2013: Academic Center Letters

March 22, 2013 at 6:32 pm 431 comments

AC 2013

In anticipation of the mail delivery.

Post your news about Academic Centers here.   AC’s are for 7th grade students.  They require a special test for placement that is taken during 6th grade along with ISAT scores and grades from 5th grade.

The beauty of getting an AC spots is that you have a guaranteed high school spot at that school.

Cutoffs scores for ACs from last year are posted here:


2012 AC thread is here:



Entry filed under: Academic Centers.

2013: Annual Elementary MAGNET Mailbox Watch 2013: SEES Gifted and Classical Letter Thread

431 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Iheoma  |  March 22, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    Thanks for starting this thread!!

  • 2. CPS Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 7:24 pm

    Waiting…waiting…waiting… 😀

  • 3. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    Yes, thank you for this thread! Will be interesting to see how many are obsessing over ACs!

  • 4. EdgewaterMom  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    Are the points based on the grades for the final quarter in 5th grade, or the whole year? Do 6th graders already have their exam results, or do they find out when they get the AC letters?

    Good luck to everybody who applied!

  • 5. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    Points are based on the final grades. If you look at your kids report card there are grades for the four quarters and then final grades after that. The final grades are the average of all four quarters.

  • 6. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 8:33 pm

    Exam results come with the letter, just like HS. Good luck!

  • 7. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:06 pm

    Who wants to play the predictions game?
    My prediction is that the Lane AC tier 4 minimum score jumps up by about 20 points. Every kid I talk to has put Lane as #1 over Whitney, etc.

  • 8. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    Gobermouche…I have heard of many kids who have put Lane as their #1 as well.

  • 9. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    What do you think is prompting the popularity of Lane? Location? Or it’s just getting a better reputation these days?

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 10. AC and waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:09 pm

    ahhhh, my people all together in one thread. I agree on the Lane jump. And of the 10+ kids we know who took the test, only 1 put Whitney first. T-15 hours till my mail carrier shows up. Sleep well everyone.

  • 11. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:13 pm

    I’m not sure what has caused the popularity jump. I think some of it is just the reputation of years past and location. I don’t know a whole lot about the program and whether or not it is better than the others. Personally, it’s not on my list. So maybe it’s new found popularity will work to my benefit 😉

  • 12. AC and waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    What we hear most is proximity, athletics, and lots and lots of classes to choose from. Did I say proximity?

  • 13. SSPerson  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:47 pm

    @gobemouche Northside, I take it? On the southside, I hear about no one who applied for Lane.

  • 14. cpsobsessed  |  March 22, 2013 at 9:50 pm

    @ssperson: what schools are the top choices for sside kids?

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 15. Tara  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:02 pm

    I love havin all the AC people in one thread. I know alot of people who put Lane as first choice. Knowing a child that goes there it is a good program. She loves it. Now only nervous to hopefully get that acceptance letter tomorrow. Does anyone have an estimate in how many applied for 8 th grade for Lane AC?

  • 16. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    I still have my SEHS acceptance letter from Lane from 1988 😀 I ended up not going there though!

  • 17. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:15 pm

    Good question about the popularity spike for Lane AC…I don’t know…the kids I’ve spoken to cant all articulate a reason why they like it, they just do. I think proximity has a lot to do with it, followed by class choices and, honestly, the newness factor.

    SSperson – what would you say is the number 1 choice on the south side? I’d like to know more about SS schools. It’s weird for me, this whole north/south thing. I moved here from out of state about 13 years ago. I ended up on the north side just because the suburban guy I married only knew one neighborhood – Lakeview. So I don’t have any particular attachment to north or south. I’d really like to hear more first hand knowledge of SS neighborhoods and schools.

  • 18. Iheoma  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:47 pm

    I’m a HP parent and many south side kids place WY, Kenwood and Lindblom as choices. WY being a top choice for most. More variety for SEHS – WY and Jones being top choices with many HP kids going to Kenwood (which is not a SEHS) because of its strong partnership with U of C.

  • 19. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:52 pm

    So Whitney is probably the overall #1 choice city wide. Makes sense given its location (and reputation).

  • 20. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:55 pm

    I’m confused about Kenwood. It’s not a SE school? Doesn’t have an AC?

  • 21. WRP Mom  |  March 22, 2013 at 10:58 pm

    Great to hear re the increased popularity of Lane’s program. My child is currently a 7th grader there & she loves it. I suspect the bump in popularity is simply that that this relatively new program (only been around a couple years) has gained acceptance. In the 1st year or so, people were a little gun-shy because it was an unknown, But not anymore. I agree proximity is also a factor for families on the north side.

    Good luck to all of you as you receive your letters in the next few days! I was in your shoes last year, so I know what you’re going through.

  • 22. Gobemouche  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:10 pm

    Ugh, I meant to say “does” have an AC. So…kenwood. It has an AC – are those the only 7&8th graders in the building? But it is a neighborhood high school? But also has a magnet program?

  • 23. Iheoma  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:47 pm

    Kenwood does have an AC and a highly regarded honors program but it is not a SEHS. I believe that it a magnet cluster school that takes kids in the school boundaries first then opens up for additional students outside of the the school boundaries. I’m not exactly sure how kids who don’t go to the AC get into the honor program. I went to the open house but can’t remember at this point.

  • 24. Iheoma  |  March 22, 2013 at 11:52 pm

    Forgive all of the spelling and grammatical errors – I need to be in bed….

  • 25. Westrogersparkmom  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:42 am

    I wonder how many in Lane’s 8th grade class stayed and how many moved on to other schools. This year they are graduating their first class of AC kids.

    I’m also curious as to if they’ll have a second round or not. Taft traditionally has several rounds but not Whitney. Since Taft is a good program as well I envision many tough decisions ahead from kids a point or two from Lane or Whitney who would lose the opportunity for a second round. I guess it would depend where you come from -if you were in a K-8 school in the first place.

    Good luck everyone !

  • 26. LTACMOM  |  March 23, 2013 at 8:25 am

    I have an 8th grader at LTAC. He loves it. Program is really well run and they are really invested in making them succeed in high school. From what I hear, the majority of the class is staying put at Lane. Lots of them got into other SEHSs (including NorthSide) but are staying at Lane.
    I am hoping my other child (6th grader at RGC) gets in.

  • 27. AC and waiting  |  March 23, 2013 at 8:47 am

    I have a friend who’s son is in 8th at Lane. Will ask if they know approximate number of kids staying at Lane. I too know very little about the south side. Love hearing about it here. Also very curious to learn more in the near future about Westinghouse.

  • 28. Bebe  |  March 23, 2013 at 9:23 am

    Another HP mom here. For my 6th grader, who is applying to AC’s, Classical and Gifted, as well as Magnets for 7th, his first choice is WY, second Kenwood. Both AC’s are excellent. My two older two children have gone on the CTA to go to schools on the northside since 6th grade or 7th grade. It can work for older kids. Well–maybe not as far north as Northside Prep. 🙂

  • 29. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 9:29 am

    The spark with Lane is all about the “once you’re in, you’re in” factor. You will not have to reapply for high school. It’s a 6 year college prep program once you start with 7/8 and Lane has become increasingly difficult to get in once the floods of the HS applicants come in from all over the city, as a selective prep hs.

  • 30. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 23, 2013 at 9:43 am

    Student in the WYAC program rarely leave for another HS. In my child’s class only 2 left~but the NSCP students did not. I think the kids who don’t get into WY will go Lane bc the cutoff is easier to get in~and you can’t beat a program w/the factor of ‘once you’re in, you’re in’~it’s nice to know you don’t have to search for a HS again!


  • 31. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 23, 2013 at 9:44 am

    ^^ I meant the students who lived near NSCP did not leave.

  • 32. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 9:55 am

    On another note, it’s great to be excited and waiting for the mailman, but my heart goes out to all the families who are changing CPS schools next year due to closures and not choice.

  • 33. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:00 am

    Bebe – just curious if you don’t mind me asking, how long of a commute on the CTA were your children taking every morning?

  • 34. local  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:01 am

    Any info on the Morgan Park AC and Kenwood AC? Where do the AC student attend HS? Where do they get in, get offers? How is the experience once in HS? Any info.

  • 35. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:07 am

    @16. (not-so)patiently waiting – That’s hilarious. I can only guess you wound up going to private school for HS? Back in the day, Catholic School parents like mine didn’t have awesome internet access. I think had they understood their choices, mine would have been perusing more CPS options.

  • 36. cmf  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:17 am

    I know a few far north side families with kids at WYAC that had Northside as their high school goal but the previously straight A kids had final B’s in 7th grade, thus knocking out any hope of NS and a shorter commute. They are generally happy with WY but the commute from far north will make for a long 4 years of high school after 2 long years in 7th and 8th.

  • 37. Bebe  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:19 am

    @33 Bridget: A little over an hour. #1 child went to Franklin for 7th and 8th, and then Chicago Academy for the Arts (a private school on Chicago and Morgan) for high school. #2 child went to Ogden pre-IB 6th-8th, and then LPHS HH. He qualified for bus service at Ogden but in 6th grade the service was so disorganized it would take him 1.5 hours to get back home. So we just put him on the same CTA buses with his sister. Funny anecdote: He had a friend who has two older sisters at WY, and since Ogden starts a little later than other schools, and the two boys both had to travel with their sisters, they ended up spending almost every morning at the Einstein Brothers near Ogden. Wondered what the employees there thought about the two boys (ant their parents).

  • 38. sharon  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:21 am

    Am I the only Grandparent going nuts waiting to hear from my Grandaughter if she got her letter?? My patience is not what it used to be!

  • 39. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:26 am

    @36 cmf – That scenario is a huge source of consideration too, that I’m guessing a lot of people struggle with. The risk associated with a more challenging curriculum in the AC and tougher grading (right now a 90-100 is an A, but in AC it’s either 92 or 93 for an A – not sure), and then doing this in the name of better shots in the Selective Enrollment high schools, but wondering if it actually will hamper the grades. Big fish in little sea for 7/8th or other way around…another reason Lane AC becomes so attractive for Northsiders I guess.

  • 40. Anonymous  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:28 am

    #30 I bet the cutoff scores for LTAC and WYAC will be very close this year. I think many kids on the north side of the city looking for an AC will chose it over WYAC. Even in its inaugral year, some kids who had been accepted at WYAC and lived north, chose to go to LTAC instead. Why do a long commute if you can have the same experience in your own backyard? The more LTAC establishes itself as WYAC’s counterpart, the smaller the difference in cutoff will be. I wouldn’t think of LTAC as an easier program to get into or be in. 🙂

  • 41. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:30 am

    @37 Bebe, what a huge commitment from your children and you. I’m sure it’s a decision you had to struggle with and it probably affected everything from sports to dinner time with the family. Good for you for muscling through for the betterment of your kids education. I can imagine your kids at Einstein Bros made friends with the workers, who probably enjoyed their maturity compared to some of the other customers at times. 🙂

  • 42. cmf  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:35 am

    Bridget – I think it has everything to do with Lane’s rising popularity. Families want the guarantee of 6 years when they enter an AC and before Lane, (for northsiders) WY was it, since kids at Taft AC would have to test for high school. The good news is that Taft, as of this year, guarantees a spot in their HS IB program for all AC students. 2 or 3 years ago, if you were testing for AC’s, it was WY or bust for many people. Not any more.

  • 43. HS Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:44 am

    Is there any truth to the rumor that WY is adding AC seats. It looks like they took fewer freshmen this year.

  • 44. Anonymous  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:45 am

    @36 and 39. As a parent of an LTAC student and author of #40, I wouldn’t put a child into an AC unless they were ready to do high school work. I think in the inaugral year 4 – 6 kids transferred out before the end of the first quarter because the work/workload proved too difficult for them. To succeed in this experience it helps to have a bright, organized, highly motivated kid. It’s not a place to go to hedge your bets. ACs really are 6 year experiences which give the opportunity for an early start on the high school experience. Kids get more time to explore more varied coursework because they begin at an earlier age. They can begin honors and AP courses earlier. It’s not really for someone looking to go elsewhere (though many students can) or for the faint of heart.

  • 45. AC and waiting  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:46 am

    Word from my friend’s 8th grader at Lane is the same as above #26, that most are staying at Lane for HS. I too think Lane’s scores will be close to WYs. One of the many reasons I’d like my daughter to get in now. I think in 2 more years, Lane’s hs acceptance scores will be much higher.

  • 46. JenFG  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:52 am

    As a SW-sider, location was key for me. We only applied to WYAC, with that idea of “once you’re in, you’re in.” We are happy at our neighborhood school and are only willing to leave if our daughter gets into a conveniently located AC and won’t have to test again for HS. If I were North, I would feel the same about Lane.

  • 47. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 23, 2013 at 11:00 am

    @35 Bridget…I did end up at a Catholic School. However, it was my choice. I went with my father to the Lane Open House, who graduated from there in the 60s when it was still all boys. We walked in the foyer, I took one look around and said that it wasn’t for me. I was coming from a very small grade school (also CPS) and felt that the school was just too big for me to survive in. Also, I graduated 8th grade the year CPS has their last strike. I was in school until June 30th, the last day they could legally keep us. I was done with that! Had there been no strike, and had Lane been the size of Taft, I would have been a CPS kid for the duration.

  • 48. cmf  |  March 23, 2013 at 11:01 am

    I do think that Lane’s AC cutoff scores will increase, HS cutoffs will, too. 2 years ago, Lane announced the opening of the AC just before the letters came out which included a new application in which you could re-rank your AC choices with Lane included. Many people left their results as is because Lane was a new, unknown program – a risk. The families that re-ranked with Lane as first choice certainly must be thrilled that they took the opportunity for 6 years at Lane.

  • 49. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 11:05 am

    Just received mail. Bills only. Going to be a long weekend for me.

  • 50. anotherchicagoparent  |  March 23, 2013 at 11:07 am

    Even 8th graders who would of chosen to go private or Catholic if they got into Lane a few years ago are now accepting the offer at Lane.I think it is a combination of things,most of us know someone who went to the Academic Center and most kids are staying even if they received an acceptance elsewhere, as many kids love the school.
    Also they are making positive changes, modernizing rooms no more shop rooms,replaced with modern computer rooms, an aquaponics room and a stem section.Also not many High schools were you can go to and choose from 11 different computer classes 7 this yr up to 11 next year,8 different languages they are adding Japanese this fall,100 electives 33 AP classes etc. Another thing that stood out Lane Tech’s new principal has an attitude of would I want this for my own children?

  • 51. anotherchicagoparent  |  March 23, 2013 at 11:13 am

    Oh yeah forgot to mention Lane is getting a brand new baseball field.sailboat and rowing club.Rowing club will get to use the brand new boathouse at Clark park for practice.

  • 52. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 11:19 am

    Lane is offering 8 languages? That’s awesome. A huge school with huge options for so many people. Love it.

  • 53. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 23, 2013 at 11:25 am

    #50~what is the stem selection at Lane?

  • 54. mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 11:33 am

    @47 Good idea to just go and walk around Lane. From the moment we stepped foot at the open house we lo ved it and I still have that feeling when i go there. The aray of choices is amazing. Great school!

  • 55. anotherchicagoparent  |  March 23, 2013 at 11:39 am

    @ 53 Here is more info http://www.lanetech.org/stem.php. We personally only checked out the computer path..App design ,web design etc.

  • 56. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 11:43 am

    Lane has been on our radar for HS for some time now. Regardless of where we land on 7/8, it remains. The size of the school doesn’t really intimidate me, because it’s not as if my child would be in class with 4000 kids each subject. I certainly love that it can accommodate more of our students than other schools. Hopefully all of our students will be as enthralled with their education (as teenagers) as all of their parents are on this thread! Good luck to everyone.
    I almost feel like convincing myself that we wont get mail until Wednesday so I don’t hound the mail person again on Monday and Tuesday. (ha) Today was a disappointment to receive nothing. Happy spring break everyone!

  • 57. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 23, 2013 at 12:01 pm

    #55~anywhere you have a principal that has an attitude “of would I want this for my kids”~is a gr8 place to be. Having Arabic as a world language is a nice option. I noticed some of the classes had an 85% for an A, Is that for just certain classes?

