Middle School Webinar This Thurs 12p

Thought Choosing a Kinder was hard? Yikes, Middle School!
Seats still available for this Thursday’s Middle School Madness webinar.

In this 60 minute live webinar we’ll break it all down. When to begin the process, Magnets and “That Point Strategy” demystified, Charters and other specialized programs, and we’ll talk about ‘tween fit. Live Q&A. *Strongly Recommended for 2nd-5th grade parents! 

Grab your seat HERE.

Can’t make the live event? Need to go over it again? No worries.
A pre-paid ticket* gets you the replay for a full 7 days afterward. 

March Update: Hello my friends!

Hello my friends,

Long time no connect, right? 

I’ve been thinking about how to re-enter the digital domain after such a spell away in one of the weirdest years to date. No, I haven’t gone anywhere. I’m still here, quietly working away assisting many fine young families with their school admissions in an equally weird and disrupted school landscape. It’s been the craziest fall admissions season I have ever seen, and even though it’s nearly spring it’s still crazy out there. Schools may be closed, start dates may be pending, but God Bless them, school admissions keep marching onward despite the blackout of tangible info, most importantly, will schools ever re-open, and what will they look like when they do? 

For months I had been imagining how I might announce some upcoming milestones…my daughter’s senior year accomplishments, her graduation, leaving for college, becoming an empty-nester… I started GoMamaGuide while she was still in preschool after all. Wow, feeling OLD much? Yet even those big moments as they approached us and as we navigated them, were some combination of disrupted, postponed, or thrown into a last-minute tailspin. I was hardly about to make beaming announcements when so much of our world was hinging on survival mode.

That being said, in hindsight can I just say I am mesmerized by my daughter’s resilience, her tenacity, and academic accomplishments, and am extremely pleased to announce that having traveled a combination of an LAUSD neighborhood school, Magnet, SAS, and small independent Charter school all tuition-free, (playing those lotteries as I teach you all to do), my daughter is now attending an IVY on the East Coast. 

I can hardly believe it.

She is a Poli-Sci major at UPenn, living in Philly, studying Constitutional Law in the very spot where our founders congregated to define our country’s unalienable rights some 245 years ago, a significant echo certainly not lost on me, and due to her incomparable high school training in Speech & Debate and Mock Trial, she has made the A team (Varsity level) Mock Trial team at Penn as a freshman, heading into AMTA’s ORCS as a Closing Attorney, which is virtually unheard of. I promise, you don’t want to get into an argument with that one! 

Despite all the year’s challenges, and there have been many, she has hit her stride and is thriving, paving her way forward, which is all one can ask for, as a parent. So, on a big level, my work here is done, nurturing her development so she can fly.

As I scan the horizon with so much unsettled and unclear with regards to public education in general, and Los Angeles schools in particular, I can honestly say, I have never seen anything like what is going on out there now. But I’m here to share knowledge and support you through this journey, whatever it becomes, and as such, I will continue to offer a combination of Zoom and Phone and Relocation Consultations to you, guiding you forward with your public school questions and decisions. 

I have laid out a number of events in the comings days that I invite you to participate in, including a fresh new webinar lineup, which many have been asking for. These are all live events but can be watched from the comfort of your own homes with a glass of something festive in your comfy clothes. I won’t judge. But do join us:

Weds, Mar 10 at 7p – SmartTrack College Funding is holding a free webinar
What You Need To Know NOW About Paying Less For College 
*Recommended for parents of 8-12th graders.
You NEED this info folks. I’ve taken this seminar twice and it is SO informative. Just like Magnet points, you want to learn this info early. Ideally before 10th grade in order to maximize your financial positioning and pay less for college.

Thurs, Mar 11 at 12p – Kindergarten 101: Know Your Public Options webinar
*Recommended for parents of 2-5 year olds.
This is the talk I’ve been giving to stressed-out parents all over Los Angeles for over a decade, updated with the most current school info.

Mon, Mar 15 LAUSD Choices initial lottery results are announced. This is not a death sentence, this is just the beginning of a long road ahead.

Tues, Mar 16 at 8p – If you’re on Clubhouse, Join MotherbirdLA’s Mia and I for a live “Wine and Whine” Chat dicing it up on LA schools after the LAUSD Choices lottery results come out. 

Thurs, Mar 25 at 12p – Middle School Madness webinar
*Recommended for 2nd-5th grade parents.
You thought choosing a Kinder was tough? Yikes! Middle School!


