Monday, May 13, 2013

Round II Letters Should Arrive Today

Round II Letters should arrive today.  Did you get an assignment?  Are you going to take it?
Are you happy, sad, relieved?

239 comments:

  1. Just accosted the mailman and got our letter. No new assignment—original assignment was Daniel Webster SI, #13 on our list. Does anyone know how the priority works for the waiting pool?

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    1. Curious: did you put the same list of schools on your Round 2 request or did it change? It would be great if people could list their schools on here when they respond. Thanks for letting us know you got a letter!

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  2. so you got a letter saying 'no new spot"? interesting. the website is confusing as I thought it read that if you werent getting a new assignment you wouldnt get aletter.

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    1. No, it says you wouldn't get an *offer* not that you wouldn't get a letter.

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    2. 1+1, did you get a better assignment, or are you sticking with MP?

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  3. Anonymous 12:06 here: Yes, we received a letter saying they were "unable to offer your child an assignment to any of your choice requests," so he was assigned to Webster, where we already enrolled.

    We listed 10 schools on round 2 as opposed to the 23 we listed in round 1. Our top 10 was essentially the same. Alvarado SI is our #1 and Alvarado GEN our #2. (We live in the Junipero Serra AA.) Given the demand for Alvarado, we wonder if it's pointless to include that one on our wait pool or if we should list something that has a better chance of happening. Would appreciate any insights others may have about the wait pool process.

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  4. We just received our letter. We got Chavez again which was not on our Round 1 or 2 list. We listed 8 in Round 1 and 20 in Round 2.

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  5. uch, this does not seem good so far. i am nervous. interesting how sfsud said 40% of people got a second round pick. where is everyone?

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  6. We got an acceptance to Miraloma! We are super excited and grateful to get this placement. We did not get any of our choices in Round 1.

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    1. Congrats! That was number one on our two rounds, not home yet to see our results from Round 2.

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    2. thank you for replying. I was starting to feel so bad for everyone. It's nice to hear from the people for whom it worked!

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  7. Just got an assignment so that the twins are now in the same school (our 7th choice out of 21 from first round). One twin was already enrolled there for round 1, so had the sibling priority to link them. We did not get an "upgrade" to the six schools we had higher up. That being said, I am completely relieved that we are not facing dropoffs 15 minutes apart, plus another preschool dropoff as well.

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  8. just received our letter as well- no new assignment... ugh!

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  9. We got Harvey Milk which was 20 something on our list of 25. Anyone have any recent expereince with Milk? I know they have had some bumps in the road with the new principal the last 2 years.

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    1. There have been bumps, but really I think it is a good place. Small-- only 250 students, some really exceptional teachers and a lovely campus. It is a school worth investing in.

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    2. My daughter is just finishing up kinder there. She's reading well into the first grade level and loves it! Yes, bumps, but we're happy that she's happy and learning. The teachers are experienced and dedicated.

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    3. We have been there for 2 years. Yes, there is drama. That said, it's a great school. The teachers and staff are great and there are many involved parents. The school is small and there really is a sense of community.

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  10. We got our letter and did not receive a new assignment. We are still at Yick Wo, which we know is a good school, just not in our top 5 that we listed for Round 2. Our choices were:
    1. Grattan
    2. Alamo
    3. Lafayette
    4. Peabody
    5 Lilienthal

    We knew our chances were slim with these schools. Yick Wo was our last choice out of 18 in Round 1 (grateful we got ANY of our choices) and then we decided to only go for the schools we really wanted rather than continuously be only "okay" with anything we got other than Yick Wo.

    What drives me nuts is I know parents who are assigned schools in OUR top 5 but who are really disappointed in their school. We would so love to have any of their schools!

    Congrats to anyone who gets your Round 2 choice. Sorry for everyone who didn't. We are going ALL THE WAY and waiting to see if we get something we really want, even if it's the first week of school. I know I should try to be happy with what we have, but I look at my son and I keep feeling like I am doing something wrong because he's so great (I know we all feel like our kids are special, and they ARE.)

    Everything works out in the end and for a reason, right?

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    1. We went to Yick Wo's Art Fundraiser in April. Met many parents of current and future students who all absolutely love the school because of the principal, teachers, diversity and close knit community. Only negative is the late start time (9:30am). At least your son has a wonderful option.

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    2. Yick wo is our attendance area school and was our #1 choice I round 1 and round 2 last year. Did not get in. Infuriating that it is your #18 and presumably not your AA and you got in.

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    3. 0 for 19 first round... got Yick Wo in round 2, our 26th choice of 29.

      We had our area school listed #4 and didnt get it (New Traditions) so can relate to your frustration.

      Does this mean all new placements were either siblings, disadvantaged or in the AA?

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  11. Following up on an earlier post, we did not receive any assignment, after getting Vis Valley in the first round. We amended our list to only James Lick and Everett. My 5th grader will be heading to St. Paul's.

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  12. We got a letter - no change, no new assignment. We only one school on our 2nd round form - Sunnyside - but didn't get it. On to the waiting pool.

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  13. Got my second twin to Harvey Milk, to accompany his sister. I also heard mixed opinions about the school, but they recently had an open house to which they invited all the newcomers and it made quite a positive impression...They also organize 2 playgroups for new kindergarteners some time during the summer.

    Similarly to anonymous at 4.42, we would love to hear more about this school

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    1. Hi Anonymous, I am 4:42 Is Harvey Milk your neighborhood school? I just read through the great school comments and it looks like there are some unhappy people. Of course only people who are motivated one way or the other usually take the time to comment on their schools there. I am not exactly sure what 4/23 article they are referring to. A lot of posts came after that date and one refers to an article on that date but no link.

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    2. Not a neighborhood school, but possibly a better choice than our neighborhood school, Flynn. The test scores, for whatever they are worth, are much better and going up every year.
      All I know that the principal changed in the last 2-3 years and that made some parents leave the school.
      I will still attend the playdates they organize during the summer to try to get a better feel. You will get an invite by mail, too.
      We do have a private school as a back up...

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    3. I think this is the article from April 23 that 7:05 was looking for:

      http://www.greatschools.org/school-choice/7282-melting-pot-diversity-at-schools.gs

      Good luck to you all, it seems like a very special school with a special history. I really hope they work out whatever problems they have been having. I think they are getting a new K teacher this year, maybe some new blood will be helpful.

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    4. We moved to the city in April. We got offered a spot mid-term at Tenderloin Community School, and opted to enroll our child in a Catholic school instead. FWIW, we had filled the 2nd round paperwork, were 0/20 in that, ended up assigned to Harvey Milk. We will not be taking up that spot. Had we been offered it in April we'd have considered it since it is pretty close to our McKinley AA (#1 choice incidentally).

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    5. The article is not a good one. The author used HMCRA to tell a story she wanted to tell about gentrification and racial conflict. While those factors have existed, I really don't think they accurately describe what has happened at Milk in the last couple years.

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    6. Curious what the 10.55 AM responder believes really happened in HM in the least couple of years?

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    7. Hi its 4:42 again. I knew several people who were at HM 2 years ago but all left before this year. The 3 families all had kids on IEPs. One issue is the resource specialist died and they didn't rehire the position for a very long time. They were having all sorts of issues with the IEPs being implemented. There were a couple of other issues that probably aren't for a public forum.

      Anyway, we plan to enroll and give it a shot but also put in for round 3. We are committed to public school either way. Moving out of the city is not something we are considering. We know others who have made it work and we know we can too.

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    8. 10:55 here. After a beloved principle retired, Christina Velasco took over as Principal. She was really dynamic and connected well with parents. However, teachers felt unsupported especially around discipline issues and she was asked to leave. This was the beginning of the drama, b/c a lot of very involved parents felt shocked and left out of the loop. Next, Tracy Peoples was appointed by the school district to be Principal. She is pretty effective one on one, but does not project well to large groups. She had some significant conflict with some very involved parents in a fundraising non-profit for the school. Ms. Peoples seems to get quiet in the face of conflict and this was not helpful to the larger parent community.

