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HOW OLD IS

TOO YOUNG?

DEBATE CONTINUES ON

HOW BEST TO PREPARE

KINDERGARTNERS FOR

FUTURE ACADEMIC

SUCCESS

SOCIAL

ORDER

WAYS YOUR CHILD

CAN MAKE FRIENDS

AND BE A FRIEND

TO OTHERS

MAKING

THE GRADE

+DIRECTORY

OF EDUCATIONAL

OPTIONS

PERSISTENCE WILL

PAY OFF IN THE

EVER-CHANGING WORLD OF

COLLEGE ADMISSIONS


5 HOW OLD IS TOO YOUNG?

DEBATE CONTINUES ON HOW BEST TO PREPARE KINDERGARTNERS FOR

FUTURE ACADEMIC SUCCESS

BY REBECCA KUZINS

9 SOCIAL ORDER

WAYS YOUR CHILD CAN MAKE FRIENDS AND BE A FRIEND TO OTHERS

BY SHEILA MENDES COLEMAN

13 DIRECTORY OF

EDUCATIONAL OPTIONS

25 MAKING THE GRADE

PERSISTENCE WILL PAY OFF IN THE EVER-CHANGING WORLD OF

COLLEGE ADMISSIONS

BY SHEILA MENDES COLEMAN

EDITOR Kevin Uhrich

DEPUTY EDITOR André Coleman

ART DIRECTOR Carla Cortez

ASSISTANT ART DIRECTOR Stephanie Torres

PRODUCTION DESIGNERS Rochelle Bassarear,

Richard Garcia

WRITERS Sheila Mendes Coleman, Rebecca Kuzins

ADVERTISING DIRECTOR Dina Stegon

SALES AND MARKETING Lisa Chase, Brenda Clarke,

Leslie Lamm

OFFICE MANAGER Ann Turrietta

HUMAN RESOURCES Andrea E. Baker

BUSINESS MANAGER Linda Lam

CONTROLLER Kacie Cobian

ACCOUNTING Sharon Huie,

Teni Keshishian

PUBLISHER Jon Guynn

SOUTHLAND PUBLISHING

V. P. OF OPERATIONS David Comden

PRESIDENT Bruce Bolkin

CONTACT US

PHONE (626) 584-1500

FAX (626) 795-0149

MAILING ADDRESS

50 S. De Lacey Ave.

Suite 200

Pasadena, CA 91105

©2016 Southland

Publishing, Inc.

All rights reserved.

BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY 3


4 BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY


How Old Is

Too Young?

DEBATE CONTINUES ON HOW BEST TO

PREPARE KINDERGARTNERS FOR FUTURE ACADEMIC SUCCESS

BY REBECCA KUZINS

BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY

5


A

recent study of public school teachers confirmed what

many educators — and parents — have long suspected:

Kindergarten is the new first grade, with teachers placing

greater emphasis on academics and less time on arts instruction

and opportunities for play.

Researchers from the University of Virginia who conducted

the study reached this conclusion by comparing kindergarten

classrooms between 1998 and 2010, using data from more than

5,200 instructors who taught kindergarten and first grade in the

late 1990s and in 2010. The study, released in January, found that

kindergarten teachers in 2010 had much higher expectations for

their students’ academic achievement than instructors had in 1998,

and that kindergarten classrooms in 2010 were similar to firstgrade

classes in the 1990s. In addition, 80 percent of respondents

who taught in 2010 believed their students should learn to read in

kindergarten, compared with only 31 percent who taught in 1998.

“Young children’s first experiences in school are quite different

today than they were in the late ’90s,” says Daphna Bassok, coauthor

of the study. “We were surprised to see just how drastic the

changes have been over a short period of time.”

The study was the latest installment in an ongoing debate about

how to best prepare kindergartners for future academic achievement.

Some educators maintain there is no evidence to prove that

children must learn to read in preschool or kindergarten in order

to become strong readers and be successful in school. In 2009, the

nonprofit Alliance for Childhood released its own study, “Crisis in

the Kindergarten,” which concluded: “Kindergartners are now under

great pressure to meet inappropriate expectations, including academic

standards that until recently were reserved for first grade.”

But many other educators argue that today’s

kindergartners are more than ready to perform

academic work: “Time spent on academic

content, and even time spent on increasingly

challenging academic content should not automatically

be seen as a threat to kindergarten,”

concluded the National Association for the Education

of Young Children in a paper released in 2014.

“Children learn from birth, so kindergarten

should provide children with opportunities

and supports appropriate for

where they are. … Kindergartners

(and all young children) can

learn academic content that is

appropriate to where they are

developmentally.”

Julie Reynoso,

assistant

superintendent

for elementary

education in

the Pasadena

Unified School

District (PUSD),

expresses a similar opinion. Reynoso disagrees with the characterization

of kindergarten as the new first grade. And she argues

that art instruction and playtime are among the many elements

PUSD teachers are using in kindergarten classes. “A good handful

of teachers do believe in the element of play — doing musicals or

plays, [children] writing their own scripts,” she says.

She notes, however, that kindergarten instruction, like all

elementary and secondary school instruction, has changed in

recent years because of California’s adoption of the Common

Core Standards. Developed by education officials and governors

in 48 states, Common Core is a set of standards for kindergarten

through 12th-graders in mathematics and in English language

arts and literacy in history/social studies, science and technical

subjects. These standards aim to prepare high school graduates to

take for-credit introductory classes in two- and four-year colleges

or to enter the workforce. The standards are being used in 42

states, including California, where the state Board of Education

adopted them in 2010, and PUSD began implementing them in the

2010-11 school year.

Some of Common Core’s reading skills for kindergartners were

traditionally taught in the first grade, such as recognizing and naming

all of the upper and lower case letters of the alphabet, knowing number

names and counting in sequence. Kindergarten students are also

expected to know the primary sounds of consonants and the long and

short sounds of the five major vowels, and to sight-read frequently

used words (such as the, of, to, you, she, is and are).

“We are wanting [kindergarten] children to read,” says

Reynoso. “We are wanting them to be prepared. We don’t want

them to read as first-graders; we want them to read appropriately

as kindergartners.”

Kindergarten curriculum, she adds, seeks to improve children’s

oral development by providing opportunities for kids to discuss,

explain and ask questions about their class work. And in accordance

with Common Core, Reynoso says teachers are no longer

“expected to have all-day directed teaching.” Instead, instructors

now provide “more of a distributed opportunity for children to

partake in their own learning” and for students to collaborate on

school work, she said.