    #56~Bridget~sorry abt your mail~it is upsetting to be in limbo.

    Happy Spring Break to Every1!

  • 58. LTACer  |  March 23, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    As a current eigth grader at Lane, I can personally attest that both it and the AC are amazing. Lane has so many opportunities and really allows students the freedom to experiment with things and see what they like. Most of us LTACers had no problem adjusting to the size, and after a few weeks at Lane, you can find your way around pretty well. The principal, administration and teachers are all supportive and great. I was accepted into Northside, but my experience at Lane has been so amazing that I see no reason to leave.

    #57, the entire school is on the 90-A, 80-B, 70-C, etc. grading scale.

  • 59. AC and waiting  |  March 23, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    @ 58, thank you for taking the time to comment here. Great to hear straight from the source.

    @ the rest, no letter in our mail today either. It’s a looooooooong time till Monday’s mail. Have a great weekend.

  • 60. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 23, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    #58~LCTACer, thanks for replying. I’m a little confused bc I know Payton has 85% for an A for certain classes and on Lane’s site it has 85% to move onto an honors world language…usually schools don’t split like that unless an 85% is an A in the class to begin with.


  • 61. LTACer  |  March 23, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    #60- No problem! And an 85% is a B, but they’ll let you move onto an Honors world language with it.

  • 62. jgkleve  |  March 23, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    So nobody has received AC letter in the mail today?

  • 63. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 23, 2013 at 3:09 pm

    It doesn’t look that way jgkleve. There are people commenting on the other post that they have received their mail but nothing has been in it.

    Come on Monday!!!! (This will be the ONLY time I ever look forward to a Monday!)

  • 64. Iheoma  |  March 23, 2013 at 3:12 pm

    We didn’t get anything in the mail today. I really wish that CPS would post results electronically.

  • 65. CPS Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 3:18 pm

    Our mail just arrived and nothing. So now we wait until Monday…..until at least 3 pm, since our mail rarely comes earlier than that. Have a great weekend, all!

  • 66. JenFG  |  March 23, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Nothing in the mail here…

  • 67. Proud Dad  |  March 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    Got acceptance letter from WYAC. I am proud of my daughter.

    Wish you guys good luck.

  • 68. Iheoma  |  March 23, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    Congrats Proud Dad! You seem to be the only one that received a letter today. I hope that CPS didn’t do a wave of acceptances first as they did with magnets. Do you mind sharing specifics on score and tier?

  • 69. Gobemouche  |  March 23, 2013 at 5:23 pm

    Mail came. Nothing.

  • 70. Proud Dad  |  March 23, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    There is no info about score in the packet we received. We don’t know the score, yet.

    We cannot take advantage of the tiers because we live in the burbs. WYAC is the only one we applied. We were insanely scared as we were in such a disadvantage. Yes, disadvantage!

    I am proud that my daughter overcame such a disparity. I had not cried in decades, but I did today.

    Again, good luck to you guys.

  • 71. Joan  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:09 pm

    My oldest daughter attends Jones College Prep, and when she got accepted, I received a congrats letter from Jones about 3 days before the CPS letter came. It had no scores nor tier info on it. That is probably what Proud Dad has gotten. I sure hope this doesn’t mean that the rest of us are not getting in because we didn’t receive that kind of letter.

  • 72. Iheoma  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:17 pm

    That’s fantastic!! Thanks for sharing Proud Dad

  • 73. Iheoma  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:24 pm

    I hear you Joan. I hope that this just means that WY mailed their letters in the morning and CPS in the afternoon. WY was not our choice – like many others- so I’m keeping hope based on no one from any other ACs have posted any acceptances or rejections.

  • 74. Someone who is wating  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    Does anyone know how many seats LTAC is offering for 8th grade applicants, and if you don’t know, could you give a reasonable estimate? I applied there for 8th grade.

  • 75. Someone who is waiting  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:42 pm

    Arty meant waiting in name

  • 76. Tara  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    I know someone who goes ther. She said about 16 seats are open for the LTAC 8th grade.

  • 77. Someone who is waiting  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:50 pm

    Thank you very much. That’s higher than expected for me.

  • 78. kate  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    @70 “We cannot take advantage of the tiers because we live in the burbs. WYAC is the only one we applied. We were insanely scared as we were in such a disadvantage. Yes, disadvantage!”
    hmm, per WY page about admissions to AC:
    “Minimum Requirements for Application for Admission
    • Residency: Students must live in Chicago.”
    so how did you get around this requirement?

  • 79. Sped Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    You can apply to CPS schools while living outside Chicago. A Chicago address will be needed by first day of school, however.

  • 80. kate  |  March 23, 2013 at 7:03 pm

    @79 – Wouldn’t you already need a Chicago address to submit an application?

  • 81. Sped Mom  |  March 23, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    Nope. You can apply from Timbuktu. You just don’t get the advantage of the tiers because you’re not living in one.

  • 82. kate  |  March 23, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    @81 I see. Many Thanks.

  • 83. JenFG  |  March 23, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    Congrats, Proud Dad! I can’t imagine you and I are the only WYAC hopefuls here, and considering that no one else has received anything, I have got my fingers crossed that your suburban post office is just faster than mine. My Saturday mail is typically thin…

  • 84. CPS Resident  |  March 23, 2013 at 8:45 pm

    @70.Wouldn’t be the first or the last that “finds” a Chicago address by start of school year.Suburbanites are in each SEES.CPS should verify addresses by current license or voting record.Funny how easy a $10 lease from Staples and a bill can buy you a seat in a SEES.

  • 85. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 9:39 pm

    Congratulations, Proud Dad. I personally didn’t have interest in WYAC for commute reasons and yes, no tier is a disadvantage even though it’s still slightly better (not much) than tier 4 for the AC program there. Kudos to you to giving it a shot and having the courage to post it among us still waiting for letters over the weekend. You appear to be the only one on this thread to hear anything, perhaps anyone else who heard similar news isn’t yet aware these sorts of threads exist.
    At least we know, by your post, something was sent out. Now we rely on the (gulp) post office to get the others the mail promptly on Monday.
    Apparently suburban post offices are little more speedy. May I ask what suburb you are in?

  • 86. Bridget  |  March 23, 2013 at 9:43 pm

    @84 Our mayor wasn’t residing here when running. (Not that I approve of that in a leadership/political situation). City workers (cfd/cpd) do not have to live here while applying either. I’m sure it works the other way too for people applying to the burb schools. Not a huge thing considering to get in still takes tests/scores/darn good grades and hard work. This child earned her spot no matter how ya slice it.

  • 87. IB obsessed-tired  |  March 23, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    No AC letter today over here either. Maybe they mailed the acceptances first. 😦

  • 88. AC and waiting  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:19 pm

    I do not think this one letter is any indication of acceptances mailed first. I have been in contact with 10 families and none have received letters in addition to everyone on here with the exception of Proud Dad. Now, let’s hope for Monday’s USPS delivery.

  • 89. Proud Dad  |  March 23, 2013 at 10:53 pm

    @85 and others. Thank you. We live in west suburb but work in downtown. The rule says we need to live in chicago on the first day of school. Because we don’t have a chicago address, my daughter had to work harder to get in.

    We are hunting for house in chicago starting today. Hope the housing price does not shoot up over night.

  • 90. sadday  |  March 24, 2013 at 12:04 am

    As you get your sons and daughters in these great schools. Don’t forget these are cps schools. And cps is doing a great disservice to 30k needy children. This could happen to you one day too. Plase come to the rally next Wednesday if you can. Just because CPS is working out for you now. Doesn’t mean it will tomorrow.

    # 86 You said rahm was not resident when he ran for Mayor. This is a HUGE problem. He thought so little of his city he didn’t even keep his house for his family while he went to DC. I think this is pathetic. He didn’t do it for financial reasons. It just shows how little he really cared for Chicago.

    I really think ALL parents who are getting their children in these great schools should be congratulated. However, I think you need to step back and think of the tragedy that is unfolding in this city. 60 plus schools and over 30k students are being used as some grand social experiment. Imagine the amount of paperwork that will be involved. Technically CPS has to wait until MAY to get this all approved. IN other words how is CPS with it’s skeleton staff going to get all these kids settled???? Their very lives are being gambled upon. I think it is unfair, and unswise , to rest on your laurels. CPS may come for your child’s school next. CPS is capable of any lie. CPS is run by a dictator who has filled the Board with rubber stamps.

    Many of you may think that you have worked hard to get your child into a good school, and you are correct. However, many parents in these shuttered schools have worked hard to keep their kids in their schools as well. We have no idea if this little social experiment is going to work. Education is a not a place to place bets. We should leave this to Wall Street and Harrahs Casino. Imagine if Chicago were to experience a natural disaster like a tornado or flood, or God forbid a terrorist attack this summer. How could Chicago possibly cope with such an undertaking and handle the reassignment of 30k and thousands of teachers. Honestly, do you think CPS has some type of contingent plan?

    Just because your Magnet or IB school has accepted your sons or daughters, you too could be in a for a big surprise. CPS is going to be diverting A HUGE amount of resources this summer to pull this off. Who knows if paperwork for your child will not get lost ? Who knows….CPS is also changing its funding plans for principals for all schools. Supposedly not for the selective schools, but can we really believe CPS? I think ALL PARENTS need to march this Wednesday to remind CPS who owns these schools. It isn’t Penny Pritzker, oh yeah she quit, or BBB Detroit Education Troup, or Skiing Rahm Emanuel. These schools are owned by you!! We need to get good neighborhood schools for all like Lake Forest and Naperville. How sad that CPS make you grovel to get a good school. One of these days maybe your neighborhood school will close down, and decrease your property value. Even if you child is safe in some great magnet or Catholic School…we need to all stand up for these poor kids. They are not at fault. This is a sad day in CHICAGO. Perhaps it will work out, but we can’t afford to gamble or child’s education with promises of an IPAD?

  • 91. SSMama  |  March 24, 2013 at 12:26 am

    I’m a south sider and we ranked WYAC, Kenwood and Morgan Park AC in that order. I attended WYAC, but the cut scores are more than likely too high for my tier 4 boy. So, I am putting all of my heart into a Kenwood AC letter. Otherwise….

  • 92. IB obsessed-tired  |  March 24, 2013 at 5:42 am

    Proud Dad, alot of people in Chicago don’t speak of getting “taking advantage” of the tiers as if that some perk of living in the city. You most likely would be a tier 4, given the demographics of alot of suburbs.

  • 93. Bridget  |  March 24, 2013 at 9:25 am

    @90 – sadday – Although I can appreciate your passion for the topic, it’s as if you’ve appeared on this thread possibly to adhere to the CPS ignorant. None of the parents here are that. We are all aware of our CPS situations and are on this thread to discuss the excitement of letters coming Monday. Many of us are employed by CPS, or have volunteered for years with CPS, and it seems we all know the system pretty well. Many stood by our staffs during their strike at the beginning of the year.

    In other words, although I read your long off-topic post, but it may be suited in a better forum. There are parents along these boards whose schools are closing.

    This however is the AC thread. Let everyone here be excited and discussing AC. Please don’t try to instill fear or guilt into people this weekend who are anticipating good news.

    I’m pretty sure we, as a CPS family, have paid attention to the newspapers and television and are all moved in our own ways, about the recent closings.

    Now back to AC…

  • 94. sharon  |  March 24, 2013 at 9:47 am

    Thank you Bridgett for saying EXACTLY what needed to said on this page!
    I, for one, can’t wait for the mail on Monday!
    Our kids have worked hard to get where they are and deserve the respect and praise that they all worked hard to get!

  • 95. Bookworm  |  March 24, 2013 at 9:52 am

    Bridget- I’m sorry you feel that no one should be commenting on the Ac thread about anyone not waiting for a letter. You might want to consider Saddays’s thought that the massive changes to CPS already affect everyone- even the elite programs that are well funded.
    Many parents seek an early entry to high school to avoid being in a school with less clout or funding. Glad you feel you have good news coming. If in the end your letter isn’t happy news maybe you’ll want to jot down the times of the rally Wednesday too.
    The mayor is correct to think that CPS can act with impunity as long as upper milddle class parents think they won’t be affected. The underfunded longer school day has greatly negatively affected the teaching morale at my child’s well funded magnet school- as probably at every AC as well. It is not possible that this climate has not already affected the AC and selective high school staffs. Out teachers aren’t household help- even at the best schools. If you get a chance ask your favorite teachers how these closings affect us all.

  • 96. Bookworm  |  March 24, 2013 at 9:53 am

    sorry that’s” Our teachers-“

  • 97. Bridget  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:01 am

    Bookworm, please do not address me if as I’m not aware of the situation. On the contrary, I’m quite verse in CPS structure and it’s shenanigans and I’ve been speaking out on correct forums about my opinions.

    I simply do not think sadday should approach a group of parents who have a small little thread about AC, insultingly really, assuming we are so blind and deaf to school closings – even though we are all clearly involved in the CPS system. This isn’t our first time. Many of us are transitioning from one CPS to another by virtue of an AC if we are fortunate to do so.

    To quote the most off-topic of the entire rambling”
    “…Wall Street and Harrahs Casino. Imagine if Chicago were to experience a natural disaster like a tornado or flood, or God forbid a terrorist attack this summer.”

    Again. The blog itself is “CPS Obsessed” than 99% of peeps here are already in the know about the closings/march/etc.

    This is the last I’ll speak of it. This thread, is of course about AC, and it’s important to stay on-topic.

    Boy I wish they had mail on Sunday!

  • 98. Bridget  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:04 am

    @Sharon – Good luck to you. I know the hardest part about this all has been looking at my child when discussing park sports for next year (football) and being unsure if we can squeeze it in, or what the workload will be wherever we go, or if we’re staying at our neighborhood school through 7/8…all our options are good, but the uncertainty is nerve wracking!
    I want to have the conversation with my son and family one way or another. Was hoping we could discuss it over our little getaway this week. If there’s a miracle, I’ll have a letter either way by 10:30am tomorrow before we hit the road.

  • 99. cpsobsessed  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:11 am

    I’ve started a School Closings post where people can discuss. Obviously it is an emotional and newsworthy topic.

    http://ilraiseyourhand.org/ is probably a good place to follow the news.

    Sadday, thank you for the impassioned POV. You might want to share the details of the Wednesday protest in the new thread if you’d like to encourage attendance. I don’t know think everyone knows when/where it is happening.

  • 100. Bridget  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:16 am

    Thanks CPSO 🙂

  • 101. CPSAppalled  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:24 am

    I heard a vague rumor yesterday at a birthday part that some north side families got letters yesterday re: AC acceptances. Any truth to that?

  • 102. CPSAppalled  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:25 am

    oops–that should have read “party”.

  • 103. Bridget  |  March 24, 2013 at 10:33 am

    There are at least a couple kids I’m sure will score like their siblings, walked in with near perfect isats and grades. Their parents haven’t received anything yet as far as I know, and I’m Northwest, not far from Norridge/Park Ridge

  • 104. parent of a current 7th grade ltac student  |  March 24, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    First off good luck to everyone waiting for their letter. I remember how tough it was to wait.
    Currently my child attends lane ac program and he loves it. His work though has been rigorous and he had to really buckle down on his time management. Prior to being at lane he was always a staight A student when he got here he got his first taste of B’s and C’s (it was a wake up call) They make the children accountable for a lot and that is good! The program has made my son more independent on so many levels. There are so many choices/options for these children.
    He chose to go to lane and even though it was a rough adjustment he does not regret his decision. And will be staying here through h.s

  • 105. sharon  |  March 24, 2013 at 1:57 pm

    Just something that has been on my mind….if your child does not get accepted into the Ac….how to make them feel that they still are special and not a failure as I believe most of them will feel.

  • 106. SSPerson  |  March 24, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    @Cpsobsessed Depending on the area, many (if not all) put down Whitney Young as their first choice. Some do not put a second choice, but if they do, it is either Lindblom or Morgan Park.