      Milk is a school with an increasing white and middle class population. There have been some minor conflicts around this, but I don't see the kind of "us" and "them" dynamics that the article suggested. There are a lot of involved parents (of different ethnic backgrounds and varying SES).

      I believe the worst of the drama is behind us. This kind of difficulty can show up at any school. Committed staff and parents can overcome it in service of our children.

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    9. Harvey Milk has a fundraiser this wed. We are going to attend to start to get to know the community there.

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  14. We just went 0 for 32 this round! No assignment. 0 for 10 in the first round.

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  15. We got nothing either. Such a disappointment!

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  16. nothing here. 0/20 first round and 0/21 second round...

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  17. 40%. Ha! I;d like to know of that 40%, how many had already received a school from their list in the first round. Having not gotten anything on either our round 1 or 2 list, I have little faith in the SFUSD system or its attempts at equity. Pathetic. You are driving us out of the public system and possibly out of the city.

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    1. We got our 3rd choice second round, from 0 in the first round

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  18. Nothing here after getting none of our choices in the first round either. We will go charter for now and move out of the city as soon as possible. Seriously, fuck SFUSD and fuck its acolytes (you know who you are) who claim that this system works.

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    1. Do you mind sharing which Charter you are going to?

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  19. No KIP for round 2. I wasn't surprised, as I'd heard that 2 siblings didn't get into Korean Immersion at Claire Lilienthal in round 1.

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    1. Bummer!!
      mq

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    2. I don't understand. How did siblings not get in? Was it a waste of time to even put KIP down? Why don't they tell people these things when you submit the form?

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    3. In the past, there were more sibling applicants than English-only spots. Since the program only has 9 kindergarten spots for English speakers and Claire Lilienthal is K-8, it's easy to how that could happen. That doesn't seem to have been the case this year, so I'm not sure what happened.

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  20. No change. Still at Sunnyside, which we really are excited about (just not excited about the drive). I'm bummed it's a let-down for us, because we are SO excited about Sunnyside. Such a weird process this is...good luck everyone...

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    1. What was on your list? We were hoping to get Sunnyside which is up the street from us. We were placed at Lakeshore and got none of our choices Round 2.

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  21. 0/12 1st round, assigned to Cobb..0/12 again round 2. We'll be going to parochial school instead. I had hope to send my kids to public school as I do believe in the system but the assignment process is terrible! I should be able to send my kids to our neighborhood school.

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  22. First Round went 0 for 15. Second Round got our #3 choice - ALamo. Very happy about it. Finally got a little luck.

    good luck everyone.

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  23. We went 0/10 in round 1 and got assigned to Longfellow, which was a disappointment, to say the very least. For round 2, we added 13 schools (for a total of 23) and reconsidered our round 1 top 10, adding Jose Ortega to it after hearing some wonderful, "hidden gem"-type things about the school from current Ortega parents, and seeing that spots were still open there after round 1. Our letter today gave us a spot at Ortega, which has us both thrilled and relieved after our round 1 (bad) luck. If we can luck out by participating in the wait pool for our #1 choice (and AA school) Miraloma, then great. But overall, we are in a much happier place than we were after round 1.

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  24. 0/10 first round. Second round got Garfield, our 14th choice. We don't know much about the school, as we listed it in an act of desperation. It's clear across town from us (we're in Bernal) and has a 7:50 start time. It's not reviewed here, so I'd love any thoughts/advice about the school. Thanks!!!

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    1. Garfield is a wonderful school! Just in case you haven't noticed, the schools in the northeastern sector of the City, minus Yick Wo, are hardly ever reviewed or even talked about here.

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  25. Had Miraloma as #1 both rounds (our neighborhood school) and got it round two. I'm in disbelief this process worked for us. My strategy for round two was to put the schools I felt people would want to leave Miraloma for (k-8's, top test scores, etc.). Who knows what triggered the assignment. This process is torture - so sorry to all of you who are struggling.

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    1. Seems like multiple posters on this site got Miraloma in round 2. Why are there so many spots still for Miraloma? My neighbor also just got it in round 2 and she claims she has a friend in her preschool who did as well. I know it's anecdotal, but it feels like a lot of round 1 people who got Miraloma gave up their spot - anyone know why? Was it to go private?

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    2. We also got Miraloma in round 2. Does anybody know anything about aftercare availability?

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    3. curious, is Miraloma your AA school for all those who got it in round 2?

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    4. Yes, it's our AA. Am curious if it was NOT others AA as I know several folks in the area who wanted it.

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    5. Miraloma has several great aftercare options, the most popular (and expensive) being their MEEP program. They also have language, music and other extra options! Congrats on your placement.

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  26. We got 0/13 on round two but did get a spot at Edison Charter. A bit relieved. Anyone else going to TECA? Any reviews/comments appreciated.

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    1. My child is finishing Kinder @ TECA now & we are really pleased- teachers are true gems! Happy to speak further - krsherwood at yahoo dot com :)

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  27. Got nothing either. On the plus side, this is a good market to sell our house and move!

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  28. 0/12 in round 2 for us. Assigned at Cobb again. MPS, here we come!

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  29. Does anyone know what the right strategy is for Round 3? Given that you can only be in the wait pool for ONE school, do you shoot the moon and aim for a trophy school, or aim lower and hope your odds are better if you choose a school that is in lower demand? I just went to the PPS website to look for info and only found a basic list of dates

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    1. Your Round Three strategy is completely dependent on your AA, CTIP preference, and what type of backup you have. I would recommend putting down, say Clarendon, if you have a space at a perfectly wonderful private or public school for next year and some sort of preference (either AA, but better yet, CTIP preference). Priority is maintained in the wait pool runs. So if you have no backup, can't homeschool and another year of preschool isn't an option, find a school with lower demand and a smaller wait pool (EPC will tell you this and they usually publish it). Schools with a high number of classrooms increase your odds. There a lots of totally functional schools in this city where your child will probably flourish. And if you hate it, you can always try again for the first grade lottery.

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    2. Folks should consider Glen Park. It's a great school with a strong parent committee and principal. Amazing things are happening there. Rise above the lagging historical reputation. Gorgeous new school, committed teachers, involved parents, lots of improvement plans....

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    3. We had Glen Park high on our list for both rounds and did not get it. Seems like the word is out already.

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    4. Glen park is our AA and we got it, not on our list though. Just gave up two K spots (twins) hope it helps someone.

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    5. I find this so confusing. One person (10:11 pm) says Glen Park was high on their list in Rounds 1 and 2 and they didn't get it. Another person(7:28 am) says they got Glen Park even though it wasn't on their list. It's not clear if that was Round 1 or Round 2, but either way, I don't understand how that happens. Maybe there's some part of the algorithm I don't understand, but I thought the system was designed to prevent exactly that scenario...does anyone have any insights? Doesn't Glen Park have a bilingual language pathway--could that be affecting these placements somehow?

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    6. 10:11 PM poster here. Glen Park does have a biliteracy pathway, which had space after round 1. Not sure that explains how the other poster got assigned 2 spots there without even listing it, though. The whole process makes no sense.

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    7. 10:11, are you happy with your child's current school assignment? Would you prefer Glen Park? If so, have you contacted Parents for Public Schools? I would try emailing them and see if maybe they can help. They seem very responsive to potential problems like this.

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    8. A couple of years ago there was a mistake with McKinley: some people who had it on their list didn't get it, and others who didn't have it on their list were assigned there. Families went to EPC, and EPC worked it out so that people who wanted McKinley got it. The 10:11 poster may want to go in there. Of course sometimes these things are not EPC error - poster who said it wasn't on the list could be mistaken.

