on either the Thorp or Franklin tier 3 WL turning down offer or accepted elsewhere (or offered a seat outright that they are declining)? We’re 33 and 28 respectively and I can’t stand the waiting!

  • 1314. Mom23girls  |  April 16, 2013 at 12:46 am

    Gifted Teacher – What Tier and Wait List were you for Murray?

  • 1315. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 16, 2013 at 8:59 am

    If anyone receives a call from LaSalle for 1st grade would you mind please posting what your wait list number was and whether you declined or accepted. Thank you!!!

  • 1316. WaitListed parent  |  April 16, 2013 at 9:32 am

    Anyone getting calls from Newberry or Suder for kindergarten?
    The wait is killing me, we are tier 4, #7 for Newberry and general #14 for Suder. Please share your numbers and decisions 🙂

  • 1317. ap mama  |  April 16, 2013 at 9:36 am

    I wonder if there will be much movement in the waiting lists before the neighborhood/magnet cluster letters go out. My guess is we will see much more movement after the deadline to accept those offers.

    With that being said, I have a few questions to put out there:

    -Anyone know how many of the LaSalle II K spots went to siblings?
    -If any tier 2 K waitlist folks get a call from LaSalle II, can you please post your numbers and decisions?

    Thanks and Good Luck!

  • 1318. Gifted Teacher Mom  |  April 16, 2013 at 9:40 am

    I am tier 4 and waitlist number 12.

  • 1319. mommy gigi  |  April 16, 2013 at 10:30 am

    Lasalle II just called me! They said I had until Thursday to think about it. I was like no I been expecting your call, I want to take it. I’m going to register my daughter tomorrow at noon. I was tier 3 #2 for a kindergarten spot! Now I’m going to call uno’s new galewood charter school to tell them i changed my mind about. Good luck everyone!!

  • 1320. FirstTimer  |  April 16, 2013 at 10:37 am

    Yay! I’m so glad to hear our Tier 3 LaSalle II K spot was snatched up already! We went back/forth so many times with our decision and know we would have been very lucky to have been at LaSalle II. There have been a number of current parents from LaSalle II on this site and NPN who have kindly reached out and shared info. with me during our decision process – I encourage you to reach out on either site if you have any questions for current parents. Congrats!!

  • 1321. smiles  |  April 16, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    if anyone turns down a lasalle 2 spot please post here and what your tier was…we are tier 4, #8 and have finger, toes and legs crossed in hopes of getting a call!

  • 1322. 60640 Mom  |  April 16, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    Does anyone know when Disney I will start calling waitlisted students? My daughter is #9 on the proximity waitlist for kindergarten.

  • 1323. Non-Disney Parent  |  April 16, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    I declined Disney 1 offer for 1st grade.

  • 1324. mommy gigi  |  April 16, 2013 at 2:23 pm

    Thanks! I’m pretty excited about this school. 🙂

  • 1325. Wend  |  April 16, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    We turned down two (twins) K spots, tier 4 For Galileo. Hoping I made right decision to go to South Loop Elem. we are also wait listed 9-10 for LaSalle II. Any significant reason to take LaSalleII over Sth Loop if we get a call?

  • 1326. Lexus  |  April 16, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    @Wend: Where do you live? I live in the South Loop but my son goes to Franklin. SL is a good school but I heard it’s overcrowded. We didn’t want our son to go there for K because it’s in a different location and we didn’t want our son to take the school bus to their after school program.

  • 1327. smiles  |  April 16, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    I have heard good things about both…depends on how far you want to drive probably.

  • 1328. I LUV LaSalle ll  |  April 16, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    The kids are super awesome! I work recess and lunch periods at the school so I see the kids interact. They are all best buddies! I love seeing how these kids have grown and bonded, new kids too! It is a great mix of kids. My experience with the teachers have been positive. . Walk by on a Sunny day at recess it will bring a smile to your face. You cant beat the location too. This is how school should be across the city!