And, coming in April…I’ll be bringing a new webinar sharing all I have learned:
Date tbd  – Maximizing High School With An Eye Towards College
Learn how to maximize your high school experience in order to optimize college opportunities. Just like everything else I teach, there is a strategy, and it starts early.

View the whole GoMamaGuide webinar series

Hang in there folks. Go easy on yourselves and your children.  I’m sending all of you, from the littles to the grown-ups, a giant virtual hug for making it this far. ❤

Just released! GoMamaGuide to LAUSD: Biggest Guide Yet!

It’s HERE!

New for the 2020-2021 School Year!

Just in time for the lotteries!

Packed with information yet delivered in easily understood bite-sized pieces. Get the Big Guide to LAUSD. Covers every region within LAUSD: North, South, East and West!

.
The Latest Elementary School Edition
GoMamaGuide to LAUSD 

LA Public Schools Demystified

by Tanya Anton

* Offers a thorough understanding of ALL your LAUSD public school options
* Outlines how (and when) to tackle each type of application process
* The latest changes to the eChoices lotteries for 2020-2021!
* Magnets and “The Point System” demystified
* The difference between Affiliated and Independent Charter schools
* Dual Language Immersions, Gifted, SAS, Open Enrollment, and other options
* Permitting in and out of District
* How to tour: what to look for in a school and more
* Learn how to expertly navigate schools in LAUSD!

Includes:
* Complete List of All LAUSD Public Elementary Schools (sorted by category and local district) 
* Handy month-by-month Application Timeline
* Evaluating Your Priorities Exercise
* Bonus Materials, Charts, and Resources
* Nearly 75 pages!
* All this for only $30 – less than what you’d spend at a Happy Hour!
* No need to leave home — Guidebook shipped to your door!

Note: Individual schools are not ranked or profiled. For individual assistance, and to find the best fit schools for your child, please consider booking a consultation with me.

View Table of Contents

GoMamaGuides have already helped thousands of LA parents.
About the GoMamaGuidebooks:
“Best $$ I’ve spent in a long time!”

“I purchased your guide last year. It was the single most helpful resource I found
to assist with our search.”

To order, click Buy Now! 
Only $30 plus $3.99 s&h via Paypal.

Please verify your shipping address with Paypal before finalizing purchase.
All sales are final.

New Webinars Just Added!

The GoMamaGuide “Lunch & Learn” Webinar Series has officially launched and I want to thank everyone who has participated so far! I am loving the no-driving part, seriously. Brilliant.

Since it’s eChoices season and several of you weren’t able to jump on those first few webinars, I’ve added two more that will directly help you with your eChoices application.

An additional Mastering Magnets webinar is scheduled for this Thursday, October 11…

And since SAS joins Gifted Magnets as part of the eChoices app this year, you might want to also check out Understanding Gifted Options next Tuesday, October 16 where we cover all your GIFTED worries, and break down the goods on SAS, GATE, and that string of acronyms: GHA, HG, HGA, IHP.

All Webinars start at 12p and run 60 mins. But if you can’t make it live, don’t sweat it, as long as you sign up BEFORE the start of the webcast, you’ll get the replay for another 7 days afterward. To sign up, just CLICK ON THE PICTURE (above) of the event you’d like to attend. If you have related questions you’d like me to cover, you can email them to me in advance, or use the live interactive Q&A feature during the webinar. Learning has never been so easy, informative, and focused on just what you need to hear. It’s like we’re together, but without all the LA hassle.

So grab a snack and your burning school questions, and join me for a Lunch & Learn Webinar. Book your spot today!

Heads Up! SAS Now Included in Oct/Nov EChoices App!

Heads Up Everyone.

If you are considering applying to an SAS or Schools For Advanced Studies (gifted) program for next year, LAUSD has moved the application deadline from March (when it had previously been due), to the newly revamped Oct/Nov eChoices application.

That means SAS apps are DUE by Friday, November 9, 2018 by 5p. 

FOUR AND A HALF MONTHS EARLIER THAN LAST YEAR!

Yep.

This is causing a slight last-minute panic, both for SAS schools AND parents, however I have gathered everything you will need to get this done on time.

Here are the bullet points:

• You will have up to 3 choices for SAS on the eChoices application, so choose and sequence them wisely. You will have a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd choice, so think about which SAS school you want the most, and also consider which one is most likely to have space as residents will have priority enrollment in the school before SAS applicants.