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    9. With over 300 requests for our 44 GE seats, we shouldn't have had a single default assignment (and we haven't had a default assignment there in awhile). I find this post a bit odd though since we had no Round One twins but I haven't seen Round Two results yet. I will check that Round Two list today for you!

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    10. 10:11 poster again. We are not happy with our assignment--we didn't get any of our choices in round 1 or 2. We plan to put Glen Park as our waitpool choice. I'll contact PPSSF, but I think it's more likely that the 7:28AM poster was mistaken.

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    11. 7:28 here, one twin got in glen park first round and 2nd twin was apparently linked with sibling priority second round. Glen park is our AA. Monroe is our first choice

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    12. So you got GP twice without it being on your list while others tried for it and did not get it? Should be mathematically impossible.

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  30. zero for thirty in round two. On to round three.

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  31. Went 0/10 for Round 2 for my kindergartener. We are probably going to do wait pool for Sunnyside which is the closest school to us, but due to the changes in the AA boundaries is no longer our AA.
    My daughter did get into 1st choice high school, but during the wait she's fallen in love with the parochial HS she was accepted to, so it looks like she'll be heading there in the fall.

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    1. Which parochial high school?

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    2. Sacred Heart Cathedral Prep. I wasn't looking forward to a tuition-based school for the next few years, but she really loves the sports program and overall school experience.

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    3. I'm the one who asked the question. I've heard great things about SHCP, so glad to hear it's getting a like from your daughter as well. I drive past there all the time when the kids are flooding out. Kids look happy, unexpectedly diverse, and abundant.

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    4. My neighbor's kid is a freshman there! Loves the diversity and sports. Academics are great as well!!! Your daughter will have a great time there!

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    5. 11:05 Just curious what was your first choice for public hs?

      We're headed to high school in a few years and our #1 is probably Washington. However, if we don't get it, we'll have to consider parochials. And like you, we'd prefer to not have to pay tuition - but you 'gotta do what you gotta do.'

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    6. 11:05 here. It was Balboa. She did get in Round 2 and we'll be dropping the spot if anyone is interested. I know several of her classmates didn't get in, even after Round 2.
      Definitely going to feel the crunch of paying tuition, but I think it's a good fit for her. She's really looking forward to it.

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  32. formerly optimisticMay 13, 2013 at 11:42 PM

    0/14 round 1 and 0/17 round 2. Assigned to McCoppin, which is, I suppose, not the worst possible outcome. Will probably try to go for Grattan in round 3, which is our AA school.
    I've had better days.

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    1. It's not bad school, too art oriented for us, but decent school with some great teachers.

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    2. formerly optimisticMay 17, 2013 at 10:07 AM

      Too Art oriented, really? I totally didn't get that sense when I toured. If anyone out there can tell me more about McCoppin, I'd love to hear it.

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  33. 0/28 in rd 2. Pretty angry right now. All we can do is move on to Round 3. We can't afford to move or to attend private. We are hoping for the best but planning for the worst.

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    1. Try the charters - my kid is finishing Kinder @ TECA & we're really happy/ he's thriving. I've heard great things about Mission Prep (I was impressed w the principal) & Creative Arts too.
      W
      TECA has a Waitlist in all grades but it moves - our system is 1st come, 1st serve.

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  34. Are there any parents of older grades who attended an undesirable school in K but where successful with the lottery the following year for first grade and got a better choice or first choice school?

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    1. We transferred into our first choice school through the spring transfer. You apply in november and are notified during winter break if you get in, we did and started in january.

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    2. I know quite a few who have done this. But I think I probably know more who were pleasantly surprised by their undesired school, and decided that they didn't actually want to tranfser.

      My daughters 2nd grade class this year (at a very sought after SFUSD school) started the year with 3 spots open. 2 spots were filled in January (one transfer from another SFUSD school, one child new to SF) and the remaining space has been open all year.

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    3. Yes, it's amazing how different a school seems when you are in it compared to how you perceive it in the pre-enrollment "echo chamber".

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    4. Not us, but neighbors. Lots of mid-year transfers, too.

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  35. Can someone clarify as the wording on the letter/websites are confusing.

    -We registered at the school after the 1st round placement. the school is on our list.

    -We tried for round 2 to get higher preference on our list.

    -we got our #5 choice and prefer to keep our 1st round school (where we registered) and try for round 3 to get either of our top 3 choice.

    Do we forfeit our seat at the 1st round school where we registered because we received an assignment to a school on our list?

    Or do we only forfeit our seat at 1st round school IF we register at the 2nd round assignment?

    So confusing as they only talk about assignment/losing your 1st round school but they don't clarify what happens after round 2 if you registered at your 1st placement school.

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    1. The details are here. http://www.sfusd.edu/en/assets/sfusd-staff/enroll/files/2013-14/2013-14_may_options_letter_en.pdf

      You are no longer registered at the school you registered at in the March placement period. You need to register at the school you were just offered and then try for round 3 if you aren't happy with the round 2 assignment.

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    2. Yup, you forfeited your seat assigned to you in Round 1. You need to register at your new school and participate in the next Round if you want to keep moving forward.

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  36. You forfeited your 1st round school, doesn't matter that you registered at the 1st round school. You are now eligible to register at the 2nd round school #5 or have no assignment going into round 3.

    Why would you put a school that you didn't prefer to your 1st round school on your 2nd round application?

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  37. Good news for SFUSD:
    http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Jerry-Brown-Public-schools-to-get-big-revenue-4515085.php

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  38. IF anyone has thoughts on the degree of movement there might be in the waiting pool and how the waiting pool list is generated, I'd appreciate hearing it. It seems like for a school with fairly high demand, there wouldn't be a whole lot of movement between now and September. Presumably any opening from Round 1 left by people that chose not to enroll was filled by someone in Round 2 that really wanted to be there so I can't imagine there will be much movement until school starts and people just don't show up. Is that the case? The SFUSD website mentions that waiting lists will be posted at some point but how is that list generated and how frequently does it get updated?

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    1. The pools get updated after every round and you can go down to 555 Franklin before each round to see what the status of a schools pool looks like. So, if you see that a school's pool is shrinking and you want to switch your pool you can do so.

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  39. 0 for 10 in Round Two, seeking Buena Vista, Alvarado, Fairmount, and some other low-chance options.

    Sincere sympathies for the too too many in tight situations; by comparison we feel fairly positive (and lucky!). In Round One we got Webster SI but have been leaning CACS... but are paused for thought tonight as today we got a call from TECA saying we could have a spot in the Spanish Immersion program.

    Have to consider it, our kiddo tested fluent in SFUSD test and TECA is much closer, and we liked it... but the 50/50 SI only goes K2 and we're concerned it's not expanding a grade a year as it needs to offer anything like SFUSD dual immersion.

    Pros and cons... pros and cons...

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    1. People are still able to hold on to a CACS spot and an SFUSD spot at this point? I didn't realize that.

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    2. Can you call TECA and ask the principal what the plans are for the Spanish program? I think they are committed to expanding it class by class through the 4th grade and then offering Spanish classes as electives in the middle school. As it is a charter, it seems that if parents really want the language component, it seems it could be worked in as the program develops.

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    3. The situation is very confused and confusing if you like a charter you get into, but want to participate in Round Two in hopes of a first-choice mainline SFUSD school. It is not defined anywhere how best to participate in later rounds while using a charter as your 'assigned and registered' school. So we chose to double-register as the safer option after consulting both with EPC and PPS-SF.

      You can't officially have both, but if you register at both, what typically happens is the district detects double enrollment and calls to demand you pick one. That's not a policy, for sure, but seems to be what happens.

      We'll report back whether that is our experience... Hypothetically a worst-case might be being 'punished' for double-registering by having both registrations cancelled but it seems like a safe gamble for us since we don't think the SFUSD can dictate to CACS to drop us (they do certainly have that ability for DW).