  • 1329. Hoping4hawthorne  |  April 16, 2013 at 11:35 pm

    No hawthorne updates?
    I have tier 3 #5 WL, and would like to know the chances to get a call.
    Appreciate any info/feedback.

  • 1330. abcs  |  April 17, 2013 at 9:33 am

    FYI. Declined STEM, K, T4; #3 WL.

  • 1331. hliddle  |  April 17, 2013 at 9:41 am

    Does anyone know how far down Mayer went on the waitlist last year? Also, does anyone have information they would like to share about their experiences there? Thank you!

  • 1332. Lisa Radabaugh  |  April 17, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    SO my son was wait listed at #5 on tier 3 for Disney 2. I called the school today and they told me 3 parents declined and they offered 3 kids off the wait list and they accepted. She told me this puts my son at #2 on the wait list. She said parents would have to not show up to enrollment on May 6th in order for my son to be accepted. What do you think the chances are?

  • 1333. Even One More CPS Mom  |  April 17, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    #1332 Lisa – Hmmmmm…..Slim but you never know. 2nd round SEES offers will be mailed before the end of April so if there is someone who receives a SEES offer and decides to go that route instead you could have a chance…..or if someone gets a job in another state and the family moves…….Just tossing out some possibilities.

  • 1334. Jen K  |  April 17, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    @ 1332 A year or two ago at D2, a family with twins accepted, then skipped enrollment because they were staying at their private school. So it can happen!

  • 1335. WaitListed parent  |  April 17, 2013 at 4:28 pm

    @1332 plus, Magnet Cluster letters will be sent out late May. Someone might get into a school closer to home / work etc. I think you have very good chances 😉 Good luck.

    I am impatiently waiting my turn too 🙂 I have to litteraly reason myself from calling the school every day 🙂

  • 1336. WesLooWorkingMom  |  April 17, 2013 at 9:15 pm

    One school listed the number of its K students who received Stanine “4 & Below” versus 5, 6 and so on, in reading and math. I presume that the numbers refer to K testing. Can anyone shed any light on Stanine and the numbers? Thank you!

  • 1337. anonymouse teacher  |  April 17, 2013 at 9:34 pm

    Not sure if this is what you meant, 1136, but stanines 1-3 are terribly low, stanines 4-6 are mid range, and stanines 7-9 are high. I personally find any stanine below a 7 to be of deep concern and anything below 5, as a parent, I’d be begging the school for a sped evaluation (which may or may not be needed, but 1-4 is cause for “the house is burning down” kind of worry).

  • 1338. WesLooWorkingMom  |  April 17, 2013 at 10:02 pm

    @1337–I think that you answered my question. I wasn’t sure what the numbers meant in terms of achievement or progress. I also wasn’t sure what numbers were cause for concern. Much appreciated.

  • 1339. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  April 18, 2013 at 9:25 am

    @ 1331. hliddle Mayer took 3 y.o. children from the general wait-list this past fall, at least 7. I asked one of the latecomers for her waitlist number; waiting for a reply.

    Mayer is a very good school: the Montessori program is very strong in the EC (3yo-K) and Elementary 1 grades (1st-3rd). The rooms have assistants in addition to the teacher due in part to parent fundraising; all but one hold BAs and several are on the verge of teacher certification. My daughter’s current teacher was an assistant who became a regular teacher. The teachers are excellent. Parents are friendly and welcoming (there will be a “buddy system” in place next year to match new parents with parents who have been there, should the parents choose).There is an IB middle years program in 6-8 grade, which is about to graduate its first cohort. The first Montessori 3 y.o. cohort won’t graduate until 2017 or 2018.