• You only have the potential to draw one SAS offer from the eChoices lottery, however you could also apply and get drawn for a Magnet AND a Dual Language Program AND an Admissions Criteria School (new category) as well. In fact, you could ostensibly win all 5 program categories on the eChoices application. Then you will have to make a choice between programs.

• So to recap, if you want to apply to some SAS programs, you will do it in Oct/Nov on the online eChoices application while you’re also applying for Magnets, Dual Language Programs, an Admission Criteria School, and also Permits With Transportation (if your school is a sending school.)

• If the SAS program you are interested in is also an Affiliated Converted Charter School, you cannot use this process. You must apply directly through the school’s onsite non-resident lottery. At a later date. Set by each school. (Valley, Palisades peeps, we’re mainly talking about you here!)

• There are NO POINTS for any program EXCEPT the Magnet program. (That’s a relief!)

• Additionally, in order to apply to an SAS program, your child must meet the GIFTED eligibility threshold and submit the necessary paperwork by the Nov 9th deadline. 

• There are multiple ways to meet eligibility, however probably the easiest method is to have your child’s Teacher and Principal or Director fill out the Verification of Eligibility Form, especially if your child is coming from preschool, private school, a charter, or another non-LAUSD program.

• In addition, for incoming Kindergarten SAS applicants, you will also need your child’s current Teacher and/or Director to fill out and sign the SAS Kindergarten Readiness Checklist Form.

To repeat, you’ll need BOTH these forms (linked below) filled out and signed:

The Verification of Eligibility Form
The SAS Kindergarten Readiness Checklist Form

Send the signed completed forms either by mail or deliver in person BEFORE the Friday, November 9, 2018 5p deadline:

U.S. Mail:
Unified Enrollment
P.O. Box 513307
Los Angeles,  CA  90051

or Hand Deliver:
L.A. Unified Headquarters/Unified Enrollment
25th Floor Reception Desk
333 South Beaudry Ave
Los Angeles, CA  90017

Don’t you love a good paperwork scramble? Yeah. I thought so.

• If your child is already enrolled in an LAUSD school and has already been identified as GATE, the District will automatically check the student’s eligibility through the school’s records so in that case you won’t need to submit these forms.

SAS Schools Alphabetical List
SAS Schools FAQ
SAS Schools List by Grade Level

=====

SAS-eChoices Commentary:
(Warning! Tanya’s getting on her soapbox. Hey, my blog, my soapbox!)

I’ve been calling around to various SAS schools for the past week to gather as much intel as possible ahead of this October 1st eChoices/SAS launch, and I can tell you after speaking with more than half a dozen SAS school office personnel, they are just as “in the dark” about these new application changes as “we the people” are. One Office Manager from a prominent SAS program asked me to call her back once I found out what the new policy was! Really? So instead of the SAS School being the source of intel, the parent has to be? Really? Another SLC Coordinator from an equally high profile SAS school in another part of town echoed similar sentiments. She just kind of sighed and resolved herself that this year “we’ll just figure it out as we go.”

Oh great. Tell that to the parents who were not informed of the changes, who will show up in March and have completely missed the SAS deadline.

Well yes, there’s a late application starting in February, but your child will then be placed at the bottom of the already sequenced waitlist. Result? Well…you do the math.

True to LAUSD form, this notion of consolidating a number of program applications onto a “common app” and moving the deadline a good 4.5 months earlier than usual should have been rolled out and announced widely months before we all found ourselves at the start of the application cycle. However that simply was not the case. It appears that some SAS schools are literally just now finding out about these new changes right at the same time you are, creating unnecessary stress and confusion in what could have been a smoother, more inclusive rollout. Or maybe the Principal or Magnet Coordinator knew about it, but the office staff fielding parent phone calls had no idea at all. I guarantee there will be disappointed parents who “didn’t get the memo” (since as far as I can tell there wasn’t one) who will bring their paper SAS apps to the schools in March just like in previous years, only to find they will now be placed hopelessly far down the waitlist and have little chance of enrollment. Because. No. Notice.

And shall I continue?

You know what’s great about producing a list of all 288 SAS programs all cutely colored and listed in alphabetical order?

Nothing. Absolutely nothing is great about that. Except for, um, at least there’s a list. 