  • 107. NowWeWait  |  March 24, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    I still firmly believe that a family’s attitude toward school matters more than the school, itself. Many success stories have come from humble schools. That said, I’m sure that many children and their families may be disappointed with the AC placement results. I firmly believe, though, that most parents couch the process with positive feedback for their child – “This is an oportunity, but not the only one (or even the best one) you will have…”, etc. Stay positive!!!! 🙂

  • 108. HS Mom  |  March 24, 2013 at 2:23 pm

    @104 or others – do the grades received in AC affect the HS GPA?

  • 109. Someone who is waiting  |  March 24, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    Has anyone received an academic center letter?

  • 110. WRP Mom  |  March 24, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    @108, at Lane it depends on the class. If it’s a hs class like biology, foreign language or algebra in 7th grade, and ALL their classes in 8th except PE, then yes, it definitely counts towards their GPA! I believe WYAC has a similar structure.

  • 111. HS Mom  |  March 24, 2013 at 3:10 pm

    Thanks WRP Mom – I didn’t realize that. Something, I think, parents would need to consider with the AC program.

  • 112. cpsobsessed  |  March 24, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    Also, for AC kids, have you worked through the grades and scores to give them a sense of how they’d need to score on the AC test to likely get a spot?
    Ugh, it’s a lot to put on the shoulders of a 6th grader I’d think.
    Also, have you told them how rigorous the programs are ?

    I swear, I dread the CPS High School talk more than I dread the sex talk.

    Maybe this summer when there’s no school stuff going on we’ll have a thread on that for a change of pace. 🙂

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 113. RL Julia  |  March 24, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    so does Taft.

  • 114. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 24, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    WY both AC and HS have 93% A~it came down from 95% A. I would love for it to go to 90% A like all the other schools since if my child gets a 92.4%, he gets a B but all other schools would give an A. It will not change. And even if the class doesn’t go toward your GPA, it still shows up w/your child’s grade on the transcripts.

    Although we know the kids who live near NSCP, it was their choice not to leave (the kids my child know tested and were admitted, but didn’t leave). They loved the school didn’t want to leave friends. However, a B (in any class) could have stopped their transfer and their choice. It’s def something parents should consider with re: AC programs.

  • 115. anonymouse teacher  |  March 24, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    @112, CPSO, I spit my drink out my nose at your post. Thanks for a good laugh!

  • 116. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 24, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    #112~CPSO, if my kid didn’t get straight As in school and in the 99th% on ISATs, I wouldn’t have my child sit for AC admission.

  • 117. EdgewaterMom  |  March 24, 2013 at 4:09 pm


    I swear, I dread the CPS High School talk more than I dread the sex talk.
    Maybe this summer when there’s no school stuff going on we’ll have a thread on that for a change of pace.

    That thread may turn out to be way more interesting than you think, given the changes to the CPS curriculum. 🙂 Let’s just say that they are going to be covering way more than you may think in the 5th grade!

  • 118. Iheoma  |  March 24, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    Soxsideirish4 – can you say more about your comment. I have heard other parents with similar sentiments. Is it b/c the 99% and straight A grades are needed for admittance (to WYAC or LTAC) or because of the rigor of the academics at any AC. Just curious.

  • 119. West Rogers park mom  |  March 24, 2013 at 4:44 pm

    I don’t think Taft, which is admittedly less rigorous, is only for the straight A, 99/99 kids. In fact I think it is easier to get those As at Taft than the other Acs.

    True not as many as the Taft kids stay, and they don’t get as many high school credits, but they still have a leg up in 9th grade . most of the Taft 8th graders will start high school with 2 science, 1 eng, 1 hist, 1 math, ability to start language in second year, and 1-2 electives, plus their service hours. I’m not clear if service hours transfer if you don’t stay at Taft but those seem easy to get – one summer as a park district jr counselor is all you need
    Also, please don’t discount Taft due to its distance. The kids get bussed and its only a 20 – 25 minute drive from the far north side. Public transportation isn’t as good as Lane or Whitney but I know of kids who take the el there every day.

    @cpsobsessed – my kids interest in ACs was 100% self driven – a result of hanging out with Decatur kids a year older than her a bit too much .

  • 120. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 24, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    #118~I’m not sure what the rigor is for LTAC or TaftAC. WYAC is very rigorous and if you want to get in and maintain your GPA~you would have to have straight As w/a 99th% (at least in a tier 4). I feel it’s a lot of pressure, but my child didn’t. I stressed out abt stuff, but my kid didn’t. WY has been a very enjoyable time for my child ~and the teachers are wonderful.

    CPSO~We only applied to WYAC, didn’t do any prep and never told my child abt the test until the morning of the exam We also never told him his exam score.

  • 121. carried out for the moment  |  March 24, 2013 at 6:39 pm

    My child is straight A student at decatur. He has 98/99 isat scores and our first choice is LTAC. Even though we are tier 4 I feel like he should be able to relax about getting into 7th grade class. It may sound arrogant but I know he worked very hard and earned his grade. But he did the test prep and still we are anxious waiting for the mail. I try my best to comfort him but he gets stressed out from what he hears at school. And I feel like this is not right. Just babbling while waiting.

  • 122. Hopeful  |  March 24, 2013 at 6:48 pm

    I was hoping some people would have received their letters yesterday so I could definitely count on our letter coming tomorrow. Since our mail is still delivered via the Pony Express, we will probably have to wait until Tuesday evening for our letter. Ugh!!!

  • 123. Questioner  |  March 24, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    @91 good luck to you. Kenwood AC is a great place.

  • 124. mail can't come soon enough  |  March 24, 2013 at 8:50 pm

    Anyone else worried about the letters not comming in the mail tomorrow? sure is nerve racking.

  • 125. SADDAY  |  March 24, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    I wish all the best. I am not trying to preach. But remember, CPS that runs the Magnets, and Disney is the sam CPS that let 100 of schools rot…we can blame the teachers, parents, students, but CPS played its part too. In some ways I feel bad for them, but this board is NOT elected…and that scares me. You should all be happy you are such great parents and have got your kids in such good schools. However, rememebr some kids, for many reasons, are on their own. They shouldn’t have to be cast aside like a Dickens novel while BBB promises them Cake (Ipads). We are all in this together this OUR CITY, not RAHMS……

    Here is the info on the rally. Please attend this rally if you want to keep CPS in the CItizens hands. If you want to let the board close schools like some people throw away old coaches…then……..???

    I meant to insult no one…except maybe RAHM( : [ )

    An anti-school closings march and rally is planned for 4 p.m. on March 27 in downtown Chicago. Demonstrators will gather at Daley Plaza, proceed to City Hall and then head toward the Board of Education.

  • 126. Neighborhood school parent  |  March 24, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    @SADDAY: I understand your point but I do think some schools do need to close if they are truly underutilized. It’s just waste of our taxpayers money. We could use those money to put more investments on other developing schools. Combining 2 underutilized schools into 1 seems like a good idea if it indeed provides a safety environment and good quality eduction to the students. I also heard that transportations will be provided to the students whose needed them. I know no one likes to change because change is hard. Perhaps I don’t see the big picture here. However, I don’t like about CPS that they have to close down so many schools at once.

  • 127. Hopeful  |  March 24, 2013 at 9:27 pm

    I could see that happening to some of us but we should all know by Tuesday evening. This reminds me of waiting for Christmas when I was a little girl. lol

  • 128. parent of a current 7th grade ltac student  |  March 25, 2013 at 7:15 am

    @SADDAY: I think we all understand your fustration, but please post in the right topic.
    Let these parents vent and talk about AC. This is selfish of you to keep ranting on this section of the blog!

  • 129. IB obsessed-tired  |  March 25, 2013 at 8:00 am

    I’m awaiting AC news, and I personally don’t care if someone posts about school closings. It’s not preventing any of us from anything. There is a history of conversations wandering on this blog. Its nothing new.

  • 130. Ceballos  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:22 am

    anxiously awaiting AC letter!!!

  • 131. SSMama  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:36 am

    Still waiting on a 7th grade AC letter. My stomach is in knots.

  • 132. kate  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:49 am

    Could someone explain the final selection process?
    Let’s say AC school A cutoff score is 850. AC school B cutoff score is 860. A given kid gets a score of 855. His first choice was school B, second choice school A. So this kid would get accepted into school A.

    Now – since some kids accepted into school A could possibly not accept for various reasons, and the kid in question is so close to the cutoff score – could he get a accepted into school B later on? If he wanted that – would he need to decline acceptance into school A immediately to get back into the pool? (which would be obviously very risky – but this is a hypothetical question).

  • 133. Hurry  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:01 am

    Has anyone received their mail today?

  • 134. Gobemouche  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:06 am

    No mail yet for me. Gaaaaaaa!!!! Come on. CPS needs to get into this century and email people.

  • 135. Hurry  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:09 am

    No kidding!! We don’t get our mail until 4:00. The waiting is driving me crazy!!

  • 136. AC and waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:13 am

    no mail here either although it normally doesn’t come till 12:30ish. But doesn’t any of you get it earlier? I feel paralyzed and pathetic.

  • 137. Tara  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:14 am

    No mail here until 2:30 ish.

  • 138. JenFG  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:15 am

    While we are waiting…Did anyone else have a child test only for an AC (not also 7th-grade selective enrollment elementaries) who took a test that was six 10-minute sections of about 20 questions each? My daughter’s group was also told to skip entire sections.

    I had been told that the AC test was 72 questions and 40 minutes.

    I called CPS and was assured that my daughter took the correct test but I was not given info about why the test was different than I expected.

    There were a bunch of early arrivals at IIT that afternoon, and the proctor did make a point of gathering up as many kids as he could to get them started early. I am just wondering if they somehow combine the AC/7th grade SEES test occasionally to facilitate testing.

    If so, there are surely advantages/disadvantages to that. I imagine all AC-seekers are graded only on the questions that are the same…? My daughter answered more questions that we anticipated–did that help loosen up her brain or did the extra questions tire her out?

    I had posted this on the forums when it first happened (in the sense of “don’t worry if this happens to you,” but no one responded there. Just curious if anyone else experienced this. Thanks.

  • 139. Tara  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:25 am

    Hi I’m a 13 year old on here and I know what am I thinking but I took the test for just AC 8th grade. My sister took it for just AC 7th grade. We had taken the same test as you described. They also had told us to skip the 3 math sections. Last year it was 72 questions in 40minutes. I know this because I had also taken it last year. @JenFG

  • 140. WestSide Mom  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:30 am

    We just got our mail! My daughter only got accepted to Taft though. She scored lower than we expected, with an 684.9. Is there any chance she would make it to Kenwood during the 2nd rounds? We would like to accept the offer at Taft, but we live on the west side of the city so transportation might be a problem.

  • 141. someone who is waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:37 am

    @138, that happened with me too. I’m applying to 8th grade AC and I took the test last year as well. It was a lot different.

  • 142. Tara  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:41 am

    Well good luck to everyone!

  • 143. bbmom  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:41 am

    829 tier 4 did not get in to lane or WY!

  • 144. someone who is waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:43 am

    @143 did you apply to 8th or 7th grade?

  • 145. bbmom  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:43 am


  • 146. Gobemouche  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:44 am

    No Lane with an 829 tier 4? Uh oh. The point jump may be higher than I thought it would be.

  • 147. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:46 am

    146 Gobermouch~this is the breakdown from last year~it must be a high cut off this yr http://www.cpsoae.org/Academic%20Center%20Cutoff%20Scores%202012-2013%20–%20Round%20One.pdf

  • 148. NowWeWait  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:47 am

    Got the letter….857, tier 4, accepted at Lane!!!! I am crying so hard right now….

  • 149. AC and waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:47 am

    Sorry #143. Had to look. Last year’s min cutoff for Lane was 814.4. Up by at least 14.6 points so far….

  • 150. Tara  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:48 am

    If you don’t mind my askn g is a 857 into lane for 7 th or 8th?

  • 151. Gobemouche  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:52 am

    Tara, there’s no way to know for sure until you get your letter or OAE releases the cut off scores. The minimum changes every year based on the scores of those applying. Either way, you should be proud of yourself – 857 is a great score!!!

  • 152. NowWeWait  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:53 am


  • 153. Tara  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:54 am

    I was asking whoever got the 857 what they were applying to. I haven’t received a letter.

  • 154. someone who is waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:55 am

    Has anyone gotten accepted into an AC that applied to 8th grade?

  • 155. Gobemouche  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:58 am

    Tara, I don’t think enough people have gotten their letters yet. Hopefully, we’ll know soon. Good luck to you!

  • 156. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 11:58 am

    @WestSideMom…can I ask what Tier?

  • 157. Hurry  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    I wish CPS would post the cutoffs for the 2013/2014 year. Does anyone know them?
    @148 Congratulations!!

  • 158. Gobemouche  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    Hurry- I don’t see them posted yet on the OAE website yet. Probably (hopefully) will be by the end of the week.

  • 159. JenFG  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    Thanks, Tara and Someone Who Is Waiting! Good luck to you.

  • 160. Hoping for Round 2  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    Applied to Taft AC for 7th grade from tier 4. 795 wasn’t enough to get in.

  • 161. someone who is waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    It looks like the cutoffs have shot up dramatically since last year.

  • 162. fairlydisappointed  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    831 Tier 4 did not make it into Lane or Whitney, but yes to Taft

  • 163. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 12:51 pm

    Yikes :/

  • 164. Hurry  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    Yikes is right!

  • 165. CPSAppalled  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    My child also took the AC test for 7th and 8th grade, and the tests were different lengths. I called OAE to ask how long the test was (so that I could plan my day) and was told that the test for 8th grade was significantly longer than for 7th, to get them ready for the HS test, which is about 3 hours long.

  • 166. cmf  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    The test for 7th grade entry is very different than the high school test. The 7th grade test is all logic/ critical thinking. The high school test is achievement based. (Reminds me of the differences in the RGC and Classical testing)

    It sounds like they use something more like the high school test for 8th grade AC testing.

  • 167. Hurry  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    Has anyone scored 840 and gotten into WY or Lane?

  • 168. CPSAppalled  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:45 pm

    OK–mail finally came. Very disappointing. My child scored 775 (tier 4; last year we were tier 3)) and did not get into Lane AC for 8th grade. Will plan to stay at Taft AC for another year. Sigh. We’re very tired of the commute and getting up at 5:30 a.m. for school.

  • 169. OIP mom  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:47 pm

    I just wanted to address the parent who asked what to tell your kid if they don’t get in. I think that’s an important question, and would love to see more parents answer it, though nobody wants to think about it yet. I tell my child they are more than a test score (of course!) but also that a test, unlike the longer term measure of grades, is just a snapshot of where you are at on the day you took the test. Ed researchers talk often about ‘noise’ in test data, kids’ scores can fluctuate wildly sometimes. Plus, it’s a big city with lots of high achieving kids! Best of luck to all.

  • 170. Sunny  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    8th grade – 812.7 – no AC offer

  • 171. AC and waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    Got a seat at Lane. Tier 4, 850.4, did Selective Prep. Best of luck to you all and hope to meet some of you some day!

  • 172. cmf  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    @sunny 170, at which AC’s did you apply? That number sounds really high for everywhere except WY and Lane. Yikes is right.

  • 173. Tiresome!!!  |  March 25, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    822 Tier 3 and no Lane or Whitney.

  • 174. mjs  |  March 25, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    @169 I had this discussion 3 yrs ago when my oldest applied for 7th grade. I think honest compassion worked for me. We talked well before results came to minimize pressure. I said her scores were high enough to get in (ISAT’s, grades, she tests well) but it depended on how many other smart kids scored higher because seats were limited. She is awesome but so are many. I am blessed and we got Whitney Young. I am waiting now to hear about 2nd child. More pressure because of comparisons if she doesn’t make it.

  • 175. good luck  |  March 25, 2013 at 2:21 pm

    good luck to everyone who has applied. i tested last year for wy and didnt get in with an 839 so hope everyone gets in where they want to go 🙂

  • 176. Sunny  |  March 25, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    172. It has been awhile since we applied – but I believe I restricted it to Lane, WY. I’m iffy on whether we applied to Taft. I didn’t save the printout of where we applied last fall. It was mainly for practice – the test was much longer than the 7th grade AC test.

  • 177. Gobemouche  |  March 25, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    Just got the mail.