    There are some points of contention: CPS and state rules sometimes conflict w/ Montessori values, which irks parents who are familiar with Montessori or had their children in private Montessori schools prior to attending Mayer. (For example, CPS requires letter-grade report cards, but Montessori is anathema to letter grades.) The teachers, however, keep the spirit of Montessori instruction alive. The arguments are really over the next steps to make the school better rather than over serious deficiencies that need to be corrected. Active parents are blessing in terms of volunteers available, but we also can be a monkey-wrench in the gears in terms of school administrations ability to balance the student interests, faculty prerogatives, and CPS mandates.

  • 1340. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  April 18, 2013 at 9:47 am

    1136-1138 Whoa! What test or measure for Ks are you referring to?

    STAndard NINEs divide the raw scores into 9 intervals across a normal distribution. 20% of the population should fall in stanine 5, which ranges from the 40th-60th percentile. Frankly, this is not all that helpful in terms of understanding your child’s abilities. Stanines 1-4 will cover 40% of the population.
    See this page for more: http://www.readingstats.com/fifth/email2d.htm

  • 1341. Lisa Radabaugh  |  April 18, 2013 at 11:32 am

    Thank you all for the encouraging words! Fingers crossed! Good luck to all of you as well 🙂

  • 1342. Chgojen  |  April 18, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    Somewhat off topic:

    Since many of you have done a TON of research on the schools you applied to…can you tell me what you used as a basis for your research? Certain websites? Ratings? Places to compare scores? School program info? Parent feedback? Etc?

    There seems to be so much info out there, but I’m having trouble determining where to focus. Also, every school has a different type of website and offer different types of info on line, so it’s not very easy to get info on after school programs, etc, just by looking on line.

  • 1343. JLM  |  April 19, 2013 at 11:27 am


    You can certainly post here and at NPNParents.org (if you’re a member there) to ask if anyone has info on a specific school. Touring and websites also give you an overview. And this site is pretty useful:


    You can compare two or more schools – they have info on overall ISAT scores, split by reading/math/science, split by grade, and you can sort by demographics (income, ELP, IEP, etc.).

    I always find it very interesting to take a Wilmette school and compare it to a decent CPS school. I compare overall scores and then just scores for non-low-income kids. Wilmette might come out better on overall/total scores, but the schools will be nearly identical when you just look at non-low-income students, leading to my belief that many suburban schools are considered so great because they’re working with a pretty homogenous population.

  • 1344. JLM  |  April 19, 2013 at 11:29 am

    @1342 again – I also always looked at a map, as I’m not interested in sending my kid to a great magnet that’s on the completely opposite side of the city!

  • 1345. Angie  |  April 19, 2013 at 11:36 am

    I am so nervous, anyone declined a spot for Sheridan tier 1 kindergarten? I called the school today and still no news. I am wait list #3

  • 1346. PatientCPSMom  |  April 19, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    @1342 What I have found the most helpful is to go to the schools you’ve identified by on-line research and have your child play at the playground. Go at recess to see teacher interactions with kids, and then go after school where you will meet other Moms/Dads and you can talk to them. You’ll also see how long it takes you to travel to that school so that helps you know if that travel time works for you.
    This process helped me pick out our two CPS schools. Good luck!

  • 1347. west rogers park mom  |  April 19, 2013 at 3:18 pm

    Newberry is making phone calls off the wait list – – – at least in upper grades. I know of someone who received a call for 4th grade and will decline.

  • 1348. Bestofmyknowledge  |  April 19, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    Just an FYI to those interested in LaSalle II. I called and they have moved 3 down for Tier 4 K

  • 1349. WaitListed parent  |  April 19, 2013 at 4:09 pm

    I am happy to hear that schools started moving down the WL.

    Anyone heard from Suder? I will be calling them Monday. The poor lady in the office is probably sick of me already 🙂

  • 1350. ruthie60607  |  April 19, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    @waitlisted parent – I was told that Suder would likely not start working down the waitlist until after May 1st (which is the official registration day for the school).

