So, there is no additional testing as part of NEST's admissions screen this year. That's a huge change. Their screen is now straight up data and is open to everyone in NYC.
They've got a relatively new principal who's been shaking things up. NEST was known for super accelerating students and they're cutting back from pushing them 2 years to one year ahead. Which, to me, is smart. Freshman coming into high schools and taking classes with juniors was a tough experience for many. And if kids maxed out of the classes a school offered (smaller schools don't offer as many advanced classes), then what?
A quick note about AP classes. Everyone asks about them. Kids are taking tons - Jack will have taken 8 by the time he leaves Tech (which I think is ridiculous but most are required in his major) while colleges are accepting few and fewer. My daughter got out of a freshman English class and all her other AP disappeared into the ether. Of course it depends on what colleges you're looking at and what kinds of programs, and yes more APs look good on a college resume, but they're not going to save you a year's tuition.