PUSD kindergartners are assigned homework, which Reynoso

describes as “very family-oriented.” These activities include

home-based scavenger hunts. Students also draw pictures of their

families and use these pictures to tell other students about the

most important people in their lives.

Students in kindergarten through the fifth grade are also expected

to read every night. “In kindergarten it is really important

to read with an adult,” says Reynoso. “Reading is instrumental.”

Parents are encouraged to read books to their children that are

either written in English or in the parents’ native language.

Revisions in the kindergarten curriculum are not only attributable

to the Common Core Standards. Kindergarten has also

changed because today’s kindergartners have changed. The number

of children enrolled in preschool has climbed in recent years,

and some of these preschoolers know the names of numbers and

6 BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY


“WE ARE WANTING [KINDERGAR-

TEN] CHILDREN TO READ. WE ARE

WANTING THEM TO BE PREPARED.

WE DON’T WANT THEM TO READ

AS FIRST-GRADERS; WE WANT

THEM TO READ APPROPRIATELY

AS KINDERGARTNERS.”

the letters of the alphabet

before they start kindergarten.

In addition, many

kindergartners are attending

full-day instead of

half-day classes. PUSD’s

kindergarten classes are

all full time, with children

in school for six-and-ahalf

hours each weekday.

The Kindergarten

Readiness Act, enacted

by the California Legislature

in September 2010,

has also altered PUSD’s

kindergarten instruction.

Before the law was

adopted, children who

turned 5 years old before

Dec. 2 were able to enroll

in kindergarten. The

law changed that date to

Sept. 1, with the new age

requirement phased in

over three years starting

in 2012-13. The law

also requires school districts to provide transitional kindergarten

classes for students turning 5 between Sept. 2 and Dec. 2; parents

can choose whether or not to enroll their youngsters in these

classes.

PUSD offers a full-day transitional

kindergarten (TK) class at seven elementary

schools (Jefferson, Longfellow,

Madison, McKinley, Norma

Coombs, Washington and Willard),

with 24 students in each class. TK

provides what Reynosa describes

as a developmentally appropriate

curriculum that differs from

kindergarten classes for the

older students. “There’s lots of

play, lots of [personal] interactions,

lots of collaborations

[with other students]. We are

teaching children how to socialize,”

she explains.

TK aims to make students

socially and emotionally competent.

The Transitional

Kindergarten Implementation

Guide, a resource

for California public

school administrators

— ASST. SUPERINTENDENT

JULIE REYNOSO

and teachers, lists four elements

of social-emotional

competence: emotional

regulation, or “children’s

ability to control behavior

and respond appropriately

to experiences”; social

knowledge, or “information

about social norms

and customs that enables

children to participate

successfully in the classroom

community”; social

skills, which are the

“appropriate strategies

children apply when they

interact with others”; and

social dispositions, which

are created when “the environment

and [children’s]

innate temperamental

variations combine.”

In addition to its TK

classes, PUSD created a

pilot Expanded Transitional

Kindergarten, a

full-day program that was launched in January at

Cleveland and McKinley Elementary Schools. ETK

is open to students who turn 5 between Dec. 3 and

the following March 31. Students who complete

TK and ETK then enter regular

kindergarten classes, enabling

them to receive two years of

kindergarten instruction.

Reynoso says PUSD is

not aiming to make kindergarten

the new first grade

but instead seeks to offer

coursework that is appropriate

to 4- and 5-year-old

children. “We have all

these types of options

in place in our school

district that deepens

their knowledge,

so they are actually

more successful.

People will say that

it [kindergarten] has

shifted, but it’s based

on what kids can

do.” ■

BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY

7


8 BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY


Social

Order

WAYS YOUR CHILD CAN MAKE FRIENDS

AND BE A FRIEND TO OTHERS

BY SHEILA MENDES COLEMAN

It is frequently the case that students who are most often cast

aside, labeled or ignored — shy, withdrawn and hyperactive

children, even bullies — all struggle from an inability to

manage social cues and effectively convey their natural desire

to make friends.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics

(NCES), these issues are only likely to grow as school populations

increase. Last year, approximately 50 million students attended

public elementary and secondary schools. Of these, over

35 million were in prekindergarten through eighth grade, with

nearly 15 million in grades nine through 12. The latter number is

expected to rise this fall.

There are a number of ways for your child to fit in and not

only make friends, but also be a great friend to others.

Dr. Mary Rooney, a psychologist with the Child Mind Institute

who specializes in disruptive behavior disorders, including

ADHD, says supervised play dates are a wonderful way to help

younger kids make and keep friends in lightly controlled social

situations. In preparing for the play date, discuss behavioral

expectations with your child and advise them to look for signals

that their guests have tired of an activity and are ready to move

on to the next one.

continued on page 10

BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY

9


continued from page 9

The ability to read body language is another way kids

learn to correct inappropriate behavior, so have discussions

with them about how to read certain cues from their friends.

The experts at the Child Mind Institute frequently recommend

role playing at home as an effective way of helping

children work on social skills needed at school. Emphasize to

your children the importance of sharing and taking turns and

remind them that their friends expect the same treatment.

Ask what they think the consequences might be when this

does not occur.

Children with behavioral issues will especially benefit from

role-playing scenarios at home since it can help them deal with

stressful and provocative situations they may feel too overwhelmed

to deal with appropriately when the time comes.

Educators agree that one of the best ways to teach a

particular skill or behavior is to first model it for your child.

While this is often easier said than done, allowing your child

to view you and your healthy relationships with friends can

convey this message simply and effectively.

Parents can help in other ways, too. One is by not becoming

overly involved in their child’s spats and arguments

with peers. Of course, it’s important to intervene or at least

interject when teachable moments present themselves, or

the conflict has become larger than the child’s skill set or

temperament can tolerate.

Dr. Jamie Howard, a clinical psychologist at the Child

Mind Institute, advises that, “As long as the children don’t

veer into play that’s outright dangerous, let the play date

unfold as it may.”

When it comes to play dates for younger children up to

middle-school, Howard believes in a moderately hands-off

approach for civil play, but adds that it’s a good idea for

parents to review the time the child spent with friends and

point out positive aspects of the behavior of all involved,

while taking care to single out any favorable behavior on the

part of your child.

“Kids are more motivated by praise than by avoiding criticism,”

Howard says. “Specific, labeled praise is most helpful. Instead

of ‘good job,’ say, ‘you shared very well with your friend.”