You’ve got elementaries along with middles and high schools, all mashed together in one long alphabetical list of schools that span over 720 square miles across this vast behemoth of a city. Clearly no one on the “eChoices Common App Graphics and Strategic Planning Team” has ever ACTUALLY had to find a school for their kid within a reasonable commuting distance from where they live.

Ok LAUSD. Let me break it down for you.

For a parent seeking a school for their children, this is absolutely not helpful. I mean, if my 2nd grader needs an SAS program and I live in Van Nuys, why the heck do I want to wade through a 3-column multi-page list of hundreds of schools I’ve never heard of, mixing San Pedro schools with Silver Lake schools with schools in Cheviot Hills and KTown? And how the heck am I going to know the difference if I’ve never even heard of these schools to begin with? It doesn’t work, folks.

I feel like that scene in Spinal Tap, where Nigels’s backstage playing with his “mini” baloney sandwich….

“I’ve been working with this now for about half an hour… I can’t figure out….”

 

 

So in conclusion, parents, here is your memo.

The SAS application is now going to be part of the eChoices application which means it, and all the necessary supporting eligibility documentation, will be due by Friday, November 9th before 5p. Do this at the same time you are applying for Magnets, and Dual Language Immersions, and that other new category, ACS, and Permits with Transportation if you qualify for those.

Should you find you need assistance with this or any of your K-12 Los Angeles public school choices, please know I am available for phone and in-home consultations, and I would be more than happy to work with you to come up with your very own personalized public school plan based on your specific needs and what makes sense for your family.

Best of luck to all of you.

xo

(exit soapbox.)

 

 

GoMamaGuide to LAUSD: Elementary Edition has arrived!

Hey folks,

I’ve been promising to write this guidebook literally for years, and now, HERE IT IS!

Packed with information yet delivered in easily understood bite-sized pieces. Get the Big Guide to LAUSD. Covers every region within LAUSD: North, South, East and West!

.
**Just Released! Biggest Guide Yet!

GoMamaGuide to LAUSD – Elementary Edition
LA Public Schools Demystified
By Tanya Anton

.
* Offers a thorough understanding of ALL your LAUSD public school options
* Outlines how (and when) to tackle each type of application process
* Magnets and “The Point System” demystified
* How Charters work and who is eligible
* Dual Language Immersions, GATE, Open Enrollment, and other options
* Permitting in and out of District
* How to tour: what to look for in a school and more…
* Learn how to expertly navigate schools in LAUSD!
.* Covers how to navigate all of LAUSD!
Includes:
* Complete List of all LAUSD Public Elementary Schools (broken down by category and region)
* Handy month-by-month Application Timeline
* Evaluating Your Priorities Exercise
* Bonus Materials, Charts and Resources
* Nearly 70 pages!
* All this for only $30 –about what you’d spend on a pilates class!
* No need to leave home — Guidebook shipped to your door!
Note: 
Individual schools are not ranked or profiled. For individual assistance, and to find the best fit schools for your child, please consider booking a consultation with me.
.

 

GoMamaGuides have already helped thousands of LA parents.
About the GoMamaGuidebooks:
“Best $$ I’ve spent in a long time!”

“I purchased your guide last year. It was the single most helpful resource I found to assist with our search.”

To order, click Buy Now!  
Only $30 plus $3.99 s&h via Paypal.

Please verify your shipping address with Paypal before finalizing purchase. All sales are final.

SAS Applications Now Through March 30th (It’s earlier this year!)

GATE
Hey folks, heads up! They moved the SAS date up a month!

If your child qualifies, NOW is the time (March 1-30, 2017) to apply for LAUSD’s Schools For Advanced Studies (SAS) programs for next fall. The deadline to apply for the 2017-18 school year is March 30, 2017. Acceptance notifications come out April 21st.

In order to apply to an SAS school, students must meet specific eligibility requirements, either by being identified as Gifted and Talented (GATE), verified by their teacher and principal, or by meeting specific testing thresholds.

What is an SAS school? It is a specialized program for qualified students that (hopefully and depending on the strength of the program and staff) delves deeper into course material at an accelerated pace. From the LAUSD website: “Gifted/Talented Programs creates high end learning opportunities which allow students to flourish in stimulating academic and social environments. In designing challenging educational opportunities, we strive to raise the floor, remove the walls and eliminate the ceiling on learning.”

