You’ve been accepted, now what? REVISIT

After a busy day at Manhattan’s Town School, Andy raced home and barely acknowledged his parents as he whipped open his laptop and hastily logged into the {fictional} Green Meadow Academy portal. He plunked in his username and password and leaned in. “Congratulations Andy! You’ve been accepted!”

In one motion, Andy yelped “I’m in at Green Meadow,” leaped up, hugged mom and dad, and then swung around and clicked the “Accept this Offer” link. Andy had been waiting for this moment for three years, crystal clear that from an academic, extracurricular, and community standpoint, Green Meadow was the perfect school for him. Andy was so decisive that the Admission Director later affirmed, “No sooner had we released decisions that our Business Office let me know that we had our first deposit… from Andy!”

Many independent school applicants who are lucky enough to be admitted to one or more schools, however, often lack Andy’s clear sense of where to attend. One school may have the perfect sense of community with beautiful buildings and dorms, but lacking a strong dance program. Another school boasting a state of the art dance studio may have older dorms, be located further from the airport, or possess any number of other factors that cause a student to be less than clear about which acceptance offer to accept.

Welcome to the wonderful world of revisits, an optional opportunity for admitted students to get another look at one or more schools ahead of the commitment deadline, which for most traditional independent schools is April 10th. “It was a bit of a dog and pony show,” Krissy’s mother described after crisscrossing New England to no less than four revisits over five days last spring. Indeed, after final decisions are shared on March 10th, the paradigm shifted from Krissy saying, “pick me, pick me,” to the four admission offices bending over backward to convince Krissy to choose their school over another.

At each revisit, Krissy arrived early and headed to a large morning meeting composed of many fellow admitted students, their parents, and a number of carefully selected current students who would spend the day as guides for Krissy and the other potential students. While Krissy headed off to classes with the student with whom she had been paired, her parents met chairs from the English, Language, Science, Math and History departments. “Come here, you’ll love it!” are common refrains from current students to Krissy and the other undecideds.

Indeed, revisits are intended to clarify options, allowing a student to revisit a school that has likely only been visited once, perhaps on a day with a torrential downpour, a drippy tour guide, or on a day when only one of two parents could participate. While clarification is the objective, revisits can occasionally confuse the process, resulting in a different school taking over top spot, or in Krissy’s case, “I love them all; I wish I could attend all four!”

While revisits can be effective in helping a student and family feel assured of their decision to attend a school, they do not always deliver a clear path. Some important things to keep in mind regarding revisits include:

  1. Revisits are for admitted students only, not for students who have been waitlisted or denied admission.
  2. Revisits are not required.
  3. Reserve early! Schools often have a few revisit days and some dates book up quickly.
  4. If a student has been admitted to multiple schools, try to narrow revisits to a few schools, as more can be confusing.
  5. Keep in mind that although clarity is the goal, revisits occasionally mystify the process.

In the end, as with most life decisions, a student and family must trust their instincts regarding which school to attend. When considering multiple independent school options, there are always tradeoffs. For students like Andy, who knew from the moment he stepped on campus at Green Meadow that it was the school for him, the choice is clear. For Krissy and most other applicants, revisits offer an effective way of learning a little more about the curriculum, programs, facilities and people at a given independent school. Hopefully, for the many students trying to make up their mind about where they are headed next fall, their path is made clearer following spring revisits.

About The Author

No data was found