  • 1351. anonymouse teacher  |  April 19, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    @1340, I wasn’t referring to tests for K. I was referring to tests my own children take (who are older). While 40% of the population might be in stanines 1-4, I would be seriously concerned if MY children were in that range. We are a double graduate degreed, two teacher, upper middle income family whose first language is English. Our children should be in the 7-9 stanine range (mostly A’s on report cards, all scores above 90% range on any kind of test) based on the work we do with them at home and the kind of life we’ve made for them. So maybe the “run to get a sped eval” was a bit of an exaggeration, but from my perspective, 7-9 are the only acceptable numbers.
    I absolutely expect my kids to be in the 90-95%+ range of testing, any testing. My little guy has been coming home with reading tests (just unit tests) at about 85%. It might sound tiger-mom-ish, but that’s just not good enough. We’re working with him a lot and this summer is going to be spent working too. All else stops in our house to ensure this improves. 85% does not cut it.

  • 1352. west rogers park mom  |  April 19, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    @ anonymouse teacher- Wow- I hate to say it but I’m glad my kid isn’t in your classroom. She also comes from a ‘double graduate degreed, two professional, upper middle family income family whose first language is English’ and does not always hit the 7-9 stanine range, is not always in the 90 – 95% range testing, and doesn’t get all A’s.

    I shudder to think what your impression would be of her (or our family) if she was in your class. I guess the fact that she got a B in 7th grade is reflective of the ‘kind of life’ that has been made for her.

    And yes, she is tutored, does not have an IEP, and still does get decent grades with a lot of help and prodding from mom and dad. But the fact is she has to try harder than her peers. Believe me, if there was a magic test course, worksheet, or anything we would use it for her. But frankly, she is surrounded by people with mindsets like yours and its terrible on her self esteem. Not all kids are academically inclined. It doesn’t mean they aren’t great wonderful kids who come from loving families that value education.

    Sure, I wish she was academically inclined like her dad and I were back in the day, And yes, I have been filled with self-doubt from time to time over the years thinking it was partly ‘us’. Thanks for re-affirming my suspicions

  • 1353. SS Mom  |  April 19, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    There is movement on the Mark Sheridan waitlist. I know someone who got a WL call today for K, tier 3

  • 1354. Angelica  |  April 19, 2013 at 5:45 pm

    Thank you SS mom, I am glad there is movement in Mark Sheridan. Giving them a call first thing monday morning. Tier 1, #3

  • 1355. Jen K  |  April 19, 2013 at 5:46 pm

    @ 1352: I feel the same as anonymous teacher from expectation standpoint, not necessarily from background. I expect my children to be at the higher levels because I know they are capable of achieving them.

  • 1356. anonymouse teacher  |  April 19, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    Okay, so I went back and re-read my posts and yeah, I cringed a little. I was overly harsh.
    What I should have said was I expect that my children will achieve highly and that their demographic background and all the advantages they have help them in that endeavor. I would be concerned with lower scores than the ones I listed. But this is my own standard and doesn’t have to be anyone else’s. My children are capable of it and I will continue to insist on it and support them in doing so.
    Its been an awful week and I’m wound a little more tightly than usual. We had an attempted abduction outside our school this week, my classroom is leaking with no fix in sight and I keep waiting to walk in one morning to find the things that I paid for totally ruined. Its taken me hours to get home from work the last two days, my basement has standing water and the parents at my school are acting like total looney tune cases doing really unsafe things in and around the school. And I am waiting desperately to find out if I get called back for a second interview at a suburban school because I want to get out of CPS so badly. Not to mention the craziness going on in the rest of the nation.
    I apologize if I made anyone feel like their child isn’t good enough. It doesn’t help that every week or so we hear the statistic quoted over and over at work that only about a fourth of the students who currently meet state standards are expected to do so on the PARCC test. I worry about this a lot. And it probably doesn’t help that I know the ONLY way my own kids are going to be able to attend college at all is if they go mostly on scholarship, so yeah, they really have to achieve or they won’t go to college.
    I will work towards tempering my comments.

