Fall 2017: Applying to Kindergarten / Elementary School

September 22, 2017 at 10:03 pm 207 comments


Coonley Elementary + RGC

In the next couple weeks, the application season for Elementary School will begin.

While the high school application process is changing slightly, the Elementary process should still be largely the same.

So far, the CPS Access & Enrollment site doesn’t have the start date or end date of the application period open, but it should be ready soon.


In a nutshell, the process will involve:

Request a PIN for the site

Once you have your PIN, sign up to schedule a test (if you’re interested in the gifted or classical test)

Select and rank the schools you want to apply to (this can be done up to the closing date)

For magnet schools (no testing needed,) apply online for up to 20 magnet or other open enrollment schools

Separately, get familiar with your neighborhood school to assess whether it’s a good option.  Your child can always attend that school at any point.  Being part of a neighborhood school has many benefits:  local friends (kids and parents,) walking to school, and being part of a local community.





Entry filed under: Applying to schools, Kindergarten, Uncategorized.

High School Application News – Fall 2017 Time for Farewell

207 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Chicago School GPS  |  September 23, 2017 at 8:44 am

    Thanks for starting this year’s string, CPSO!

    Here is a little blurb with what we’re hearing:
    “CPS is making a big change this Fall to their application system that will affect all applicants, from preschool to high school. Instead of their old online system, CPS is changing over to a one-stop shop at http://www.go.cps.edu. It uses an online platform that many charter schools have used for years called SchoolMint. You can enter your family’s basic information into the system and get an idea of what your child “is eligible to apply to” by first “activating” your account (not sure if they are using PINs this year). You can activate an account now and browse programs, tag “favorites”, etc, but you CANNOT apply to any schools until the application window opens on Oct. 2nd. The application closes on Dec. 15th.
    If you have a non-CPS student wanting to apply to 5th-9th grade programs, they will also need to take the NWEA MAP qualifying exams. The October exam dates of 10/21 & 10/22 require registration by Oct. 2.

    CPS has said that the new GoCPS website is intended to be a single location to Learn, Research, Explore & Apply to all their programs managed by the Office of Access & Enrollment. This is from their website:

    Get detailed information and explanations about all CPS application processes.
    Track important dates and events related to applications, testing, and enrollment.
    Access informative videos, brochures, news, and community engagement material.
    Answer important questions using Frequently Asked Questions.
    Contact support from the Office of Access and Enrollment.

    Find CPS schools and programs using multiple search and display options.
    Find your neighborhood school using your computer or mobile phone’s geo-location.
    View school profiles with detailed background, contact, performance, program, and admissions data.
    Select and compare up to four different schools side by side.
    View map overlays of attendance, geographic, and political boundaries.

    Learn about which schools are the best fit for your student.
    Access statistics and success data about CPS as a district.
    Read detailed descriptions and information about school and program types.

    Activate an account and create a family profile supporting multiple students.
    Access and review student program eligibility information.
    Select and apply to elementary and high schools.
    Receive and accept school admission offers.

    CPS’s Office of Access & Enrollment is in the process of migrating their information over to this new site. Each day there is more information regarding all programs, but it looks like you will still be able to add up to 20 non-selective elementary schools on the “Standard Elementary School” application and get accepted to all, none, or any amount in between. Waitlists will still move a lot over the summer. SEES programs should still allow up to 6 choices and one offer.

    Bottom line, if you want to apply to CPS this Fall for the 2018-2019 school year, then Activate your GoCPS account and do your research as the Oct. 2nd application open date will be here before you know it! CPS is adding new info to their GoCPS site every day so check back often!”

  • 2. KCabral  |  September 23, 2017 at 1:40 pm


  • 3. HSObsessed  |  September 26, 2017 at 10:13 am

    Hi CPS obsessers! My kid sailed through 13 years of CPS in the blink of an eye (or so it seemed to me) and is now in college, so I’m not on this blog as much as I used to be. I saw this interesting free school-related event in a newsletter and thought I’d cross post it here, although it’s short notice for Wednesday, Sept 27th. It looks like a great panel.

    Millie’s Meetups

    Choosing the right school for your children is enough to make you feel like all the homework in the world won’t amount to a passing grade! The inaugural edition of Millie’s Meetups will focus on helping Chicago parents navigate through the school election process via a panel of the real experts: other parents!

    We are thrilled to have Mary Dempsey, president of DePaul College Prep, moderate our discussion.
    Jane Herron: Educational Consultant
    John Martin: (Alexander Graham) Bell Elementary
    Marc McDonald: St. Josaphat School
    Hillary Schneider: Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School
    Amy Shulman: (Augustus H.) Burley School
    Neena Vlamis: British International School of Chicago, Lincoln Park
    Keren Weiss: Latin School of Chicago


  • 4. futuremom  |  September 27, 2017 at 1:45 pm

    Does anyone know when the Open House Calendar will be posted for SEES?

  • 5. Corey President  |  September 28, 2017 at 9:30 am

    I called OAE, and they said that they are still waiting for schools to let them know when they will hold open houses. Once this is done, OAE can update the calendar. They didn’t give me an estimated time that they will have the Open House Calendar complete, but there is a website that has the open house dates for some schools (chischoolgps.com).

  • 6. futuremom  |  September 29, 2017 at 9:14 am

    @5. Corey President. Thanks so much

  • 7. sloanesmom  |  September 29, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    Just an FYI, if you already have a student enrolled in CPS, you DO NOT need to request a PIN. This was verified by CPS Admissions (I called their helpline to confirm).

    You can just activate your account (you will need your child’s CPS Student #) at:


  • 8. Chicago School GPS  |  September 30, 2017 at 2:15 pm

    CPS just announced revised application dates for this Fall. Applications now open on October 10 and close on December 22.

    “Dear Families and Students,
    One of the most important priorities for GoCPS is that all families and students have the best possible experience with and access to the new platform. In order to make sure the system supports anticipated demand, we will briefly delay the planned launch date to Oct. 10.
    CPS will extend the application deadline to Dec. 22, 2017 so that no student loses time in applying to school.
    We look forward to offering an improved school application process for all our students.
    Tony Howard
    Executive Director of Enrollment and Education Policy

  • 9. CPSparent  |  October 1, 2017 at 8:25 pm


  • 10. R_WL  |  October 2, 2017 at 9:20 am

    Thanks for the 10/10 update! Question- we live in the Skinner West boundaries (.7 miles away) but Brown is coming up (1.4 miles away) as his neighborhood school? We were quite looking forward to walking to school each morning. Can I make a fuss about this?

  • 11. No Horse In the Race  |  October 2, 2017 at 11:08 am

    #10–are you East or West of Ashland? Skinner West boundaries end at Ashland. IME, CPS doesn’t care what’s closer.

  • 12. R_WL  |  October 2, 2017 at 11:35 am

    East of Ashland. We fall directly into the center of the boundaries listed on CPS’s website but they are sending us West of Ashland as our “neighborhood” school

  • 13. jfc  |  October 2, 2017 at 12:23 pm


  • 14. No Horse In the Race  |  October 2, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    When Skinner West opened, I was told that Burnett made them agree any child East of Ashland could attend. BUT I am not sure whether there were any caveats related to Skinner enrollment.

  • 15. Rankings?  |  October 2, 2017 at 2:08 pm

    #12 What is your cross street? Skinner’s boundaries are from Lake to Congress and Ashland east to Canal.

  • 16. public mom  |  October 2, 2017 at 2:47 pm

    @10 original question the best thing to do is call the school directly and provide your address they will confirm the “true” answer for you

  • 17. R_WL  |  October 2, 2017 at 2:48 pm

    @15 – its Jackson & Des Plaines

    @16 – I will do that too- thanks!

  • 18. R_WL  |  October 2, 2017 at 2:56 pm

    I called the school and they confirmed that we are, in fact, in their district for neighborhood school. I’ll just raise a ruckus if CPS tries to assign him elsewhere! It seemed so silly to me that we would walk or drive PAST the Skinner to go to another school.

  • 19. public mom  |  October 2, 2017 at 3:32 pm

    @18 R_WL you shouldn’t have a problem when you register directly at the school. Neighborhood schools you go directly into the school versus having to deal with OAE and assignment. My friend moved into the Beverly area and walked into the main office and registered with no problem. She later provided her proof of address and other docs and was successful.

  • 20. public mom  |  October 2, 2017 at 3:36 pm

    @18 R_WL also you will be surprised of the boundaries CPS have created. I literally stay directly across the street from an elementary school but my block is the cutoff. Therefore if I chose to take my son to the neighborhood school I would have to walk 8 blocks or drive. It would make sense for me to walk out front door, cross the street and be at school but you will learn CPS has a very special way of doing ALL things.

  • 21. 1stGradehopeful  |  October 4, 2017 at 10:17 am


  • 22. cpsobsessed  |  October 4, 2017 at 10:09 pm

    R_WL, I would probably still enter the application process for other schools as backup just in case there is any kind of change, if you are in a hard-to-interpret block. You’d hate to get stuck if something changes (I know nothing about the other school you mentioned, so no judgement there.)

    The key is getting the school to register you as a neighborhood family, then you’re in. But that won’t happen until Spring.

  • 23. Chicago School GPS  |  October 7, 2017 at 12:15 pm

    Some tidbits gleaned from the newest Options for Knowledge guide for 2018-2019:

    Coonley RGC is not accepting new K students, so their program will run from 1st-8th grade only. Means this application season may not have many accepted into 1st, since most kids from current K will go into 1st.

    Bell’s RGC IS accepting a new K class, as well as their original 1st grade entry class, so they will probably accept 28 students for K and 28 students for 1st this Fall. Next year’s application forward will only really have spaces for K students.

    Lincoln Elementary’s International Gifted program is phasing out, so no new 6th graders coming in. They will probably only have fill in spots for 7th and 8th this coming year.

