Q. Is there a birthday cut-off date for kindergarten applications?
A. Yes. Children must be five years old by the first day of December in order to be eligible to apply for kindergarten. We know that many children may be developmentally ready for a kindergarten program before they are five years old.
Q. I would like to tour the school and visit classrooms. Am I able to do that any time?
A. The first step of the application process is for the parents/guardians responsible for the child to contact the school or access the inquiry page on our website to register for an information meeting and school tour or to attend an Open House. Both the Open House session and the information meeting/tour are great opportunities to hear about our philosophy and programs.
Q. What kind of admissions test is administered at Park Day School?
A.Park Day School does not administer standardized tests to children. The application process includes a time for the child to visit the school. Children applying for kindergarten, first, or second grade are scheduled to visit the school in small groups after school hours; applicants for third through fifth grade are scheduled to spend a full day integrated into a classroom program. We do assess applicants in math and writing; observations are made by the classroom teacher and the learning specialist has individual time with the applicant. Students applying to sixth grade attend a half-day week-end assessment/workshop. They are also encouraged to spend a half-day visiting during the school day. Applicants to seventh and eighth grades spend a full day at the school during which time there are assessments given.
Q. Can I put my name on a waiting list? My child will be ready for kindergarten in two more years.
A.We do not maintain a waiting list. We suggest that parents contact Park Day School in the Fall of the year prior to when they will make an application to the school.
Q. Does Park Day School offer tuition assistance? And if so, how does applying for tuition assistance impact the application for admissions?
A.Park Day School has a strong tuition assistance program. Applications for tuition assistance are available at the time of the information meeting/tour, when admissions applications are distributed. The tuition assistance application is with School and Student Service for Financial Assistance (SSS), a national service that assesses financial need. All applications and documents are submitted directly to SSS for processing. Applications for and information about tuition assistance are kept apart from applications for admissions. Parents are informed of admissions decisions and tuition assistance allocations at the same time.
Q. Where do students go after Park?
A.Park Day School has a very successful process that helps our students and their families through the high school admissions process. The terrific part of this process is watching each student and his or her family explore which of the many options are the best match for the student academically and socially. The many variables make this process exciting as well as challenging. Our Middle School Program Coordinator meets and works with each family individually to counsel them through the process. We also have the area High School representatives come to Park Day to give lunch time presentations to our eighth grade students.
Our eighth-graders in the Class of 2013 spread out to several different programs around the Bay Area. This number is significant, particularly when talking about adolescents, as this demonstrates the fact that these students have chosen the right school for them rather than going where their friends go. In the past two years, our students have joined the following high schools: Alameda High School, Athenian, Bay Hill, Bentley, Berkeley High, Bishop O'Dowd, Head-Royce, Lick-Wilmerding (San Francisco), Maybeck, Oakland School for the Arts, Oakland Technical High School, Piedmont High School, and Urban (San Francisco).
To learn more about how Park helps families approach looking for the right high school for their child, listen to our 2008 Curriculum Night Podcast Series episode on Choosing the Right High School.