When it comes to the shy child, making friends is an activity

that is regularly fraught with anxiety, but experts warn

that it’s important that parents not go to the extreme when it

10 BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY


comes to protecting their shy or withdrawn child from more

assertive peers and situations where they may potentially

encounter conflict, as Rachel Busman, a psychologist and

specialist on childhood anxiety, observes in an interview

with childmind.com.

“There’s a difference between accommodating and enabling.

For shyer kids we want to give them opportunities to

meet new kids, but we want to help bridge the transition so

they aren’t too uncomfortable,” Busman says.

Timid and introspective children often miss key opportunities

to overcome these types of challenges because

well-meaning parents and other adults fail to allow them

to experience the discomfort inevitably encountered when

managing these relationships. There is no triumph like the

triumph of a child who’s conquered a fear or particularly

daunting challenge. It is often these smaller challenges that

provide the biggest boosts to a child’s self-esteem and confidence

in social situations.

Experts encourage parents to have their children practice

managing peer-introductions; teach them to get in the habit

of smiling without staring at those who make eye contact. A

quick smile at another student having a bad day or unpleasant

moment can quickly cement a friendship that lasts for years.

For children who continue having trouble fitting in or

finding their place within a certain social circle, Rooney

recommends that parents make time to discuss any concerns

regarding social skills with their child’s teachers. Teachers

are often a trove of vital information on the way your child

interacts with other students away from you, and the other

students’ responses to those interactions.

“Often kids will say ‘everyone hates me,’ but they may not

be able to describe what’s going on,” says Rooney. A frank

conversation with the child’s teacher can nip many social

issues in the bud before they become more serious social

anxiety problems. Such a discussion may also offer valuable

insight into emotions your child may have at school that

they’re hesitant to share at home.

It can be painful to watch children flounder in social

situations. But if they know they’ve got the inner resources

to handle what comes their way, their outer-being will reflect

that confidence, and that can make them an attractive friend

to have. ■

BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY

11


12 BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY


ADVERTISEMENT

— DIRECTORY OF OPTIONS —

A Plus Adventist Children’s Center

(Founded in 1981) is a year-round, non-profi t preschool committed

to providing a safe, secure loving environment where children ages

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The mission of A Plus Adventist Children’s Center is to serve the Glendale

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All Souls Catholic School

At All Souls World Language Catholic School, we recognize that speaking

multiple languages considerably heightens one’s ability to learn, lead, and

love. As California’s fl agship dual language Catholic school, we’re happy to

start our Junior High program that builds on our strong 50/50 elementary

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29 South Electric Ave., Alhambra (626) 282-5695 allsouls.la

continued on page 14

BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY 13


ADVERTISEMENT

continued from page 13

Altadena Children’s Center

At Altadena Children’s Center, the families of the children in our programs

who range in age from 2 months to prekindergarten fi nd programs that

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framework. Our family-centered approach helps to nurture healthy partnerships

between teachers and parents as we all work together to support

the children. We are eager to help families from diverse backgrounds to

discover that Altadena Children’s Center is the best place for their child’s

early education.

Contact Director Toni Boucher at (626) 797-6142 or visit accc-kids.org.

Alverno Heights Academy

In 1960, Alverno Heights Academy opened our doors to young women

throughout the San Gabriel Valley under the guidance of the Sisters of

St. Francis and later, the Immaculate Heart Community. More than 55

years later, Alverno continues to be the incredible institution our founders

imagined and we are thrilled to announce our return to our original

name—Alverno Heights Academy. Although we have begun a new chapter

in the Alverno story, Alverno remains a progressive Catholic, independent,

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200 North Michillinda Ave., Sierra Madre (626) 355-3463 – alvernoheightsacademy.org

Arroyo Pacific Academy Expands

There will be a new dramatic building along N. Santa Anita Ave in Arcadia

as Arroyo Pacifi c Academy expands its campus. New Science labs and

Humanities classrooms will bring the campus to the same high standards

as its current Arts and Technology center. The school is adjacent to the

new Metro Gold Line station in Arcadia for ease of commute. Students will

be offered reduced Metro passes to encourage their use of the Gold Line.

To celebrate the expansion and the extra space it provides as well as the

renewal of our six-year WASC accreditation, Philip Clarke, President, has

announced $5,000 scholarships for all new incoming students who are

sponsored by a current student who will also receive a $5,000 scholarship

for this referral.

41 Santa Clara St., Arcadia (626) 294-0661 arroyopacifi c.org

ArtCenter College of Design

ArtCenter College of Design has been a global leader in art and design

education for more than 85 years, currently offering 11 undergraduate and

seven graduate degrees across a spectrum of visual arts, communications

and industrial design disciplines. In addition to its top-ranked academic

programs, the College also serves members of the Greater Los Angeles

region through a highly regarded series of open enrollment art and design

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public programs are offered year round.

artcenter.edu/possibilities - Hillside Campus (1700 Lida St.) and South

Campus (870-950 S. Raymond Ave. and 1111 S. Arroyo Pkwy) in Pasadena

Assumption of the Blessed Virgin

Balancing legacy with innovation, Assumption Catholic School continues

its faith traditions while utilizing the best researched instructional aca-

14

BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY


demic practice. We embrace our families with love, learning, and genuine

opportunities for each child to develop his/her unique gifts and passions.

We foster faith in the human spirit, curiosity for continuous learning and

empathy for the welfare of others. In our 10-year partnership with parents

from TK to graduation, we grow capable, confi dent young citizens who

fl ourish personally and exert a bold and positive impact on the world.

We are distinguished by highly trained teachers, visionary courageous

leadership, next generation technology, early focus on literacy acquisition,

Spanish language, and advanced mathematics in upper grades. We

stretch not stress our students and inspire them to be leaders and role

models for the future. We strive to manifest Christ-like love and compassion

in our actions and attitude. Within an extended family atmosphere

of generosity, gratitude and inclusiveness, our students mature into wellbalanced,

engaged and refl ective individuals, sought after by our area’s

top high schools.

Visit our website: ABVM-school.org or call (626) 793-2089

Barnhart School

Accredited by the California Association of Independent Schools and

Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Barnhart is distinguished

through its focus upon Early Literacy, Writers’ Workshop, the Virtues

Program, conversational Spanish at all grade levels, daily PE and a stellar

middle school program where students are graduating with acceptance

to their top choice high schools. We are dedicated to recognizing that

all of us are learners on a continuum of unlimited growth. At Barnhart,

we believe that education is a lifelong comprehensive human experience.