  • 1357. Sped Mom  |  April 19, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    I expected top scores from my SWD too. Not to be. Very difficult to recalibrate expectations. Our entire education system, with CPS to the nines, requires these top scores to access anything. This kid doesn’t get access to what even general public schools students do. But, we started out with those top expectations because all the stars pointed to it. Except that one star that ruled.

    And it has been a hell of a week, from the micro to the macro.

  • 1358. Portage Mom  |  April 19, 2013 at 10:57 pm

    1332. Lisa Radabaugh – I think your chances are good. My daughter was wait listed #5 on the Tier 4 list about two years ago. We received the call the Monday after acceptances were due offering us a spot. I was thrilled. There is a lot of movement in the summer. I remember talking to a parent and her daughter was wait listed #12 on the Tier 4 list and she got in over the summer. I believe they received the call in August. Every year is different given your chances really depends on what other parents do with the spots they have been offered.

  • 1359. IB obsessed  |  April 19, 2013 at 10:58 pm

    @1356 Don’t drink the standardized testing kool-aid. You are too smart for that, although I can see how it can happen in the current environment.

    Waaaay back in the day before testing was the be-all and end all, I typically scored in the low 90s in Reading, lower than that in Math on IOWAs, I think it was. I have a Ph.D.

    Kids can rise above their 5th grade achievement on standardized tests. Really. They can. And do

  • 1360. SK  |  April 20, 2013 at 3:22 am

    Has anyone received a call from Newberry proximity wait list for kindergarten?

  • 1361. westtown mama  |  April 20, 2013 at 8:52 am

    We received a call from Newberry but for tier 2. WL #6 and we accepted.

  • 1362. Waitlisted  |  April 20, 2013 at 10:50 am

    Anyone heard from Thorp? We are WL#teens for T3… Any tiers got calls yet?

  • 1363. Waiting......  |  April 20, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    We declined a spot for Stone tier 1 kindergarten.

    Has anyone declined a spot at Drummond for preK tier 1? Waiting for their call……

  • 1364. waiting  |  April 21, 2013 at 9:31 pm

    Anyone has news for Hawthorne? We are on waitlist #4, tier 4…..

  • 1365. Amon  |  April 22, 2013 at 5:51 am

    Hawthorne will probably not go very far down the lists this year. There were more offers given out this year due to a mixup at the oae office.

  • 1366. waiting  |  April 22, 2013 at 9:37 am

    1362 – I just called to inquire about wait list information for Thorp and was told they hadn’t looked at it yet but will be doing so today. Call back tomorrow. So frustrating. Wait wait wait and wait some more.

  • 1367. waiting  |  April 22, 2013 at 9:52 am

    @1365, Thanks, Amon. That is really bad news. I hope they did not give out more offers to every tier. I thought we had a good chance at #4.

  • 1368. Bsmoresmom  |  April 22, 2013 at 10:41 am

    Has anyone heard anything about Franklin? Just curious.

  • 1369. some waiting mom  |  April 22, 2013 at 10:42 am

    @1305 Amon: That sucks. How could OAE mess that up? Why can’t I receive an offer by that mix up?!!

  • 1370. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  April 22, 2013 at 11:49 am

    @1356 Sure. We all want our children to be score well and do well on tests, but if its elementary school we are talking about, I’m with IB obsessed @1359. At a certain point, kids start to burn out. Reading becomes a chore, not a source of entertainment. Math is not elegant and exciting, but a tedious exercise in computation. History is not a journey into the past requiring one’s imagination to think as someone else might have thought, but memorization of one damn thing after another.

    None of the assessments that CPS employs capture children’s aptitude in the arts. Even the humanities has been reduced to reading hack story-writing. Have you read some of these tests? They are awful. Like stab-your-temple-with-a-pencil awful.