    Tier 4
    Accepted to Taft
    Exam score :146
    Total points : 824.4

    Damn. Last year, we would have gotten into Lane with these points. Oh well, he is fine at his current school. He only wanted to apply because he would wanted to go to Lane if his friends from other schools are going.

  • 178. Decatur Parent  |  March 25, 2013 at 2:50 pm


  • 179. Cpskool  |  March 25, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    Hi Decatur parent.. Congrats.. Still waiting for our mailman. Sure takes the stress off of seeing classmates on next monday. Now go enjoy your spring break…

  • 180. Worried  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:18 pm

    If I accept a school, will i still be considered during the 2nd rounds? I know this was possible with the classical schools/regional gifted centers, but is it possible here? I’m confused.

  • 181. Lsquared  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    Tier 3
    Score: 782.7

  • 182. Checking options  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:21 pm

    First time posting – but thought I would let you all know that my child applied only for WY – but did not make it at a total score of 834 – we are tier 4.

  • 183. Cps frustrated  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Has anyone gotten into Taft from tier 4 with a score below 810?

  • 184. Tiresome!!!  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:48 pm

    I posted #173. Thought we were tier 3 but I guess we are tier 4. Not happy! The map I looked at earlier today and several times in the past few months showed we were in tier 3. It has changed within the past 2 hours and now shows we are tier 4. This is the map I linked to from the Academic Center website directly.

  • 185. Elaina  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:50 pm


    Tier 2

    Score: 764.9

  • 186. Annette  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    Tier 4.
    Offer at Taft.
    This was our 3rd choice. Not sure what to do.
    Any Taft parents would like to share their thoughts about the program?

  • 187. Dad  |  March 25, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    855 tier 4. Got into Whitney AC

  • 188. sharon  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    no acceptance letters for WY???

  • 189. curious  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:03 pm

    does any one know if an academic center will give you test results over the phone if we are on vacation?

  • 190. HydeParker  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    Tier 4.
    Offer at Taft.

    Not sure if Taft is worth the commute. Any parents have any thoughts? My daughter could stay at Skinner West.

  • 191. Relieved  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    Mail finally came, tier 4, son got into WY with a total score of 900. So proud!

  • 192. waiting.....  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:15 pm

    @191…You have every right to be VERY PROUD!!!! WTG young man!!!

  • 193. Cpskool  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:18 pm

    Hi all, tier 4, offered Taft AC
    score 818.9

    Son went to Taft ac program.. I have only good to say about it #190. Left with high school credits, made a lot of great friends and ended up getting into Jones college prep.

  • 194. mjs  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    809, tier 2. Have offer at Lindblom-2nd choice. Did not get Young-1st choice.

  • 195. CPSAppalled  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:24 pm

    My child is in 7th grade at Taft’s AC. I have mixed feelings about the program, but my child likes it overall. The best part is being in an environment of like-minded students, i.e. those who take learning seriously. The worst part is the unpredictable work-load and the lack of coordination among the teachers. Taft (and perhaps other A.C.s, other parents can fill me in) has the 7th graders take 9th grade Honors level courses in Science and Technology, but not English. My child came from a private school where they did not do science fair, so this fall was a bit of a shocker. At the private school they wrote research papers, read a lot of literature and wrote essays/exams on literature. At the AC, they have maybe read two or three novels so far this year and written only a few essays. In Social Studies, on the other hand, the teacher has had them write a lot of critical thinking-type essays and seems to have a really creative curriculum. On the whole, I have to agree with other posters on this site that CPS does not really understand “gifted” education. They are good at accelerated busy work, but my child is not learning anything in depth, just skimming a lot of surfaces.

  • 196. Chicago School GPS  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    @180- once you accept a spot at an AC or SEES, you are no longer in the running to receive further round notifications. BUT, if you decline an offer, you stay in the pool for the next round. If they hear nothing from you, then after 3 rounds, you are automatically removed from the pool.

    @184- CPS updates the Tier map annually, and the last time was Nov. 2012.

    @190- as 193 said, ACs give high school credit (and therefore, grades count to HS GPAs starting in 7th) so an advantage would be that an Algebra or Geometry class taken in 8th grade at an AC will count for credit hours satisfied versus merely as an opportunity to test into a higher level from a non-AC program. That means that by junior or senior year, the AC child has probably satisfied more core credit hours and therefore can double up on languages or math or science or fine arts courses, etc.

  • 197. cmf  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:29 pm


    I think it depends largely on your goals for HS admittance and the rigor of your child’s elementary program. There are huge differences among the kids at Taft in terms of how prepared they are for the honors high school classes. Kids from rigorous programs seem to skate through unchallenged and some kids have a very hard time which can result in lower 7th year grades and affect high school admittance. Everyone knows their child the best. If your goal is SE for high school and you’re concerned about the rigor of early HS classes, stay at your elementary school and do some enrichment to get through the next two years. If you think your child is ready for the challenge of HS classes (not to mention the social aspect!) and can get through 7th grade with A’s, head to Taft.

    Anecdotal HS admittance from Taft this year: Out of 120 students I know of at least 14 to Northside, 7 to Jones, 6 to Whitney, more than 10 to Lane. I’m sure there are more, these are kids I’m personally aware of. Certainly some to Payton, but I don’t have direct knowledge of any. The entire AC class is automatically admitted to Taft IB which gives a safety net for HS, though without the cache of the SE’s. Still nice to have in your back pocket.

  • 198. SSMama  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    Rushed home to get mail:

    Tier 4
    Kenwood offer (2nd choice after WY)

    Very relieved.

  • 199. HydeParker  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    @193, @195, @196, @197 Thanks so much for the insight!

  • 200. Annette  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Thanks for the information about Taft. Please keep it coming. We have a lot to think about?

  • 201. cmf  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Pi should have mentioned that there are a great number of kids who choose to stay at Taft for the IB program over SE’s. many of the kids love it there and don’t want to leave!

  • 202. CPSAppalled  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    This is the second time I have seen this claim here, that Taft AC students are automatically admitted to the Taft IB program for HS. We haven’t received any such information as parents of a Taft AC 7th grader. I have heard from other parents that about 1/3 of the AC students are invited to apply to the IB program, but by no means is that a guarantee of admission. Please clarify.

  • 203. cmf  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    In October 2012, Taft AC had an 8th grade parent info meeting to announce the brand new policy that all AC students have a spot in Taft IB, as long as they fill out the application. This is something the admin had been fighting for – for years.

  • 204. WY mom!  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    Tier 4

  • 205. Beth  |  March 25, 2013 at 4:56 pm

    873 tier 4 yes at Whitney. Well, I must say I am surprised and relieved!

  • 206. CPS Mom  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    Just got the mail.

    Tier 4
    Accepted to Lane
    Exam score: 134
    Total point score: 845.9

    Daughter sitting in window all afternoon, waiting for mailman……

  • 207. CPS Mom  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:07 pm

    Oh – Lane was our first choice (closer to home), WY our second, and Taft our third.

  • 208. Frustrated & Confused in Tier 4!?  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:08 pm

    We too were changed to Tier 4 from Tier 3 this year. While we ADORE our neighborhood (Logan Square) and sections of it have gentrified in recent years, I struggle with the fact that we were reclassed from Tier 3 to Tier 4. Our home appraised for $170K last year. Literally – across the street from us is Tier 2. Can anyone shed light into the classification of tiers? I struggle with how we are the same Tier as much of Lincoln Park, the Gold Coast, South Loop & others. Thanks for your input.

    Our daughter scored 829 in Tier 4, not enough for LT or WY.

  • 209. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:12 pm

    So we missed the cutoff for Taft…totally bummed. Does anyone know how far down they went last year with the scores? Just curious as to what our chances may be.

  • 210. LTACMOM  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    Looks like I now have to LTACers! My younger one was accepted to Lane. Tier 4. 840 total points

  • 211. LTACMOM  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:14 pm

    I mean to say Two not To!

  • 212. CPSAppalled  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:23 pm

    Wow–leave it to CPS to not share that crucial piece of information with current 7th graders and their parents. My child wants to leave Taft, if possible, for HS (long commute is one issue) but I’m sure there are other 7th graders who would be relieved to hear this bit of news. Why so secretive?

  • 213. cpsobsessed  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:25 pm

    @208: Frustrated: The reason you are in the same Tier as Lincoln Park, etc is based on the fact that 3/4 of the city is still “poorer” than you are. “Poor” being made up of all 6 Tier factors. So 3/4 of the city is worse off than you are, in theory.

    A similar analogy is that the top 25% of US household make $90k per year. So that could be, say 2 teachers who each earn $45K. They probably don’t feel rich, but they’re in the same “Tier” as surgeons, lawyers, actors, and Bill Gates. Because so much of the U.S. is realllly poor.

    So yes, there is a big gap between the bottom of Tier 4 and the top of Tier 4. But those households are still statistically in the top 1/4 of Chicago.

  • 214. CPSAppalled  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    Yes, I understand the math involved, but doesn’t this just point to the fact that perhaps we need to have 5 tiers? The top level shouldn’t include people who are struggling to pay rent/mortgage on the edge of a “good” neighborhood, along with those who would have no trouble paying private school tuition for multiple children. Very unfair. If I had as much money as those in Lincoln Park, I probably wouldn’t care nearly so much about getting my children into a good CPS school. Lots of people don’t really have choices in this matter.

  • 215. cmf  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    @212 I received an email about the policy change before the meeting in October. Not sure why they wouldn’t communicate this info to 7th grade parents.

  • 216. Chicago Dad  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    213—It’s incorrect to say that 3/4 of the city is poorer. Some lucky families are much wealthier than the parent in 208, but are still put into a lower Tier because CPS has decided to use other, non-income, factors (i.e., owners versus renters, etc). The kids of these families got in, the kids from 208 and many others did not.

    The use of these other, non-income factors is too subjective and should be removed. They were put in for political reasons only.

  • 217. cpsobsessed  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    @216: Chicago Dad:

    “Some lucky families are much wealthier than the parent in 208, but are still put into a lower Tier.”

    So those would be the really lucky families you refer to who live in lower income areas with more rental units, more single parents, more non-english speaking households, less educated parents, and lower performing neighborhood schools? That does sound lucky!! (those are the tier inputs in case anyone is wondering)

  • 218. (Soon to be)LTACmom  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:51 pm

    Lane tech acceptance!
    My son’s first choice – 5 blocks from home
    Tier 4
    Thank you Beaubien for providing us a great education so far:-)

  • 219. EdgewaterMom  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:58 pm


    So those would be the really lucky families you refer to who live in lower income areas with more rental units, more single parents, more non-english speaking households, less educated parents, and lower performing neighborhood schools? That does sound lucky!! (those are the tier inputs in case anyone is wondering)

    Well said! We can’t afford many luxuries, yet realize that we are much more fortunate than many families in Chicago. We are both college educated, can afford to buy books (and have easy access to a great library), can afford basic vacations (we usually have to drive, but we can go) as well as museum membership, don’t have to worry about putting food on the table (but can’t often splurge at nice restaurants) and can spend time helping our child with school (and have time to volunteer at school). We are by no means in the same “category” as wealthy families in Lincoln Park or Old Town, but I do believe that we belong in the same tier.

    The tiers were not put there to give us a leg up over kids who could afford private school tuition. They are there to level the playing field a bit for families who really do struggle.

  • 220. cpsobsessed  |  March 25, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    I’m sorry.. overly snarky, I know…

  • 221. JenFG  |  March 25, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Accepted at WYAC, first (only) choice, Tier 4, 855.

    I’m trying to remember other questions people have asked in the past…Daughter currently attends neighborhood school. She did test prep.

    Very excited!

  • 222. Westrogersparkmom  |  March 25, 2013 at 6:05 pm

    Prior to this year all Taft AC students could stay- just not necessarily IB- many kids stay for Avid or other programs

    Taft has traditionally had many many rounds – I think it was a great experience for my kid

  • 223. Iheoma  |  March 25, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    Very happy today. Offered Lindblom 7th grade AC. This was her first choice with Kenwood as her second. We’re tier 3 and her score was in low 800’s. I don’t want to give exacts because she knows people IRL on this board and I want to protect her privacy. Let me now and I’ll send a pm with her exact score.

  • 224. Iheoma  |  March 25, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    I mean let me “know” not “now”

  • 225. WestSide Mom  |  March 25, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    Anyone know how many rounds Kenwood has? We are from Tier 2.

  • 226. CPSAppalled  |  March 25, 2013 at 6:37 pm

    Again, I will say it: this is not an issue of being wealthy compared to being comfortable. There are many families who found themselves moved from tier 3 to tier 4 this year who are struggling. A lot. No vacations. Worried about buying groceries. Worried about what to do when the 10 year old car breaks down and we can’t reliably get our children to school, because we care too much for our kids to send them to our crummy neighborhood schools. Wake up; not all tier 4 families are comfortable. Some are just barely hanging on.

  • 227. (not-so)patiently waiting  |  March 25, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    @222 Westrogersparkmom…how far down from the original cut off score did the rounds for Taft go? Do you have any idea?

  • 228. Iheoma  |  March 25, 2013 at 6:49 pm

    Cps appalled – I get your point of view regarding the tiers as well as the really significant issues of inequality within this whole system. HOWEVER this is a really tough day for many students and parents on this board. Is it possible for today and tomorrow you let people just post their news about ACs acceptance (or denials)? I know that you have the right to keep posting about it but it may really be about having empathy.

  • 229. CPSAppalled  |  March 25, 2013 at 6:57 pm

    Sorry, I was just responding to a snarky comment about tiers posted here. I am very disappointed today, like many parents. Reading comments full of assumptions about tier 4 parents made me boil over. Won’t comment again.

  • 230. Iheoma  |  March 25, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    I understand and I wasn’t trying to make you feel bad. Feelings are really on the surface today. I’m sorry it’s a rough day for you today.

  • 231. EdgewaterMom  |  March 25, 2013 at 7:04 pm

    @299 I’m sorry, I really didn’t intend to be snarky and I should not have generalized my comments about Tier 4 families. The tier system is far from perfect and, especially when tiers change year to year, it can seem arbitrary. I think my comment was probably based on comments from families that I know who ARE comfortable but complain because they are not wealthy and should not be in the same tier as wealthy families in other neighborhoods, but that was not fair to you.

    I didn’t mean to make things worse in what must be a very frustrating situation for you.

  • 232. CPSAppalled  |  March 25, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    Thank you. Everyone is frustrated, but let’s not make assumptions about one another. Clearly the system isn’t working for the majority. CPSO: is there any way to accurately track the acceptance rate of families posting here? For both SEES and magnet schools, it appears that the majority did not get anything at all. Not even last choice schools.

  • 233. parent  |  March 25, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    also, it might be helpful to specify in this blog if your spot is for 7th or 8th grade. We are in tier 3, total points 854.9 and we received no spot for 8th grade–we would have taken Lane or WY. I know a lot can still happen between now and August so we remain hopeful–but if not, we will gut through another year of our current gifted program.

  • 234. Time2exhale  |  March 25, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    Tier 4
    entering 7th grade AC
    852 score
    offered Lane, 2nd choice

    Thrilled yet torn about leaving the RGC we adore.

    No test prep.

  • 235. CPS Mom  |  March 25, 2013 at 7:44 pm

    Also, 7th grade, no test prep.

  • 236. NP Dad  |  March 25, 2013 at 8:47 pm

    Just got our great news.
    Entering 7th grade AC
    Offered Whitney Young
    Tier 4

  • 237. CoolerbytheLake  |  March 25, 2013 at 9:27 pm

    Accepted to Whitney Young Tier 4 with 883.4
    No test prep except some workbooks and telling the kid he absolutely HAD to finish the test. He scored low for the Ogden IB gifted test last year even though he tests high for standardized tests. A very nice woman at CPS said when I called, “You know what–after describing his personality to me I bet he didn’t finish the test. And if you don’t finish you score low.” I asked him and sure enough–he said he didn’t finish.

    We are equal parts excited and nervous for the work ahead–two working parents who can’t always be there to guide him after school.

  • 238. Bebe  |  March 25, 2013 at 9:57 pm

    6th grader’s mail came today but I’m away with 11th grader visiting colleges, so I’m not sure what his total score is. Kenwood AC (his second choice), Tier 3. We put him in Selective Prep because he is just not a good test taker–very slow. I think it helped greatly for a kid like him.