      And yes, we're going to call TECA and find out what the current story is. A small flag was raised since they are still quoting the same K-2 range on their website/media as last year... could be an oversite, but I wonder if there are 2nd graders being left high and dry this fall because a 3rd grade SI teacher could not be hired...

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    4. I'm a parent @ TECA w Kinder son in the dual immersion program.
      The website is still accurate for now (10 days left this school year) & will be updated to reflect that the dual-immersion program will be K-3 next school year (2013-14). Then it will be K-4 the following year. After that Spanish will likely become an academic option (advanced Spanish).
      As a Charter, TECA has more flexibility in hiring so if anything, I'm less concerned about our school's ability to staff appropriately (we also have the drama teacher on maternity leave right now & the awesome 1st grade Immersion teacher will be out for 1 semester this fall as her baby's due in August). Both are manageable /normal staffing issues :). For example, our wonderful Kinder dual-immersion teacher was hired last summer & I can't speak highly enough about Maestra. Darawish :)

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    5. Oh & I should have added - the right people to ask at the school are Jessica Alfaro & Lea Water-Clee - jalfaro at edisoncharteracademy dot com and lwaters-Clee at edisoncharteracademy dot com

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    6. Thanks Kate, great information. Our message hadn't been replied to yet so this is very helpful! (OP)

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  40. We have decided to move. Both my wife and I will have to commute into the city now but hopefully we can find better school options than those we were given here in SF.

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    1. Good luck with that. The housing market all over the Bay Area is nuts right now. We're actually staying in SF because our $1M budget couldn't buy us anything. Houses are selling for 150-250k over asking prices.

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    2. I would just caution you to be sure that is the right decision for your family. There are expenses involved with moving and ongoing expenses plus a quality of life impact to commuting. Plus, I suspect you would feel an ongoing bitterness to have felt forced out of the city.

      This process is far from over after Round 2. Spots will free up between now and the start of school. And then there is huge movement in the first few weeks of
      school. I don't have the numbers for last year, but for the 2011-12 application process 369 enrolled Kindergartners did not show up for the first 3 days of school. This freed up between 1 to 16 spaces at 69 different Elementary Schools.

      It does feel really unfair to not have a school for your child at this point, especially when so many others do, but I would carefully weigh up the 3 months (or maybe less) of uncertainty against the long term impact of moving.

      I hope it works out for your family, whatever your decision.

      Delete
    3. 5:37am here. I am aware of the sellers market we currently have in the Bay Area. And to the previous poster, I am also aware of the impact commuting will have on our lives. Believe me when I say, moving is not what we had hoped to do but we feel moving now is what we need to do in order to get the school situation settled for our family. As far as the feeling bitter about being forced out of the city, I am already there. Good luck to all of those with choices and those that "won" the lottery. The rest of us that "lost" will just move on.

      Delete
    4. Look to move to Albany. All the schools are great there. Plus BART, plus close to Berkeley.

      Delete
  41. Anybody has experience with Sutro elementary?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sutro is a great school! Again, only certain schools are repeatedly reviewed and championed on this website. Rooftop, for example, will always be sought after simply because of the "word of mouth" factor. If one really looks deeper into the facts, Rooftop wouldn't be on top of so many parents' lists.

      Delete
    2. I think that alot of the west side schools are overlooked on this blog. You rarely hear anything about Lafayette, Argonne, Peabody, etc. Those are all great schools (active PTAs, diverse, good test scores, etc).

      Different strokes for different folks. Agree that Sutro is a great school too.

      Delete
  42. I'm not going to doubt anyone's decision to move based on their unsatisfactory experience with the SFUSD, but as the parent of now a 2nd grader and K, we have seen lots of families move because of schooling and regret it and are now unable to move back because they've lost the ability to purchase in the SF market or find affordable rent costs. Just so that everyone is able to weigh their options fully:

    1. Unless you are moving out of the bay area, housing isn't much cheaper elsewhere so unless you have the cash and means to move to a desirable area that can guarantee a good public school, you aren't guaranteed much better.

    2. Parts of the East Bay are also on lottery system, so you just have to play the game again

    3. Commute costs do not offset the lower housing costs. Dual working families who commute from Marin or East Bay say that their commute costs can be anywhere up to $500+ a month.

    4. TIME. For me, this is a huge factor. School is important, but spending time with my family and being present is even more important. Adding 30 - 90 minutes each day to your commute really adds up when you think about that time apart from your family. It is really stressful on the whole family.

    Every decision is personally weighted, I know, but I've seen more families who have happily made it in SF with their assignment (or persevered to transfer later in the school year or future grades) than I see families who felt like they fared off better moving IF they have to commute back into the city. Just some food for thought for those who think moving out is an easy or sure thing - it's just as difficult elsewhere...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're assuming that everyone has a school assignment close to home. What if your child's assigned school is 30 minutes from home? That's 2 hours of commute time just to stay in SF.

      Delete
    2. If your assigned school is 30 minutes from your home (and there really can't be too many people facing that scenario), then file a Hardship Appeal along with your Round 3 paperwork.

      These assignments don't have to be considered done deals mid-way through May.

      Delete
    3. I went to a Parents for Public School Event at Glen Park (after Round 1) and this issue was explicitly discussed. According to PPSF, a long commute to an assigned school is NOT considered a hardship. I would ask again of course, but the discussion seemed very clear to me.

      Delete
    4. My friend, who is a single parent applied for hardship due to commute time and was denied, but in R3, he did end up getting the spot that he wanted which was his neighborhood school.

      As for the 30 minute to school, yes, your math is correct of course, but moving out of the city could potentially increase that commute as well, right? Our school is 20 minutes away, which is rough, but it is sort of along the route to my work, so it's not so bad...it's still an hour to pick up and drop off both kids at different schools and then to work 2x a day though! Like anything else, you just get used to it.

      Delete
    5. Don't forget bridge tolls, parking, etc. I have lived in the city and I have commuted to the city and 30 min wont even get you from the maze to downtown SF in rush hour. I also don't want to be in the city and have my kids in school in the burbs and not be able to get to them if something comes up. I don't want my child to have to wait an hour for me to pick them up if they are sick. I also think back to Loma Prieta or even back to when they closed the bridge when an eye bar broke. It is rare but once is too much.

      Delete
  43. If you have no options at this point and live in the Noe/Glen Park/MIssion/Bernal areas, you might want to look into the following:
    Katherine Michiels School - progressive, private much less expensive than other privates, after school partner with Alvarado
    St. Finn's Barr - parochial but with strong Spanish program right next door to Sunnyside Elementary
    St. Paul's - parochial and less expensive than private
    St. Phillip's - parochial and less expensive than private
    Thomas Edison Charter on Dolores - get on the wait list because they do have movement.
    I think the parochial schools have a lot of scholarship and are generally 6500-8500 per year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Junipero Serra seems like a good wait list choice for Glen Park/Noe area. I have heard nothing but good things about that school from current parents but it seems shunned for some reason.

      Lakeshore is another school that might be a great wait pool option for the south end of town. It's a late start time but they do have before school care and the commute isn't too terrible for this neck of the woods. Both schools had few requests (Lakeshore has under 300 for 88 kindergarten spots in Round 1). There is still time to tour.

      Good Luck families. Having watched this anxiety producing time for four years now, I can say it turns out OK for most families. They may not end up at Clareroofliligrattanalvaradostan, but almost everyone I know winds up someplace in kindergarten and is happy with the choice, even if the test scores aren't fabulous.

      Flynn GE would be another one. The parent community at that school just absolutely floors me in their awesomeness.

      Delete
    2. Have you heard anything about Lakeshore? We were placed there, but did not tour in the Fall. We took a look back in March after we were placed and were so-so about it. Big school, late start, far end of town, etc.
      It also appears that they are getting a new principal next year. I was looking up their test scores and unlike the "up and coming" schools, their test scores are going the opposite way. I'm starting to feel a bit anxious about the placement. Any info would be great.

