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 middle school

  • What to look for on a school tour.

    Most schools offer tours in the fall. Some districts offer middle school choice fairs in the evening or on a weekend where you can meet the principals and students of a number of schools. Here’s what to look for: Quality of teaching Try to look… Read more and watch video
  • Zoned schools and middle school choice

    In some of the city’s 32 school districts, children are assigned to a middle school according to their home address. In others, children must apply to middle school (although they are guaranteed a seat somewhere in the district.) To find out whether your child has… Read more and watch video