Therefore, in addition to a robust and rigorous academic base of subjects,

we provide a full range of co-curricular programs including music, art,

technology, Spanish and PE. In middle school, we further extend learning

to include classes in public speaking, life skills, woodshop, theater arts,

yearbook production, student leadership and much more. Classroom

equipped with SmartBoard technology, accessibility to iPads, laptops

and desktops, and allowing students to bring their own devices, Barnhart

students stay current in the latest technology. Barnhart is known as an

affordable, “down to earth”, diverse community. We invite you to take

a tour and talk with our parents and students. Come meet our dedicated

team of professionals, share some time in our community, and watch our

students in action!

240 W. Colorado Blvd., Arcadia. barnhartschool.org (626) 446-5588

Cal State LA

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*Program subject to University and Chancellor’s Offi ce approval.

calstatela.edu/dtla - 888-541-DTLA (3852)

continued on page 16

BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY 15


ADVERTISEMENT

continued from page 15

Chandler School

Chandler School is a co-educational, independent school in Pasadena

serving 450 students in grades K-8. Chandler adheres to its mission to

provide each student with the highest quality and most academicallychallenging

education in a nurturing, balanced and diverse environment.

A Chandler education seeks to develop good character, self-reliance and a

commitment to community in students as a foundation for academic and

personal success. Chandler offers engaging classes taught by dedicated

teachers whose average length of service to Chandler is 10 years.

Chandler students benefi t from exceptional educational facilities, as well

as robust arts, athletics and after school programs, all provided on a safe

campus. Chandler families come from 48 different zip codes in the San

Gabriel Valley and beyond.

(626) 795-9314 - chandlerschool.org

Child Educational Center

The Child Educational Center (CEC), a Caltech/JPL affi liate, has been providing

research-based early care and education to children with an innovative

focus on outdoor learning since 1979. Our programs are designed for

children six weeks to grade six, and provide nurturing care, highly-qualifi

ed teachers, and excellent ratios. Our School-Age Program for K-grade

6 is at seven sites, including Caltech. Our Infant-Toddler and Preschool

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Learn more at ceconline.org or by calling (818) 354-3418.

The Counter Burger

We want to challenge the way people think about burgers. We’re about

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140 Shoppers Lane, Pasadena (626) 440-1008 thecounterburger.com

Crestview Preparatory School

Crestview Preparatory School is excited to be adding a Steam Lab to campus

to coincide with the addition of a K-5 Science Specialist. The space

will include fl exible furniture that confi gurations for optimized learning.

The science tables will be on casters and height adjustable to allow our

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be outfi tted with a variety of technology choices from iPads to Chromebooks,

microscopes and interactive boards, giving students the autonomy

to utilize the best tool for their discoveries and demonstrations. The space

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(818) 952-0925 - crestviewprep.org

Eagle Rock Junior/Senior High School

An International Baccalaureate World School, is a comprehensive junior

and senior high school, with a gifted, high ability and highly gifted

magnet. ERHS serves about 2400 students in Local District Central of the

Los Angeles Unifi ed School District. We offer a fully authorized IB Middle

Years Programme to all students in grades 7-10, and candidates for the IB

16

BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY


Diploma Programme in grades 11-12. We also have championship athletics,

robust arts, and pathways for college & career readiness. Our alumni

attend public and private colleges and universities throughout the world

and nation, such as Brown, Harvard, Stanford, UC Berkeley and more!

Visit our website erhs.la or Facebook to learn more about what rocks at

our amazing public school.

1750 Yosemite Dr., Los Angeles, (323) 340-3500 offi ce (323) 255-3398

fax erhs.la

Fantastic Sams

Welcome to our new Fantastic Sams! With an updated design inspired by

our French parent company, we set a new standard in affordable luxury

for the whole family. Our salon on South Lake is the fi rst in California to

offer a modern look and feel with outstanding stylists handpicked to offer

you a great cut, highlight, or color. Private rooms available for special

occasions!

For more information, please call or email us at FantasticSamsOnLake@

gmail.com. 502 S. Lake Ave., Pasadena (626) 639-3737

Foothills Mathematics Group

Foothills Mathematics Group recognizes that every student is unique in

their ability and it’s important to approach them on their own, individual

terms. Our student-centered method brings one-on-one tutoring to the

comfort of the student’s home, minimizing distraction, maximizing retention

and understanding. Each client is evaluated personally and partnered

with a teacher based on our assessment of their individual needs, making

for the utmost compatible learning experience. FMG offers specialized

tutoring in a broad range of subjects including Math, Science, and Foreign

Language at all levels of study. The goal of every tutoring session is to

cultivate a better grasp of information, placing our students on a trajectory

for success. We invite you to give us a call or visit our website to learn

more about how we tailor education for our students!

(888) 784-1639 - foothillsmathgroup.com

Friends Western School

Friends Western School is a cooperative private elementary school founded

on the principles of community, harmony, integrity, equality and simplicity.

FWS offers a host of unique advantages such as small class sizes, with a

student/teacher ratio of 15:1 or better; a responsive learning environment

that encourages and honors each child; curriculum that supports academic

growth as well as social and emotional development; abundant opportunities

for creative exploration, with weekly art, theater and yoga classes; and

an emphasis on community, where students become stewards of the world

around them through entrepreneurial service projects. A Quaker school,

FWS shares a rich heritage with many highly respected educational institutions,

such as Swarthmore College, Cornell University and Sidwell Friends.

Families of all faiths and no faith are welcome.

524 East Orange Grove Blvd., Pasadena (626) 817-2481 FriendsWestern-

School.org

Glendale Adventist Academy

Founded in 1907, Glendale Adventist Academy is a K-12 college preparatory

school dedicated to empowering young men and women with spiritual

commitment, strong academic preparation, and leadership skills. We

continued on page 18

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continued from page 17

provide a Christ-centered learning environment where students, parents,

and teachers can experience the presence of God in a spirit of affi rmation.

Our progressive curriculum challenges and fosters the highest academic

development, and our values-laden, ethically driven focus involves

students in service and a commitment to their local and global communities.

The curriculum maintains a rigorous program of college preparatory

courses, religious education, community outreach, art, music, athletics,

drama, and enrichment opportunities, promoting a life-long love for learning.