      Delete
    3. I am a Lakeshore parent and happy to give you a tour or answer any questions-
      You can contact us on:
      new2lakeshore@gmail.com

      Play dates for new families are listed here:
      http://www.lakeshoreelementary.org/?page_id=1804

      Lakeshore is a great school with a tendency towards experiential, project based and nature based learning. The enrichment programs are integrated with the class curriculum- signature full year programs are science based gardening, studio art, motor perception and poetry. There are three options for on campus before and after care. (I commute from the Mission and 9:30 start is too late for me as well). We don't have much digital technology and the school is not focused on that (if that is what you want it is not a good match) though we did get a grant for some ipads to go into the library next year. It is very multi-cultural and actually diverse (which I love, but if you don't want that it is also not a good match).

      The Principal is leaving, and I would say the community is very happy about the potential of the new principal who was chosen unanimously by a panel of parents, teachers and site council members after they surveyed the community to devise some interview questions.

      Our test scores were invalidated last year because of a testing error but they have been trending down a bit. This is something we are assuming the new leadership will address, but there is not general interest in taking away any of the enrichment in order to 'teach to the test'. We have many English Language Learners (and each child gets a period of language learning at their level every day. )

      Hope that helps some, but do contact us with specific questions or come have a tour.
      As a previous poster says- we have 4 K classes, a less populated attendance area and and are currently not a trophy school so your chances of getting a spot late are not bad.

      Delete
  44. we went 0/21 for rounds one and two. we did get in to one private. we applied to one on a whim and got in.

    we want to be a public school family. we want to support public schools - donate our time and money.

    we have a child who is very anxious. he is not resilient in the way most five year olds are. we could not start him somewhere and move him after five days. about a month before kindergarten starts we will need to start driving by the school, taking pictures and talking about it. we will need to find a way to meet other parents and try to arrange play dates beforehand so there is a familiar face or two. we have been reading kindergarten books for weeks and will continue to do so all summer.

    basically, the ten day count wont work for us. we feel we have no choice but to commit to private school. we have the money - thats not it. we like the school but we want public school. we are feeling completely forced out and it sucks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. At least you HAVE an option, you HAVE the money. Others are forced to put their kids in bad public schools because they can't afford private, can't quit their job to homeschool, and sfusd failed them. Disadvantaged PEOPLE should have a priority in all this, not rich people living in disadvantaged neighborhoods who take advantage of the CTIP areas. They have the means to PAY for better options. Leave the trophy schools for underprivileged kids who also deserve a chance!

      Delete
    2. I have news for you: if only underprivileged kids go to a trophy school, it likely won't be considered a trophy school for long. Everybody wins -- including disadvantaged kids -- when middle class kids stay in the public school system. A healthy and democratic school includes kids of all backgrounds, including affluent ones. The last thing you want is for public schools to be stigmatized as something you only choose if you can't pay for something else.

      I think the original poster's post is very sad and frustrating. Here is someone who wanted to make public school work, and now thanks to 0/21 lottery results, this family's talent, time, and resouces will go outside sfusd.

      Delete
    3. I'm so sorry about this 11:05am. Yours sounds like a lovely family and I'm glad you've got a spot at a private that your son can use. If you can stomach one more round, you could hold out till the end of summer. Private schools start later than public, so you'd have a bit more time on your side. You could still hold on to your private spot with this approach. Alternatively, you could just see this a multi-year process. There will be options down the road, if you want them, to pursue public school again, starting next Fall. Lots and lots of kids transfer in first grade (and later.) You'll find nobody even realizes a year or so later what year your family came in.

      And even if you did have playdates with new people at the private school and then end up switching, how's that a loss? You and your son could end up with even more potential friends, and that's a good thing for stability any way you look at it. And people generally are understanding. Things happen, people move -- they wouldn't see your son going somewhere else as something bad or telling. At my kids' school, people who were hoping to get their kids' in showed up at summer playdates and it was totally fine. It's usually just people getting together in a park somewhere, and they're happy to meet people with kids the same age. Good luck!

      Delete
    4. Why can't the original poster put its talent, time and resources into a less desirable school not in their top 21? If you are a parent who is very involved in the school and can devote the time to help your child succeed the kid will do well at any school. 12:53 is probably a family who work two jobs each just to make ends meet and want to give their kids a slight advantage. He/she also said they should have an advantage not that disadvantaged kids should be the only ones enrolled. As we all know in reality the "trophies" are filled with rich white kids. Btw my kids (middle class Caucasian family) are finishing up K at Sanchez and love it.

      Delete
    5. 11:05/OP here.
      3:37 - we offered them 21 schools? Is that not enough? And guess what, our schools were not"trophy" schools. Our listed included Flynn, DW, McKinley, Sunnyside, Glen Park...
      We will continue with the waitpool for a bit longer and see how that goes.

      Delete
    6. 3:37, if you are willing, I would love to hear more about Sanchez! I walk by there sometimes and it's a gorgeous building with a great-looking garden. Can you tell us about your kids' experience?

      Delete
    7. I agree with 3:33 - and I also have a similar anxious-ridden child. While we were secure in our school placement by this time last year, we also had to follow the same type of prepping - we did this by sending him to summer camp at his future school and then we had to send him to some other new camps to cover our work schedule. It was traumatic, yes, but in the end he really surprised us with his maturity and growth in those 6 short months. In my experience, it was best to not talk about schools or anything in his presence until just one week before school started - let your child build his social confidence in his current situation - you'll be surprised at how much that prepares him/her for any future transitions. In whatever school you end up with, you will encounter several transitions in the school year for school closures/camps. We had many tearful little 5 year olds at the beginning of K, but they are all strong, resilient little people now. A lot happens between the age of 5-6 - they really do grow a whole lot socially! Good luck, I hope something works out for you soon so you can stop stressing.

      Delete
    8. Our son is finishing K at Sanchez as well (Shout out 3:37) and we love it too.

      I blogged on this site last year as MJ if you would like to check my reviews
      Sanchez was our top choice and we have been very happy.
      Our son is thriving and learning. The new principal seems to be very dedicated and focused (I can't speak about the old principal as the new started with us in 2012). The smaller school setting (256 approx students) is ideal for him. I found schools with larger student bodies (4 K classrooms) too chaotic for him. He's pretty sensitive and dislikes change.
      After school care is great. we are very happy with our school

      Delete
    9. To the OP, though I understand the instinct to want to protect your child, and was similarly frustrated with SFUSD when my first child entered K a few years ago, the way to build resilience is not to shield kids from potential discomfort, but to help them cope with it when it arises. Your child might surprise you with his ability to meet the challenge. And, from my experience, many schools in SFUSD have resources to help students adapt to a new school situation if they are having difficulty.

      Delete
    10. 3:37 - We were assigned to Sanchez and have been stressed about it based on its lack of fairly low performance and high concentration of language learners. We realize it's in the "Superintendent's Zone" and receives more resources, but for the reasons mentioned above. Could you say anything more to allay our anxiety? Not meaning to be "elitist" but hoping to come to some peace.

      Delete
  45. We are in similar situations:( 0/14 second round....my husband is a real-estate broker so we too will consider moving and if you're interested you can contact him too (650-773-8839). Otherwise, what else can we do? If you can't afford a private school how is it fair that we have to deal with this? Our tax dollars at work! UGH

    ReplyDelete
  46. A reminder that Round 3 results come out on June 10 this year, less than a month from now.

    From pages 8-9 of the SFUSD Enrollment Guide 2013-14.
    Round 3: requests due by May 24
    Round 3 results: June 10
    Round 4 results: Aug 9
    First day of school: Aug 19
    Round 5 results: Aug 26-Sept 6

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Feeling for you all having gone through this last year- so also want to say that everyone at our preschool last year did get a school they wanted eventually- about 70% public. (The 10 day count is hard but it does work and historically there is not tons of movement in round 2).