  • 239. hmm  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:11 pm

    Got into WY. Tier 2 823.9
    I’m a little worried it might be too much for him, but he’s responsible.

  • 240. WYAC Accepted  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:22 pm

    Accepted to Whitney Young AC (7th grade) from newly tiered 3 Logan Square with 840

    Feeling very fortunate

  • 241. RogersParkGirls  |  March 25, 2013 at 10:25 pm

    Tier 2 – 761
    Offered Taft (2nd)
    Applied Lane Tech (1st)

    I am interested to see the new cut off scores for Lane. This score would have been 20 pts above the Lane cutoff for last year in tier 2. According to OAE the cutoffs will be posted no later than Wednesday this week (3/27).

    Congrats to everyone who received an offer!

  • 242. RGC Dad  |  March 26, 2013 at 3:46 am

    Quite bummed. We are away for spring break and won’t know til we return on Saturday. Such a shame that BBB closes schools while wasting money on first class mail, envelopes, toner, paper et Al to send out letters. Every little bit could help. When I called today asking them to email me results they say call back on Thursday…when they will email letters. What?!? So it is possible?

    Congrats to all acceptances and best to those on the fence. Things do change. Hang in there.

  • 243. Frustrated & Confused in Tier 4!?  |  March 26, 2013 at 4:13 am

    Chicago Dad –

    Thank you for sharing the criteria that go into the composition of the tiers – rental units, single parents, non-english speaking households, less educated parents, and lower performing neighborhood schools. Helps to understand what may have gone into our block changing this year. Appreciate the info…and congrats to all who got in to the schools they hoped for!

  • 244. IB obsessed-tired  |  March 26, 2013 at 7:07 am

    No AC admission here, but wasn’t really expecting it with one B grade and no test prep. Applied to WY and Lane. I’m not sure anyway that my kid is ready to be taking courses that will count as high school credit, and thus, have college admission consequences.

  • 245. parent of a current 7th grade ltac student  |  March 26, 2013 at 7:19 am

    Contests to those of you who got into the school of your choice. I am sorry if there are others who did not get into their. I understand this frustration about the tiers. We were in the same boat.
    What sucks is they only accept a certain percent of children from each tier and then a certain percent just based on their ac test score.

  • 246. parent of a current 7th grade ltac student  |  March 26, 2013 at 7:21 am

    *congratulations (auto correct)

  • 247. local  |  March 26, 2013 at 9:51 am

    You know what might be good right about now? A new post and thread on how to strategize education for one’s child if the didn’t grab the brass ring of CPS (all the special programs, options and high-demand schools). What to do? It can be lonely if you missed out.

  • 248. cpsobsessed  |  March 26, 2013 at 9:53 am

    Yeah, that’s a good idea! I’ll get it up later today.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 249. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 26, 2013 at 9:58 am

    #248~CPSO~may be in that thread they could list their n’hood school. Things could be happening (good things) that they aren’t aware of.

  • 250. local  |  March 26, 2013 at 10:06 am

    Maybe call it “Plan B”?
    – K/1st
    – middle school
    – high school

  • 251. Vanessa  |  March 26, 2013 at 12:20 pm

    Applied for 7th grade. Lane 1st choice, WY 2nd, Taft 3rd. 775 score, Tier 3. Got seat at Taft. A little upset because we really had our hopes up for Lane but still proud that she got an offer. Now we have to decide if we want to stay at current magnet school or go to Taft. I need to do more research on Taft.

  • 252. dolphin2  |  March 26, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    The cut off scores are posted at OAE.

  • 253. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 26, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    thanks dolphin 2

    Good luck every1


  • 254. dolphin2  |  March 26, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    Are you and I are the only ones who are skipping lunch today?

  • 255. whattodo  |  March 26, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    DD1 got accepted at Taft AC. I have a few questions…will bus service be available? Will she automatically be accepted to their HS IB program or regular HS? Will bus service be provided for HS?

    DD2 got accepted to Ogden IG program. Any information on this school?

  • 256. Gobemouche  |  March 26, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    Well, dang. My prediction was dead on. 20 point jump in minimum score for tier 4 at Lane. Now, how to parlay my prediction skills into some sort of career….? 😉

  • 257. AC and waiting  |  March 26, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    @256, apply to CPS, they could use you and your common sense.

  • 258. AC and waiting  |  March 26, 2013 at 2:25 pm

    @ 253, thanks for that speedy link.
    Anybody out there know how far down the score #’s went last year for Lane, Tier 4, 2nd round, if there was one? Have a friend who’s child is oh, so close to the the cutoff score. Not even sure there will be a round 2. Any news on that??? I have heard of one kid declining their spot at Lane already. That’s one.

  • 259. coolerbythelake  |  March 26, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    I’m confused about how my son could have scored more than the tier 4 max for Whitney Young. The letter said 883, but the cutoff chart lists a tier 4 max of 873. What am I not understanding??

  • 260. CPC4Chicago  |  March 26, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    @259, your son got in on rank, which ranged from 900 down to 873. Then the Tiers came into play. Congratulations.

  • 261. Gobemouche  |  March 26, 2013 at 2:34 pm

    AC and waiting – I just called OAE to ask if there was a second round last year…the lady I spoke with said, “I don’t know.” And that’s it. No offer to find out. Nice.

  • 262. MeansToAnEnd  |  March 26, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    Your son got in by ranking.

  • 263. Christopher Ball (@skepticismwins)  |  March 26, 2013 at 3:13 pm

    @208 Tiers are based off census tracts. The tracts are relatively static in shape; often were drawn with fixed geographic features in mind; and were not created to define wealthy or fortunate neighborhoods from others. This is why you get situations like yours.

  • 264. CPS Mom  |  March 26, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    I would like to say “thank you!” to CPSO for all the info she has in this thread and the rest of the blog…for keeping so informed and up to date on everything…for working to keep this a place where we can come to be informed (or at least feel less in the dark!).

    Thank you, also, to everyone here who adds information that helps us to make sense of it all…it makes the whole process much more bearable (at least for me!). From explaining your experiences with your kids in the past, to explaining what the min/max tier/rank info means….the list to be thankful for is endless.

    I appreciate this community.

  • 265. Annette  |  March 26, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    We are in the same predicament. I’ve been on a 24 hour Taft info search. So far most of it is very positive. Today we got a letter from Taft. I see it as a good sign. Best of all I got a call from the AC coordinator in response to an email I left in their website yesterday. I was not expecting any response until next week. So…we continue to consider our options. Our son has been in the same magnet school since K and we really like it.

  • 266. Still hoping  |  March 26, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    My child missed the Taft tier 4 cutoff by only 5 points. I’m hopeful for round 2, but does anyone know if historically Taft has always had more than one round?

  • 267. cpsobsessed  |  March 26, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    I know that the SE high schools did their first round by taking attrition into account – meaning no plans for a 2nd round. It’s probable that the ACs did the same. I think that when cps publishes the cutoff scores, that tends to mean it’s the end of the process.
    Not to say a couple kids might not be called…but I doubt there will be a formal round 2.
    Just speculation. I’ll post the old AC threads…

  • 268. cpsobsessed  |  March 26, 2013 at 3:34 pm

    Ok, the old thread is posted at up above in the initial post.
    I didn’t see any mentions of 2nd rounds last year.

  • 269. merelyastudent  |  March 26, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    There is bussing for every AC, but not at high school. You do gain automatic entry to Taft IB from Taft AC.
    Unfortunately, I don’t think there is going to be a second round for Lane (or Whitney for that matter). I know last year they padded them like the high schools (accepted more than 120, counting on people declining offers). Taft, however, usually has multiple rounds. My heart goes out to you guys… these numbers are evil.

  • 270. curios..  |  March 26, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    does anyone know if any child from the mount greenwood area got accepted into WY?

  • 271. AC and waiting  |  March 26, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    To all who answered my inquiry about a Lane 2nd round, thank you. I kind of figured the offers were padded like the high schools. Was hoping I figured wrong.

    I too am very appreciative of this blog and this community. A valuable resource indeed.

  • 272. cmf  |  March 26, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    Wow, Taft tier 4 minimum jumped 24 points over last year and 42 points over 2 years ago.

  • 273. Still hoping  |  March 26, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    Yep, the minimums really jumped. I know Taft had three rounds of offers last year, but don’t know if that was unprecedented.

  • 274. Just wondering  |  March 26, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    Do you know how many points under the cut off that Taft went in those 3 rounds?

  • 275. Still hoping  |  March 26, 2013 at 5:32 pm

    @274 –I believe almost 20 points.

  • 276. CPSAppalled  |  March 26, 2013 at 6:37 pm

    In past years Taft had more than one round, not sure how many. Every year is different. Because Taft is in the far NW corner of the city, I’m sure some parents are going to decline an offer based on geography. I think there is hope for you!

  • 277. Gobemouche  |  March 26, 2013 at 11:52 pm

    Does anyone know how many total seats are offered for each school?

  • 278. Iheoma  |  March 27, 2013 at 12:02 am

    I’m curious about this as well.

  • 279. Gobemouche  |  March 27, 2013 at 12:15 am

    Well, I answered part of my own question: lane website says 120 for 7th.

  • 280. WRP Mom  |  March 27, 2013 at 6:37 am

    Whitney Young is also 120. Taft usually accepts more, although I’m not sure of the exact number. I’m guessing somewhere around 200. Perhaps someone whose child goes to Taft AC can confirm…

  • 281. cmf  |  March 27, 2013 at 7:27 am

    I think Taft was 120 in the past but increased admissions to about 150 last year (current 7th grade).

  • 282. parent  |  March 27, 2013 at 8:24 am

    I spoke with someone downtown after I received our child’s letter–it seemed like there was a mistake with her solid score and that she wasn’t offered anything for 8th grade. He said they offered no 8th grade spots for AC in this first round. (not sure if this is 100% true–as I feel like I saw someone posted they got into Lane 8th grade). Anyway,he said those spots, if there are any, will be offered late May early June, when they know what they have available. Just thought I would pass this along….

  • 283. RL Julia  |  March 27, 2013 at 11:02 am

    I had a child at the Taft AC and loved it. Think Taft has the most developmentally appropriate AC program (compared to Lane and WY – which are more like going to HS early) – great math and science teachers, child took computers, a language and art both years – didn’t have to pick (like they do at WY). My only complaints were that the commute was hard for us (bus left at 6:20 every morning) and that there wasn’t much of a parent/on-line community when my son was there (he’s a HS freshman now). Everything else was great. While my son didn’t love Taft while he was there, he is more appreciative of it now and thinks it was a great education overall. He arrived at high school prepared and the high school credits were helpful – allowing for flexibility in his schedule earlier in high school. Thought Taft was a good program for kids who are tiring of an elementary school atmosphere (need greater acceleration, ready to start changing classes) but are not necessarily emotionally ready/mature enough to go to high school in 7th grade.

  • 284. OIP mom  |  March 27, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    Does anyone have any thoughts on going to WYAC as opposed to waiting for h.s.? The 2 1/2 hours of homework per night is a bit off-putting, wondering what some parents of kids who went there or are there think?

  • 285. Still hoping  |  March 27, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    My child isn’t at WYAC, but if yours was accepted, and it’s their ultimate goal to go to high school there, I would accept. Getting in at the AC level is a bit easier than getting in as a 9th grader when the cutoff scores really are crazy. The work is tough, but from people I know, I hear it’s manageable.

  • 286. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 27, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    284. OIP mom | March 27, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    WYAC is for kids who are ready for HS classes now and need the challenge~and it is a challenge and rigorous. It’s a lot of homework, but not every night. It’s a good way to incorporate and learn time management b4 college years. The teachers are gr8 and they have the most National Board Certified Teachers in CPS. I will say this and I believe it~it’s a family effort.

  • 287. RP  |  March 27, 2013 at 5:09 pm

    To comment on the above, this is not necessarily the case that it is more difficult to gain admission in high school than in 7th grade. I thought so as well until a lady at OAE explained that there were more than three times the slots for the high school class. In addition, the test for AC is different than the high school test. I don’t know how the numbers correlate, but I have a friend whose child applied in 7th grade, didn’t make the cut, but then was admitted in 9th grade, on rank. His mother said his ISATs and grades didn’t change but his overall score was nearly 100 points higher which she attributes to the different admissions exams. I think it largely depends on the kid.

    All that being said, 2 1/2 hours is a lot of homework; however, it guarantees your child a spot at one of the best high schools in the country. I think it’s a fair trade.

  • 288. local  |  March 27, 2013 at 6:23 pm

    What is a week (or semester) of homework like in the life of your average AC student? What are the strategies to getting it done (and done well) as well as any additional learning the student might want to do? How, exactly, do activities or sports fit into the week? Sleep?

  • 289. CPSAppalled  |  March 27, 2013 at 6:43 pm

    I have a 7th grader at Taft AC. I think they usually have a class size of 120 as well. I heard something last spring that they had accepted 150 students, but by this fall, it seemed that they had 120. Hard to tell, since Taft does not publish a school directory, so I really can’t say definitively.

  • 290. Gwen Harris  |  March 27, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    One thing to keep in mind is that since AC kids are in a high school schedule they get an entire 50 minutes for lunch – at least at Taft they the kids can go to the library to study or a room where they can get help. They also use their CPS email accounts and Edmodo to turn in assignments and contact their teacher. Edmodo assignments are due at 1159 pm so my kid has spent a few Friday nights finishing things up. This isn’t 100% procrastination – sometime its time management on her part

    Sent from my iPhone

  • 291. CPSAppalled  |  March 27, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    Well, to answer your question about Taft AC homework: first semester was impossibly hard, but second semester has been more manageable. The strike certainly did not help matters. They did almost nothing before the strike, then loaded up the work after. Science Fair assignments dominated the fall, as in 10 hours every weekend, as my child had other homework during the week, and likes to sleep at night. Crazy, I know. Add in to that, every other week there were Tech. assignments (mostly busy work) that took all weekend. Barely any English homework (1 novel, one essay all semester, I kid you not). Very easy math homework (1/2 hour each night, often completed in class). Easy Spanish homework that was fun. Appropriately designed Social Studies assignments. Science teacher gave very short notice for exams. This semester the History Fair assignments were much more manageable than the Science Fair. My child had to give up several after school activities, due to the intense workload and the long commute by bus. My child struggles to get enough sleep, but to me,sleep is more important than getting all the homework done. How can you function if you’re sleep-deprived?

  • 292. R ceballos  |  March 27, 2013 at 7:32 pm

    Taft patents, how long is the commute? Bussing?

  • 293. CPSAppalled  |  March 27, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    Depends on how far you live from Taft. My child gets picked up at Waters (not our neighborhood school) and has a 35-40 minute commute in the morning. In the afternoon it is definitely at 45 minute ride back. The routes get changed and adjusted a lot in the beginning of the year. We have been happy with Latino Express, and the bus driver even found my child’s lost glasses! Yay!

  • 294. SoxSideIrish4  |  March 27, 2013 at 7:39 pm

    291. CPSAppalled | March 27, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    I’m surprised by the 1 novel, 1 essay. Our kids had to read 5 novels and do a report on each~and it’s not part of the hw and once it’s assigned in the fall, it’s never talked abt again until due date. That does not include the novels they are working on during class time and essays. I think it’s good Math is completed in class, so the teachers are right there if there’s a problem. My son had a lot of Math hw. I think my child gave up one extra school activity but kept violin.

  • 295. curios..  |  March 27, 2013 at 8:12 pm

    If a child finds that the AC is just to hard for them, can they transfer back to their home school without a problem?

  • 296. EdgewaterMom  |  March 27, 2013 at 8:35 pm

    @295 They can transfer back to their local neighborhood school, but if they were attending a magnet or other non-neighborhood school then no, they would not necessarily be able to transfer back. Most likely their spot would already have been given to another students.

  • 297. WRP Mom  |  March 27, 2013 at 8:38 pm

    Yes, a child can always transfer back to their neighborhood school. But keep in mind that this is the 7th grade year when grades matter for the SEHS admissions points. If the child is flunking out, its going to be difficult to pull up their grades by the end of the year.