    I never met anyone who said that the perfect score on their SAT or ACT exam was essential to their success.

  • 1371. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  April 22, 2013 at 12:26 pm


    …every week or so we hear the statistic quoted over and over at work that only about a fourth of the students who currently meet state standards are expected to do so on the PARCC test.

    Given that the test hasn’t been written, I don’t see how anyone can know that unless they are designing it to produce that result.

    The new cut-scores for this year’s ISAT are based on taking the percentile distributions for PSAE scores for 2011 and mapping them onto the 8th grade ISAT scores in 2008 to arrive a cut-scores that put roughly 10% in academic warning, 40% below standards, 40% meets, and 10% exceeds. In other words, the cut-scores are set to create this distribution. Think of it this way, imagine you gave a 100-point test and told the students that their grades would match a normal distribution (this is roughly what ISBE has done), not a fixed percentage. So if the top 10 percent of the class scored between 90 and 75 points, those students would earn an A.

  • 1372. CPSer  |  April 22, 2013 at 1:42 pm

    @1371 – Does it go the other way also? If all raw scores were between 90 and 100%, would the lowest 10% (at the 90% raw score) be put on academic warning?

  • 1373. Rita M.  |  April 22, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    I’m kind of blown away by the idea that 85% is an unacceptable score for a test. My kids are smart, but occasionally my dd comes home with grades like that due to careless errors or what have you. Sometimes she didn’t understand something and we go over it together. But with the amount of homework she is given, I’d have to take away all her play time to drill her to perfect performance. Is that just because she has adhd, or do other smart kids get the occasional B or C on schoolwork too?
    I’m clearly not cut out for the Tiger Mom business. I felt very alone when I ran into some parents at conferences who were upset about ther first graders receiving a B.

  • 1374. anonymouse teacher  |  April 22, 2013 at 6:25 pm

    @1371, All I can tell you is what we are being told. My principal and other admins in Chicago have told us this multiple times. I know people who have seen sample questions on the PARCC test, so if it is not completely written, it is in process.

  • 1375. EdParent  |  April 22, 2013 at 6:46 pm

    Can anyone tell me about CICS Irving Park? We applied for K and kind of forgot about it. Was surprised to receive an acceptance in the mail today. How does it compare to Belding? Are Charter schools on the same calendar as regular schools?

  • 1376. LaSalle II mom  |  April 22, 2013 at 6:53 pm

    We were accepted last year for K for at CICS – IP. We accepted the spot over the neighborhood that we were enrolled in at the time, and I set off to find out as much as I could about it. I had two friends with kids at the school so I talked to them at length about it. I also toured the school with the principal, and attended her presentation about the school, curriculum and policies. We ultimately received a call from LaSalle II over the summer, and accepted that spot.

    As with any school there are good and bad aspects. They have some really good things going there. They have a strong curriculum that includes NWEA testing for progress throughout the year. They are very serious about academics and are focused on preparing kids to attend college. They keep their class sizes low, and were planning on having 2 aides in the K classes. They do an amazing job of differentiating instruction for kids at different levels. They have very strong test scores, as good or better than some magnets and better than most neighborhood schools. There is a very strong feeling of community and support there that the parents love, and an active PTO. They offer full-time art, music, gym and Spanish. The school also has a commitment to the environment with a composting program, solar panels, school garden and chicken coop. They have after care on site, and enrichment classes. They also have a playground for recess. They have school community meetings in the morning, a great sense of school spirit and reward kids often for positive behavior.

    The aspects that weren’t as good are a high teacher turnover because they aren’t in the union and can’t pay them as well. The school is very small and is overcrowded for the space they have. In my opinion they went a bit too far with the seriousness of the academics and didn’t let the kids just be kids. The uniforms are very strict and they were talking about requiring 7th and 8th grade boys to wear a coat and tie.

    I don’t know enough about Belding to compare the two.

