I know an 8th grade student whose method of choosing a High School I admire. Since there are still seats at her High School of choice, Bard High School Early College II, I thought I would share a bit of what she expressed to me.
Louise is a good student, whose test scores could have gotten her into many selective schools in NYC. In fact, she found 11 schools that she very thoughtfully and deliberately placed on her list of possible 12. She felt Bard was a good fit the first time she walked in, but she chose Bard II for her first choice because she has come to love science at her Middle School, MS 447 The Math and Science Exploratory School. Bard II's new principal was a science teacher at Bard College and she felt the school would have more of a science slant considering their partnership with the National Academy of Sciences. She likes the idea of starting fresh and not having to fit a mold. She knew it would be challenging, and there is a lot of pride in being in the first graduating class in what is bound to be a strong school. She will have a long commute in freshman year to Elmhurst, Queens from Park Slope, Brooklyn. She knows what she is in for and in her sophomore year the school will move to the Frank Sinatra HS building in Long Island City.
The thing I think impressed me most was the pragmatic way that she made her choice. She knew that Bard II, as a new school, would be looking hard for students and the classes might be smaller. All the students would feel united in a school that was a new experience for everyone. She knew she had something to offer the school and she could really make a difference.
Her advice to students picking a school:
#1 look for classes that you like
#2 think about if you feel comfortable there
#3 how far do you have to go to school
#4 is the environment bright and exciting or dull
To talk to Bard High School Early College go to the supplemental HS fair held Monday April 7 and Tuesday April 8 from 5-8pm at Brandeis HS (W. 84rd between Amsterdam and Columbus)