  • 298. AC and waiting  |  March 27, 2013 at 8:48 pm

    Any homework/work load comments from current LTAC students or family members?

  • 299. LTACer  |  March 27, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    @298. As a current LTAC 8th grader, I would say that the workload is quite heavy. I usually find myself with 1-3 hours of homework a night. I think the most I’ve spent working in one night is 4 1/2 hours, but there are many up and down stretches. I also tend to go thoroughly on my homework, so I have some peers that can get it done faster, but most of us agree that the work load is rather heavy. Last year, as I seventh grader, I had 3 high school classes, as well as non- high school classes taught by high school teachers that felt like high school classes, so I often got overwhelmed. This year, I have six high school classes, but it’s a bit easier to manage time and get things done.

    However, even though the workload is heavy, keeping up an after school activity is possible. During most of the winter, I was in the Lane school musical. Rehearsal was 4 days a week and often went until six. I was still able to keep my grades up. But it is a lot to handle. I wouldn’t send someone to LTAC unless they are able to work very hard. I have a lot of smart peers who struggle with managing their time and keeping grades up. However, if they can manage the work, it’s an awesome program. I’ve loved being in LTAC.

  • 300. current 7th grade ltac student  |  March 27, 2013 at 9:47 pm

    It completely varies. The thing about having 7 different teachers is they don’t communicate with each other how much homework they are giving to the students.
    As far as after school activities it does not tend to intercede with the homeworkso much. It depends on how good you are with time management. I do private music lessons 2x’s a week as well as in school activities.
    Also since we have a longer lunch period than elementary school we are able to utilize that timefor studying or doing homework.
    I love to sleep and if I don’t have my time management skills under control then I will not do well.

  • 301. Annette  |  March 27, 2013 at 10:05 pm

    Very helpful information. Thanks!

  • 302. AC and waiting  |  March 28, 2013 at 7:05 am

    @299 and 300, I thank you very much. Both of you say about what I’ve heard from other LTACers. Someone from Taft said something too about the longer lunch. Nice mid day perk.

  • 303. CPS Mom  |  March 28, 2013 at 9:03 am

    Thank you, LTACer, for the info. I was wondering about the teachers and whether they coordinated with each other or not. I am interested in your impression of your LTAC program and its students and their behavior….are they serious about their studies? Do a handful disrupt class time at the expense of the entire class? That sort of thing.

  • 304. CPS Mom  |  March 28, 2013 at 9:19 am

    Oh, and thanks, too, to the current ltac 7th grade student as well. Also interested in your input, too!

  • 305. RL Julia  |  March 28, 2013 at 10:07 am

    I have or had kids at Taft and WY ACs. In terms of homework – it is all about time management. The homework maybe averaged out to be 2.5 hrs per night but there were plenty of nights where my kids were able to get it all done during their lunch periods – and then some weekends or weeks that was tons of homework every night. If your child is super involved in any activity – they will have to budget their time carefully – 75% of the time it will be manageable and then there is that one week where something has to give.

    OIP Mom – In terms of going to WY at 7th grade – or waiting until HS – WY sends out a sheet (at least they did last year) with the acceptance packet outlining their expectations for their students and asking you to seriously consider if your student is a good fit. I thought this was a pretty good guide – although a little intimidating.

    Teachers (at both Taft and WY) will expect students to be proactive about stuff and keep on top of their assignments without a lot of prompting. I have had any number of experiences (with both of my kids) where all of a sudden there was a test the next day and when I check into it – it was more like my child didn’t hear the two other times it was mentioned and ignored the study guide handed out….

  • 306. LTACer  |  March 28, 2013 at 10:30 am

    The teachers will coordinate for big LTAC events, such as Science Fair, or class field trips. However, in terms of things such as homework amounts, I believe that they have meetings, but it often seems that they just follow their own schedules. For example, last week, the week before break, I had 7 tests and tons of homework. The teachers will often create stretches where there is hardly any homework followed by stretches when the homework can be overwhelming. So, in some ways, they are both coordinated and uncoordinated.

    As for the program in general, the students are mostly very committed, hardworking and interested in learning. The program is still new, but I have no trouble getting along with almost all of my peers. It’s a great community feeling. There are several kids that will interrupt class to crack jokes or ask questions that are slightly off topic, but my classes are normally in control. There are also kids who will copy each other’s homework during lunch or just don’t want to put in the effort, but I have many friends who work very hard to get their work done and prepare for tests. I feel very much like I am already in high school.

  • 307. ecstatic  |  March 28, 2013 at 11:31 am

    Tier 1
    Offer : Whitney Young
    And after saving all summer, we did selective prep.

  • 308. OIPMom  |  March 28, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    Thank you to everyone for feedback on WYAC. I appreciate it.

  • 309. current 7th grade ltac student  |  March 28, 2013 at 8:49 pm

    We will always have classmates that are disruptive, it is not an issue here to me. I actually loved how we have become a small family here and to know that we will be together through high school makes it even more exciting.
    I don’t know how wy or Taft is but we had an orientation at the beginning of the year and a group camping experience before starting the program. Since then there have been many gatherings arranged by our PTSO. The teachers here communicate very well with us as does our advisor. I will not lie though there were days when I first started the program I was not used to the amount of work I got compared to my grammer School, but now I am glad I asked my parents to put me here.
    Time management is my best friend! 🙂

  • 310. local  |  March 29, 2013 at 9:09 am

    For kids (or their families) already targeting college admission:


  • 311. AC and waiting  |  March 29, 2013 at 10:08 am

    @309, how much homework on an average did you have at your elementary school?

  • 312. CPSAppalled  |  March 29, 2013 at 10:19 am

    You are lucky. At Taft there was no orientation experience, just a half day when the kids registered for classes and had their photos taken for IDs. There is almost no on-going communication with the families and no social events, accept for school dances for the students. Taft really needs to work on building community, especially since students live very spread out.

  • 313. Taft 2013-14  |  March 29, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    I have created a page for Taft AC in hopes that the students that plan to attend in the fall will have an opportunity to form a virtual community. @312-CPSAppalled…thanks for the idea! I think that we, as students, with the help of our parents can get it done.

    Please show your support and join today!!!


  • 314. di  |  March 29, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    313 – Unfortunately my daugher is not allowed to go on facebook yet. She will be attending Taft in fall. Is there a google group you can create?

  • 315. Taft 2013-14  |  March 29, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    @314…I will do that

  • 316. Taft 2013-14  |  March 29, 2013 at 5:11 pm

    @314..it’s up

    If you or your child will be attending Taft AC in the fall please join this group…..


  • 317. Valerie  |  March 30, 2013 at 12:06 am

    How many rounds does Kenwood AC usually have? I do personally know a few kids who are turning down their seats there but do not know how far down the wait list my daughter is at. She was offered a seat at Taft, but we deemed it was too far away and the commute would take too long. We are from Tier 2.

  • 318. What to do  |  March 30, 2013 at 5:42 am

    Was anyone out there from TIER 2 offered a spot at Lane that plans to decline? My child is close to the cut off and wondering the risk involved with a possible round two.

    Any response is appreciated!

  • 319. AC and waiting  |  March 30, 2013 at 7:15 am

    I know 1 tier 2 who is going to decline.

  • 320. WRP Mom  |  March 30, 2013 at 7:46 am

    @318, last year Lane AC didn’t have a second round at all. The number of acceptances was padded (136 offers for 120 slots). I wouldn’t expect this year would be any different.

  • 321. HS Mom  |  March 30, 2013 at 9:22 am

    @318 – I wouldn’t turn down any offer unless you have a secure backup (other offers, can stay where you are, good neighborhood school)

  • 322. maria 3  |  March 30, 2013 at 9:38 am

    Hi, I would like to know if someone could share any tutoring programs or websites to have my daughter practice for the selective test. Thank you.

  • 323. Bebe  |  March 30, 2013 at 11:43 am

    @322 Maria: I highly recommend the Selective Prep program. I was skeptical at first, but I have an 8th grader and a 6th grader this year. While the 8th grader is an excellent standardized tester, the 6th grader is relatively slowly. I bit the bullet and put both of them in the 4-week Selective Prep program in December. The 8th grader ended up with a 900 final score and then 6th grader with a 795.

  • 324. maria 3  |  March 30, 2013 at 2:11 pm

    Bebe thank you for the information.

  • 325. Questioner  |  March 30, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    @Valerie, I think that last year, Kenwood had 2-3 rounds because typically Kenwood takes 90 7th graders, but last year they admitted about 134 7th graders, give or take.

  • 326. Confused??  |  March 30, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    Has anyone else not gotten in to your AC of choice but had 600 going into the test? We got 125 on the test but looks like we needed 135. Finished with 825. Any thoughts?

  • 327. AC and waiting  |  March 30, 2013 at 10:26 pm

    @326, I believe there are quite a few kids go into the test with 600 points. It’s the entrance exam that separates those up.

  • 328. Frustrated  |  March 30, 2013 at 11:21 pm

    @326- My kid had 590.9 after having to take a test in October in lieu of the ISAT (98/93 for math and reading, respectively, we are from out of state). We came from a program for children gifted in math. With a score of 120 on the entrance exam, that left us with a score of 799.9. I was told that there was no way to study for the entrance exam; I see now that there were prep classes. Perhaps that is lack of planning on my part as a parent as I had her set up mentally for a general reading/math exam. I caught major attitude after the test. We didn’t get either of our top two choices, but I’m hoping we’ll be able to work with what we did get.

  • 329. Gobemouche  |  March 31, 2013 at 2:19 am

    Frustrated et al – Don’t worry too much about the test prep. My kid scored 147 last year without prep, but 146 this year with prep. Meh. I sort of agree that there is no real way to prep for the AC test (even though we did it anyway out of curiosity). My understanding is that the AC test is more similar to the gifted test (patterns, logic, etc), which is different from the high school test. But who knows?

  • 330. Gobemouche  |  March 31, 2013 at 2:22 am

    Also, Frustrated, be happy that you got something. 🙂
    Many kids coming out of schools that end in 6th grade got nothing.

  • 331. Hurry  |  March 31, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    Does anyone know what the average score on the entrance exam portion of the test is or what score is considered above average?

  • 332. IB obsessed  |  March 31, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    Those who received AC offers-What is the deadline you were given to accept/decline? April 12, same as for the magnet schools?

  • 333. IB obsessed  |  March 31, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    @328 We did no test prep and my child also scored 120 on the exam. No offers from where we applied either.

  • 334. Jenn.  |  March 31, 2013 at 5:55 pm

    The deadline for us is April 12 too. We scored a 123 (ironic, isn’t it?), and received a spot at Taft.

  • 335. Jenn.  |  March 31, 2013 at 5:55 pm

    We did not do test prep either.

  • 336. di  |  April 1, 2013 at 10:55 am

    Thank you 316. I’ll make sure I send it to my daughter to pass on to her friends.

  • 337. South Side Renaissance  |  April 1, 2013 at 1:10 pm

    Does anyone know if CPS provides a listing of the feeder schools and the number of students they sent to each of the Academic Centers (7th grade) and Selective Enrollment High Schools (9th grade)?

  • 338. chicagomama  |  April 1, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    no test prep. no ISAT scores, so sat with psychologist for alternate test. 143 raw score on AC test. accepted to Lane Tech on merit. Confirmation letter to school due 4/12.

  • 339. IBobsessed  |  April 1, 2013 at 4:07 pm

    @338- Your private school does not do any standardized achievement testing at all? Don’t parents complain?

  • 340. Gobemouche  |  April 1, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    338 – Chicagomama- What were the total points? And what test did you take in place of ISAT? Just curious.

  • 341. RL Julia  |  April 1, 2013 at 4:56 pm

    It is very difficult to get a list of the feeder schools -but last year I think one was sort of compiled ad hoc on this website. While I imagine CPS knows which schools feed to which ACs and SEHS’s it is not information they make public (for good reason). That being said, I am pretty sure that if one was to see such a compilation there would be very few/no surprises on it – save a few schools sending one kid to an SEHS or AC.

  • 342. cpsobsessed  |  April 1, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    Cps hasn’t reported that before but last year linda lutton from wbez got the information on sehs.
    I’ll try to find the link from last year. I think the big “surprise” was the share of private school kids who got sehs seats.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 343. YH  |  April 1, 2013 at 6:08 pm

    Can anyone help me out? We are new to the CPS system. Just moved to Chicago last year. My son applied to several programs, including international gifted and academic centers. He scored 877.3, tier 4. We just got a letter saying “It is my pleasure to offer your child a seat at Ogden, Young for the 2013-2014 school year”. I am pretty confused. Does Young refer to Whitney Young? Does that mean we got two offers?

  • 344. Chicago School GPS  |  April 1, 2013 at 6:31 pm

    Congratulations! Yes, you got two offers, one to the International Gifted program at Ogden (IB curriculum) and one to Whitney Young’s Academic Center (feeds directly into Whitney Young’s SEHS). You should also be getting a welcome packet from Young and at least an email from Ogden. Both will give you details on visiting the programs before the acceptance due date of April 12.

  • 345. YH  |  April 1, 2013 at 6:40 pm

    @344 many thanks!

  • 346. kate  |  April 1, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    Could someone clarify the process for me? Judging from CPS web site there’s no ‘principal discretion’ for spots at Academic Centers. Yet I’m hearing through the grapevine that in some cases principal from an elementary school where a kid is currently enrolled at may help with getting a spot at one of the AC schools. Is that really possible? Would that mean a letter of recommendation? Being involved in extra activities (science/history fair and such)?

  • 347. Chicago School GPS  |  April 1, 2013 at 7:08 pm

    Not only is there no “Principal’s Discretion” aspect to Academic Centers, it is actually NOT in an elementary school’s best interest to lose their best and brightest before 8th grade graduation. That being said, the schools that stop at 6th grade (Decatur, Poe & McDade) DO have an interest in getting their students into top AC programs. Whether there is something “unofficial” is something to be discussed directly with the Principals of those schools, but there is no formal, regulated CPS policy such as that for SEHS.

  • 348. kate  |  April 1, 2013 at 7:25 pm

    @Chicago School GPS
    Thank you for your response. I think I’m confused even more 😦 If there’s indeed no formal CPS policy on admission other than through test scores – but there’s a hint of some kind of “unofficial” help – does that mean that CPS is just like any other Chicago politics? Meaning that it definitely does help to know someone? Or that certain admission avenues beside test scores do exist – but they are known to selective few? I’m not sure how I would even approach a principal asking for anything – knowing that it is “unofficial”?

  • 349. Iheoma  |  April 1, 2013 at 7:48 pm

    I know that prior to the current tier/point system there were people who talked to AC directors and got their kids into the programs due to extenuating circumstances. For example, one kid I know has/had a serious health condition that caused him to miss a lot of school in 5th grade – leading to less than stellar grades and less than stellar ISAT scores. The parents made a case that he should get a chance at an AC and he was given a seat. These were not “connected” folks just persistent parents. That said, this was *before* the current scoring/tier system AND I never heard that it was the principal that made the decision.

    The pressure is indeed on for schools that end in 6th grade regarding AC enrollments. I wouldn’t be surprised that there were at least some discussions about this type of thing at some schools. I actually don’t think that it would be a bad thing if there was some kind of formal “principal’s discretion” for ACs.

  • 350. kate  |  April 1, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    Many thanks for your comments. I too do think that ‘principal’s discretion’ for ACs wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing. If it was a known thing, just another part of the process.
    But now I’m thinking that I was just plain naive assuming that once the scores are known, spots given out, it’s time to move on. Now I have a feeling that there are other ways – but I do not know how to explore those ‘other means’. 😦

  • 351. cpsobsessed  |  April 1, 2013 at 7:54 pm

    Principal discretion just ended a couple years ago for elem schools so some stories might be true but a few years ago. High schools still have it but it’s more regimented now than in the past.
    I wouldn’t be surprised if a school took in a kid or 2 after the school year started – perhaps as a transfer student? But I doubt any principal would fess up to it. It could get them in trouble.