    They are not usually on the same schedule as other CPS schools, so I would check their website or call the school to ask.

  • 1377. FirstTimer  |  April 22, 2013 at 6:56 pm

    I don’t know about charters specifically, however because I just spent yesterday mapping CPS’ schedule against the private preschool where my youngest will be, I quickly pulled up CICS Irving Park and it looks like the calendar is fairly different from CPS.

    It seems like CICS Irving Park starts earlier in August and runs later into June (plus Spring Break is a few weeks earlier). And it also looks like maybe the school dismisses early every Wednesday? That part is a little confusing.

    For reference, here’s the link to the CPS calendar I found yesterday: http://www.cps.edu/sitecollectiondocuments/SY2013_2014Calendar.pdf

  • 1378. Chicago Mama  |  April 22, 2013 at 7:03 pm

    @1375 – The neighborhood is really split on Belding vs. CICS-IP. I know parents who are in the Belding boundary and chose CICS-IP over Belding, and parents who chose CICS-IP over Belding, so it probably depends on what you are looking for in a school and school community. I know one parent with a K student in CICS-IP now who is pulling him/her for a CPS RGC.

    They are on a completely different calendar than CPS – start earlier in August, end earlier in June, have spring break at different times, have different report card pick-up/conference days, etc.

  • 1379. EdParent  |  April 22, 2013 at 7:24 pm

    Thanks for all the responses about CICS. The calendar may be a deal breaker for us. Our older son is at an RCG and I can’t see juggling different calendars for their full elementary education. It’s probably worth a tour, but I’m not sure how realistic it will be for us.

  • 1380. anonymouse teacher  |  April 22, 2013 at 7:34 pm

    It is my understanding that CPS now is admitting that a good portion of the kids who now pass the ISATs should not be passing it and that cut scores are being adjusted some this year and again next year. Add to that, the PARCC test is expected to be much harder than what ISAT is, and that’s my understanding of why they keep telling us only 25-30% of the current “meets” group will “meet” on PARCC. As well, we are told to look at the NWEA data. How many kindergarteners are on track to be college and career ready? Of course, I think NWEA for my grade level is nonsense, but it doesn’t mean I don’t worry. According to NWEA only a small portion of my entire school is college and career ready. 85% of our kids are meeting standards on ISATs, yet NWEA says only about 15-20% are ready for college and career.

    I’d also mention one, my rating as a teacher is based partly on my students’ test scores (REACH). So, yes, I have to care and care very, very much about tests.
    And two: 7th grade. Isn’t that half of what people post about here? If you get straight A’s and near perfection on tests, you go to a good high school. If not, you scramble or pay for private. 7th grade scores and grades aren’t determined directly by earlier performance, but it has something to do with it.

  • 1381. IB obsessed  |  April 22, 2013 at 8:35 pm

    @1380, there is Von Steuben, Senn IB, Lakeview STEM which do not require straight As and near perfection on tests.

  • 1382. HS Mom  |  April 23, 2013 at 8:44 am

    @1380 – I’m not sure what being “college ready” in elementary school means. Does that mean that an 8th grader is working 4 years past grade level? Seems like a lot to put on a kid.

    @1373 Rita – 85% is good even great. Don’t be swayed by others visions. A child with ADHD will spend so much more time and work harder than his/her peers in the same intellectual group for the same or lower grades. They will be penalized because they forget, are continually late or just can’t complete the task. This is supposedly done to get them “college ready”.

  • 1383. me  |  April 23, 2013 at 9:14 am

    @1381 – Go Senn and Lakeview!!

  • 1384. Patricia  |  April 23, 2013 at 9:32 am

    @1380 anonymouse teacher. Yes, it has been true for over a decade that the “meets” score on ISAT is completely misleading. The bar has been continually lowered in part due to the poor implementation of NCLB.

    Because federal funding is involved, states all across the country lower the “meets” bar each year……the test questions get R