The school is fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools

and Colleges (WASC). Now offering Transitional Kindergarten.

(818) 244-8671 - glendaleacademy.org

The Gooden School

Located in Sierra Madre, The Gooden School has been offering a strong

educational foundation using both traditional and progressive approaches

since 1975. As an independent, Episcopal kindergarten through eighth

grade school, our caring community of faculty, staff and families believe

that all students possess gifts that are manifested in many ways throughout

their years at Gooden. These gifts may be discovered or enhanced

through academic excellence, musical, artistic or dramatic ability, through

sports or the acquisition of a second language. All students study not

only traditional academic subjects but each child also learns Latin and

Spanish and all students play a musical instrument. Additionally, students

participate in service-learning projects and utilize the latest technology

that is integrated throughout the curriculum. Open houses will be held on

October 22, 2016 and January 11, 2017.

For more information visit goodenschool.org or call (626) 355-2410

H-Bar Tutoring

We are a math, science, and test-prep tutoring service started by Caltech

graduate students. Our mission is to provide you with expert tutors who

are passionate about the subjects they teach. Our tutors draw on their

extensive experience to tailor their teaching style to your student’s needs.

We can do this because we are a small company with a strong commitment

to education. Our classes are designed for motivated middle school

students and early high school students who want to explore science

and math. At h-bar, we know how busy today’s students are, so we drive

to the place that’s most convenient you. We will tutor your child at your

home, or other public space if you prefer.

Please call (626) 375-0575 or visit hbartutoring.com for more information.

High Point Academy

High Point Academy is an independent co-educational kindergarten

through eighth grade independent school nestled in the beautiful foothills

of Pasadena. For over fi fty years, High Point Academy has provided

a strong commitment to academic excellence and innovation and the

academic, social, and ethical development of the whole child within a

balanced approach to education. Service learning, technology, athletics,

arts, vocal and instrumental music, world languages in Spanish and

French, library, and green sustainable living are embedded in our enriched

curriculum. We strive to awaken the joy of learning in each student and are

proud to offer physical education fi ve days each week, an iMac technology

center, an exquisite and impeccably maintained campus as well as a

dedicated faculty and staff. High Point invites you to see our community

for yourself at one of our upcoming open houses.

highpointacademy.org

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Holy Family High School College Preparatory

…Where Women Make History! Holy Family High School College

Preparatory (HFHSCP) is a Catholic, all-girls high school that serves the

educational needs of women in the city of Glendale. Founded in 1937,

HFHSCP serves a diverse student body by offering a rigorous curriculum

that is both innovative and Christ-centered. Our young women embark on

a journey of leadership, service, spirituality and sisterhood that continues

beyond their high school experience. The Western Association of Schools

and Colleges (WASC) and the Western Catholic Educational Association

(WCEA) granted a full-term (6-year) accreditation in June 2013, once

again accrediting Holy Family High School College Preparatory with its

highest honor. Come join the Gael family and start making history.

Visit our website: hfhsglendale.org or call (818) 241-3178.

Hummingbird Conservatory

No one can sing like you. At The Hummingbird Conservatory in Glendale,

our mission is to foster the development of an individual singers

own unique instrument. Our emphasis is exclusively on the training and

preparation of singers across all genres, ages and talent levels. Students

7 and up get training in the bel canto method - learning legato and staccato

phrasing, improved breath support, musical terms and notation in a

fun, supportive, creative atmosphere. Students are also coached in stage

deportment, languages, character development and audition technique.

In addition to private vocal instruction, there are masterclasses, recital

opportunities, student showcases and Junior Divas Voice Class. Come get

a high level of training in a down-to-earth atmosphere fostering music,

singing and fun!

3531 N. Verdugo Rd., Glendale (310) 916-6797 thehummingbirdconservatory.com

Immaculate Heart High School & Middle School

Immaculate Heart offers beloved traditions and a distinguished history

with more than 10,000 graduates since its founding in 1906 by the Sisters

of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The Catholic school remains true to its

original mission: the intellectual, spiritual, moral and social development

of young women in grades 6th – 12th. The hillside campus, centrally located

in Los Angeles near Griffi th Park, welcomes students of geographic,

ethnic and religious diversity. Virtually 100 percent matriculate to college.

The high school’s curriculum features 17 Advanced Placement courses,

14 honors classes, and 50 UC and Cal-State approved elective courses.

IH fi elds teams in basketball, cross country, equestrian, soccer, softball,

swimming & diving, tennis, track & fi eld, and volleyball. Students participate

in community service, retreats and liturgies, theatrical productions,

the visual arts, and more. Bus transportation serves the Pasadena area!

5515 Franklin Ave., Los Angeles (323) 461-3651 immaculateheart.org

Inspire Dance Studio

At INSPIRE Dance Studio, we offer cutting edge classes for children ages

3-18 in Ballet, Pointe, Jazz, Modern/Contemporary, Hip-Hop, Tap, Musical

Theatre, and more!

It’s our heartfelt philosophy that dance education is about creating a

happy, whole, and successful child, as well as a top dancer! We believe

that happens when children are in an environment in which they feel safe

and encouraged to explore beyond their comfort zones, while being given

the tools to become fl awless technical dancers and performing artists.

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continued from page 19

This means that every child at INSPIRE will receive elite training, while

creating self-disciplined habits in a self-esteem building, peer supportive,

and fun environment! We offer small-class sizes, spacious studio rooms,

and professional faculty.

Enroll today! 457 Foothill Blvd, La Canada (818) 714-7254 inspire-dancestudio.com

Institute for Educational Advancement

IEA is an independent, national non-profi t that matches gifted children

ages 3-18 with customized educational programs designed to serve their

complex intellectual, social, emotional, spiritual and physical needs. These

initiatives foster intellectual curiosity, the acquisition of knowledge, confi

dence, creativity, responsibility and moral decisiveness. Academy provides

year-round, challenging enrichment classes focused on exploration

and the application of knowledge. The residential summer Apprenticeship

Program links high school students with distinguished professionals who

serve as mentors to gain hands-on, real-world experience. The Caroline

D. Bradley Scholarship provides students with a four-year scholarship to

a high school that fi ts each Scholar’s individual intellectual and personal

needs. Yunasa summer camps unite highly able youngsters and gifted

experts to teach campers how to balance all aspects of their lives.

Visit educationaladvancement.org for more information.

