My school versus yours (erm, you still can't spell, *iyotch).

I think of the the Private Ecole Consultant, and her comment about public high school/early college: "It's no Stuyvesant!" Someone here took the trouble and commented to ask, " 'It's no Stuyvesant!' -- What on earth does that mean?"

PEC seems to like what society dictates is "best" -- whatever that means. Public High School/Early College came on the scene in 2001 -- literally, yesterday. Stuyvesant has been around for a while -- it has an impressive alumni base, and is steadily developing its reputation as a school for budding Nobel Laureates. Stuyvesant is also a huMONGO school, and its ethnic minority base is mostly -- you guessed it -- Asians.

My A would probably enjoy a school like Stuyvesant -- but there is no room for as much individual attention there as exists in smaller public schools or private schools.

So, yes, Ms. PEC has admissions knowledge that I do not have, but I suspect that there is a bit of snobbery involved. Her clients generally want their precious kiddos to attend Dalton or Riverdale (the Bloomingdale's of schools) -- and the public schools they want should be equally "prestigious." Because a group of people (influenced by whom or what?) decided that those schools are the only ones worth anything.

If NYC Private School Society dictates that I should pick a Bloomingdale's, even though where I'd actually go, Alpana Bawa, gives me personal attention, makes me smile more, and therefore, is a better value for me, will make for a very unhappy LaMai who winds up shuttling to Bloomingdale's. But I run the risk of disappointing society. I'd also prefer to drive a Mini Cooper or better, an electric car, than sit behind the wheel of a big 'ol Mercedes.

Then there's this, taken from PEC's website:

"At Big Time Private Ecole Consultants, we honestly believe that EVERY kid is smart, special and great and every single one of them derserves acceptance to the school of his or her parents' choice. We work tirelessly, and nonstop (over 350 days a year!) to make that happen forcountless families."

Derserves? School of his or her parents' choice? I guess the child has no opinion in the matter? And since when is "forcountless" one word?

It gets worse:

"Think about this: if you are applying for preschool, including pre-kindergarten or kindergarten through grade 12 for admission in September 2008. September 2009, or September 2010, you are competing with parents, many of whom are our clients, who have often been preparing or plannning for the admissions process seemingly since their children were born. We should know: many of them are our clients. You think getting into medical school at Yale was hard? Or Wharton's MBA program? Just wait until you try for a top tier preschool in Manhattan: the process redefines the word, "difficult" in every way."

Can you say, nice Bloomingdale's ring around your finger, but can you please spell check?


Manda said...

Hrm. For them, they look better if they place more people in the schools society has dictated are "the best." But a job WELL DONE would be to place students in schools where they would learn, grow, and enjoy their environments. Which, in any case, is what society SHOULD value, if it wants a worthwhile group of future contributors to that society.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for answering my Stuyvesant question. It made no sense to me because I'd think going to a school like B**d with so much personal attention would be MORE prestigious than going to Stuyvesant, which really is a kind of factory at this point --- although I think kids can channel themselves in various directions (e.g. favorite subjects, teachers, clubs, etc.) to make it a psychologically "smaller" place.
(full disclosure: my husband graduated from Stuyvesant in, hm, around 1962)(different place then, different world then)

Anonymous said...

Oh --- "forcountless" is one word when you have a sloppy webmaster
(as opposed to headmaster)