“Parent Involvement”: Only for Bake Sales?

The recently upheld “Parent Trigger” law in California, which allows a 50% + 1 majority of parents at a state defined “failing” school and/or incoming feeder school to petition to change the school to a Charter, fire the principal and staff, close the school or restructure the school, gives parents additional tools to shape their kids’ educational experience.   Many of…

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To Cheat: Not A Simple Decision

To Cheat: to deprive of something valuable by the use; to practice fraud or trickery of deceit or fraud  (Merriam-Webster.com)   If deprive means to withhold, what is missed in the end by both the withholder and others?  What possibilities could have been realized or ideas built?  In a student’s mind, what is the value that comes only through cheating?  And, why…

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Guest Post: Parent to Parent Advice about College Applications

Norman’s daughter will be starting her Freshman year at the University of Washington in Fall 2012.    He offers the following perspective, having just completing the college application process: _________________________ Applying for college is an exciting time for every family.  It represents all the hopes and dreams that your student has had since he or she brought home her first report…

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You Can Dish It. Can You Take It?

Opening up to outside review of one’s work, including college essays, can create a wincing-eyes-jaw-clenching-fidgeting reaction to the surely unfounded criticism anticipated to be unleashed.  While the ultimate reward of such perspective can be a sharper argument and greater understanding, the human tendency to prevent humiliation can get the best of us.  (Incidentally, as humans we tend to confuse humility…

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Just Because You Can, Does That Mean You Should?

Are we “solving” issues too quickly with medication, or just “kicking the can down the road” only now with more complications for a generation of today’s youth?  According to a recent Wall Street Journal article, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention reports 14% of Americans 12 years and older have been on medications for 10 years or longer. …

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To Transfer or Not to Transfer: The Community College Dilemma

Parents (and increasingly students) are asking us about transferring from a community college to a 4 year university from early in their high school careers and making transfer a primary option, rather than a Plan B.  Community college transfer became a more serious option when families were uncertain about admissions chances.  Now, younger students and their families are beginning to…

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You Can’t Divorce Your College Degree

The reputation of a college and its alumni is no small consideration in choosing schools for application.    Networks of professionals and access to opportunities all can be gained with an institution’s name attached to your resume.  (Of course, you still have to earn a position and perform consistently to stay in that position.)  Yet, the college’s reputation and subsequent experience…

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High School = College Tours “Invade” Family Vacations

Once students enter high school, parents start planning summer vacations to coordinate with college campus visits (often wondering where all the time went).   More exposure to college life helps students make informed decisions about applications and eventually enrollment. Listen to our tips that will help make time on campus more productive: Starting tours early also gives families time to transition…

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An “If” Halts UC Tuition Increase…Temporarily?

If voters approve a tax increase on November’s ballot, then the UC will freeze tuition at current amounts–$12,192.   (The UC Regents discussed the possibility of a 6% tuition increase for 2012-13 at their last meeting and were expected to vote on the increase in July.  That vote will not be called.)   However, if voters DO NOT pass the tax increase,…

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