Justine Sherman & Associates

Justine Sherman & Associates serves the speech-language and educational

needs of individuals throughout the greater San Gabriel Valley

community. We design customized treatment plans with personalized

measurable goals achieved through individual therapy sessions or classes

conducted by our certifi ed and licensed speech-language pathologists and

supervised aids. Our collaborative relationship with families, educators

and health care professionals ensures the best opportunity for client success

and supports our philosophy of holistic treatment.

justineshermanslp.com or (626) 355-1729

Los Angeles Children’s Chorus

First Experiences in Singing

Los Angeles Children’s Chorus’s First Experiences in Singing (FES)

classes introduce children to joyous vocal expression appropriate for

the children’s age and developmental stage. These classes are nonauditioned,

non-performing groups that introduce six- to seven-year-old

boys and girls to the fundamentals of singing. No prior musical experience

is required. LACC developed this three-level, sequential course to impart

the foundational elements of musicianship and bel canto choral technique,

while engaging the whole child in fun, interactive musical learning.

Classes prepare children for auditions for LACC’s core ensembles.

For more information, visit us at lachildrenschorus.org/FESFALL

La Salle High School

La Salle High School is dedicated to excellent student performance in

academics, arts and athletics. La Salle Summer Academic Institute is for

5th to 12th graders. Courses provide opportunities to home skills and learn

new concepts in the more relaxed environment of summer. Students earn

high school academic credit in some courses, and many courses satisfy UC

standards. Sports Camps are available throughout the summer for student

athletes.

(626) 696-4300 lasallehs.org

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Maranatha High School: Christ Centered, College Bound

Maranatha High School is a non-denominational Christian school providing

an excellent college preparatory education in a Christ-revering context.

MHS is excited to kick off the 2016-2017 school year under the direction

of new Head of School Dr. Steven J. Sherman, and recently appointed, but

familiar to many, Principal John Rouse. This dynamic and energetic duo

is ready to begin the year with a renewed focus on their Christian mission

predicated by building strong relationships through mentoring, and continuing

to strive for academic excellence. Maranatha offers 31 Advanced

Placement and Honors courses, exceptional Performing and Visual Arts,

competitive athletics, nearly 40 clubs, and mission trips and service opportunities

both locally and globally.

Discover what Maranatha is all about at Admissions Open House on

Saturday, November 5, 2016 or online at maranathahighschool.org.

Mentor Avenue Preschool

Located in the heart of Pasadena, Mentor Avenue Preschool students are

engaged in the joy of discovery. Everywhere there is fun and excitement

while learning through art, science, music, cooking, games and other

activities. Our loving staff encourages independence in the younger

students, especially in the area of potty training, along with healthy eating

habits and good table manners. Class projects involve team work in order

to build good social skills. Our innovative approach to the outdoor classroom

inspires a natural learning environment. Mentor Avenue Preschool

is a Christian Preschool dedicated to providing quality early childhood

education, while nurturing Christian Values, to prepare children for kindergarten

and beyond.

308 N. Mentor Ave., Pasadena (626) 396-7008 mentoravenuepreschool.com

MeriEducation

You’ve never experienced tutoring like this. Since 2007, MeriEducation

has supported hundreds of families in their journey to college. As a onestop

shop with specially designed 1-on-1 programs customized to each

student, we provide hassle-free, personalized help with K-12 classes, test

prep, and private school/college admissions. We’ve found that our modern

spaces, engaging tutors, exceptional customer service, and positive

energy are the perfect ingredients for student success. Visit our fl agship

center in the South Lake District to see how we make learning beautiful!

First-time clients receive a complimentary consultation. Mention Pasadena

Weekly to also receive (1) free strategic college planning session OR (1)

free diagnostic test (SAT, ACT, ISEE, HSPT, SSAT). Offer ends 12/31/16.

845 Cordova St., Pasadena (626) 639-8810 merieducation.com - #tutoringninjas

Pasadena Language Center

Discover a new culture, learn a new language! Pasadena Language

Center’s mission is to provide cultural awareness and language instruction

in over 30 languages. Our small group classes for adults and children

are perfect for any level: beginner, intermediate and advanced. You have

the option to choose from a wide range of language programs including

weekly classes, intensive classes, weekend intensive, full immersion

classes, ESL classes, kids classes, family classes, or private instruction.

Our experienced instructors are native speakers passionate about sharing

their language and culture. We keep the rates affordable so that anyone

can learn a new language.

46 Smith Alley, Suite 240, Pasadena. Call (626) 844-5003 or visit pasadenalanguage.com

continued on page 22

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Southern California Children’s Museum

Southern California Children’s Museum invites you to attend Touch-a-Truck

presented by Advantage Ford Lincoln! There will be dozens of vehicles for

children to climb, sit-in, touch and see. From fi re trucks to dump trucks,

this event is fun for the entire family! Join us at Santa Anita Park on Saturcontinued

from page 21

Pasadena Unified School District

At the Pasadena Unifi ed School District, we believe that every child can

learn and succeed in the 21st century. PUSD students are prepared to be

critical thinkers, creative problem-solvers and strong communicators.

Themed learning options are available for every K-12 age group in dual

language immersion; science, technology, engineering and math; and the

visual and performing arts. Partnerships with civic organizations, businesses,

and higher education create unparalleled opportunities to enhance

the student’s learning experience. It covers approximately 76 square miles

within Los Angeles County (the “County”), including the cities of Pasadena,

Sierra Madre, and Altadena. The District currently operates 19 elementary

schools, fi ve middle schools, four comprehensive high schools, one continuation

school and one alternative independent study school.

(626) 396-3606 pusd.us

Pasadena Waldorf School

A community for those who think deeply about the world and their

place in it. PWS is a conscious approach to parenting and education

founded on the wisdom of Rudolf Steiner who recognized that every child

is gifted; he inspired teachers to get to know each student individually and

to meet them authentically, with a rich, holistic and experiential curriculum

that has been thoughtfully developed, time tested and intentionally

structured with the healthy development of the student at the center. The

results are academically prepared, confi dent and conscientious individuals

who know they are capable of achieving whatever they can imagine – and

they graduate with a great capacity for imagination! PWS is accredited by

AWSNA, WASC and is a member of WECAN.

pasadenawaldorf.org

Polytechnic School

Polytechnic School, an independent, college-preparatory K-12 school in

Pasadena, will begin on Wednesday, Aug. 31, when Upper School students

return to campus (Lower and Middle School students follow on Tuesday,

Sept. 6). Established in 1907, Poly seeks to develop the intellect, talents,

and character of each student in a community of learning dedicated to

principles of academic excellence. Poly cultivates intellectual growth

through innovative spaces and small classes, which not only provide each

student with more attention. Poly’s K-12 structure allows teachers to collaborate

and implement a scope and sequence within the curriculum that

builds as students progress from one year to the next. Poly is accredited

by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and is a member of the

National Association of Independent Schools and the California Association

of Independent Schools.