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 352. Chicago School GPS  |  April 1, 2013 at 7:57 pm

    I personally doubt there is anything “unofficial” going on because CPS has been to taken to task in the past specifically for the reasons you cited. BUT, since you mentioned you heard rumblings, perhaps it was something a few years back that someone is misinterpreting as happening now or perhaps someone has a first hand account of it. I, however, have not personally heard of anyone getting their principal to intervene since the scoring changes have been in place. There have been folks who have successfully gotten second round offers from Taft or Kenwood and whether they tried talking to their Classical principal or not probably had no bearing on the later round offer (BUT they may have thought it did).

  • 353. Lucky yet cannot be happy  |  April 1, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    Tier 4 856 Accepted at Lane, our top choice. Did test prep class for 6 weeks. I wasn’t too compelled to do the testprep since I thought my boy was good enough student without it. However, I could not resist the peer pressure! Being at Tier 4 I didn’t want to jeopardize my child’s chance so I paid that $350 for the prep class along with some of my neighbors who carpooled with me. It’s true, most of my neighbors make just enough to make it so called six figure income. It may put them in the top 25% income group compared to the city. However, they are also the people who pay tax, pay their mortgage often a lot more than their houses are worth and will probably have to pay their children’s tuition in full when they go to college. I also know people who rent basement apartments in our neighborhood, too. You can call me whatever you want, but the tier system the city has now is totally ridiculous. Even though we have been lucky despite of the situation, I’m very angry for many responsible families being marginalized. I’m going to fight with all the means I have.

  • 354. dolphin2  |  April 1, 2013 at 8:19 pm

    My child got an offer at Skinner West. Can anyone provide some info? Also, if your child is currently at a school which provides education up to 8th grade and your child has an offer to AC and wondering what to do, please make your decision quickly, especially if you are going to turn down the AC offer. Some of my friends’ kids got NO offers and they are anxiously awaiting to get into the second round selections.

  • 355. kate  |  April 1, 2013 at 8:22 pm

    @ Chicago School GPS, @ cpsobsessed
    Thanks for the clarification.

  • 356. local  |  April 1, 2013 at 9:05 pm

    @ 353. Lucky yet cannot be happy | April 1, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    “I’m very angry for many responsible families being marginalized. I’m going to fight with all the means I have.”

    I read a school-closings column by Laura Washington on Emanuel “sitting pretty” (for re-election) despite deep and growing anger in some sectors of the city. She wrote:

    “The opposition is not listening. And they are angry about much more than the schools. They are furious about the high jobless rate in the inner city. Despairing over crushing street violence. Seething over the city’s affordable housing shortage. Fearful of the temporary shutdown of the South Side’s branch of the Red Line. Emanuel is not “our” mayor, they say. He is the mayor of the corporate interests, union-busters, the Gold Coast class.

    “Race is the third rail of Chicago politics. Racial conflict can undo the most savvy politician. Emanuel is a white mayor in a majority minority city. He is sitting, squarely, on that smoking hot rail.

    “Yet right now, he is sitting pretty.”


    Just interesting, in light of your comment. (Absolutely not calling names, here.)

  • 357. local  |  April 1, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    BTW, off topic, but how the heck are some southside HS students going to get to school easily with the Red Line shut down next year? Today, that thing was going so slow. Next year, it’s going to be even more of a challenge.

  • 358. edgewatermom  |  April 1, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    @353. Lucky yet cannot be happy

    I am curious as to what you mean when you say

    “I’m very angry for many responsible families being marginalized. I’m going to fight with all the means I have.”

    Do you think that students who are not accepted into an AC are “marginalized”? I think that it is important to remember that all of the selective enrollment schools are for the very cream of the crop. Every smart child who does well in school is NOT going to test into one of these schools – that is not what they are designed for.

    This is why it is so important for us to continue to fight for quality neighborhood schools for all – and to be able to recognize a good neighborhood school, even if it is not a Hawthorne or Burley.

  • 359. edgewatermom  |  April 1, 2013 at 9:09 pm

    Woops – forgot to close my quote tag in that last post! Sorry, it is a bit confusing to read now! It should read

    I am curious as to what you mean when you say

    “I’m very angry for many responsible families being marginalized. I’m going to fight with all the means I have.”

    Do you think that students who are not accepted into an AC are “marginalized”? I think that it is important to remember that all of the selective enrollment schools are for the very cream of the crop. Every smart child who does well in school is NOT going to test into one of these schools – that is not what they are designed for.
    This is why it is so important for us to continue to fight for quality neighborhood schools for all – and to be able to recognize a good neighborhood school, even if it is not a Hawthorne or Burley.

  • 360. Bebe  |  April 3, 2013 at 9:02 am

    @357 local: The southern half of the CTA Red Line will be shut down starting May 19 this year, NOT next year, for about 5 months. See http://www.transitchicago.com/redsouth/ My 2nd child travels from HP to LP every day but he takes the #2 or #6 downtown and then takes the brown line, so the red line construction won’t affect him much. But he has already been dealing with the loop track construction the past couple of months and knows about the work-arounds.

  • 361. domonic  |  April 4, 2013 at 7:58 am

    Hi first time user got accepted into Odgen for 6th grade. Anyone with some insight to the IB program here please let me know.
    Also kindergarten score 136 tier 2 did not get Edison maybe 2nd round

  • 362. Iheoma  |  April 5, 2013 at 6:35 am

    As the acceptance deadline approaches, I’m curious how parents are dealing with their kids’ and community responses? I know that at my dd school, some kids are excited others are disappointed. Some parents are in full despair while others are facing some really tough choices about next year. I would love to hear more about this “post acceptance” period from other families.

  • 363. Chicago School GPS  |  April 5, 2013 at 8:40 am

    I’m in the midst of finding out more info, but there are very exciting things brewing for Disney II’s middle & high school expansion! Any Disney II families on CPSO probably can share more details, but it sounds like their 7th & 8th graders will earn high school credits similar to typical Academic Center kids. They will also be offering AP and honors classes for the HS, typical of a College Prep school. Essentially they plan a Magnet focus of technology, fine/performing arts & culinary arts. The technology track will learn Microsoft programming. Languages expected are Spanish, Mandarin & Latin.

    Again, details still being ironed out but I believe they are planning to open 7th and 9th grades this Fall. For kids from Classical schools and elementary schools still looking for options this Fall, this could be it!

    I know another string or earlier in this one has dealt with a discussion of the co-location with Marshall Middle school (3900 N. Lawndale). There are two community meetings at Schurz HS on April 10 & 15 @ 5-7PM to learn more.

    More details at the link: http://www.disneyiimagnet.org/apps/pages/index.jsp?uREC_ID=194329&type=d&pREC_ID=391864

  • 364. Jen K  |  April 5, 2013 at 9:12 am

    @363 I attended the D2 parent meeting last night about 7-12 grades and it is indeed very exciting! I want to clarity the languages you mentioned are possibilities – likely the school will continue Spanish instruction and probably add others; Mandarin and Latin are possibilities. 7-8th graders who qualify for HS level classes will be able to earn HS credits -definitely using the AC model.I believe 7th grade apps were accepted during the regular application process and there will be a new round of applications for 9th.

  • 365. SoxSideIrish4  |  April 5, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    #363-364~this sounds like a fantastic program for Disney2! I hope this works out for all the families!

  • 366. Some Parent  |  April 5, 2013 at 7:19 pm

    Does anyone have the number of students of the feeding schools who got accepted into ACs this year?

  • 367. Cpskool  |  April 5, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    Called oae. They are only taking 7th graders if they applied last fall for Disney 2. I asked if they had enough applicants to fill the new spots and they told me they did and would only open up a new application for 9th grade.

  • 368. Questioner  |  April 5, 2013 at 8:21 pm

    7th and 8th at Disney II is just like another AC opening up on the north side of town. Cool beans.

  • 369. local  |  April 5, 2013 at 9:56 pm

    Man, as a parent, somedays I kick myself for missing the memo to live on the northside and to not work full-time. Fresh from a parent-teacher conference. Very sucky.

  • 370. merelyastudent  |  April 6, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    @346, 348
    There is no unofficial process to getting into an AC. I graduated from Decatur last year and currently go to Lane AC… and all they do at Decatur is educate us about the application process early on. I can’t speak for Mcdade or Poe, but we just got a lot of emotional support from our teachers and administration, especially when several kids didn’t get 1st round AC offers. Our principal told us up front that her hands were tied, and that she was powerless to get anyone accepted.

    Principal discretion should definitely exist for ACs, though. Unfortunately, as slow as CPS is, that would take years to get an official process for it to be set in place. 😦

  • 371. Gobemouche  |  April 6, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    Wait. So you would have to applied this year for Disney II for next year? Who would have thought to do that when it wasn’t even announced until late December that the D2 expansion was approved?

  • 372. Jen K  |  April 6, 2013 at 5:09 pm

    D2 has always been planned K-8, and was recently approved for 9-12. That’s why 7th grade applications were done with the original application process.

  • 373. cpskool  |  April 6, 2013 at 5:32 pm

    Exactly my thought. When I mentioned that to OAE, they said it clearly states one grade would be added each year and since in was already K-6. I should have realized that meant 7th grade for next year. Guess I did not realize and now lost a great opportunity for a 7th grade spot…Booo

  • 374. Jenk  |  April 6, 2013 at 7:41 pm

    @373 that’s a good point. There’s a difference between applying for a 7th grade magnet school spot and 7th grade AC spot. While D2 7-8 isn’t considered an AC, my impression is that is the model. That wasn’t known during the normal application period.

  • 375. Iheoma  |  April 7, 2013 at 7:05 am

    Yesterday I went to the “Welcome/Info” session for Lindblom’s AC. Although it seems to me that this board is mainly populated by family’s on the north side or parents who prefer their kids to attend school on the north side, I still want to give a review of our experiences yesterday. Some people IRL asked me to post as well.

    Let me start by saying that Lindblom was our child’s first choice. She had strong scores and would have been offered a seat at Kenwood, Taft and Lane based on the first round cutoff scores published by OES. I write that because for *some* parents the assumption is that Lindblom is a second or third choice for kids from “certain neighborhood” (a comment I have heard many times). Let me assure that it is not. From what I saw at yesterday’s meeting. Lindblom was the first choice for most of the kids there and they were excited.

    Transportation/Neighborhood/Security — The biggest issue surrounding Lindblom’s (AC and SEH) is the neighborhood. As we were driving to the school on a sunny warmish day, we saw everything clearly. Food desert, abandoned buildings, people hanging out, ect. I thought – **SO WHAT**. We see these exact same things when driving to and from many neighborhoods in Chicago. It’s not pretty but it’s true. I don’t plan on getting out and having conversations as we drive through – we’re getting from point A to point B.

    Driving from Hyde Park – you would typically take 55th/Garfield to Damen and then turn onto Wilcox (exactly where the school takes up nearly a city block). These are all major streets and well policed. The school has a strong relationship with CPD and there is a program called “safe passage” that includes security guards to walk students directly from their shuttle to the front door of the building. There are security cameras on each corner of the building. There are security guards that walk the perimeter of the school all day long. The neighborhood is not ideal but the school, CPS and CPD are serious about security. Believe or not, when my parents dropped me off at U of C as a 18 year old first year – Hyde Park didn’t look much different to them than W. Englewood given their small town/suburban experiences.

    School Leadership/Administration — I was blown away by Mr. Alan Mather as well as the school’s assistant principal ( I don’t remember her name). I was also impressed by with the school’s admission counselor. They were friendly, engaging, smart and realistic. I didn’t get the impression they were trying to sell Lindblom – but they were both passionate about their love for the school. It’s clear that Mr. Mather has a clear vision for the school and is making it happen. The AC is not an “add on” but a separate, valued program. It makes a difference to me as a parent of early tween who has been in cocoon of a school, that she’s not completely overwhelmed by the principal and admin of a high school. Yesterday, I saw Mr. Mather make eye contact and greet every parent AND student that crossed his path. The exact same thing with assistant principal. I saw him treat his staff with warmth and respect. I saw his staff treat him the same way. He answered EVERY question that parents asked in our large group setting and didn’t make anyone feel rushed. The admission counselor made sure to offer a Spanish tour to parents who wanted it. That kind of leadership in any organization is vital to the success – with CPS in disarray in so many ways, this was fantastic to see. I’m not saying it’s perfect – but I was really impressed.

    Academics — There were teachers from each department present to talk with kids about the curriculum. Every teacher present shook hands with my child and said that they looked forward to seeing her in the fall. Nice. They had the books they used present and were willing to talk about the “nitty gritty” of the curriculum if requested. They all seemed to have a real enthusiasm for teaching smart 7th grade kids and an engaging way of talking with parents – bonus. Especially since 7th grade is a transition year for students and parents as they learn how manage adolescence (e.g puberty), academics and extra curriculars. They have the option of a 2 year Algebra sequence or 1 year Algebra sequence. Same with Arabic or Mandarin. There is a strong emphasis on writing in English and analysis in History. The science labs and curriculum blew me away. They continue to have relationship with Baxter and Northwestern U. Electives – all 7th graders take the the “fine arts suite” meaning a quarter of music, drama, dance and studio art. This will help them decide what they would like to pursue in high school. Again – I thought this was a great, developmentally appropriate way to have 7th graders experience electives. The school just received a 30K grant from VH-1 to purchase new musical instruments for AC students. It’s clear they value their arts/music department.

    Last thing on academics the school operates on a block schedule – 4 100 minute classes and 1 50 minute class 4x per week. Colloquia on Wednesdays (an opportunity to have additional learning opportunities like an executive functioning seminar for 7th graders or sailing for 12th graders or extra tutoring). 9 minute passing periods and 50 min lunch. Humane and well planned for AC students.

    Facilities/Technology – The school is in fantastic condition. The hallways are wide, well lit and appropriately covered in student art and activities. Each student gets their own locker (nice and spacious) and the classrooms are large and appropriate for AC students.I believe that there are three computer labs. There are also “roving” laptops and ipads available. Kids are allowed to bring their own tablets or laptops to use in school if they would like. (As a parent – I’m not sure if *I* want that). Science labs are college level – period.

    Overall – I continue to be blown away by the school. I’m excited to send my child there and realistic about the community that the school is located in. Selfishly, I’m glad that my child is already in so that when people figure out that this is truly an fantastic school and an excellent south side option, we won’t have to go through the whole admissions thing. They will have a class between 120-130 incoming 7th graders. I got the impression, that they don’t need a second round to fill their seats this year. I hope this helps people make decisions this year and next.

  • 376. JenFG  |  April 7, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    Great review, lheoma! Thanks for sharing.

  • 377. Questioner  |  April 8, 2013 at 5:38 am

    @375, Love the south side posts. Keep them coming! I enjoy reading all the posts actually.

  • 378. cpsobsessed  |  April 8, 2013 at 7:38 am

    Agreed – the more posts about schools all over the city, the more likely that others will come and read and we can get exposure to schools beyond the north side.

    That was a great write-up. Thank you!

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 379. HS Mom  |  April 8, 2013 at 8:40 am

    @375 Iheoma – Yes, great review. I think this detailed information should be very helpful to others. The part about “point A to point B” has me laughing. So true. One very minor correction – the school is on Wolcott (not Wilcox) which is about 2 blocks east of Damen.

    Thanks for putting in the effort for everyone.

  • 380. Iheoma  |  April 8, 2013 at 9:00 am

    Thanks for the feedback. @ HS Mom – thanks for the address correction. Wilcox was on my mind for other reasons and I put it down instead of Wolcott — big difference!! As I read over the review, I noticed other errors that needed to be fixed — OAE vs. OES and a other grammatical errors. Sorry about those but thanks for taking the time to read the review. I do hope that it helps parents make decisions.

  • 381. Questioner  |  April 10, 2013 at 8:52 am

    Did anyone attend the Kenwood Academic Center open house two nights ago? If so, how was it?

  • 382. Iheoma  |  April 11, 2013 at 6:40 am

    South side parents – please post about Kenwood’s AC info meeting – even under an alias 🙂 . I think that this board has a significant number of readers who would benefit from hearing from your experiences.