    South Loop RGC is just doing fill-in spots for 7-8 since they are phasing out their RGC while NTA will be accepting K-6 for this Fall. (When their new campus opens, that may change again).

    Click to access OptionsForKnowlegeGuide_2018-2019.pdf

  • 24. northsidemom  |  October 10, 2017 at 9:06 am

    @23 Chicago School GPS thanks for the info. Regarding your comment on Coonley RGC wouldn’t this be the same challenge for most schools that have a K RGC program? I would imagine the K students will stay at move into the 1st grade slots so I am not making the connection? How many classes per grade level does Coonley have? I’m asking because Coonley would be on my list and need to see the best approach. Thanks!

  • 25. northsidemom  |  October 10, 2017 at 9:08 am

    just checked the gocps.edu site is NOT OPEN as expected! LOL

  • 26. lincolnsquaremama  |  October 10, 2017 at 9:27 am

    Well it’s open now. And what is unclear to me is (1) is there no PIN anymore? and (2) do we have to submit our applications before getting to schedule a test date? They seem to have uprooted the prior system just a bit.

  • 27. north side mom  |  October 10, 2017 at 9:43 am

    @26 you do not need a PIN if you have a current CPS student just activate your account on the website. If you are new to CPS I believe the process is different. Not sure on other questions.

  • 28. lincolnsquaremama  |  October 10, 2017 at 9:50 am

    Thanks @27 but we have a new to CPS 2018 Kindergartener so I’m a bit confused by the lack of a PIN request. I had thought that was how they verified your address.

  • 29. CP  |  October 10, 2017 at 9:58 am

    @27 We have a new to CPS 2018 Kindergartener as well, and I just completed the applications without having to use a PIN, so the process is the same as current CPS students. @28 I’m not entirely sure how addresses will be verified myself, but I’m assuming we’ll have to show proof of residency when it comes time to register our kids to the accepted school.

  • 30. lincolnsquaremama  |  October 10, 2017 at 10:23 am

    @29 – Did you actually submit the application? I’m assuming you can still go back and edit?

  • 31. Chicago School GPS  |  October 10, 2017 at 11:08 am

    @24- In a nutshell, I would not expect many acceptances at lower grades from Coonley this year as they are transitioning to their 1st grade entry year. You are also correct that any SEES that starts at K wouldn’t ordinarily have many acceptances to 1st. Coonley has one class of RGC per grade. My post was just clarifying that come April, we won’t be hearing much about Coonley or see scores reported because they are barely accepting any new kids into the RGC this year with no more K RGC. Hope this helps.

  • 32. Chicago School GPS  |  October 10, 2017 at 11:25 am

    @30- You are supposed to be able to still go back and edit your school choices until Dec. 22. This is from the bottom of the page:
    “How can I change my school choices?

    We encourage you to attend Open Houses and conduct any other school-related research BEFORE submitting your application, to decrease the need for changing school choices. If you apply online, you can make changes by deleting your application and submitting a new one. If you apply via paper application, contact the Office of Access and Enrollment at 773-553-2060 or oae@cps.edu to request a paper Application Modification Form. Changes must be submitted no later than December 22, 2017.”

  • 33. CP  |  October 10, 2017 at 11:34 am

    @lincolnsquaremama Yes, I submitted the application. After you submit, there is an option to edit the application online.

  • 34. BTAQ  |  October 10, 2017 at 11:37 am

    Ranking Magnets??? I just submitted my application for Kindergarten. I noticed that I could rank my Selective Enrollment choices, but could not the Magnet choices. However, upon completion and submission, my Magnet choices now appear to be ranked. Do I need to go back and re-rank my Magnet choices?

  • 35. MN  |  October 10, 2017 at 11:54 am

    Does anyone know if there is early testing this year for kindergarten? I think last year for those who took the test in November results were posted in Dec? Is it no longer the case? Can’t find this info on the site. Thanks

  • 36. BTAQ  |  October 10, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    Just called the Office of Enrollment. There was apparently a pop up saying that the Magnet schools are not ranked – even though they show up as being ranked on the Student Dashboard.

  • 37. CP  |  October 10, 2017 at 12:04 pm

    @MN I called the OAE, and was told that if a child is tested between Nov 1st and Nov 21st, parents should receive their scores before the end of the application period (Dec 22nd).

  • 38. north side mom  |  October 10, 2017 at 12:06 pm

    @33BTAG there are NO ranking options for magnet; the computer just defaults to a ranking but the lottery takes precedence. Which is why the system did ask you to rank Magnet and only SEES

  • 39. north side mom  |  October 10, 2017 at 12:07 pm

    @28 lincolnsquaremomma you can go back and edit your application and ADD a student with no PIN needed.

  • 40. MN  |  October 10, 2017 at 12:31 pm

    @CP Thank you so much!

  • 41. lincolnsquaremama  |  October 10, 2017 at 1:20 pm

    Following up – I submitted the applications and was given the option to RSVP for a test date. (1) Testing starts 11/2 and goes into December, (2) you have to submit both applications (selective and non-selective) to get to the option to pick a test date, (3) I confirm no PIN was required, (4) it looks like the applications can be revised fairly easily (the dashboard screen after you submit has an option to cancel applications – I haven’t tried doing another addition yet).

    Looks like the “new normal” is going to be to do your research ahead of time, select all the schools you think you want and apply when the window opens, do open houses and testing as needed to help narrow your choices and then make sure you have your final picks in when the application window closes.

  • 42. northsidemom  |  October 10, 2017 at 1:34 pm

    @ 37 CP is early testing only for K or all grade levels?

  • 43. Dina  |  October 10, 2017 at 1:35 pm

    Following – thank you for the awesome comment thus far…

  • 44. Chicago School GPS  |  October 10, 2017 at 2:11 pm

    Typically early results for Nov. 1- Nov. 21 tests has only been for K. CPSOAE actually didn’t even test the upper grade entry kids until after that time period last year.

  • 45. Mom2Mom  |  October 10, 2017 at 3:07 pm

    So to clarify, the only ranking we’ll be doing is of selective enrollment, right? So that will be like last year? (we won’t be ranking say Gifted over Magnet) ?

  • 46. Coonley Mom  |  October 10, 2017 at 3:11 pm

    I’m curious how this will affect entry scores for Bell and Coonley? Typically the schools with 1st grade entry tend to have slightly lower scores (since many people prefer getting their child placed in Kindergarten.)

  • 47. BTAQ  |  October 10, 2017 at 3:51 pm

    @45Mom2Mom – I ranked selective enrollment and RGC on the same page through a drop down menu. (You aren’t given the option to rank Magnet schools, even though the Student Dashboard shows the Magnets schools as being ranked.) I didn’t rank gifted/classical over magnet as there was no such option and they are separate applications. Also, I received three email confirmations: (1) Magnet application; (2) Classical/RCG application; and (3) Test date confirmation stating “Thank you for your RSVP to Regional Gifted and Classical Schools Admissions Exam.” For Kindergarten, both tests are apparently given on the same date and at the same location per the OAE.

  • 48. SoLo MoM  |  October 10, 2017 at 8:29 pm

    @46: My understanding is the 1st grade scores are typically lower than K because the test isn’t structured similarly vs. lesser popularity. Sure, there aren’t as many applications . . . but it’s PLENTY competitive. Maybe even more so due to fewer spots. Plus, the test is administered differently with the kids filling in the bubbles themselves. So. Many. Pages. My child left there exhausted.

  • 49. 1stGradehopeful  |  October 10, 2017 at 9:02 pm

    Is the first grade test one day or two days? If two days, how long is the test each day?

  • 50. CPSparent  |  October 10, 2017 at 9:37 pm

    The first grade test is actually scored differently and is out of 150 points instead of the 160 for kindergarten so scores are “lower.” Kids test in a group and you have to go on two different days if you are testing for both classical and RGC schools. I remember my daughter being in the test for about 45 min or so but I also saw them taking bathroom breaks as a group so they’re not testing that entire time. My daughter did not complain about filling out a lot of scantrons or anything and we didn’t do any prep. Her scores did go down about 10 points from K to 1st for RGC but she still got an RGC offer (which we declined) and her score for the Classical test went up (99 math and 99 reading) and we got an offer for that as well (after decling the RGC spot). Hope that helps people who are testing for 1st.

  • 51. CPSparent  |  October 10, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    Oh and for what it’s worth the principal at my daughters Classical school told me often the kids who get in at a non-entry year are some of the highest performing students because they had to test super high to get the very few spots available. I was asking since I was nervous that she had not been at an accelerated school for K. Turns out she has consistently been in the top math and reading groups since starting at the school in 1st. Again, just FYI for concerned parents.

  • 52. cpsobsessed  |  October 10, 2017 at 10:16 pm

    @SoLo Mom – that is a good point about the scoring. That is my understanding as well that the test for 1st grade results in lower scores.
    Another factor is that it’s given in a group and not one on one.

    I think I’m going to ask my now-9th grader if he remembers his test before Kindergarten….

  • 53. cpsobsessed  |  October 10, 2017 at 10:18 pm

    Ok, my 14 yo has only a vague memory of being there, in a room with someone. and he remembers not being worried about it.

    So after all your kids go through with the testing… they won’t even remember it some day! 🙂

  • 54. Chicago School GPS  |  October 10, 2017 at 10:36 pm

    If anyone is interested in learning more about the SEES Classical & RGC tests and admissions process, join us on Saturday, Oct. 21 at 1-3pm at IIT for our annual “What’s on the Test?” seminar: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/whats-on-the-test-understanding-chicagos-gifted-testing-admissions-2017-tickets-37317417400?aff=erellivmlt

  • 55. northsidemom  |  October 11, 2017 at 8:31 am

    @50 CPS parent, where does your child attend school now if you turned down RGC?