Learn more at polytechnic.org. 1030 East California Blvd., Pasadena (626)

396-6345 offi ce, facebook.com/poly

School of Rock Burbank

Group Classes, Birthday Parties, Songwriting... With more than a decade of

successful experience teaching music, School of Rock is the national leader

in music education. Our unique performance-based approach get students

of all abilities out rocking on stage! Students learn from professional musicians

in an interactive environment combining weekly private lessons and

structured group rehearsals. Get your child on the stage TODAY!

Call (818) 980-1522 or visit burbank.schoolofrock.com. Be sure to check

out School of Rock Pasadena opening this fall!! Pasadena.schoolofrock.

com (626) 508-1818

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day, September 17, 2016. The event will run from 9am-2pm with a special

horn free hour from 9-10am.

Admission $5/person or $15/family of 4 at socalkids.org.

Southwestern Academy

Southwestern Academy is a college preparatory, independent, boarding/day

school, offering middle & high school instruction. We welcome

American and international students to our two distinct campuses located

in San Marino, California, and Rimrock, Arizona. For 93 years, students,

alumni, teachers and staff alike consider Southwestern home. We offer

programs to strengthen students through small classes - normally of eight

to twelve students - with personalized lessons, achievement grouping,

safe environments, and especially by supporting student achievements

through an involved, nurturing, caring staff who create an environment

for individual student success. We’re looking for intelligent, active young

people who are ready to participate in the school’s varied activities and

classes. We also welcome your application if you’re not experiencing success

or fulfi llment in school, but are willing to try to do better work with

our support.

We invite you to fi nd out more about Southwestern Academy at southwesternacademy.edu,

“Where you Belong.”

St Andrew Catholic School

St Andrew Catholic School celebrates 120 years in the heart of Old

Pasadena, now teaching 275 boys and girls for the 2016-2017 school

year. In August we begin our new 3-year old program that enhances our

current 4 and 5-year old program. Facing the famous Pasadena bell tower,

St Andrew’s continues a tradition of academic excellence that extends

beyond the classroom. Annual competitions in spelling, math, science,

and robotics inspire confi dence. And, a robust sports program, thriving

fi ne arts curriculum and a children’s choir personalize the learning experience

for each student. St Andrew School is proud to partner with the

Armory Center for the Arts for a unique learning experience. For 10 weeks,

artists partner with teachers to infuse arts education into every subject.

St Andrew Catholic School welcomes students from every neighborhood

and proudly graduates students to top-performing Catholic and private

high schools in Pasadena and beyond. If you have not looked at St Andrew

Catholic School for your family, now is the perfect time to come for a tour!

(626) 796-7697 - saspasadena.com

St. Monica Academy, grades 1-12

St. Monica Academy is an independent, Catholic, coeducational school for

grades 1-12 and is at the forefront of a renaissance in classical education,

a time-honored method of teaching that inspires students to excel academically

and morally. Founded by parents in 2001, the school provides

255 students in grades 1-12 with an academically rigorous education

using a classical curriculum. Due to a steady growth in enrollment, St.

Monica’s moved to the campus of Holy Redeemer Parish in Montrose in

the summer of 2015. The newly renovated school site features a spacious

elementary school building, new classrooms for the high school, new

landscaping, a computer lab, library, science lab, and expansive outdoor

space. St. Monica Academy, coed, grades 1-12.

2361 Del Mar Rd., Montrose (818) 369-7310 - stmonicaacademy.com

continued on page 24

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continued from page 23

St. Philip the Apostle School

Students -- and families -- thrive at St. Philip the Apostle School

St. Philip the Apostle School has enriched the lives of the children in our

community for 90 years. We are a K-8 Catholic, parish school with two

classes per grade serving over 550 students. The school’s modern, urban

campus features an advanced technology platform that supports a broad

range of web-based research and instructional resources, dedicated classrooms

for art, music, and Spanish…and beautiful Holy Angel Hall that also

serves as a gymnasium and theatre.

1363 Cordova St., Pasadena. For more information or schedule a tour go

to stphiliptheapostle.org/school or contact Colleen Welsh, Development

Director at (626) 795-9691 ext. 449.

Stratford Schools

We are committed to connecting students with their unique futures.

We offer an unparalleled education that inspires children to be creative

problem-solvers, innovators, and leaders. We approach the learning experience

by infusing a strong liberal arts curriculum with STEAM inspired

learning.

Respect: We value our employees, students, parents, and community.

Respect and integrity are cornerstones of our character building and commitment

to one-another. Being a good neighbor builds strong community

partnerships with our school.

Excellence: We foster educational excellence and citizenship in our students

through outstanding teaching and a customer service culture.

Always Improving: We are passionate about learning at all levels. Our

commitment to feedback and constant improvement is essential to our

future success. We hire employees with the same willingness to evolve.

Collaborative Culture: Teamwork is our focus and every role is interconnected

and valued. We aim to create a school with open doors and joyful

warmth, where everyone is seen and heard. Our culture of connectivity

promotes social intelligence, cultural sensitivity, and community. Joyful

people create better educational outcomes.

High Expectations: By empowering extraordinary teachers with a rigorous

curriculum that blends tradition with 21st century learning, Stratford

School achieves academic excellence. We encourage children’s natural

curiosity to reach for things they don’t yet understand, and unleash their

courage to grasp opportunities others don’t yet see. Spots still available

but are limited for the 2016-17 school year.

Call for a tour and for more information: (626) 498-2810 2046 Allen

Ave., Altadena. stratfordschools.com.

University of the West

University of the West, a non-profi t private university, has been serving

the greater San Gabriel Valley for over 25 years. UWest, a WASC accredited

institution, provides personalized educational programs in Business

Administration, Psychology, English, Liberal Arts, Religious Studies,

and Buddhist Chaplaincy. Our knowledgeable faculty and caring staff are

committed to help students succeed inside and outside of the classroom.

With our Lotus Scholarship of up to $10,000, eligible students will receive

fi nancial assistance which can cover 96% of tuition fees.

