1. Write a good essay.
"Essay?" " Write?" I can just imagine what you are thinking about what your child will do on this part of the application. However, why not do what you always do: plan ahead. Download the Candidate Statement portion of the school's application. Print out a couple of copies. Then, starting in July or August, though you can do it any time, of course, have your child work the questions and think about the answers. That way, when it comes time in December and January to complete those parts of the application, she'll will be able to write confidently, clearly and concisely.
"But her spelling is atrocious. She texts all the time and doesn't spell or capitalize according to the rules." That is a very real concern that you should have. And it's another reason why she needs to do a couple of dry runs before the real thing. While I don't suggest that you correct her work for content, I strongly suggest that you remind her how important it is to follow the rules of good grammar and syntax. Teach her the skill of mirroring the context or person she is dealing with. It's a valuable life skill as you very well know. Again, don't attempt to write the essay for her. Why? Because when you go for
Chatham Hall calls its Candidate Statement an 'Applicant Response' and specifies up front that the form is "To be completed by the Applicant without assistance." That's true of just about every school to which you will apply. The school wants to get to know each applicant. It wants to understand what makes her 'tick'. Absolutely resist the temptation to guide or correct your child's answers on this form. The admissions staff will know if you 'fix' things anyway.
Chatham Hall wants to know about your child's activities. It asks whether she rides or not and if she plans to ride at the school. Most schools with equestrian programs will want to know if the applicant is a rider. There are several more questions which are fairly straightforward. Then comes the essay. Your child must choose from three questions or prompts. Her answer can be as long or short as she wishes. What are they looking for? They want to see if she can frame a thoughtful response to the question she has chosen. They want to know if
The Admission Process
Our Application Calendar will keep you organized throughout the stressful process of applying to private school. There's a lot to keep track of. So plan your work carefully and try to stick to the schedule. Ideally you out to start the process at least 18 months before the expected date of starting school. For example, for fall 2012 admissions, you need to begin in the spring of 2011. If you are an international student, you need to allow an additional 6 months because there are some additional steps which you need to follow.
Applying to any private school is just that: an application. The school is under no obligation to accept your child. You also need to be aware that places in schools in certain metropolitan areas are very limited. Enhance your prospects by avoiding common admissions mistakes. What if they waitlist your child? Is that the end of the world? Not exactly. What if you start the process late for some very good reason such as a job relocation and miss the deadlines, does it matter? It depends.
The most important thing to understand about the