  • 56. northsidemom  |  October 11, 2017 at 8:34 am

    I know several kids took the Kindergarten test scored high then took the 1st grade test and scores dropped. I think like most are saying the K test was mostly pointing but the 1st grade test you have to fill in bubbles correctly. The kids are in a group however I heard they have little desks with privacy boards and the teacher is at the front using like a projector screen slowly asking the questions. the 1st grade test for RGC covers a lot of patterns, paper folding, following instructions, analogies, etc.

  • 57. CPSparent  |  October 11, 2017 at 9:05 pm

    @northsidemom – the Classical school my daughter attends is Skinner North.

  • 58. Leslie Triplett-Bracy  |  October 12, 2017 at 11:21 am

    My son is in kindergarten and will be testing for both gifted and classical for 2018-19. I have found this awesome Critical Thinking Boot Camp to prepare him for the test. What I have learned so far has been extremely helpful with test taking techniques for my son. They also gave me customized books for me to help coach my son through the material for the test. So far, I am completely amazed!

    The Critical Thinking Boot Camp came highly recommended from other parents that I know that have used them. One parent said that if you want your child to test into these schools that the Boot Camp is a must. Another friend of mine said that it is the best way to prepare your child for academic excellence. There are also testimonials from university professors on the website too.

    You should check out their website: http://www.thecriticalthinkingchild.com/critical-thinking-boot-camp-for-kids/

    Let me know what you think.

  • 59. Chicago School GPS  |  October 12, 2017 at 11:26 am

    If anyone wants to get a better feel for what is on the CPS Selective Enrollment Classical and Regional Gifted tests and how admissions and selection is done, join Chicago School GPS and Critical Thinking Child as we take you in depth on what to expect.
    Saturday, Oct. 21 from 1-3pm at IIT (near the testing site for CPS SEES).

    “What’s on the Test? Understanding CPS Gifted Testing & Admissions
    If you are a PreK – 3rd grade parent who is confused about navigating the Chicago Public School System (CPS) Gifted and Classical school options or is seeking gifted test prep tutoring strategies and resources, please join our expert speakers:
    Saturday, October 21st 1pm to 3pm
    Grace Sawin – Chicago School GPS
    Lemi-Ola Erinkitola – The Critical Thinking Child
    Preschool & Early Elementary Parents (PK-3rd) will gain answers to:
    Understanding of the CPS Gifted and Classical School Options (what’s new this testing year?)
    How to successfully navigate the CPS admissions and selection application process
    What’s the difference between Gifted and Classical schools?
    Entrance test tips & strategies for “What’s on the test?”
    How does testing for kindergarten differ from other grade levels?
    How do I prepare my child for the CPS Gifted and Classical admissions tests?
    What resources should I use if my child is learning multiple languages?
    How can I register my child for The Critical Thinking Boot Camp for Kids?
    What sample questions are used for test prep?
    What strategies work best for parents of multiples?
    More FAQs
    Registration is required. Adults only please!
    Hurry!!! Seating is limited! – Sorry “No Walks-ins.
    All tickets must be purchased in advance and online.
    No tickets will be sold at the door.
    Thank you!”

  • 60. helpfulmom  |  October 12, 2017 at 1:08 pm

    @58 I concur. My son took two Critical Thinking Child boot camps and is so advanced as a result.

  • 61. Chicago School GPS  |  October 12, 2017 at 2:07 pm

    Here is the “helpful” but a bit unwieldy online application guide. Has high school (pp 6-34), then elementary (pp 35-52) and finally preschool (pp 53-66) instructions. http://cps.edu/sitecollectiondocuments/gocps/GoCPS-HS-Application-Guide-English.pdf

  • 62. Chicago School GPS  |  October 15, 2017 at 4:09 pm

    CPS TIers have been updated for the 2018-2019 application season. Type in your address into http://cps.edu/ScriptLibrary/Map-SchoolLocator/index.html and the blue box will have your tier listed under the yellow pin.

  • 63. Skinner West  |  October 16, 2017 at 6:10 am

    Has there been a change to Skinner West’s neighborhood boundaries? I typed my address in to the updated Tier Map as found this:

    Brown School: 7th-8th Grade
    Skinner West: K-6th Grade
    Wells HS: 9th-12th

    Is SW no longer accepting Middle School kids?

  • 64. KCabral  |  October 20, 2017 at 4:06 pm

    Galileo Scholastic Academy has 2 Open Houses scheduled. From their website:
    Prospective Parent Open House! October 24 or November 2
    Interested in your child becoming a Galileo Star next year? Join us!

    Come and learn about the wonderful opportunities we have here at Galileo for your child and your family! You will have the opportunity get information and ask questions about our curriculum, community, and get a tour of our building.

    Tuesday, October 24th at 5pm
    Thursday, November 2nd at 5pm

    Galileo is at 820 S. Carpenter St., just north of Taylor St. near UIC.

  • 65. 2nd grade mom  |  October 22, 2017 at 11:08 am

    The maximum score for Kindergarten gifted test is 160.

    The maximum score for 1st grade-8th grade gifted test score is 150.

    There is a different scoring system used after K.

    So, an individual child’s test score is not dropping from K to 1st, it is just a different test with a different rubric/scoring system.

  • 66. 2nd grade mom  |  October 22, 2017 at 11:17 am

    So Coonley won’t have ANY open spots for Kindergarten ever again since they are dropping gifted K moving forward.

    And this years K class will take all 28 1st grade spots for next year.

    So the only open spots for any gifted grades at Coonley for school year 2018/19 will be if a student leaves the school thus opening a spot.

  • 67. cpsobsessed  |  October 22, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    What you’re saying is correct for coonley 1st grade. There will be no K offers and the 1st grade offers would probably come in late spring or summer once the school determines how many kids are leaving, if any.
    There could be more offers in say 3rd grade and up when class size expands. Also for 7th grade since some kids will leave for ACs .

    However now there is the chance to apply to Bell for kindergarten which is also a great school and very close to Coonley.

    I imagine this will continue for the near future.

  • 68. SuzyChi  |  October 26, 2017 at 7:40 am

    “Bill Gates Tacitly Admits His Common Core Experiment Was A Failure”


  • 69. skk  |  November 2, 2017 at 11:07 am

    STEM MAGNET’S PROSPECTIVE PARENT OPEN HOUSE IS AT 1PM THIS FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 3RD. Check it out, especially if you are in the neighborhood lottery radius. It’s a great school!

  • 70. confusedparent  |  November 3, 2017 at 8:48 am

    Hello all I read something on this blog or on OAE website and it stated that tiers only play a role for entry years. I am confused by this. Can someone explain in detail? For example, my daughter is currently enrolled in CPS student at Hawthorne. We will be applying for Keller 1st grade. We are tier 2. Since Keller starts at 1st grade is this considered entry year? When she takes her test will they not look at her tier only her score? Any feedback greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  • 71. Chicago School GPS  |  November 3, 2017 at 9:12 am

    @70- yes, it’s true that CPS Tiers are only considered for the entry year of a program (when most seats are available). Since Keller’s SEES program starts at 1st grade, that is when CPS Tiers applies to their 28 or so spots. The first 30% of those seats will be offered to highest scorers regardless of tiers, then the remaining 70% is equally divided among high scorers from each tier (i.e. 17.5% of seats must be from Tier 1, 17.5% from Tier 2, etc).

    For non-entry years, a program may not have any spots or just one or two to fill in, so no Tiers apply and seats are awarded based on scores.

    CPS Tiers change yearly (in October), so be sure to check your tier by entering your address at http://cps.edu/ScriptLibrary/Map-SchoolLocator/index.html

  • 72. Confusedparent  |  November 3, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    @71 Chicago school GPS. Awesome I understand! Thanks for the detail

  • 73. confusedparent  |  November 3, 2017 at 3:19 pm

    one more question Chicago School GPS. Let’s continue with Keller’s program with 28 seats. Approx. 8 seats will be filled with top performers. The remaining seats will be filled equally among the high scores from each tier. Essentially around 5 seats are allocated per 4 tiers right? Let’s say there were only 3 applicants (which is probably rare) in Tier 1 and they all received offers, what happens to the other 2 spots that need to be satisfied within that tier? How does OAE handle this? Do they fill the remaining seats with applicants from Tier 2? I hope that’s clear. Thanks

  • 74. Chicago School GPS  |  November 3, 2017 at 5:09 pm

    My understanding is that tiers are adhered to for the first 3 rounds, but after that, they fill any remaining seats from highest score on down (from any tier), until the classroom is full.

  • 75. Emily  |  November 5, 2017 at 8:31 am

    For those going through the kindergarten insanity this year, I’ll make a plug remember to go visit your neighborhood school! Your local, open-enrollment school won’t match the super-high test scores of SEES, but it can still offer a wonderful education that may even be better in some respects than SEES. (Really.) I remember going to a Chicago GPS presentation when doing my research, and the presenter explained that while her kids had tested, there were trade-offs involved. I’m one of the few (it seems like the few) who decided not to test or enter lotteries. I visited my neighborhood school, realized it was a gem (which is lucky for us, of course), and happily went there. It’s been a great choice for us. So good luck. There’s a tremendous amount of pressure to find the perfect, right, amazing school for your child. But if you visit your local school and realize it’s good, know that there are some of us out there who have voluntarily opted out of the insanity.

  • 76. RVmomma  |  November 6, 2017 at 1:44 am


  • 77. helpfulmom  |  November 7, 2017 at 9:15 am

    Skinner North 640 W Scott St, Chicago, IL 60610
    open house is tomorrow at 4pm

  • 78. helpfulmom  |  November 7, 2017 at 9:19 am

    https://www.schooldigger.com/go/IL/schoolrank.aspx 2016-17 school rankings are posted. Congrats to Decatur now the #1 school in ILLINOIS!

  • 79. veteran parent  |  November 7, 2017 at 9:23 am

    Well said, Emily!
    We are huge supporters of our neighborhood school, Peirce!
    Before you reject or discount your local school, spend some time checking it out.