  • 383. Bebe  |  April 11, 2013 at 7:05 am

    @381 and 382: My husband, child, and I attended the Kenwood AC info meeting on Monday and we were very impressed with the presentation. Jennifer Hey-Lewis, the director of the AC, and whom I have known for years, is fabulous as usual. Very organized and energetic presentation (she teaches Math in the AC and has been the director for at least the past 10 years.) The principal, Dr. Gregory Jones, was fine, but less impressive (e.g. cannot pronounce Alliance Francaise correctly, which I am not was noted by not only this HP mom.) The science teacher also made a wonderful impression with a wonderful presentation of her environmental science course backed up by enthusiastic student testimonials.

    The curriculum for the AC is well designed. All AC students take 7 50-minute classes each day and has PE each day. The language choices are Latin, French, Chinese, and Spanish, and there is a great range of elective choices (visual arts; choral, band, and new to 2013-14 orchestral offerings; creative writing, journalism, debate.) One parent asked if computer science can be an elective for 7th graders. Ms. Hey-Lewis is open to it, but noted that since most students taking computer science are upperclass students, scheduling may be a difficulty. Finally, throughout the presentation, there was quite a bit of an effort to sell Kenwood High 9-12 grade, with stats on student scholarships to colleges, info on the U of C bridge program (11th and 12th grade students can take classes at the University of Chicago at no tuition), etc.

    After the intro meeting, which ran about half an hour longer than the one hour scheduled, The group was split into 3 student-led tours. This is when it went from impressive to what my kids would call “total fail”. Splitting 200+ parents and students into 3 student led tours meant a lot of slow walking down hallways and not able to hear anything. So we left after a few minutes and did not complete the tour.

    Kenwood is my child’s 1st choice, so this meeting helped, but was not the deciding factor for us. Also with this being our fourth child, we are very much old hands at this.

  • 384. Iheoma  |  April 11, 2013 at 7:58 am

    Bebe – thanks for the review. I was really impressed with Kenwood when we went to the info meeting for the AC earlier this year. I’ve heard really great things about the program and glad to see that it’s continuing to do well.

  • 385. Some Parent  |  April 11, 2013 at 10:13 am

    @383: Thanks for your review. Their AC program has always been really good. It’s the high school level that has the problem. They accept all kinds of students. It was not well-selected.

  • 386. Chicago Mama  |  April 11, 2013 at 11:02 am

    Disney II 9th grade application now open. Submissions due June 7. Notifications mailed June 17. http://www.disneyiimagnet.org/ourpages/auto/2012/12/28/62350139/Disney%20II%20High%20School%20application.pdf

  • 387. Questioner  |  April 11, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    @385 Just wondering what you mean by “it was not well-selected.”

  • 388. local  |  April 11, 2013 at 6:40 pm

    Any info on the Morgan Park HS Academic Center?

  • 389. Go Eagles  |  April 11, 2013 at 9:06 pm

    Accepted seat at Lindblom. Lindblom was the first choice for our son, and Kenwood was 2nd. My oldest son went through WYAC, he is graduating this year and will attend UPenn this fall. We love WY, however, we did not feel that WYAC would be the best fit for our youngest son. We like that Lindblom offers Algebra Part 1 in seventh grade and Algebra Part II in eight grade, but you can test out and complete Algebra in seventh grade. We also love the block scheduling. I definitely feel that we made the right choice for our son.

  • 390. Bebe  |  April 12, 2013 at 11:31 pm

    @385 and 387: Kenwood High School has two programs: in-district and magnet. The magnet program admits by lottery. So there is no selection based on academic achievement. Nevertheless, the University of Chicago bridge program offers students who have the ability and discipline to tackle U of C classes a fantastic opportunity.

    I know one senior who has been accepted to the University of Chicago this year, and another senior who has been accepted to the University of Wisconsin Madison. And the principal Dr. Jones mentioned at the open house on Monday that Kenwood received the largest amount in college scholarship of all CPS schools last year, and is currently on track to surpass last year’s amount. So there certainly are some high-achieving students among a larger group of “regular students”.

    My older son attends Lincoln Park High School, which is somewhat similar in that it is a very large high school with some fantastic programs (IB and Double Honors that are academically selective as well as performing arts which is selective based on achievements in the arts) but it also has less than stellar students in its in-district program.

  • 391. scholars  |  April 13, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    When a schools state that they received the largest amount of college scholarship of all CPS schools, they are basing that on the award letters that their students received, and actually brought into their counselor office. Kenwood counselors are very proactive in getting this information from their students. My daughter, who graduated from WY two years ago, only took in two of her scholarship award letters, and those where the two I made copies of and told her to give to her counselor after receiving a second email requesting the information. My son has not been ask to bring in any award offer as of yet.. So stating that a particular school received the most in college scholarship is very misleading.

  • 392. local  |  April 15, 2013 at 11:15 pm

    Personally, I’m delighted to hear that Lindblom has sailing. Cool. We do live next to a really, really, really big lake. Now, where’s rowing in CPS? 😉

  • 393. CPS Mom  |  April 16, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    @383 Bebe: I had to laugh at your “total fail” comment! We had a similar positive experience at Lane’s info night until the tour. We weren’t 3 groups, however; we were groups of “however many wound up in groups with the students acting as tour guides.” The small group experience could have been great, but it was loud, there were backups in the hallways, etc. Our group was 6. Others were 15. Oh, well. Just something to suggest as an active parent next year!

  • 394. momof3boys  |  April 17, 2013 at 9:24 am

    FWIW, I spoke to a friend of mine and she said they were declining a wy spot, tier 4…

  • 395. 8th grade Dreaming  |  April 17, 2013 at 9:09 pm

    For those still awaiting an 8th grade Academic Center Offer from WY, Lane, and Taft. This is what OAE sent me:
    The notification letters for all grades were mailed. Students were accepted for available eighth grade seats at Harlan, Kenwood, and Lindblom. There were no eighth grade seats available at the Academic Centers to which you applied.

    I spoke with the AC Coordinator at Lane and she shared that Lane’s principal made the decision not to accept any 8th graders, even though at least 2 7th graders have left the program this year, leaving 2 spots for 8th grade in Fall 2013.

    Just wanted to share for any other incoming 8th graders who were wondering.

  • 396. CPSAppalled  |  April 19, 2013 at 7:31 am

    @8th Grade Dreaming:

    Wow. That is disappointing news. We were also hoping for an 8th grade spot at Lane. My child is at Taft AC, and we wanted to be closer to home. Does the principal think these kids can’t make the adjustment to the academic rigors of Lane? Give them a chance, please.

  • 397. CPS Mom  |  April 21, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    Interesting tidbit…my child’s classmate received an acceptance letter for both WY and Lane. Chose WY. Subsequently received a phone call saying the child was incorrectly offered WY because score was x too low. Given the chance to enroll at Taft.

  • 398. Iheoma  |  April 21, 2013 at 10:23 pm

    What a weird mistake. I wonder why the student wasn’t offered a spot at Lane – it seems that there would have been a spot there for him/her there if the score was high enough…,

  • 399. waiting again!  |  April 22, 2013 at 9:47 am

    Does anyone know when the letters for the subsequent rounds are sent out (for those schools that have more than one round)? Also, I am assuming that the notification is done in letter form versus a phone call. Am I correct in that assumption?

    Finally, I have heard that how you ranked your school choices is important for subsequent rounds. For example, if a student put Lane as their first choice and Taft as their second choice and was not offered a spot at Lane or Taft in the first round, then there is a chance that they may not be offered a spot at Taft in the second round because it was not their first choice even if they meet the cutoff score. Is there any credence to this theory?

  • 400. PTA Southside Mom  |  April 22, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    Does anyone have information about Morgan Park or Harlan?

  • 401. RL Julia  |  April 23, 2013 at 9:41 am

    I never got the impression that there were tons of letters/spots open for the ACs – although I do know a few kids who got late in the summer phone calls from Taft a few years back. Overall, they are small classes and while there might be some movement – there isn’t much.

    In regards to 8th grade- I heard that Whitney wouldn’t even be thinking about making any 8th grade offers until the summer when they had a better idea of who wasn’t returning (if they decide to make offers at all). I am sure all the AC’s lose a few kids every year – but I imagine it’s probably less than 15-20 kids total for all the ACs combined – hard to really get too invested in getting in with such little movement. Better odds on the lottery….

  • 402. AboutLane  |  April 25, 2013 at 7:41 am

    Hi all. Is their school bussing for students to and from Lane Tech Academic Center? If so, do you know if the school bus picks up on the south side?

  • 403. AboutLane  |  April 25, 2013 at 7:42 am

    @402 I used the wrong “there”, sorry.

  • 404. FG Mom  |  April 25, 2013 at 7:59 am

    My daughter just got an offer from Taft AC for 8th grade. If anyone has a child who attends or attended Taft AC, I’d appreciate your thoughts on the program.

  • 405. WRP Mom  |  April 26, 2013 at 7:06 am

    @402, yes there is busing for LTAC students. Currently, there are stops on the south side. If you are going there this fall, they will have a form for you to fill out to get set up with that, I think in June.

  • 406. lastminute  |  April 26, 2013 at 5:32 pm

    Received an acceptance letter from Kenwood on Wednesday. Would appreciate feedback/comments about their program. Need to make a decision by Monday, 4/29

  • 407. Kenwoodreply  |  April 26, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    What would you like to know about the Kenwood AC? I can tell you that it was a great move to enroll my 7th grader there. He is being challenged academically, has participated in two sports (not at the same time), and has made quality friendships. He enjoys his teachers and during report card pickup, they confirmed that they enjoy him. He is very self- motivated though, does his homework shortly after he gets home, starts projects early, so the AC has been challenging, but he has been able to stay on top of it. There are separate (from the high school) social events for the AC kids. Each class period is 50 minutes, the AC hallway is the quietest in the school, I’m rambling, so I’ll stop, but its a caring environment for motivated learners.

  • 408. another cps parent  |  April 26, 2013 at 9:36 pm

    What do you think about Kenwood as a high school program for your child? Will he stay?

  • 409. Kenwoodreply  |  April 27, 2013 at 6:06 am

    I want him to stay. I like that he will be able to take classes for free at the University of Chicago if he continues on the path he is on. I also like how focused the school is on helping their students to get scholarships to college, so that college is free. I think Kenwood’s principal is really good for the school (but CPS usually promotes good principals to network/central office jobs). My son likes options though and wants to test for the Catholic schools and for the selective enrollment high schools.

  • 410. lastminute  |  April 27, 2013 at 9:44 am

    My child’s score was fairly significantly less than the entrance score to WYH and Lane. I’m concerned that she’ll struggle and is entering at a lower level than other children. Do you know if they allow entrance in 8th grade? We’re in a win-win situation. The ball’s in my child’s court. We’ll be supportive of the decision which we’ve asked for by Sunday evening. In regards to HS, we’d probably enroll in other SEHS in 8th grade too.

  • 411. Kenwoodreply  |  April 27, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    If one of the 7th graders leaves before 8th grade, then I do believe someone would be admitted to fill that spot for 8th grade. Let us know what your young lady decides. Go Broncos!

  • 412. WRP Mom  |  April 27, 2013 at 6:03 pm

    @Kenwoodreply, not necessarily. See 395 “Lane’s principal made the decision not to accept any 8th graders, even though at least 2 7th graders have left the program this year, leaving 2 spots for 8th grade in Fall 2013.”

  • 413. Bebe  |  April 29, 2013 at 7:43 am

    @407 Kenwoodreply: Thanks for the confirmation about Kenwood AC’s quality. My youngest son is going there for AC next year, with several of his friends from 6th grade. I am happy for him.

  • 414. Still hoping  |  May 1, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Does anyone know how or if we can find out if there will be second round offer letters? Missed the first round cutoff by 4 points and are still hoping.

  • 415. round 2  |  May 3, 2013 at 10:32 am

    I believe some second round letters from Taft were sent out last Wednesday or Thursday. But I don’t know what the cutoff score was that they went to. I don’t know about any other schools though.

  • 416. Chicago School GPS  |  June 23, 2013 at 7:02 am

    Disney II has 19 spots available in 7th grade this Fall at their new campus at 3900 N. Lawndale. If you are still searching for a suitable 7th grade spot, I encourage you to send in an application. You can always say “no” later, but not if you didn’t apply!

    Disney II Magnet 7th grade Application – Opens July 8, due July 19, 2013 at 5pm

    7th grade applications will open July 8, 2013 at 9:00am on the website cpsoae.org

    Disney II Magnet School currently has 7th grade seats available for the 2013-2014 school year. The application will be part of the Office of Access and Enrollment’s “End of Year City-Wide Options”. It will open July 8, 2013 at 9:00am and is due July 19, 2013 at 5:00pm to the Office of Access and Enrollment. The application will be available on the website cpsoae.org, under NEWS on July 8, 2013.

    Feel free to contact the Office of Access and Enrollment at (773) 553-2060 for application questions or Mrs. Santiago at (773) 534-3750 for general Disney II admission questions. Notifications will be sent to families the week of August 5th.

  • 417. ca  |  July 25, 2013 at 6:23 am

    Got a call from OAE yesterday offering a spot at Lane AC. Will turn it down (turned down WY back in April). Staying put. Posting in case anyone out there is still hoping for a call.

  • 418. west rogers park mom  |  August 12, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    My daughter graduated from Taft in June and is trying to make some money. She has several Taft polo shirts, hoodies, gym shorts etc for sale. Most are size AS. They are all clean and in good condition. If you are interested in purchasing them just email westrogersparkmom@gmail.com

  • 419. CPSMom  |  October 20, 2013 at 5:04 pm

    Regarding academic centers….I’ve read the cutoffs for the past couple of years and am wondering: if a child scores high enough to land within the min/max scores of their choices (either by rank or by tier), do they receive acceptance letters to each school?

  • 420. Chicago School GPS  |  October 20, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    Families are asked to rank the order of Academic Centers on their application, and it is a Single Offer system whereby if your child’s score is high enough to get her into her first choice school, you will receive an offer. If not, the computer will see if your child’s score is high enough to gain entry into your 2nd choice school, and so on, until a match is made. As soon as you accept an offer, you are taken out of the pool for any subsequent rounds.

  • 421. Cm  |  January 8, 2014 at 5:17 am

    Child testing for 8th grade AC on Jan 20, 2014. My first time doing this. Heartbreak last year because I didn’t think to test her for 7th grade AC. Many of her friends got accepted to 7th grade ACs and left. Are these tests computerized, or do they shade with pencils? Is there Math and reading? I am so clueless.

  • 422. RL Julia  |  January 8, 2014 at 11:14 am

    Test are not computerized. Kids use pencils. Few kids get AC offers for 8th grade. I don’t think WY gave out any spots last year. Don’t know about the others… Anyone know of an 8th grader getting a spot at an AC for 8th? Smaller pool of applicants but fewer seats to be sure.

  • 423. kenwoodreply  |  January 8, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    Yes. Kenwood AC offered spots to kids for 8th grade.

  • 424. WRP Mom  |  January 8, 2014 at 2:42 pm

    Lane AC did not offer any spots to 8th graders this past year.

  • 425. Lindblom  |  January 8, 2014 at 7:00 pm

    I know of one child from my sons grammar school that got accepted to Lindblom for 8th grade. I tested my son who is now a freshman for AC entry for 8th. He got accepted to Harlan but I declined & kept him at his grammar school to finish.

  • 426. CPS Appalled  |  January 8, 2014 at 8:36 pm

    Taft AC admitted one 8th grader this year; perhaps there was another one I didn’t hear about from my child.

  • 427. Yes?No?  |  March 21, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    2015-16 letters are going out today…

  • 428. Yes?No?  |  March 21, 2014 at 2:14 pm

    Oops, that was 2014-15 :))

  • 429. cpsobsessed  |  March 21, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    New posts coming soon!!

    Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

  • 430. vstis  |  March 21, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    yes, they’re coming!

  • 431. CPS Mom  |  March 26, 2014 at 11:29 am

    RLJulia: I just want to thank you for your comment about AC being all about time management. That was so *very* helpful to us as first-timers and it has made all the difference to our daughter as she started in September and has worked her way through this year. Couldn’t remember where the whole “time management is really important!” idea came from until I came across your comment as I was re-reading this post from last year, searching for Taft references because this year our current 6th grader was accepted to Taft’s AC. So, again, THANK YOU!!!!

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