In an earlier post we explored the traditional financial aid deadline. We understand that that not every family reaches their decision to apply to boarding school on an ideal admission timeline. Many families arrive at their decision to explore boarding schools in the spring after the fall semester is ‘in the books.’
With this post, we offer our suggestions for those arriving to the admission process after the traditional January application deadline.
It’s All About Process
No matter when you arrive at your decision to apply to a school(s), applying remains a process that benefits from planning, working through your plan and taking care of the details.
We offer our sketch of a compressed, or later, admission timeline:
Know your child and your family. Schools may ask about your late arrival to the admission cycle. Be frank if asked.
- Have student information ready. Gather grades, test scores, and report cards.
- Build a profile of your student. In what type of school might your student have the greatest chance of success? What programs or approaches will best support your student’s growth and success? What types of schools and activities interest your student?
- Consider an academic summer program or another type of growth program to strengthen candidacy and to demonstrate seriousness.
- Contact schools that look like good fits. Ask the admission officers about “school fits” and what their opinions are given your student’s academic and personal profiles. If not their school, can the office make any suggestions?
- Ask about available financial aid if it is part of application. Keep in mind that financial aid will be limited outside of the traditional financial aid filing period.
- Focus on a maximum of three schools and request their application materials.
- Contact recommendation authors (teachers, school administrators, etc.). Ask each to prepare a recommendation. Prepare transcript requests.
- Schedule campus visits and interviews.
- Complete applications and essays. Submit the applications. Follow submitted applications with telephone calls to confirm that each school has all required information.
Even though a compressed time frame accelerates events and decisions, do not shortchange your analysis and information. Breathe, examine each step. Move forward with deliberation.
Through all of the steps, use admission officers, teachers, administrators, and, if using one, your educational consultant as references. These professionals can help you make good decisions as you move through the process.