  • 80. K-8 all the way!  |  November 9, 2017 at 3:56 pm

    @78. Something for newbies should know…Dectaur ends after 6th grade. You need to have a plan for what you will do for a school after that. If anyone glibly tells you “academic centers,” just know that the competition for those few seats is tougher than ever these days. My daughter felt intense pressure from her peers and teachers at Decatur to get into an AC: stomach aches, anxiety, the whole 9 yards. When she and one of her best friends got into WY and their third friend did not, it was devastating for us all. If I had to do it all over again, I would shoot for a SE K-8 school.

    Also, I have a few gripes about these lofty lists: I wish these ranked lists only compared apples to apples. How can we really compare a school like Decatur that only goes to 6th grade against schools that go through 8th? I am impressed by schools that have challenging middle schools and still manage to score so high across the board, like Keller, Skinner North, and Edison. Likewise, I would like to see ACs ranked in some way. Gripe session over!

  • 81. Edison-Decatur parent  |  November 9, 2017 at 6:02 pm

    It seems like Edison and Keller were the only schools on the top 10 list with K-8. I wonder if “K-8 all the way!”appreciated their daughter’s experience at Decatur.

  • 82. CPSparent  |  November 9, 2017 at 6:17 pm

    Skinner North was #3 and they are K-8.

  • 83. Edison-Decatur parent  |  November 9, 2017 at 9:47 pm

    Re SN – (but) it has K-7 on the article.

  • 84. In SN  |  November 9, 2017 at 10:15 pm

    Which means we can’t have too much faith in its data. Nonetheless, in terms of the recently released PARCC scores (via ISBE), Decatur’s four-grades (3rd-6th) average is likely higher than SN’s six-grades average (3rd-8th), as well as Edison’s and Keller’s. Which suggests these latter schools suffer from AC exodus in the 7th and 8th grades.

  • 85. SEparent  |  November 9, 2017 at 11:16 pm

    I assume the data reflect what % “met or exceeded” the standards. In other words, it ranks which school has fewer students who do not meet the standards. For SE schools just 1-2 students can really make the difference. Am I correct?

  • 86. cpsobsessed  |  November 10, 2017 at 9:50 am

    I didn’t see the link to the data. Curious to see how big the difference was.

    One could also surmise that Decatur is a “better school.” 😉
    I don’t believe either is better, they’re both great — but that’s usually what a ranking implies to parents who don’t know much about schools.

  • 87. cpsobsessed  |  November 10, 2017 at 9:52 am

    Another note – many of the kids who get into ACs are leaving empty seats in RGCs that can be utilized for Decatur kids. My son’s RGC class get several kids in 7th grade (many who are now in SEHSs) after a chunk of his classmates left for an AC.

  • 88. northsidemom  |  November 10, 2017 at 11:16 am

    @84 IN SN Can you tell me how to look up a school’s PARCC results on website isbe? I am trying to locate the link that allows you to search by school. Thanks

  • 89. In SN  |  November 10, 2017 at 12:17 pm

    For PARCC:


    Search a school then click “Academic Progress”.

  • 90. cpsobsessed  |  November 10, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    Based on that link I see the % Exceeding PARCC:

    Decatur 42%
    SN 47%
    Edison 42%

    I’d say these are all in the same ballpark, which is an outstanding ballpark.

  • 91. northsidemom  |  November 10, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    @89 In SN. Thanks much!

  • 92. jazzman  |  November 10, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    Based on that link I see the % Exceeding PARCC:
    McDade Classical 43%

  • 93. jazzman  |  November 10, 2017 at 2:52 pm

    Keller Gifted 43% exceed PARCC

  • 94. In SN  |  November 10, 2017 at 3:04 pm

    For 7th and 8th grades only, over three years 2015-17, the average % exceeding:

    Whitney Young 48%
    Edison 47%
    Skinner West 38%
    Keller 36%
    Lane Tech 34%
    Skinner North 33%

    Probably missing a few RGCs housed in neighborhood schools.

    It appears the others are all lower than 30%.

  • 95. northsidemom  |  November 10, 2017 at 4:27 pm

    @94 In SN how are the RGC programs assessed inside neighborhood schools? For example NTA has a RGC program not sure if it has reached 3rd grade yet but NTA PARCC score is incredibly low around 25% exceeding. I am sure the students in the RGC program are performing better than the neighborhood. Any thoughts. Seems like results are skewed. Thanks

  • 96. jazzman  |  November 10, 2017 at 4:41 pm

    @95 northsidemom you are correct RGC program is doing much better than neighborhood very skewed. I think the RGC program will be moved to the new south loop elementary when its finished and NTA will be new south loop high school. Not 100% sure but from what I have been hearing its pretty much a done deal.

  • 97. In SN  |  November 10, 2017 at 5:46 pm

    @95 northsidemom

    Unfortunately, various data sources have probably never published specific scores for RGCs in neighborhood schools. We can only guess at their achievements by comparing with demographically similar stand-alone SEES programs.

  • 98. SEparent  |  November 11, 2017 at 9:45 am

    @inSN You can get some insight by looking at some specific data sources. For example, in Math http://cjml.org/stats.php

  • 99. NTA Supporter  |  November 11, 2017 at 2:09 pm

    @jazzman It is not a done deal.

  • 100. northsidemom  |  November 13, 2017 at 9:28 am

    @ #96 – 99. thanks for the feedback. I am so torn if I want to apply to NTA for 1st grade. I visited NTA and it seems like an awesome school with advanced curriculum for RGC however all the stats show (other than 1+ rating) shows school underperforming. Another note doesn’t it say something about the school if the Achievers Program or Neighborhood Program is not meeting state standards? Scores are drastically low. Any feedback helps. Maybe the NTA parents can chime in and let me know their thoughts. Thanks much in advance

  • 101. jazzman  |  November 14, 2017 at 2:04 pm

    @99 NTA supporter I hope you are right but the cost to build new high school vs rehab NTA for high school (NTA is beautiful great facilities) and they are building a new south loop elementary its too easy to transfer the gifted program over to new building. However keep fighting the good fight.

  • 102. oneofus  |  November 14, 2017 at 2:25 pm

    I am wondering if there’s any gifted program not in SEES? For example, neighborhood school with the gifted class but not requiring entrance exam. J

  • 103. cps  |  November 14, 2017 at 2:25 pm


  • 104. Chicago School GPS  |  November 14, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    @102- There are several neighborhood schools with a classroom of students who are working ahead of their peers. The programs are called “Comprehensive Gifted Programs” and are listed on page 142 at http://cps.edu/AccessAndEnrollment/Documents/OptionsForKnowlegeGuide_2018-2019.pdf

    Comprehensive Gifted Programs
    Addams Elementary School
    Ashburn Elementary School
    Bateman Elementary School
    Burnside Scholastic Academy
    Clinton Elementary School
    Courtenay Elementary School
    Cuffe Elementary School
    Dawes Elementary School
    De Diego Community Academy
    Disney Magnet School
    Field Elementary School
    Galileo Math and Science Scholastic Academy
    Gary Elementary School
    Hale Elementary School
    Haugan Elementary School
    Hayt Elementary School
    Healy Elementary School
    Hibbard Elementary School
    Hurley Elementary School
    Lyon Elementary School
    Metcalfe Community Academy
    Ninos Heroes Community Academy
    Palmer Elementary School
    Parker Community Academy
    Pasteur Elementary School
    Prussing Elementary School
    Randolph Magnet School
    Sawyer Elementary School
    Thorp, O.A. Scholastic Academy
    Von Linne Elementary School
    Young, Ella Flagg Elementary School

  • 105. NTA/South Loop/Smyth  |  November 20, 2017 at 6:45 am

    Seems like a done deal that NTA will be HS. With CPS accepting applications for RGC there, seems like there will be a program somewhere. Any news on what is happening with NTA’s RGC? I would personally like to see it moved to Smyth, less congested but centrally located, but principal did not want it last time it moved.

  • 106. Fifth child entering CPS  |  November 20, 2017 at 6:56 am

    To families with older children in CPS and younger child applying to kindergarten: what is your strategy this year for magnet school lottery? GoCPS does not allow you to rank your choices. Is there a lottery for each school as in prior years or a single offer as for the new HS application? If it is a single offer with no ranking, I am inclined to limit our list.

  • 107. Learning CPS  |  November 20, 2017 at 10:45 am

    I got so much from this site as I was starting CPS with my kids, and while I don’t come by often now I just wanted give back by sharing my experience in hopes it helps any of you over the next months as you go through the process.

    I have a 4th grader at Decatur (has been there since K) and now a K student at Peterson (our neighborhood school). Both schools are perfect fits for my kids. My Decatur kid has thrived being in a school with kids who are similar in ability and drive to learn, has been challenged enough to date and now with the new Principal a number of things have changed that I think will make the remaining years even better. If anyone wants to know about the changes that have happened in just a few months, happy to share but it is a very different school than it even was last year (in a good way!).

    My Peterson student is also at a school that is turning out to be a perfect fit, and I’m completely amazed at how the K teacher has differentiated in the classroom to meet the needs of my child, who is well ahead of K curriculum in reading and math (but didn’t test well enough to also get into Decatur), and kids who are just learning letters, sounds, numbers, etc. A school doesn’t need to have an internal gifted program to be able to challenge the learners at different levels, but you want to ask questions about what they do with the different needs in a classroom. Also, Peterson has a STEM program that starts in K. In fact as Decatur looks to keep building new challenges into their curriculum and student experience, they are looking to add something similar and Peterson has been one school they’ve explored as a model!

    The lessons my experience have taught me: SEES schools and magnet schools are great AND aren’t the only option for a good CPS education. Definitely don’t overlook your neighborhood school without doing the due diligence; I went to several PTA and parent info meetings at Peterson and talked to current parents to understand their approach. I felt comfortable they could adjust for my child even knowing that my child would need more than the general K curriculum so I felt OK when I turned down a magnet school offer that would been a better schedule fit for my family to stay with Peterson. Very glad I did.

