News and views

  • Child born in 2012? Apply to kindergarten now!

    Written by Clara Hemphill
    If you have a child who will turn five in 2017, now is the time to apply to kindergarten for the school year starting in September. Your child is guaranteed a seat regardless of when you enroll, but you'll have the best chance of getting into a school of your choice if you apply by Jan. 13. If you want to learn more about your options, come to our kindergarten workshop Jan. 11, or buy…
  • Top ten reasons to love InsideSchools

    Written by Insideschools staff
    Here’s why you should support InsideSchools with an online gift today: 1. We visit schools in the snow and rain.
2. We’re independent.
3. We’re parents (we get it).
4. We don’t sugarcoat.
5. We know test scores don’t tell the whole story. 
6. We avoid jargon.
7. We call 'em like we see 'em.
8. We do our best to be fair.
9. Our advice is free—24/7.
10. You rely on us.
Want us to keep on keeping on?
 Show your love and support today! 

 With gratitude,
  • New book on NYC's best elementary schools out Dec. 13

    Written by Insideschools staff
    For nearly two decades, parents have looked to Clara Hemphill to help them find a good public school for their child. This Fourth Edition of "New York City's Best Public Pre-K and Elementary Schools A Parents' Guide" features all-new reviews of more than 150 of the city's best public elementary schools, based on visits and in-depth interviews by Hemphill and the InsideSchools staff. This essential guide uncovers the "inside scoop" on schools (the condition of the building,…
  • New report: Five steps to integrate schools

    Written by Insideschools staff
    The City can do much more to foster economic integration of elementary schools than the small scale efforts it has made to date. That's the conclusion of our new report, Five Steps to Integrated Schools, based on our visits to 150 schools across the city over the past two years. Mayor Bill de Blasio has suggested that school segregation is intractable because it is largely a result of housing patterns, that is, that schools are…
  • To give you help we need help ourselves!

    Written by Insideschools staff
    Middle school and high school applications are due on Dec. 1! Have we helped you in your search? It's a tough task – and a rewarding one.You trust us; you turn to us for help.This #GivingTuesday we're turning to you! InsideSchools is a tiny non-profit group.We can't provide the free services that you count on without your help.Please consider giving us a vote of your confidence with a tax-deductible contribution this year. Donate now!
  • College Counselor: What if a student has dropped out?

    Written by Dr. Jane S. Gabin
    Q: This is a pretty sticky situation. I dropped out of high school to homeschool myself without credit some time ago, using online high school and college-level courses and books, and I've had nobody to help me with college applications or getting into programs. I'm very interested in physics and want to go to a major state university. Is going to community college for a year or two and working really hard there actually a…

How to apply to high school

  • Getting started

    New York City is blessed and cursed by the most extensive system of school choice in the country. Everyone must apply to high school. Choose carefully. Once you enroll, it’s really hard to transfer. The yearlong application process begins at the end of 7th grade,… Read more and watch video
  • Weighing your options: close or far?

    The first thing to consider is whether you want a school close to home or far away. Tip: check out the commute before you apply. Imagine what it will be like on a dark, snowy day in February. Some students happily travel halfway across the… Read more and watch video