Hard to believe it's almost August. More tour sign ups will go live. Administrators will be back in buildings. Everyone will soon be gearing up for back to school and the great high school search.
Something to keep in mind: don't get stuck on one school. You might find a place that seems perfect. Your child might completely fall in love (that happened with my older one and Brooklyn Tech). You might know from the bottom of your heart where you child belongs. But, it doesn't work that way.
There are no ways to play the system. In the end, it's a computer matching up applicants and spots in schools. It's best to go into this with an open mind, leaving preconceived ideas at the door, and work with your family to find several options you'll all be comfortable with.
Last year 45% of kids got their first choice. That was great for those kids. But that meant thousands didn't. Be comfortable with and knowledgable about a number of schools. Finding positive attributes for each on your list and not fixating on one will make it easier when letters come and the offer might not be the one you had at the top of your list.
My daughter got her first choice in the main round. My son got his third. But because we'd spent a lot of time talking about the merits of all the possibilities, it was disappointing, sure, but not devastating. It's important for kids to know this process is very much a numbers games - where they get an offer doesn't reflect who they are as an individual.