    Best of luck to you all in the application process and making a decision. I know it isn’t an easy process!

  • 108. SN Parent  |  November 20, 2017 at 11:05 am

    @107 I couldn’t agree more. I have a child at SN and she is very happy there and then I have a kindergartener at our neighborhood school (which we did not live in when my oldest went to kindergarten). My kindergartener got into a regional gifted center but we opted to keep her at the (very well regarded) neighborhood school because we want the neighborhood feel and it has been a great choice. She is ahead in both math and reading and her teacher has really differentiated for her – small pull out groups, differentiated morning work and homework packets… There are things I like better at Skinner and then things I prefer at the neighborhood school – pros and cons to each school. For me, I would say the biggest bonus of Skinner over the neighborhood is the diversity at Skinner which we sadly lack in our neighborhood school, but that is obviously variable depending on where you live/demographics of your school. I know that these posts are for those who have a strong neighborhood option and many families do not have the local school as a back up option, but for those of you that do, please give it a good hard look and remember that the school has to fit the entire family so schedule, location, community…is all important too.

  • 109. Chicago School GPS  |  November 20, 2017 at 12:18 pm

    @106- The standard CPS elementary application (for Magnet, Magnet Cluster & Open Enrollment schools) does not require you to rank any of your up to 20 school choices. The schools have independent lotteries and families can be offered multiple schools but can only ultimately send a child to one school.

    This is from http://cps.edu/AccessAndEnrollment/Documents/FAQs_MagnetSchools_2018-2019.pdf

    Can my child be selected for more than one school?
    The selections for each type of school on the Standard Elementary Application are conducted independently from each other. Therefore, your child can be selected for any number of schools, depending on the number of schools to which you apply. Your child could be selected for no schools and placed on the waitlist for all of your choices; he/she could be selected for some schools and on the
    waitlist for the others; or he/she could be selected for all of the schools to which you apply.

  • 110. jazzman  |  November 21, 2017 at 3:44 pm

    @107 Learng CPS what are the changes at Decatar that you like more now versus previous years?

  • 111. MontessoriMom  |  November 24, 2017 at 3:13 pm

    I was thinking it might be useful for parents to have a database of information about the “qualitative” components of different schools in terms of considering which school is a good fit. I made a draft of different categories and put it on a Google Sheet. Please update it as you are able.

  • 112. Learning CPS  |  November 26, 2017 at 11:10 pm

    @110 – In general, there is a bigger focus on helping the kids, who are already at high levels, further challenge themselves and grow. The new Principal is very communicative and responsive to parents, yet clear in her vision of where she wants the school to go.

    The overall facility, while still too small, is being used better (kids no longer eat lunch in their rooms, the library is more organized and inviting). An array of after school programs and J at School for After Care have been added. Downside, if your kid buses it is hard to take advantage of them.

    Teachers are being pushed to differentiate more in their teaching methods – and 4-6 are actually moving from teacher to teacher for each subject vs just having one teacher. It’s being called a “Junior Middle School” approach. Technology is better integrated into instruction – grades 4-6 are working with Google classroom and all students have either a Chrome book or ipad too use for classroom work. Officially there is no longer homework – but there are assignments kids can work on at home and often need to. It’s just not a parade of worksheets all the time.

    There are some things I am less happy about (no visual art this year, but I do think that is temporary) and some growing pains with a huge amount of change in a super short period of time, but all in all I think the new administration and changes in line with that are a boost in a new direction for the school that will serve it well.

    Don’t get me wrong, we’ve been happy there so far as well so I never thought the school was “broken”, but I definitely see the upside for my child with the new changes. I also know that some of the criticisms of Decatur on this site in the past have been and are being addressed with the change in administration.

  • 113. HopefulCPSMama  |  November 27, 2017 at 1:14 pm

    Does anyone know how long it will take to receive SEES testing results for incoming Kindergarteners? I know that OAE says that if your child tests by November 21, 2017, results will be mailed by the application deadline of December 22nd, but I don’t know if means we will actually receive the results by then… My child tested late in this window–the 18th. Has anyone whose child took the exam early in November received results yet? Thanks!

  • 114. jazzman  |  November 27, 2017 at 4:04 pm

    @cps learning 112 thank you for that insight it sounds fantastic at Mcdade classical we are trying to also get a 7 and 8th grade added like Decatur as well. I hate that like Decatur, Mcdade, and Poe has to take another high stakes exam to get into small number of Academic Centers without the option of staying at their current school.

  • 115. CP  |  November 27, 2017 at 5:01 pm

    @113 I actually called OAE earlier today, and they weren’t able to give a definitive date when results will be given to parents. The only thing I was told was that we should have the results before December 22nd, and that they will be mailed.

  • 116. HopefulCPSMama  |  November 27, 2017 at 5:11 pm

    @115 Thank you very much!

  • 117. Gigi  |  November 27, 2017 at 11:28 pm

    @113 Judging by the dates some parents posted their children’s scores for this year (17-18) we should be getting the scores by mid December, or even earlier. Anyways, anything can happen with CPS.

  • 118. HopefulCPSMama  |  November 28, 2017 at 10:39 am

    @117 I hope even earlier, but I hear you–anything can happen!

  • 119. PMmom  |  November 29, 2017 at 9:52 am

    Do you need to bring anything to either the SEES or Classical testing? In years past you needed the letter, but this year I haven’t received any notice/emails. TIA!

  • 120. HopefulCPSMama  |  November 29, 2017 at 10:07 am

    @119 No, we didn’t need to bring anything. I gave them our child’s name and they verified it from a list and checked us in. I did bring water, snacks and a coloring book for entertainment, which worked out well because we waited for an hour and 15 minutes after our scheduled time before being called for testing. This was on a Saturday morning.

  • 121. NTA Ambassadors  |  December 2, 2017 at 11:25 am

    @100 Northside Mom,

    Hi! We are a group of NTA parents to answer your questions. Here is a response from one of us.

    NTA 1st Grade RGC parent chiming in… My experience is that NTA has created an excellent culture for learning that values and inspires students to continue to work hard, improve, advocate and own their learning. The teachers and staff at NTA have high expectations for their students and work hard to support and challenge each student by targeting and personalizing the learning. It is easy to focus academic achievement on attainment (what score did you get?) but for my daughters, I am more concerned about how much they have grown (are you continuously being challenged?). Despite public education having the potential to be a great equalizer, student achievement is highly correlated to race and socio-economic status. NTA serves students that are 75% African American and 75% economically disadvantaged. In general, students with these indicators start school at a lower achievement level than their more affluent peers. Research highlights that students from more affluent households hear 30 million more words than students form economically disadvantaged households. As such, school like NTA that serve low-income students of color will have students entering school at lower achievement levels. However, NTA does an excellent job at growing students. NTA’s Level 1+ status is driven by their student growth (how much a student grows in one academic year). NTA students are in the 75th percentile for NWEA National Reading Growth and 72nd percentile for NWEA National Math Growth. This means that NTA students are growing more than 75% of students nationwide and are growing significantly more than one years worth of academic growth. In fact, 7th and 8th graders tested above the 90th percentile for growth. For context, a score in the 50th percentile for growth means a student exactly grew one years worth of expected learning.

    If you have further questions or would like to meet with existing families, feel free to reach us at NTAAmbassadors at gmail dot com.
    NTA Ambassadors

  • 122. Seymore Butts  |  December 3, 2017 at 10:20 pm

    Does it hurt or help to apply for all the classical and RGC options? Can you get accepted at more than one OR ONLY ONE?

    Leaning towards a neighborhood classical program but unsure if we should check off the RGC schools nearby too?

  • 123. northside mom  |  December 4, 2017 at 11:36 am

    @121 NTA AMBAS.. thank you so much for your response.

  • 124. northside mom  |  December 4, 2017 at 11:49 am

    @122 @ Seymore Butts,depending on if you are applying to K or 1st grade. If Kindergarten its an entry year for schools therefore you have approx. 28 seats that must be filled. If you are applying to 1st grade, most students will stay within their school and move into those 28 seats for 1st grade so your chances of getting an offer is limited. I would suggest applying for 3 Classical schools and 3 RGC schools but again this even depends on how you think your child will test. If Reading and Math are strong points then Classical should be the focus, if your child is more of a critical thinker then RGC should be considered. If you do half in half you are fairly positioned.

  • 125. cpsobsessed  |  December 4, 2017 at 12:54 pm

    @Seymore – I’m of the mind that it can’t hurt to apply to both (knowing you have 6 to choose overall.) Chances are that only 6 are within a reasonable distance anyhow. There ultimately is no point in applying to something that requires a 1 hour busride or drive.
    If you apply to 3 of each, you get the test results to help assess where your child’s current strengths may lie – at a very broad, early level.

  • 126. telefingersmom  |  December 4, 2017 at 1:03 pm

    @cpsobsessed – Thank you! So do people ever get into both…a classical and a RGC? Or is it one or the other?

  • 127. telefingersmom  |  December 4, 2017 at 1:04 pm

    @cpsobsessed – and when you say you get the test results…aren’t they mailed sometime this month…or does applying to the other schools give you a breakdown of where you fell on their entrance map? THANK YOU!

  • 128. cps  |  December 4, 2017 at 1:41 pm

    @108. SN Parents: Would you compare academics in SN and the neighborhood school (pull out)? Does it work same? I am in the mid of the decision between pull out differentiation school and the no-pull out like SN.

  • 129. northsidemom  |  December 4, 2017 at 2:49 pm

    @ 126 and 127 telefingersmom. You will only get ONE selective enrollment offer. If your initial offer is not your first choice than you can decline and hopefully you will get another offer from another SEE school. This may NOT happen so be careful how you respond. For Kindergarten, if you tested early you will get your results BEFORE the Dec 22nd cutoff which will allow you to make a better selection. I am not sure how the results are communicated, last year I think letters and email.

