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This month's topics:
• The Admission Process for Fall 2004
• School Voices - Tilton School
• Private School News
• Testing

Featured Schools





The opening of school also signals the beginning of the admission cycle for the coming school year. To help families plan and work through the admission process we will present a monthly topics planner to help folks make sure that all their bases and topics are covered.


The most important thing to keep in mind about applying for admission to a school, college, or summer camp is the notion of process. Every step, and the finished product of each step requires, planning and baby steps. Doing a little bit at a time builds a better foundation, leading to smoother results, less panic, and a better application.

An application package requires the work of more than just student and family. Recommendations require teachers and counselors and you must give them time and notice so that they can plan and speak about you in a thoughtful way. And, there's also some tests to take.

Each month we break pieces of the admission process into parental, student, and family responsibilities. Rome wasn't built in a day and a complete application application package isn't produced in a night, weekend, or even a week.


Parents- If you're new to the private school world or simply want expert help and and advice negotiating the myriad of schools and finding the best fit for your student, you might, before anything else, consider using an educational consultant.

An educational consultant can help identify the strengths, weaknesses and interests of your student and, then, point you toward the schools that might provide the best fit for them.
An educational consultant can help identify the strengths, weaknesses and interests of your student and, then, point you toward the schools that might provide the best fit for them. Visit our friends at the Independent Educational Consultants Association to learn more about educational consultants.

Whether or not you choose to use an educational consultant, begin thinking about your child and the kinds of environments in which he or she does well. Every child is not a good fit for a small rural school and every student is not a good fit in a large school with access to a major city.

Knowing your child and and the traits of each school are the keys to this process.

Students- During this preparation time, you want to work as hard as you can. Consider scheduling your day so that time is set aside for homework, studying, and extracurricular activities. Stay busy, stay involved, and contribute to your community.

Family- Visit web sites like AdmissionsQuest.com and others to get an idea of the types of schools that are available. Visit you local library to check out, or, buy a private school guide to read the print material and profiles of schools.

Begin forming judgments about the kinds of schools that may be right for your student. Large or small. Academically competitive or academically supportive. Athletic or more arts or communally oriented. Close to a large city or rural. A particular state or region?

Collect the names and contact information of schools that you find interesting. You might even want to call and request an catalog and admission packet to begin building you foundation or what to expect from these materials and what schools will require.

Take notes and keep good files on your contacts, thoughts, and ideas.

Next month: The Interview

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As a regular monthly feature in The AQ Link, School Voices will feature an interview with a community member of an AQ Member school. Our goal is to hear about the great qualities and happenings in AQ Member schools by featuring a student, faculty member, or administrator, invested the school, but, who is not regularly featured as one of the school's public voices.

October School Voices: Margaret Allen, Academic Dean
Tilton, NH
Co-ed, Boarding/Day
Grades 9-12, PG

Balancing Tradition and Innovation
...it's also a school that is very able...to innovate and to come up with new ways of thinking, new kinds of program initiatives, new ways of running a school.

Allen: "What's great about Tilton and what does work well, I think that there's a very good and interesting balance between traditional things and innovative things. Traditional roots and a good sense of continuity and history, which is very appealing in many ways and makes kids feel a sense of belonging to somewhere that's been around for a while. But, it's also a school that is very able...to innovate and to come up with new ways of thinking, new kinds of program initiatives, new ways of running a school. Tilton somehow finds a good balance between tradition and innovation."

Curriculum Innovation
Allen: "Tilton went to the mat on this one (the "Understanding by Design" curriculum framework model) and decided to do some new thinking on its curriculum. We feel that we have not thrown out our traditional strengths. (Keeping) The kinds of things that have always been done at Tilton, we have reenergized and revitalized the curriculum by doing that work."

Inclusion and Participation for All
Allen: "Traditionally, as many schools here up north, (Tilton began as) a traditional boys school with a strong athletic program and that still remains and is still very strong.

The place (Tilton), for young women, is a very good place. The girls here are very visible and comfortable in what they're doing and really rise to some leadership roles and get a great deal of respect from the community even though they're still slightly in the minority. It seems to be a natural reflection of a good social climate. It's become a pretty friendly place for all kids.

Diversity, including gender diversity, racial diversity, learning diversity, works fairly well at Tilton."

Relationships Mean Most to Students
Allen: "The relationships that kids create here mean most relationships with their teachers, relationships with their advisors, and relationships with each other. That's a pretty purposeful thing. Part of the mission statement of the school is a good human relationship context is important for learning."

A Good Place to Go To School- A Supportive and Comprehensive Environment
Allen: "Tilton students experience, a lot of individual attention in the sense that they are acknowledged, supported, and intellectually challenged as unique individuals.

Using the Understanding by design Model as a guide for organizing the curriculum and total school program makes a difference. The learning experiences, in and out, of the classroom feel coherent and connected with each other."

Students and Faculty Appreciate Relationships
Allen: "Strength of human relationships is seen as the foundation stone on which learning and development take place. Students and faculty understand this intuitively and come to appreciate human relationships as one of Tilton's strengths. Returning students often express that they miss these relationships a great deal when they go to college."

What's your favorite part about the daily routine?
Allen: "Teaching and interaction with students around campus. As an academic dean, I have a lot of office/desk work to do. The energizing part of my day is in my direct work- teaching, counseling, or conversing with students."

Activities Bind the Community
Allen: "Special sports events, and community service events are very important in the school. The annual "Tilton Road Race" and "Halloween Haunted Tunnel" are huge events. Twice weekly school meetings led by student government give voice to student concerns and initiatives."

Fast Pace Living Keeps Everyone Busy
Allen: "The pace of life is extremely busy, for students and faculty. We call this "Tilton Time." The hardest part of my week is Wednesday at 11:00 PM- finishing campus duty after starting the day with 6:00 AM detention duty."

What's the one thing that you would change?
Allen: "Saturday Classes!"

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From The Asheville Citizen-Times (10/27/03)
A Blues-Greenies game is quite an affair

From NapaNews.com (10/1/03)
Boarding schools offer students an alternative

From San Antonio Express-News (9/27/03)
Then & Now: It's a college prep school, but statue of MacArthur still reigns

From the Boca Raton News
Saint Andrew's School dedicates Hammond lower School Library

From Newsweek
Why choose an independent school?

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Secondary School Admission Test
"Founded in 1957 by 10 independent school admission officers to eliminate multiple test requirements and administer a common admission denominator. SSATB today serves 1,700 educators, representing approximately 600 day and boarding schools and 70 educational consultants and organizations."

Upcoming testing dates:
November 8, 2003
December 13, 2003
January 10, 2004
February 7, 2004*
March 6, 2004
April 17, 2004
June 12, 2004*
*US/Canada Sites only

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