If your gifted child is wait listed at their magnet choice and you haven’t yet heard if they got into that charter school, the possibility of an SAS program can be another school option to consider. You can apply to more than one SAS program, you apply directly at your desired SAS school site, and the school will determine which applicants get accepted or not by the end of the application period. Some schools handle applications on a first-come first-served basis, and most schools base student acceptance on a more selective criteria which might include a student interview plus review of work samples, cumulative grades, teacher recommendations and SBAC test results.

*Note: For middle and high school, they will look at your child’s grades going back 2-3 years, making your child’s grades and test scores from 3rd, 4th and the 1st semester of 5th grade particularly important when applying for middle school, and 6-8th grade outcomes critical for high school applications.

For more on SAS (Schools for Advanced Studies) programs, see: achieve.lausd.net/gate

SAS application and criteria: achieve.lausd.net/Page/2033

All about GATE options and “The List” of SAS programs by area/grade begins on page 5: List

You can pick up applications at each SAS school office during the application period, or download it here: achieve.lausd.net/Page/2033

Transportation is not provided for these programs, so keep that in mind when applying.

As always, if you want to discuss anything further, I’m here to help!
phone consultation
in-home consultation

SAS Applications Now Thru April 30th

GATEIf your child qualifies, NOW is the time (April 1-30th) to get those Schools For Advanced Studies, (SAS) applications in. The deadline to apply for the 2014-15 school year is April 30, 2014.

Acceptance notifications come out in early May. In order to apply to an SAS school, students must meet specific eligibility requirements, either by being identified as Gifted and Talented (GATE), verified by their teacher and principal, or by meeting specific testing thresholds.

What is an SAS school? It is a specialized program for qualified students that (hopefully and depending on the strength of the program and staff) delves deeper into course material at an accelerated pace. From the LAUSD website: “Gifted/Talented Programs creates high end learning opportunities which allow students to flourish in stimulating academic and social environments. In designing challenging educational opportunities, we strive to raise the floor, remove the walls and eliminate the ceiling on learning.”

If your gifted child is wait listed at their magnet choice and you haven’t yet heard if they got into that charter school, the possibility of an SAS program can be another school option to consider. You can apply to more than one SAS program, you apply directly at your desired SAS school site, and the school will determine which applicants get accepted or not by the end of the application period. Some schools handle applications on a first-come first-served basis, other schools base student acceptance on a more selective criteria which might include a student interview plus review of work samples, cumulative grades, teacher recommendations and test results.

*Note: For middle and high school, chances are excellent they will look at your child’s grades going back 2-3 years, making your child’s 3rd, 4th and 1st semester 5th grade grades particularly important when applying for middle school, and 6-8th grade grades critical for high school applications.

For more on SAS (Schools for Advanced Studies) programs, see: New LAUSD GATE website!
achieve.lausd.net/gate

SAS application and criteria: achieve.lausd.net/Page/2033

List of SAS programs by area/grade:
List

You can pick up applications at each SAS school office during the application period, or download it here:
achieve.lausd.net/Page/2033

As always, if you want to discuss anything further, I’m here to help!

phone consultation

in-home consultation

 

Another Fantastic Middle School Event

NavMS

.

Thanks to organizer Julie Hoang and the Friends of Playa Vista Elementary School, another fabulous gathering of parents convened last night curious to learn about their public Middle School options on the Westside.

It’s never too early to learn “the lay of the land” so time can be spent touring, gathering info, talking to parents and collecting school impressions –all which will help formulate your school plan.

SAS Applications Accepted Now Through April 30th

GATEIf your child qualifies, NOW is the time to get those SAS applications in. (SAS stands for Schools For Advanced Studies.) The deadline to apply to an SAS school is Tuesday, April 30th for the 2013-14 school year. Acceptance notifications will come out May 6-10th.

In order to apply to an SAS school, students must meet eligibility requirements, either by being identified as GATE (Gifted and Talented), verified by their teacher and principal, or by meeting specific testing thresholds.

If your child is wait listed at their magnet choice and you haven’t yet heard if they got into that charter school, SAS programs (if they qualify) can be another school option to consider. You may apply to more than one SAS program, you apply directly at the school site, and the school will determine which applicants get accepted or not at the end of the application period. Sometimes its handled on a first-come first served basis, other schools base student enrollment on a more selective criteria and student review.

For more on SAS (Schools for Advanced Studies) programs, including eligibility requirements and the list of school programs in each local area, see:

http://www.lausd.net/lausd/offices/GATE/prog-opt-3.html