  • 130. helpfulmom  |  December 6, 2017 at 4:38 pm

    Skinner North open house is today at 5pm.

  • 131. LaSalle Parent  |  December 7, 2017 at 9:22 pm

    FYI, LaSalle Language Academy has now dropped to a leve 1 school. They have had declines in their SQRP numbers over the last 3 years. This is not a new issue but one that seems created by the new principal. There is also a lot of issues with bullying and disruptive kids. 12 kids from K and 4th grades left the school because of the issues in their grades (now 1st/5th).


    Just putting this out there so other parents can make informed decisions for their children.

  • 132. sero  |  December 7, 2017 at 9:46 pm

    @ the parents who have experience with the options program housed in the neighborhood school (Coonley, Bell, Beaubien, Disney, is there more?) :

    How do kids get along with each other? Is there any bullying issue?
    Would you share your experience?

  • 133. Chicago School GPS  |  December 9, 2017 at 10:07 am

    Apparently two new Classical School options are on the GoCPS application, and three neighborhood schools have added a STEM magnet focus, per CPS’s latest announcements.

    CPS is transforming three neighborhood schools into magnet STEM schools after being awarded a five-year, $15 million Magnet Schools Assistance Program (MSAP) grant from the U.S. Department of Education. Each of the new magnet schools will offer innovative STEM curriculum while promoting diversity and ensuring students gain critical 21st Century skills. The following elementary schools have been selected:

    William H. Brown Elementary School
    Claremont Academy Elementary School
    Joseph Jungman Elementary School

    CPS is also proposing a plan to open two new classical schools — one in Bronzeville and one on the Southwest side that will also incorporate a STEAM magnet program — to meet growing demand for classical programs and establish programs in parts of the city that do not have classical schools. Currently, CPS has five high-demand classical schools throughout the city, but more than 1,000 students who qualified to enroll in a classical school this year did not receive an offer. By creating two new classical schools, more students will have the opportunity to receive a rigorous education in their area.

    Southwest Elementary School
    Neighborhood: West Elsdon
    Location: Former St. Turibius Elementary School Facility, 4120 W. 57th Street.
    Estimated Open Date: Fall 2018
    Program Structure: Classical (citywide boundaries; testing requirements) and STEAM Magnet (Lottery prioritizing students within 2.5 mile boundary and others if seats are available; no testing requirements)
    Grades Served: K-8

    Bronzeville Classical Elementary School
    Neighborhood: Bronzeville
    Location: Former Hartigan facility, 8 W. Root St.
    Estimated Open Date: Fall 2018
    Program Structure: Classical (citywide boundaries; testing requirements)
    Grades Served: K-8

  • 134. HopefulCPSMama  |  December 10, 2017 at 12:34 pm

    FYI, I spoke to OAE on Friday and they let me know that anyone who tested prior to November 21, 2017 will have their results mailed out no later than Friday, December 15th.

  • 135. NTA Ambassadors  |  December 11, 2017 at 3:28 pm


    NTA will host an open house tomorrow, December 12th, from 6:30PM (note, it’s not 6PM) to 8PM. You can park in the lot behind the school. Looking forward to seeing you there!

    NTAAmbassadors at gmail dot com

    NTA Ambassadors

  • 136. kayewe  |  December 11, 2017 at 5:10 pm

    @134 Thanks for that update. Seems to be cutting it close to the 12/22 deadline, especially knowing the way Chicago mail can be…

  • 137. curious mom  |  December 12, 2017 at 3:23 pm

    @133 Chicago GPS are you sure the grades served for the two new schools are K-8? I think the email said K-3rd and gradually adding a grade each year?

  • 138. Chicago School GPS  |  December 12, 2017 at 5:17 pm

    @137- That was just a quote from the press release, but the portion that talks about the phasing in is here:
    “The STEAM magnet program at Southwest Elementary will have a STEAM focus, which is similar to STEM but also integrates art as a learning tool. The magnet program will use a lottery to prioritize students living within a 2.5 mile radius and provide offers to students outside of the radius if seats are available. Both schools will serve grades K-2 in September 2018 and a grade will be added each year thereafter until the school serves grades K-8.”

  • 139. marcia  |  December 13, 2017 at 10:27 am

    Hello All, I was wondering whether the test results will also be emailed or just mailed. We are leaving town this weekend and I’m hoping we can still access our results. Thanks!

  • 140. HopefulCPSMama  |  December 13, 2017 at 11:02 am

    @139 Unfortunately, I believe they are just mailing the results–no email. That said, you could call OAE and see if they’d be willing to email?

  • 141. R_WL  |  December 13, 2017 at 4:44 pm

    Am I reading things correctly? The results for which schools my son will have gotten into will go out in April 2018? But the private school I have him in now needs an answer March 12th on whether or not we’ll be going back in the fall?

  • 142. cpsobsessed  |  December 13, 2017 at 4:56 pm

    @R_WL – that is a common problem for families applying to private school. they typically have an earlier decision (and for K, downpayment) date than CPS does. It’s very frustrating.

  • 143. Jamie Tapia  |  December 13, 2017 at 9:47 pm

    I just Received an acceptance email for my kid for Pre-K 2018 at Blaine…is pre-K easy to get into for this school or should I take this opportunity? Will he get preference for Kindergarten when he applied for Blaine 2019? Anybody have any idea? I just hate that the pre-K programs is only almost 3 hours a day…he currently goes to a catholic pre-K from 7:45-2:45 and it’s perfect. BUT I’ve heard Blaine is excellent and would love for him and his brother to attend.

  • 144. First grade age exception PSA  |  December 14, 2017 at 9:43 am

    I wanted to warn any parents who may be applying for first grade through the first grade exception process (which allows a child who misses the first grade age cut off by no more than 4 months but has attended pre-k and k at a private school to enter CPS in first grade) to watch out, especially given that it appears that if the 1st grade app is rejected it will not be re-classified as a K app and you would lose the right to apply thru OAE for the coming year.

    CPS has changed their practice this year for implementing the first grade age exception, the FAQ now excludes daycare centers from the types of private schools that a student can attend in order to that qualify for the exception:

    “…must have attended preschool and kindergarten at the same non-public school, or the same public school outside Illinois (day care centers do not qualify);”

    I will be applying for CPS next year for my youngest child and am (was) considering using the first grade exception process. My child currently attends a private pre-k thru K school that also provides daycare. Children from the school have used the first grade exception process in the past.

    I called OAE to find out what they consider a school vs. a daycare, and was told that only a school recognized by the Illinois State Board of Education qualifies as a school for the age exception. I then called ISBE and was told that many private schools are not and some cannot be recognized by ISBE as schools. Only non-profit schools can be so recognized, and generally schools that only go up to K do not register with the state even if they can (few benefits). Private schools are not required to register as schools through the state. So, CPS is excluding many schools through this policy change.

    I’m not sure whether it is proper for CPS to make this change, the state law regarding school enrollment entry age, which is the basis for the first grade exception rule doesn’t specify what qualifies as a public school: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=010500050K10-20.12 only that the teacher be properly licensed. But, it is apparently what they’re doing and may improve the sagging enrollment numbers by keeping more kids in their system for 13 instead of 12 years.

  • 145. First grade age exception PSA  |  December 14, 2017 at 9:50 am

    Typo, first sentence of last paragraph should read: I’m not sure whether it is proper for CPS to make this change, the state law regarding school enrollment entry age, which is the basis for the first grade exception rule doesn’t specify what qualifies as a PRIVATE school

  • 146. First grade age exception PSA  |  December 14, 2017 at 12:26 pm

    Never mind about my previous comment. I called OAE again and this time I was told that there hasn’t been an actual change in policy and that registration with ISBE is not an absolute requirement for a school to qualify as a non-public school for this rule. They can look up for you whether your school is on the list of schools in their database and if not the school can fill out a form and submit it to CPS to prove they are a school not just a daycare. Sorry to scare anyone.

  • 147. Bruce Wayne  |  December 15, 2017 at 10:23 pm

    Any news on gifted scores?

  • 148. Jamie T.  |  December 16, 2017 at 11:46 am

    FYI You can’t “activate” a student unless they are currently 3 years old, so it’s useless for a parent of a 2 year old looking to apply for pre-K 2018. Icalled the help line about it during the enrollment period and they had a too bad so sad attitude about it. Hope they fix this for next year.

  • 149. KRV  |  December 18, 2017 at 11:41 am

    My son took the test for third grade yesterday. Any insight on how many seats are generally available at a school (in this case, Keller) for a non-entry year? What types of scores are required? He scored in the mid-130s for K but bombed the first grade test. We decided to try again this year, but I’m trying to gauge whether there are likely to be spots available, and how competitive the later years are vs. the entry years,

  • 150. Kinder mom  |  December 18, 2017 at 3:40 pm

    Just received my son scores in the mail. He tested for kindergarten .
    We areTier 3
    classical schools reading score 93
    math score 92
    RGC 118.
    I doubt he’ll get any offers to any classical or Regional gifted centers. We’ll just have to wait to see if he gets into any magnet schools.

  • 151. helpfulmom  |  December 18, 2017 at 3:44 pm

    @150 Kinder Mom. Congrats your son did very well. Your son did well on BOTH tests and will be in the pool for selections. You are fortunate to have TWO options. Most kids do well on one test but not the other. Better chances on Classical offers

  • 152. Donna  |  December 18, 2017 at 9:16 pm

    We received scores today – testing for Kindergarten:

    RGC 123
    Classical – Reading: 99.9%
    Classical – Math: 70%

    We are in Tier 4

    I don’t know what to make of these; the two classical scores are so different. Any ideas? Thank you!

