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  • Writer's pictureLisa Marfisi

Navigating Private School Admission Decisions: A Guide to Responding with Grace

A girl thinking about private school admission decisions.

The culmination of the private school admission process brings with it a range of emotions for parents and students alike. As emails arrive bearing news of acceptance, denial, or placement on the waitlist, it's essential to approach each outcome with a thoughtful and measured response. There are three possible outcomes and ideal ways to respond to each, ensuring a considerate and respectful approach throughout the admission journey. Navigating admission decisions with grace is challenging, and rewarding.

1.    Acceptance: Embrace the Opportunity

Receiving an acceptance letter is undoubtedly a cause for celebration. Your child has been recognized as a good fit for the school, and it's time to express your excitement and gratitude. Respond promptly to the school, acknowledging the acceptance and reaffirming your commitment to enroll. Schools have deadlines for acceptance, but they want to hear from you as soon as you are ready to commit.

Additionally, if, for any reason, you decide not to take the space, it is crucial to inform the school promptly. This allows the school to extend the offer to another deserving student and keeps the admission process flowing smoothly.

2.    Denial: Seeking Alternatives

Receiving a denial letter can be disheartening, but it's essential to view it as an opportunity to explore other options. The denial may stem from the school's inability to meet your child's specific needs or due to space limitations. While disappointing, this outcome provides clarity for both parties.

A school is unlikely to share the reason for the denial. Remember, the denial is not a reflection of your child's worth or potential but rather a redirection towards a more suitable educational environment.

3.    Waitlist/Waitpool: Navigating with Grace, Patience and Persistence

Placement on the waitlist signifies that your child is a strong contender for admission, but there are currently no available spaces. This outcome requires a delicate balance of patience and persistence. Promptly inform the school whether you would like to remain on the waitlist/waitpool. Express your continued interest and enthusiasm for the school, reinforcing why it remains a preferred choice. Keep the lines of communication open, updating the school on any changes in your circumstances that might impact your decision.

Remember, waitlists are dynamic, and spaces may open up as other families make decisions. Maintaining a positive and engaged relationship with the school increases your child's chances of securing a spot if one becomes available. There will be a lot of movement in the first week after decisions are announced.  After that you can choose to remain on the waitlist/waitpool until the beginning of the school year or until you have selected another option for your child’s education.

The private school admission process is a journey with distinct outcomes, each requiring a thoughtful and considerate response. Whether met with acceptance, denial, or a place on the waitlist, maintaining open communication and a positive attitude is key. By embracing the opportunities that come your way, seeking alternative paths when needed, and navigating the waitlist with patience and persistence, you empower your family to move forward on the educational journey with grace and resilience. Lisa Marfisi can help you with any questions you have about how to make the best admission decision for your child and family.




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