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    #184477 - 03/11/14 12:12 AM School Options. GAI 160. Opinions Plz
    ejv Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 03/10/14
    Posts: 2
    Our 12 year old son's WISC (GAI) is a 160. He has already accelerated one school year and is scheduled to enter HS in Aug as a 13 year old. He loves math, physics, and science in that order. He has carries the emotional characteristics of many gifted children and he is a perfectionist in that his work product must meet his standards (exceeding what is expected).

    We will apply at Davidson and the Stanford EPGY Online HS program. But we're conflicted and would like to hear ALL opinions should Davidson or other choices not pan out:

    1) Do we put him in a traditional public HS that has an IB program even though the HS has reputation for drugs and low test scores (IB Program boosts the school's scores). Not comfortable with how HS kids will accept our son.

    2) Home school?

    3) Private HS. One hour drive each way. Huge cost. Other than a prestigious name, not sure the educational quality is equal to or significantly better than IB. In theory, drugs should not be a problem.

    4) Online HS (Stanford, Laurel Academy, etc...)

    From his HS experience, we obviously want him to continue his love of learning, to challenge himself, and to be in a position to be accepted at a University like MIT, Cambridge, Princeton, etc...

    Give me your pro and con arguments to the above. Which route would you take and why? I am interested in all view points.


    #184519 - 03/11/14 09:19 AM Re: School Options. GAI 160. Opinions Plz [Re: ejv]
    Sweetie Offline

    Registered: 06/05/11
    Posts: 669
    You are kidding yourself if you think private high school doesn't have drugs.
    ...reading is pleasure, not just something teachers make you do in school.~B. Cleary

    #184522 - 03/11/14 09:46 AM Re: School Options. GAI 160. Opinions Plz [Re: ejv]
    Val Offline

    Registered: 09/01/07
    Posts: 3294
    Loc: California
    We looked at Stanford OHS. Overall, my impression at the time (two years ago) was that they were pretty disorganized in the admissions office (e.g. they rarely answered their phones and we had to bug the dean for a decision letter after the date when they said they'd be sent out). They rejected DS. We applied a bit late by their standards (as you will be), which was presumably an important factor in the rejection (the website mentions that their "priority deadline" is Feb. 1; we applied in March). My son's grades were very good, and I suspect (without evidence) that his age was also factor (12-year-old entering freshman). I'd call them and ask about age and the chances of getting in at this point, because the application is NOT trivial. My impression is that there's a lot of homework.

    DS also took an EPGY course as a 9th grader (not an open enrollment one), and there was a lot of disorganization there, too. The program coordinator didn't answer emails, the entry requirements weren't clear, etc. etc. Plus EPGY isn't accredited, and he lost credit for the course at the public high school when he enrolled this year. The OHS is accredited, though.

    He did a few CTY courses (CTY is accredited). The homemade ones were fantastic. Not so much the canned ones they licensed in (e.g. the physics courses, all the AP courses). IMO, the canned courses at CTY are NOT worth the high expense. You can enroll in the same courses elsewhere for much less, anyway.

    DS is going to the local high school this year. It's okay but not much better than that. He's going to have to spend an extra year in school because of the lost credits (a math and French course also didn't count). This isn't a bad thing in some ways, because I'm not sure he'll be emotionally ready to leave for college at 16. But he may be able to attend a program called Middle College, which is a free dual-enrollment program. The kids spend all of their time at a local community college. They take a few core HS classes and are free to take college classes the rest of the time. Some get Associate degrees at the end of it. Do you have a middle college program where you live? They don't advertise them.

    Expensive private high school: it depends. There's an expensive prep school around here. It has amazing course opportunities and amazing facilities. Just superb. The homework load is enormous and every parent I've met with a child in that school says the same thing: "Your child's life is [school name]. There is nothing else, starting in middle school." I'd ask about that. I'd ask students or their parents, BTW, not the faculty or administrators.

    Small private schools tend to be more flexible. Big mainstream schools tend to pile on homework, using the rigor = more homework principle.

    As for the one-hour drive, I'd think very, very carefully about that. It means that your son will lose 2 hours a day, every day, to commuting. Two of my kids have been commuting 20 miles for 2 years, and it gets old quickly. If your son can't do his homework in the car, he'll be up very late at home and won't have time for anything else.

    We looked at Davidson, but it's 200 miles from here. I was impressed.

    Edited by Val (03/11/14 09:56 AM)

    #184524 - 03/11/14 09:50 AM Re: School Options. GAI 160. Opinions Plz [Re: ejv]
    indigo Offline

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4884
    Have you asked your DC for input? At the HS level, some may say the DC ought to be visiting/shadowing/sampling options and making a decision which the parents support, thereby fostering the child's internal locus of control and sense of responsibility for one's own education.

    There may be something fundamentally flawed in leading with a DC's GAI? In theory GAI is calculated when there is a potential learning disability indicated by the IQ test, therefore this may cause attention to focus on exploring any potential LD as a concern for "fit" with any particular school option or learning environment.

    In regard to #2, there have been several threads regarding homeschool and college admittance.

    In regard to #3, I agree with Sweetie.

    Has DC articulated what he is especially fond of at MIT, Cambridge, Princeton? Has DC frequented their websites and gathered information to help guide his decisions... as to how to get there from here?

    Best wishes to your DC and family in choosing a high school.

    #184534 - 03/11/14 12:18 PM Re: School Options. GAI 160. Opinions Plz [Re: ejv]
    puffin Offline

    Registered: 12/11/12
    Posts: 2035
    It does make a difference why the gai was calculated. Hard choice though. Is there only the one option for public high school?

    #184770 - 03/13/14 01:23 PM Re: School Options. GAI 160. Opinions Plz [Re: ejv]
    ejv Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 03/10/14
    Posts: 2
    Thank you all for your thoughtful responses.

    I don't want to erroneously speak to why GAI was calculated until after discussing with tester.

    Our child has visited Cambridge, Harvard, and MIT. He wants to be a theoretical physicist and he has liked the challenging learning environments in the classroom.

    Believe, I don't see private schools as a panacea. There are drugs. There are those that are there more for social status. Comparing out HS vs. optional privates, the privates are a bit better, not I don't think worth the cost.

    I appreciate the insight between Stanford and CTY. Will keep those points in mind.

    And I will look at the Middle College program. Sounds like a nice option too.

    Believe it or not, because our city is spread out, the commute to HS will be 25 mins each way. We could petition to a closer HS, but it has no IB program and is still 15 mins away. So either way we have a bit of a commute.

    THanks again!

    #185633 - 03/23/14 01:49 PM Re: School Options. GAI 160. Opinions Plz [Re: ejv]
    psychland Offline

    Registered: 02/27/14
    Posts: 69
    If your DC's main concern is the college he is going to get into I would not worry that much. My husband got in MIT and he graduated from a public, not so great, rural high school. He loves science and was an intel science award winner as well as valedictorian. He was also an athlete and had very high SAT scores but has never had an individual IQ test administered (just the group tests they do for gifted programs). His parents were not economically advantaged so the extra stuff was out of the question but he was passionate about engineering and his achievements and work ethic showed it. That will be what schools like MIT are looking for.

    #185637 - 03/23/14 03:08 PM Re: School Options. GAI 160. Opinions Plz [Re: Sweetie]
    JonLaw Offline

    Registered: 07/29/11
    Posts: 2007
    Loc: The Sub-Tropics
    Originally Posted By: Sweetie
    You are kidding yourself if you think private high school doesn't have drugs.

    Yes, but they are higher quality, purer, drugs.


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