      There are so many great schools in SF and once you get through this part of the process you can hopefully enjoy what happens next- you know- the part thats about your kids! The affect of marketing and social media is so anxiety inducing I would also really suggest giving the school you were assigned- if you were indeed assigned- a chance. I think what makes schools stand out is largely based on community effort and participation.

      For information on how the public assignment system algorithm works, Parents for Public Schools has all the details and they do really good workshops.

      Delete
  47. The poster asks if it is fair to have to deal with this. I ask what the poster would prefer in terms of an assignment system and the comment is censored. I just don't get it. What is an appropriate post or it entirely the whim of the moderator? I have wondered if there is any respect for opinion on this blog, but censoring out a reasonable question like that leaves me wondering as to whether there is any rhyme or reason. She leaves comments like "F*** SFUSD", but censors a question like "what would you do?" Strange. Surely this comment will be deleted before it hits the light of day. But, please, moderator, - I'm not the only one. What is your policy?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It may just be a problem with Blogspot, not the moderator. I've noticed comments (like the "F*** SFUSD" one) disappear, then reappear later. I've also made purely informational comments that have later disappeared. It could be a technical problem that has nothing to do with moderation.

      Delete
  48. I don't always (often) agree with Don but I do here. He has a unique perspective and if his comments are on topic and not abusive, don't know why they are censored.

    ReplyDelete
  49. I disagree with Don on a lot of issues, but there is absolutely no reason to censor him. He argues his points politely and doesn't bully people. It seems like the only rationale for the moderation on this site these days is the whims and personal likes and dislikes of the moderator.

    ReplyDelete
  50. This is sickening ... they took millions of dollars away from our kids. "SFSUD officials accused of embezzlement and fraud" (From S.F. Examiner by Andrea Koskey):

    Six current or former employees of the San Francisco Unified School District are facing embezzlement and fraud charges stemming from the alleged misuse of an estimated $15 million in grant funding, the district attorney announced Tuesday.

    Money earmarked to provide students with support services, nutritional programs and violence-prevention programs was allegedly directed into bonuses, slush funds and unwarranted pay increases.

    District Attorney George Gascón said roughly $250,000 of the $15 million in federal and state grants went to personal use, but how and what the money was spent on is not known.

    School district officials said they became aware of the possible misuse of funds during the 2010 budget process. It was at that time, Carranza said, that the District Attorney’s Office began looking at finances in the district’s Student Support Services Division, where most of the accused individuals were employed.

    Around the same time, Trish Bascom, 66, the associate superintendent of student support services, retired. Former Senior Executive Director Linda Lovelace, 62; former assistant principal at Marina Middle School Mychel Navales, 42; and Senior Executive Director Meyla Ruwin, 51, also left the district around the start of the investigation. Additionally, administrative analyst Lilian Capuli, 51, has been terminated and senior clerk Betty Wong, 57, has been placed on administrative leave.

    All six are being charged with a variety of felony charges including grand theft, falsifying documents, perjury and forgery for wrongfully diverting funds for up to a 10-year period.

    http://www.sfexaminer.com/local/crime/2013/05/sf-schools-officials-accused-embezzlement-and-fraud

    ReplyDelete
  51. Back on topic. We did not receive a new assignment, 0/1. Will try again for Sherman in Round 3. Still at Yick Wo, we know it's a good option.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sherman is great. Last year there were still openings a few weeks into school, so if you are patient, you may get in eventually. Good luck!

      Delete
    2. We love Sherman!

      Delete
  52. How does round 3 work exactly? What if you have someone else's #1 choice and that person has your number #1 choice? There's no more lottery correct? If we both went to wait list at each other's schools, will a swap happen or no (assuming that we have both registered for those schools already)?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you both registered then it is assumed your child will attend. If they don't show up the first 3 days then they pick people from the waitpool. Parents have to either UNregister if you know for sure your child won't attend to open those spots up for the following rounds or wait until the kids get dropped by not showing up

      Delete
    2. how do you unregister?

      Delete
    3. Call the school or call EPC

      Delete
    4. I think that even if you're registered you can still go round 3 for the wait pool at the school that is your highest choice. If you get that school the next round your registered spot will open up and be given to someone else. So I don't advise to UNregister because if you do that you will have no school going into the next rounds and if you don't get off the wait list you will have no school. The only reason to UNregister is if you know you will absolutely not go to that school.

      Delete
  53. The topic for this thread is "Round II Letters should arrive today. Did you get an assignment? Are you going to take it? Are you happy, sad, relieved?"

    People are not commenting on SFUSD embezzlement and fraud, not because they don't care, but because it is off topic. Don's comment "What would you like the assignment process to look like?" was likely removed because it was off topic, as are many of the comments that follow, such as "What is moderation policy?" etc., etc., which the moderator has prerogative to remove. The continual hijacking of threads with off topic streams minimized the value of SFKFiles last year, and Kate closed it down. New moderators are ensuring content has value, not trolls.

    The new moderators appear very accommodating, and their hard work is appreciated. If you want to discuss Round II, then here's your opportunity to do so. If you want to discuss the scandal, ask the moderator for a new thread. If you want to discuss the ideal assignment process, ask the moderator for a new thread. If you want to discuss Prop H, ask the moderator for a new thread.

    - Donna

    [Dear moderator, I understand completely if you remove this post--it is, after all, off topic]

    ReplyDelete
  54. We got Yick Wo, which is a school that most people never talk about. Can someone explain why Yick Wo is NOT a "trophy school?" It seems to have high test scores and isn't in a bad neighborhood (unless I'm wrong about that.) Would love to know why no one puts it down on their list of desirable schools. Thanks so much!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. #1. Once a school is deemed to be a "trophy school," that label seems to stick no matter what. Again, Rooftop is the perfect example of that. Yick Wo isn't labeled a "trophy school," and that's just fine with those of us who live in the northeastern corner of The City. :)
      #2. Yick Wo is located on the northeastern corner of The City and frankly, none of the schools there ever get talked about a whole lot. Again, just fine and dandy with us. :)
      #3. Very frankly, a certain demographic is worried that their children will be "one of the few _____ kids" at the school. The same perception applies to all of the northeastern schools with the exception of Sherman (which is very "desirable" to this certain demographic.

      Delete
    2. YW also starts at 9:30 with NO before care at school or anywhere in the neighborhood so it is impossible for many families. It is also not on a commute path, unless you live right near school. But in the YW AA it is considered a trophy school.

      Delete
    3. People will work around the commute issue if they get into a "trophy school." Unless you live very close to Rooftop, how in the world is Rooftop along the commute path of most San Francisco residents? Same goes for before/after-school programs - people will work around that issue if they get assigned to a "trophy school."

      Delete
    4. I don't agree. YW has no before school program. If it is not on the way to work and you can't drop off until 9:15 that gets you to work at 10 or later! It did not work out for us and it is our AA school. Rooftop has a before school program so you can at least get to work at a reasonable hour.

      Delete
    5. What is a "trophy school"? A trophy school is a school that "the masses" say is a great school. What is a great school? Yick Wo has high API scores, an involved parent community, great principal and teachers, nice campus (that's being remodeled) in a nice neighborhood, kids who love the school and a diverse community. Fine with us in Russian Hill if people don't consider it a trophy school because we have a better chance of getting in.

      Delete
    6. Half the students are english learners
      you can find lots of information in the district report card here:
      http://www.sfusd.edu/assets/sfusd-staff/rpa/sarcs2/sarc-801.pdf

      Delete
    7. Thanks. Lots of good info there. On pages 11-12, Yick Wo's scores look really strong. On page 15, the API score of the English learners is 905 and the overall school 918. That looks higher than some trophy schools.