  • 153. Learning CPS  |  December 18, 2017 at 10:00 pm

    @152 – We had similar scores last year, but opposite. High 90s for math and 70 for reading. It was not surprising to us because our child showed an interest for math, less so for reading (though they were) and really only likes to answer and show what they know when they choose – and with people they like/trust. The tester probably didn’t make the cut!

    I wouldn’t take it to mean much of anything related to actual math skills/aptitude. My child was reading at a 1st/2nd grade level entering K this year, so that 70% really was not representative of their reading ability, even a year ago.

    What it does mean, unfortunately, is that you probably aren’t eligible for any classical offers despite the super high reading score. I seem to remember that 70 is below the cut off for even being considered for an offer. And I know we didn’t get any last year.

  • 154. Megan  |  December 18, 2017 at 10:36 pm

    Parents who have received their scores, when did you test? I’m just trying to figure out when we might hear from our test. And was it a letter or an email? I am terrible at checking our mail, so just curious.. Thanks!

  • 155. Kinder mom  |  December 18, 2017 at 11:09 pm

    @Megan we tested in the beginning of november. I believe that if your child tested before Thanksgiving you will be receiving test scores in the mail starting today. If it was after Thanksgiving you will not receive your score until April.

  • 156. Megan  |  December 18, 2017 at 11:18 pm

    Thanks for the reply. I just went back and read the last line of our confirmation email and you’re correct. If you test before Nov 21 you’ll receive before Dec 22. Thanks!

  • 157. Bruce Wayne  |  December 19, 2017 at 12:15 am

    Do magnet schools look at your scores? Or is that ‘strictly’ ‘lottery?’

  • 158. Christina  |  December 19, 2017 at 12:48 am

    My kid took the test, but the website still showing “modify rsvp” button. Is that normal?

  • 159. Laura  |  December 19, 2017 at 1:02 am

    My daughter tested for K on November 21st and we just got her scores back today. This is our first experience with CPS not sure what to think. RGC: 129, Reading: 92, Math: 63. Not surprised by the classical scores as our daughter is a great reader but still skips 13 when counting. 😉 Time to really rank our selected schools and cross our fingers to get a call from one!

  • 160. Jamie T.  |  December 19, 2017 at 9:05 am

    Please forgive me for what some will surely read as a stupid question but what is the “reading” test for a 4 year old? I learned to read in Kindergarten. I never expected my 4 year old to be reading (he’s 3 now)… I will be a CPS virgin when my oldest enters kindergarten in 2019 and am only familiar with the Indiana school system.

  • 161. New to CPS  |  December 19, 2017 at 11:24 am

    Just got my DD’s score. RGC 131, Reading 62 Match 88. Classical is out. Is the RGC score good enough for Bell, Pritzker, Edison, or NTA?

  • 162. New to CPS  |  December 19, 2017 at 11:36 am

    Forgot to mention in previous post – Tier 4, Applying to K

  • 163. CPSparent  |  December 19, 2017 at 12:16 pm

    @New to cps
    That RGC score is most likely not high enough coming from a tier 4. Generally for K in tier 4 the score needs to be closer to 145. My DD got a 135 in K and did not get any RGC offers.

  • 164. CPSparent  |  December 19, 2017 at 12:19 pm

    Just noticed you put NTA on that list and I do think they accept a little lower scores so maybe that one is possible but it’s highly unlikely for the others. Is Bell accepting for K this year? Is that new? They’ve always stated in 1st but I know there’s been changes with coonley not accepting for K.

  • 165. Chicago School GPS  |  December 19, 2017 at 12:43 pm

    The list of schools and the grades they are filling from this Fall’s application for 2018-2019 is on this link: http://cps.edu/sitecollectiondocuments/gocps/GoCPS-ES-SEES-Application-English.pdf

    Regional Gifted/Classical Grades Served

  • 166. akg  |  December 19, 2017 at 4:12 pm

    I just received my son’s SEES test scores for Kindergarten – 2018 school year. Any chance for Skinner North?

    RGC: 107
    Reading: 99.9
    Math: 95
    Tier: 3

    His birthday is in August, so he is on the youngest end of the age scale for KG applicants.

  • 167. HopefulCPSMama  |  December 19, 2017 at 4:18 pm

    @akg I think so based on what I’ve read in previous years’ thread’s scores although I get that it differs from year to year. That said, I think that the 99.9 still counts for a LOT and his math score is still quite high.

    I have the same question–also hoping for an offer from Skinner North.
    Reading: 99
    Math: 98
    Tier: 3

    I’m worried about the lack of a percentage after the 99…

  • 168. SNParent  |  December 19, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    I think the last two posts have a very good chance for Skinner North coming from a tier 3. Congrats on the great scores!

  • 169. akg  |  December 19, 2017 at 4:32 pm

    @ 167 HopefulCPSMama Thanks for your input. I was a little surprised by his math score since i thought he would score a little higher, but I’m still pleased with it as it gives us him a chance to get accepted.

    Your son’s scores are very impressive. I would think that 99 and 98 in reading and math respectively should get him accepted at SN. I wouldn’t worry about the fraction after 99 if I were you.

  • 170. CPSparent  |  December 19, 2017 at 4:38 pm

    My son got a late round offer (about a week before school started) to Pritzker RGC for K this year with a 131 in tier 4 so that’s still a possibility. We declined the spot.

  • 171. newSChicago  |  December 19, 2017 at 4:50 pm

    @166, @167 Congrats! Your scores look so good! New to here, my daughter will take the exam for 2019. Just wonder what are the levels for 99.9,99 and 95 for reading and math? Does a kid have to know how to read a chapter book (hopefully not…) to get a 99.9 in reading? For math, how much need to know to get 99, know 8+9? Again, the 99.9 is really impressive!

  • 172. akg  |  December 19, 2017 at 5:11 pm

    @171 To give you an idea, my son is able to read a book and I even found him reading the closed-caption on our TV the other day. As far as math, he is able to count to 1000+ and will do basic addition and subtraction, but his subtraction is often “spotty”. I hope this helps you to level set.

    I wish you the best with your daughter’s tests next year, you should expect to see a BIG jump in her ability to read and in math as she turns 4+, we certainly did with our son.

  • 173. In SN  |  December 19, 2017 at 6:09 pm

    It appears the kindergarten classical test is not really about actual reading fluency and number operations, but instead emphasizes mastering pre-reading and pre-arithmetic fundamentals. So, sometimes, a child who can read independently or do multi-digit operations is unable to get high scores because of his/her weak areas in the fundamentals. There is a way that probably works more reliably for parents to gauge their children’s prospect: go buy a first-grade workbook and see, depending on the child’s age (with month), how well he/she can answer the questions. Given the facts that Skinner North operates one year ahead and its competition is perhaps fierce, a safe bet is for a child to know things 1.5 years or more in advance. For example, if a child has already turned 5 years old at the time of the test, he/she should be able to do much of the first-grade workbook correctly if 99.x scores are desired.

  • 174. recentcpsapp  |  December 19, 2017 at 10:53 pm

    Can anyone share the strengths and weaknesses of the classical programs at Skinner West comparing to that at Skinner North? My impression is that SW is a bigger and more diverse school. Kids would have more fun things to do besides reading and math. We live in South Loop, so commuting would be easier. SN seems to have a curriculum that is better suited for “gifted” kids. But its location is less desirable. Thanks!

  • 175. newSChicago  |  December 20, 2017 at 12:46 am

    @172 Thanks for your inputs! Now I am thinking we need to start searching for a good neighborhood school…
    @173 Thanks for your comments. I should go to find a new house right now! 🙂 But I am a little confused about the “pre-” things you mentioned. If a kid can read fluently, generally speaking, the kid must have a pretty good pre-reading skill (which I guess it includes spelling, phonics…).

  • 176. SNmom  |  December 20, 2017 at 8:12 am

    I cannot speak to the differences between Skinner north and Skinner west, but I can say that Skinner north is extremely diverse – it’s one of the things I love the most about the school. And I also love the size of Skinner north. I also have a child at coonley which is much larger and while we are happy with coonley I have to say that i prefer the intimacy of the smaller community that Skinner North offers. I also feel that my child has had a very well rounded experience at Skinner north – it is not just about academics. The co-curricular program is strong and most kids participate in after school activities like drama club, art club, music lessons, STEM club… The emphasis is definitely on the whole child.

  • 177. HopefulCPSMama  |  December 20, 2017 at 9:31 am

    @169 akg and @168 SNParent, thanks so much for the encouragement! I sure hope we get some good news in the spring.
    @171 newSChicago, I wouldn’t overly worry about your child’s capabilities–I really do think it’s tough to tell how these things are scored. There’s so much that goes into whatever happens that day with your child than what they may be able to actually know and do. These are 4 and young 5 year olds! I just tried to keep my child relaxed and comfortable that day.
    That said, knowing there are no guarantees, I still have my list of open enrollment and magnet schools that we’re applying to because moving is not in the cards for us!

  • 178. swparent  |  December 20, 2017 at 11:18 am

    @174. My child is in the 3rd grade classical program at SW. The school is very large (1250+) and will only get larger with the addition that will be completed in December 2018. The school is one of the most diverse – there are half a dozen languages and religions in my child’s class alone. The students at SW are crazy, loud, boisterous, and full of life – it is very, very different than many other schools in CPS; the level of enthusiasm is off putting to many parents. Last year, SW and SN matriculated a similar number of students into Whitney Young and both programs prepare students well for SEES and ACs. The major difference between SW and SN is homework – my understanding is that SN does not require any homework at all and SW requires very large amounts of homework starting in kindergarten. SW families are split on the homework issue.

  • 179. SNmom  |  December 20, 2017 at 11:43 am

    There is definitely homework at SN and it is required. I have never found it to be overwhelming (except for the occasional quarter project). It is generally appropriate and minimal.