Contact us at (626) 571-8811 or info@uwest.edu to learn more today!

1409 Walnut Grove Ave., Rosemead ■

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MAKING THE

GRADE

PERSISTENCE WILL PAY OFF IN THE

EVER-CHANGING WORLD OF COLLEGE ADMISSIONS

BY SHEILA MENDES COLEMAN

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25


Gaining admission to thousands of colleges and universities

just took several crucial steps in the right direction.

A groundbreaking report, “Turning the Tide,” was released

in January by the Harvard Graduate School of Education

and suggests several critical changes to the admissions process

that many educators hope will result in a more balanced, wellrounded

student body, as well as more parity in the selection

process.

Traditionally, potential schools have reinforced to students

the importance of high SAT and ACT scores, along with

charitable work and coveted recommendations from important

members of the community. Administrators are now learning

that what these high SAT and ACT scores mostly reveal is family

background and income levels — issues which have little to

do with the quality of the students who present themselves as

candidates.

With such a narrow focus, the Harvard study concludes,

schools may miss prime opportunities to extend admission to

students with other valuable qualities and experiences, and

overlook students whose grades may not meet the same threshold

as some students, simply due to familial obligations, or a

packed work and study schedule.

The research advises that schools pay less attention to the

amount of charitable work each student participates in and

instead focus on the authenticity of the student’s commitment to

individual causes and their civic-responsibility. This can be accomplished

through a more thoughtful review of student essays

and personal recommendations and letters of reference.

Gone too, are the days when schools were awed by student

resumes consisting of an overwhelming amount of Advanced

Placement (AP) classes and constant activity. Many high schools

in lower income areas do not offer the same amount of AP

classes, nor at the same level, and the Harvard Study suggests

that this may unfairly eliminate viable candidates for admission.

Frank Bruni, author of “Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be:

An Antidote to the College Admissions Mania,” tells CBS TV’s

“This Morning” that “You have schools saying they’re not going

to be as impressed by a huge load of AP courses. … What they’re

trying to do is get kids away from a sort of incredibly dutiful

script following during high school and encourage more genuine

passions in them and figure out a way to judge them by the way

they commit to those passions.”

The Harvard Study goes on to conclude that a well-tested

student is not one who is necessarily well prepared. Major

universities across the country have seen a significant spike in

admittance to mental health centers on and off campus as many

students struggle with the transition to life away from home and

the pressure to maintain their GPA. Mental-health professionals

have discovered a definitive correlation between the pressures

of academic achievement and mental health. The Harvard

study addresses the role universities play in exacerbating or

compounding the stress in what is already a stressful time for

students, and outlined specific recommendations to the admissions

process itself to lesson their anxiety. Somewhere along the

line, schools and parents have sent a message to students that if

they’re unsuccessful in meeting a rigid set of educational metrics

and milestones, they’ve failed, and many feel overwhelming

concern that their failure will potentially follow them through

adulthood.

The Harvard study seeks to reverse this presumption. While

hardly a mandate for the college admissions process, it has been

lauded and commended by so many administrators from top

continued on page 28

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27


continued from page 26

28 BACK TO SCHOOL 2016 PASADENA WEEKLY

universities that it can now be considered a blueprint for institutes

of higher-learning when it comes to accepting and turningout

a more qualified, less fretful graduate into the workforce.

In adopting this forward-thinking approach, many universities

across the country have already begun to make SAT and ACT

scores optional. As per the recommendations from the report,

admission counselors are also casting a more critical eye on

charitable work and personal recommendations from high-powered

mentors and teachers alike. Rather than immediate, drastic

changes to admissions, look for these changes to materialize

over the next five years or so as schools across the country begin

to understand the benefits of a more contemporary approach to

admissions.

The sweeping new changes to the SAT tests implemented in

March are yet another welcome modification to the admissions

process. In addition to returning to a top score of 1,600, rather

than the ill-advised and unpopular 2,400, students will no longer

be penalized for incorrect answers, and the number of possible

answers to multiple-choice questions has changed from five to

four, thus affording test-takers better odds of a correct response.

Additionally, students will be allotted more time to take the test,

which now contains 16 fewer questions than previous versions.

These are just a few of the important changes to the SAT system,

so be sure to check collegeboard.org for more info.

Financial aid will continue to be a lifeline to higher learning,

but increased competition may make getting in to your favorite

spot trickier than you’d hoped. Take advantage of the many

websites geared toward helping students get their share of the

financial aid pie, most notably among them studentaid.ed.gov, and

above all, file all necessary aid forms in a timely manner. Many

scholarships and grants are awarded on a first-come, first-served

basis. Sites such as Cappex (cappex.com), formerly meritaid.com,

continue to be excellent resources for finding a multitude of available

scholarships. But be advised that while competition for these

scholarships has increased, their availability, particularly those

that are merit-based, has seen a significant decrease.

Tuition has also seen a sharp increase, and experts predict

the cost will

continued on page 30


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29


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continued from page 28

only climb higher. Currently, the average yearly cost of a four-year

in-state public college is $9,410, and $23,890 for out-of-state public

colleges, while private colleges start at around $32,410 per year.

As of now, schools typically require the following coursework

for entrance into most four-year colleges and universities: four

years of English, three years of math (specifically geometry and

algebra I and II), three years of a foreign language (unless fluency

is verified), three years of science (including at least one laboratory

science course) and some history and social sciences.

To be sure, this is merely a guideline, since many prestigious

colleges and universities prefer to see students take four years of

math. According to the National Association for College Admission

Counseling (NACAC, nacacnet.org), “Students who take math

in each year of high school are far more successful in college

than students taking only three years.” NACAC goes on to caution

students to “never ‘skip’ a year of math in high school because you

will lose your momentum. If you do not take math in your senior

year, you will find that the math classes required in college will be

very difficult!”

Many universities have become much more welcoming to students

with alternative-education backgrounds, with some college

applications already providing a box for home-schooled students

to check.

Experts at petersons.com advise home-schooled and schooledonline

students to include a portfolio of special projects and writing

samples from English and history curriculums along with their

completed application to distinguish themselves from other students

— those schooled both traditionally and non-traditionally.

With all the changes on the horizon, it’s important for parents

and students alike to investigate all the many new and exciting

options available, as well as those changes not necessarily in their

favor.

With a little research and persistence, most students are sure

to discover that finding the right college is like finding a great pair

of jeans — there’s a perfect fit for every type. ■


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31

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