      Delete
  55. Donna, is your point saying it's OK to comment off the topic as long as you say it's off the topic and consent to have it removed as being off topic? The point you make is valid but off topic too and equally as much as the one of Don's asking for an explanation of the moderation policy. Looking back at the thread I see the comment about the fraud scandal is still posted. Do you have explanation why that would be up still even as other comments of lesser distraction are removed?

    ReplyDelete
  56. Donna's comment makes no sense. There are plenty of instances where the comments are "off-topic" but aren't removed.

    I'm all for the moderator determining what's appropriate and what's not but it would really reduce frustration and increase the usefulness of this blog for people to have a more clear understanding of what the policy is. And if the policy is "Whim of the Moderator" that's fine too. Just let us know!

    ReplyDelete
  57. I'm just re posting my comment since things are now really off topic and those of us who are here because we'd like some advice would appreciate getting back on track. AnonymousMay 17, 2013 at 8:27 AM
    We got Yick Wo, which is a school that most people never talk about. Can someone explain why Yick Wo is NOT a "trophy school?" It seems to have high test scores and isn't in a bad neighborhood (unless I'm wrong about that.) Would love to know why no one puts it down on their list of desirable schools. Thanks so much!

    Reply

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think part of the problem is the perception this blog gives on whether a school is "good" or not. As has been pointed out many times here, the difference in the quality of education at the "trophy" schools is not different from the non "trophy"schools. Learn about the school yourself. See if YOU like it. If you do GO THERE and make a difference yourself. There are so many disappointed people on this board because (many) people all feel like they have to go to the same few schools and if they don't get in those schools, "they lose". My experience in an "undesirable" school with "low test scores" has been amazing!

      Delete
    2. Do the math folks! When a huge number of people only apply to a certain number of so called "trophy schools," should any of us be surprised that not every applicant will get in?

      Delete
    3. Thanks for your reply. It isn't that I am disappointed in getting Yick Wo, it's just that it is a complete unknown to me other than the short little tour I took. No one mentions it, no one says really anything, good or bad. I was curious if there was a specific reason it doesn't make everyone's list. (And yes, I'm more curious about negative reasons.) For example, someone earlier mentioned that they wanted Sherman instead of Yick Wo (where they are assigned) -- both schools are in the same geographical area, ranked about the same -- yes, I know test scores isn't the best indicator -- so I was curious about why Yick Wo remains a "hidden gem." I visited the school. It seems perfectly fine, though I wasn't crazy about the fact that the school was moving for a year for renovations, which was why I didn't rank it high on my list. On paper, it looks fantastic -- I just am wondering if there is something I'm missing? Oh, and can you please share what school you are at that's so amazing? I think that would be nice for parents who got assigned there but who are disappointed to hear. Thank you!

      Delete
    4. I am the poster who got Yick Wo and am still trying for Sherman. Even though Yick Wo is our AA, Sherman is closer, less than 2 blocks away. Also, An earlier start time would be more convenient. Other than that, we are very happy we got Yick Wo. I am also the poster who went to their art fundraiser, which was a lovely event organized by the parents. Lots of great, involved parents who raved about the principal and the teachers. I do agree with the other poster who said that one reason it's not more popular is because it's tucked away in the northeast corner of the city and not likely on people's way to work. I don't think there's any hidden negative reason it's not more popular.

      Delete
    5. As a parent of a current 3rd grade Yick Wo student and an 8th grade alumna (on her way to Lowell in the fall), I can not say enough positive things about Yick Wo. It has an amazing enrichment curriculum, including SF Opera and Ballet, k-3 music, poetry, art, Playworks and PE. Great parent community. Talented and committed teachers and principal. For many of the reasons mentioned above, it isn't a good fit for everyone. However, to clarify for those who don't know the area, the school is located on Russian Hill (base of Lombard Street curve) and is proudly named after a famous Chinese civil rights pioneer and Supreme Court case, but the population is very diverse, e.g. the majority of this year's K population is 32% Chinese and 30% White. Frankly, the school community doesn't promote itself because it prefers to stay a hidden gem for local AA parents.

      Delete
  58. There's a bigger picture here, alluding to a few posts back. There is some movement before school starts, but it becomes much harder to get a preferred placement after the first round. It isn't as if people don't know that, but to be realistic, you should fully understand the difficulty of placement at this point in the process. Now is time to start considering schools that you didn't before, go private or leave the district. And then there's home schooling. And the bright side, there are lots of good and even great schools that aren't on the trophy list. Yick Woo is surely one of them.

    And yes, the 11:40 post is really out to lunch.

    ReplyDelete
  59. I personally didn't like yick woo because it lacks diversity. (Along with many other SFSUD schools). Any school with over 65% of a single race, including my own, was off my list.

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    1. Yick Wo reflects the diversity of the neighborhood. And since no one at Yick Wo (or any other school site) gets to hand-pick their students, what else do you want to see as far as diversity is concerned? Lastly, I wonder how genuine some people really are when they complain about the lack of diversity. Is a school not diverse enough for you as long as your child isn't a part of the majority? Let the elephant in the room out -- for those of you who are worried about the lack of diversity at a school because a lot of the students there are Chinese -- don't worry, socially, children will play with other children as long as they are all respecting each other, following rules, and being safe around one another; academically, the Chinese students bring plenty (perhaps too much for some of you) to contribute to the school.

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    2. Thanks for your reply! Everyone has their own personal reasons and I appreciate your honesty in sharing yours. Out of curiosity, does that mean you also rejected so-called "trophy" schools that had over 65% of a single race? I'm not asking to attack you or anything as subversive as that, but really out of trying to understand what makes one school so much more desirable than another when on paper they seem similar in many respects. Thanks so much!

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    3. Im 4:11pm who didnt want more than 65% of a single race. We live in cole valley in the grattan attendance area, 3 blocks away from the school. We applied to it for convenience because of the location knowing it is very much a single race but it was #7 on our list of 10. Our first choice is monroe and are waitpooling for it in round 3. #2 Harvey Milk #3 Glen Park, #4 Mckinley #5 Peabody,#6 Alvarado #8 lakeshore #9 new traditions #10 SF community.

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    4. What's your current assignment?

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    5. Our current assignment is glen park.

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    6. Good luck with round 3. Fortunately, you would also be very happy at Glen Park IMO.

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    7. Yick Wo is NOT a racially homogenous school. Its racial breakdown is: Asian 46% (Chinese 38%), 30% White, 8% Latino, and 4% African American. English Learners represent about 30% of the enrollment.

      Regarding English Learners, I haven't been concerned by the percentage of English learners at the elementary school level. SFUSD students who start out as English Learners and then get reclassified as English proficient actually have higher scores on the Language Arts and Math sections of the CST. That's right, the bilingual kids outperform the "English only" students on STAR testing.

      There are many factors at play, but I speculate that part of what's happening is with the "Reclassified Fluent English Proficient" is that it represents a cohort of faster learners who pick up English and get reclassified earlier, leaving a progressively slower learning cohort in the "English learner category. This is supported by the fact that English Learner CST scores fall further and further below the SFUSD mean as you go from grade 2 to grade 5.

      Sources for demographic info on Yick Wo:
      SFUSD School Site List, CBEDS Information Day, October 3, 2012
      California Dept of Education, Dataquest 2011-12 Enrollment Report

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  60. We go to a school that is rarely mentioned here that I think is a very good school: George Peabody. I've never heard anyone refer to it as a "trophy" school, but look up the test scores, demographics, PTA involvement, etc. I think parents shouldn't get mentally stuck thinking that only "such and such" school is a "trophy" school.

    According to the "Highlights March 2013 Assignment Run," GPeabody was the third most requested school in SFUSD (behind Clarendon and Rooftop) for Kindergarten.