  • 180. recentcpsapp  |  December 20, 2017 at 11:46 am

    @176 SNmom and @178 swparent: Thank you both for the comments. Both are good programs. Probably SW will be our first choice as our child also have some friends who are or will be at SW. We are OK with homework in kindergarten and actually was concerned that our child would not be challenged enough at SW.

  • 181. former SN parent  |  December 20, 2017 at 11:47 am

    @178 swparent

    My kid went to SN for three years, including last year, and I promise you that SN had homework in each of the classrooms she was in, and my kid’s friends who are still at SN still have homework. Homework typically included packets to be turned in weekly as well as “Quarterly Projects” due (as one might expect) each quarter. The amount of homework my kid had in 1st grade was literally more homework than I had any year of schooling until I was in high school.

    So, not sure where you heard that “SN does not require any homework at all,” but that is antithetical to the truth of the matter.

  • 182. Edison?  |  December 20, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    Edison have been our #1 choice school without thinking based on the reputation I’ve been hearing from other parents. However, after visiting the school by myself, I was quite disappointed. A good small school, but nothing better than other selective schools. In addition, I came across some complaints about multiple teachers from anonymous students. A few students’ opinions cannot judge anything, but I really want to know what contributed Edison’s good reputation. Would any share your thoughts?

  • 183. CP  |  December 23, 2017 at 6:44 am

    Hoping for an offer from Poe for K:
    Tier 4
    RGC: 113
    Reading: 91
    Math: 87

    If not Poe, then McDade or the new Bronzeville school. Crossing our fingers…

  • 184. helpfulmom  |  December 26, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    @183 CP – you should definitely get an offer from Poe based on those scores and depending on how you ranked them it may be round 2 or right before school starts. My son got an offer day 3 of school with lower scores. We were Tier 1 and Poe was our 6th choice. I love the school and the culture. Hope you become apart of our 2017 National Blue Ribbon School.

  • 185. Bruce Wayne  |  December 26, 2017 at 4:06 pm

    What do you make of these scores?
    RGC 118
    Reading: 88
    Math: 88

    Keep hope or slowly relinquish the dream : )

  • 186. Bruce Wayne  |  December 26, 2017 at 4:07 pm

    ooooops….Tier 3

  • 187. jazzman  |  December 26, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    184 helpfulmom congrats on Poe I hope CP gets into one of her schools of choice the big problem is she is Tier 4 McDade will be tough and New Bronzeville school might work. However its kind of crazy those are very good scores and she still has sweat?? Thats not right!!

  • 188. cpsobsessed  |  December 26, 2017 at 9:26 pm

    Probably relinquish the immediate dream. Might open the door to other dreams though…

  • 189. helpfulmom  |  December 27, 2017 at 2:39 pm

    @185 Bruce Wayne what schools did you apply to? Always stay HOPEFUL!

  • 190. helpfulmom  |  December 27, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    @ 183 CP and 187 jazzman. I actually think she has a good chance in getting in Poe and McDade. I know several parents at least 10 that kids got in McDade and their children scores were mid 80s. The offer may not be immediate but most families get an offer and accept it end up turning it down later. This year they didn’t fill all their seats into the 1st week of school. I was in touch with the principal and he said they were at 24 seats of 28 for the entire summer. Now of course they are at full capacity. Therefore I am speaking off things I know and not heard. CP has a good chance! Congrats!

  • 191. CP  |  December 27, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    @190 helpfulmom Thanks for the info! Poe is actually our #1 choice, so hopefully we’ll get an offer in one of the first few rounds. The funny thing is, Poe actually started out as our #3 choice behind Lenart and McDade, but we moved them up to #1 after going to all the open houses.
    How did your son adjust to Kindergarten? Is he enjoying it so far?

  • 192. Kaitlin  |  December 28, 2017 at 12:03 am

    Hi all

    My DD tested on Nov 10th and we received our scores.

    Applying to K:
    RGC – 117
    Reading – 99
    Math – 95
    Tier 4.
    DOB: JUL 2013

    RGC will be a long shot but how realistic is our chances at Skinner North (Rank1) or Skinner West (Rank3)?

  • 193. helpfulmom  |  December 28, 2017 at 9:56 am

    @191 CP. I am pretty confident you will get an offer with those scores. I can’t wait to you update me in April with the good news. Since its your #1, you should get an offer the first round. You only need 75% in both reading and math to be in the pool and your child has exceeded that so you’re good trust me!!!! Again my son’s scores were lower than your child’s and we got a late late offer. McDade, Lenart, and the Skinners were on our list. I liked McDade because it was 5 minutes from our home however after visiting Poe’s open house and meeting the teachers and seeing the building I was impressed with the school spirit. Poe’s Principal Dockery is an amazing leader and very passionate about the success of the students. I love the personal development approach they instill in the students as well. Then they were awarded the Blue Ribbon Award further confirmed we made the best choice. My son went to an accelerated Preschool so he adjusted quite well. In addition, 4 of his buddies from his Preschool got accepted to Poe so they all are super duper happy. He loves Poe because they have Spanish and Music; things he enjoys to do anyway. Be prepared the homework it takes us 45 minutes and the monthly projects are challenging. Overall we are happy.

  • 194. jazzman  |  December 28, 2017 at 2:16 pm

    193 helpfulmom I head great things about Poe and congrats we are at McDade very happy and we have a strong parent support group and the scores have increased in the exceed areas of reading and math. The only problem i have with Poe and Mcdade is that they both only go up to sixth grade so again another high pressure test for AC which are very competitive and my child is going to fifth grade next year more pressure.

  • 195. helpfulmom  |  December 28, 2017 at 4:06 pm

    @jazzman, glad you are happy at McDade. Good news we are trying to get both schools and Decatur expanded so keep your fingers crossed.

  • 196. cpsobsessed  |  December 28, 2017 at 4:15 pm

    Hi All. As I mentioned at the beginning of the school year, the time has come to retire CPSObsessed. I’ll be keeping the blog up for viewing so people can search previous posts, but comments will be disabled after 12/31.

    Please feel free to ask any final questions of me or Chicago School GPS and we’ll do our best to answer anything!

  • 197. jazzman  |  December 28, 2017 at 4:23 pm

    Thank you cpsobsessed for all your efforts to give us a forum to talk and dialog about a very important issues of education.

  • 198. jazzman  |  December 28, 2017 at 4:27 pm

    @195 helpfulmom I hope so they can pull this off as far as McDade they will need another building to accomplish this If he is getting into one of the AC we will stay there for high school as well enough testing until college and grad schools lol more fun!!

  • 199. RVmomma  |  December 29, 2017 at 8:51 am

    Thank you for being being a great resource! Anyone know of a similar site that we can move our discussion to?

  • 200. Chicago School GPS  |  December 29, 2017 at 9:43 am

    https://chicagoschooloptions.wordpress.com/ is a placeholder for now, but sometime in the New Year it will be updated and will drop the “wordpress” part in the web address. When it’s up and running, it should have preschool to high school threads, public and private. As with CPSO, it will also be by parents, for parents, so the more useful info people post, the more helpful it will be for all.

    Thanks a million, CPSO, for this blog that has been tremendously helpful to all!!!

  • 201. roxannewright14  |  January 2, 2018 at 10:33 pm

    I just received my daughter’s scores and she was below cutoff for classical but received a 117 on RGC. Tier 3. I’m new to the city and don’t really understand what this score means. Does she have much of a chance of getting a spot somewhere? She’s also a URM; do they take that into account for balance, or just use the tiers?

  • 202. Jennifer R  |  January 3, 2018 at 12:47 pm

    I was looking at my neighborhood school (Pulaski International) and the scores posted in the CPS website and the scores posted on Greatschools.org are very different from each other. Can someone inform me why the huge difference?

  • 203. veteran parent  |  January 3, 2018 at 7:22 pm

    202 – Jen R. what kind of scores are they? achievement scores? parent satisfaction scores? standardized test scores? CPS grading system (1,1+,2+, etc.)? The CPSO brain trust would need more specifics to understand what you are seeing.

  • 204. veteran parent  |  January 3, 2018 at 7:23 pm

    201 Roxanne Is this for kinder?
    Whats a URM (under r______ minor?)?

  • 205. one last comment  |  January 4, 2018 at 6:31 pm

    @204 – I think URM means under-represented minority. Also, I assume it is K because I don’t think you get early score results for grades other than K.

    @201 – These days, actual minority status is not taken into consideration. Several years ago CPS was told that they were not allowed to use race, but were allowed to use socioeconomic factors to achieve racial diversity. That was when CPS designed the tier system.

    As for your particular score of 117, it depends on where you applied. (Search old posts from March for admission scores for schools you are interested in.) While it seems low to get a K offer from the more popular RGCs, you just never know. The accepted K scores last year seemed a bit lower all around than the prior 2-3 years of accepted K scores. It will be interesting to see if that holds up (although without CPSO around, I’m not sure how we’ll know).

    Also, the addition of 2 new classical schools will change the dynamics — More directly with classical school admission scores, but I’d expect there will be some spillover effect on rgc admission scores too, especially for schools located south, west and central. Probably not as much on north side schools. Good Luck.

    @cpsobsessed – Thanks for having this site. I am so sorry you are shutting it down. I stumbled into your blog during the strike in 2011 and have learned so much through the years from the chatter. I’ve come to consider your site a fixture on the CPS information scene and am very sad to see it end. I’d offer to keep it running for you, but I assume you’ve had many similar offers and for some reason it won’t work. I’ll just have to be satisfied by sneaking in a last comment. Thanks for all your effort over the years!

  • 206. askingforafriend  |  January 4, 2018 at 8:00 pm

    I am sure this has been asked, but how our tiers determined for out of district? Also is there a FAQ section on the site so I don’t bother again ; Thanks.

  • 207. cpsobsessed  |  January 7, 2018 at 5:08 pm

    Hi – CPS will calculate a Tier for you based on your zipcode.

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