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  61. We went 0/8 then 0/17. Grattan is our attendance area school and our #1 and will be our waitlist, but were assigned to Sanchez. Does anyone have anything positive to say that might relieve some serious stress?

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    1. I don't have personal knowledge of Sanchez, but there are a couple posts earlier on in this thread from parents who seem to really love it. Unless the logistics are problematic for you I would recommend taking a serious look at Sanchez with an open mind.

      It dorsn't have great API scores but I would guess that is largely due to a high percentage of English Language Learners - maybe someone who knows the school better can chime in on this?

      It is possible to look at the STAR Test results (which allows you to see much more granular data). There are "undesirable" schools in this district where certain student populations actually score higher on the tests than they do at a school like Rooftop.

      Finally, if your heart is set on Grattan, your chances of getting there with it being your AA are not awful. But definitely no guarantee there either. Close to 400 enrolled children likely won't show up for Kindergarten during the 3-day count. Spots will open up at Grattan - you can talk to one of the counselors at the EPC to see what this has looked like in years past.

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    2. 7:59am here again. I also wanted to add that Kindergarten is not for life. If you do start at a school and after giving it an honest try there, still feel it is not the right fit for you, then there will be opportunities to transfer.

      San Francisco is a city where people move on a frequent basis - for jobs, to be closer to family, to be somewhere less expensive..... We are just finishing a year where there has been a spot open in 2nd grade (at our "desirable" school) all year. Pretty sure there were 1st grade spots open too.

      I wish you luck and hope you have a good experience wherever you end up for Kindergarten.

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  62. I'd like to echo the comment that Kindergarten isn't forever. Unless the school is absolutely unmanageable for you commute wise/start time wise, I think it's worth giving schools a try. There's the mid-year transfer, which many people don't know about, and you can try for the lottery between K and 1, when there actually is some movement. If you can manage the 10 day count, either for K or 1, there's a fair amount of movement then, too. (FWIW, the schools didn't even poll the parents to see who is/isn't coming back next year until after the round 2 letters went out!)

    On the commute lengths -- I definitely feel this strain myself, but there's often a carpool you can put together to minimize the strain on your family.

    As for diversity -- SFUSD isn't that diverse overall. And, frankly, as you get into middle school and high school, there are fewer and fewer "white kids," which frankly is what I think many of us are talking about. I can't speak to how this will feel to everyone's family or everyone's kid, but it's worth noting.

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    1. Agreed on the diversity. SFUSD has done really through excellent reports examining the impact of the new assignment system on a variety of factors, but also on the intent to better diversify schools. For the most part, it didn't work. The schools got more racially isolated. or came to have a higher percentage of a single race at each school. This happened almost uniformly. And realistically, the city is pretty geographically divided in the pockets of where different ethnic groups tend to live -- that gets reflected in the schools as well, especially with the aim to make them somewhat more neighborhood based and put into K-8 pathways. And it's true that the middle schools and above look less white. You can see the demographic spread (in colorful chart form) in the report, and the numbers of whites go way, way down. Very different from the charts for elementary school aged kids.

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    2. I completely agree with you! I'm Latino and live in the CTIP neighborhood of the inner mission. I've lived here for 14 years. Back then the mission was still mostly Latino, now my neighbors are affluent whites who send their kids two public schools across town. A triplex with three Latino families is two doors down from me, the landlord (an upper middle class white family) used the utility bill/ paper work from their property here to get their child into grattan knowing CTIP has a golden ticket to trophy schools. The family lives in San Bruno. Totally unfair system. While its true, poor Latino and blacks cannot take their kids across town. I have three kids and no car, getting them all on two or three buses all the way across (2 diff schools) town during muni rush hour is just not feasible for me, who has to be at work at 8:00 am in the mission. The reason many Latino families, like myself, stay at undesirable neighborhood schools.

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    3. EVERYONE should report people who use false addresses ...

      Residency Fraud Reporting

      The district has installed an Address Tipline to accept reports of suspected address fraud. You may make a confidential report by calling 415 522-6783 or by e-mailing information to:
      AddressTipline@sfusd.edu.

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    4. Thanks! I hope most people speak up and start reporting. There is just to much address fraud in sfusd.

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    5. PLEASE report them... and I say that as an actual SF resident, non-CTIP, who listed Grattan high on my list and of course, didn't get it. >:(

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  63. Schools that don't have available extended care are truly non-starters for working families who lack the budget to pay a nanny or a retired local relative who can fill the gap.

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  64. Michelle, I don't think you should say that, you really hurt a school if you take your kid out after a year or two and it would be best you not even start. It damages the other kids in the school, the teachers, and the continuity. There's too much of that in SF. We can't build a community with people going to Kindergarten and 1st grade somewhere and then moving. It's disruptive and socially damaging to the kids left behind who make friends with your kid. If you don't intend to stick at a school, don't go.

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    1. So, what would your advice be to those people who are currently assigned to a school they aren't thrilled about. Don't educate your child? Most people in this city don't have the resources to throw vast amounts of money at private schools. Nor should they have to.

      I know many people who have given a school they didn't think they wanted a try, and ended up loving it. The focus on API scores, Great Schools ratings and the urban legends about which schools are trophies can often mask the reality of fantastic teachers and a wonderful community of families that can be much better appreciated from the inside of a school.

      And I do think people need to know that if a school, for whatever reason, doesn't work out for their family that they aren't locked into it for the next 6-9 years.

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    2. I completely disagree. I suspect most families will end up liking the schools they end up in if they give it a shot but if not it makes a lot more sense to move then to stay somewhere you are unhappy. The other kids will be fine. People move away for all srots of reasons. When I was a kid there were always a handful of kids who left school after a grade and a handful of new kids. I was sad when one of them was my friend but that is life. You aren't going to damage the kids, school, teachers or community.

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  65. Sorry, 11:12, I'm going to have to disagree. There are many reasons kids move after K or 1 -- leaving the city, deciding to go parochial or private for some reason or another. While I guess I can see knowingly taking a spot you're not going to use as sort of rude, I really don't see a problem with trying a school you're not thrilled with on paper, and seeing how it works out for you.

    There are families who choose a school they think they're going to love, and find out they don't. There are families who choose a school they think they're going to hate, and find that they like it.

    My advice is not to be so quick to reject schools you think you won't love. You might like it -- or you might not, and the system provides opportunities to make a change.

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  66. " poor Latino and blacks cannot take their kids across town. I have three kids and no car, getting them all on two or three buses all the way across (2 diff schools) town during muni rush hour is just not feasible for me, who has to be at work at 8:00 am in the mission."

    This is the fundamental reason why it is so unfair to have the current system. If all the white or otherwise middle class people would work to make the school in their own neighborhoods better and stop fleeing across town, we would have more diversity, better schools all around, more people using public ed and more money for SFUSD.

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    1. I must say I was doubtful that the CTIP1 priority would have the effect the district was hoping for when they introduced it. The data from the 2011-12 and 2012-13 assignment reports seems, to me at least, to point pretty clearly as to which demographic is most able to take advantage of their CTIP1 priority. And it isn't resulting in more diverse schools.

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  67. SFUSD has a homebased education program. Basically it is homeschooling through the district. They provide the materials, the kids learn the same subjects as in the classroom and you meet with a teacher weekly. Anyone looking into this as an option if they don't get a school for the fall?

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  68. 0/10 first round and ended up at Flynn GED (our AA school which was not on our list). 0/10 the second round. Sunnyside was our first choice. Crossing our fingers that it works out on round 3.

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  69. Just back from EPC to turn in our Round 3 waiting pool form. Lots of people in line but it moved fast and I was out in about 20 minutes. I'm starting to lose faith in the system even though I keep hearing that if you wait it out, you'll end up with something you're happy with. So many people I've talked to didn't get ANYthing on their list that I'm pretty discouraged. We did get a school from within our top 3 and are trying to trade up.

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