Parents of the HS Class of 2023 3.0-3.4

I was surprised at how many schools my son has applied to that didn’t require essays. Our problem is waiting on transcripts.

I’ve found kids don’t talk too much about it. It’s stressful and they want their friend time to be fun as they know it’s coming to an end. It also gets awkward as acceptances come in as 1 friend may get into the other friend’s dream school that the friend didn’t get into. Kids tend to hold their lists and how they rank them close to the vest.


My goal for my kid next week is to request LOR (he hasnt yet that i know of) and to pick 5 schools he wants to apply to.

I guess all kids are different, maybe different regions or areas of the country. Our kids absolutely talk about college ideas, applications and choices with their friends, and even more kids post about their process. When D21 was a senior one silver lining of online/remote school was that there was less comparing on a daily basis. But again, that may be our kids’ school environment.

I would agree with the counselor on this; my suggestion (especially as it’s August) would be to focus on his grades this fall, for his grades are what colleges will consider the most in any application, and all the hours and weeks he would need to spend studying and taking practice tests for the SAT or ACT would be far better spent focusing on his classes for his fall and winter term.

If he’s not a good test taker, all those hours spent trying to cram for those tests aren’t going to make a meaningful difference in his applications. But maintaining, or even bumping up his GPA just a teeny bit would be viewed positively by AOs.


A suggestion for people that are debating whether to send in test scores. You can look up any school’s common data set. It will give you much more insight into the “average” test scores that are reported. It breaks it down into the percentage of admitted students that scored in each score range. It does the same with GPAs. I found this much more helpful than the general 'average" that you find on many websites when trying to assess which schools were safeties/targets/reaches.


I’m dealing with my son doing a little here and there too. But having gone through this with my daughter 2 yrs ago, our plan was to get it all done over the summer. She procrastinated and when she returned to school, there were enough kids who had already submitted applications that she was in panic mode. They get it done but it’s a painful process.

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Thanks all. I know he will get it done. I’m not going to be there in college so he really does need to do this on his own and in his way. We are pushing him to get stuff in early because his top choices have EA and chances are decent he’d hear back before Thanksgiving. There is benefit there for housing selection too. I trust he will get there in the end.

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My daughter (2018) was done with application process by end of August. My son (2023) has shown no interest to complete anything concerning the application process. He has a slight interest in URI and UMaine. Really difficult not to worry. Crazy how siblings are so different.


Chiming in from Class of 2022 3.0-3.4 thread here. Try as I might I could not interest my D22 in doing college apps over last summer. It really took until about 2 weeks after school started in the fall for it to sink in for her, but then she did them over the fall and had them all in by the Dec 1 deadline and was accepted to 4 of the 5 of her schools by Jan. One only did regular decision so had to wait a bit on that acceptance. I think she just really needed the peer pressure and maybe the guidance counselor pushing it too. She was not receptive to mom and dad pushing it.


Exactly, and good for you for letting him do the work!

I said this in another thread when the 4.0 parents were lamenting about their kids not staying on top of their applications for their T20 schools and there was a lot of agreement from us “3.4ers”.

Sometimes kids end up in the college that they “deserve” or that’s the right fit. There are kids working their tails off to gain admittance and scholarships at top schools. (And, yes, I also know that in many cases, there are also parents driving the process). Those kids certainly “deserve” a spot, but might not get one. If my kid can’t do the process on their own they probably shouldn’t be applying to top schools as I won’t be there with them. I know we all want our kids to have the best shot of getting into the schools that we think they should go to or that caught their eye with a nice website, but sometimes they are just not ready for it or not willing to work that hard. If my kid ends up in a school no one has ever heard of or a community college because they couldn’t get their act together to complete an application when there was ample opportunity to get help, then that’s probably where they need to be until they can become a little more self-motivated.

After recently going through this with D22, I also think we all need to remember that applications (even for EA) aren’t due for quite some time and our kids are in summer mode. While we think they should tackle this while they have time and before school puts more demands on them, many kids (especially this age and/or those with ADD/ADHD/executive functioning issues) do not do well when they are not on a schedule or have little to do. It’s almost like the more they have to do the more they can get done.


Wish I could like this post more than once!

During our oldest’s freshman year, spouse and I had frank discussion about whether it made sense to ‘help’ as much as we sometimes wanted to. We both came to the conclusion that us ‘helping’ D20 remember deadlines, cajoling better drafts, pointing out the stakes of a possible gasp lower grade - would probably keep D20’s GPA close to, if not a 4.0, stress her out tremendously and not help her at all if we wanted her to be independent in college.

So we let go of the reins. Not going to lie…there was a dip in grades sophomore year that I think was in part due to her expecting us to swoop in. But we didn’t. And the grades recovered a bit 2nd semester and were strong junior and senior year (except for that one class senior year she dropped because it was a ^%!#*).

D20 didn’t graduate high school with an uw4.0. But she owned each and every one of her grades - the successes as well as the challenges. She also gained a lot of confidence in her ability to recover when she faltered. She improved her communication skills with her teachers, learned to seek out mentorship and help under her own steam. She also learned that failure is part of learning. That she could fail, pick herself up and move forward. And she doesn’t regret dropping that senior year high school class - she hated everything about it and picked a different class to fill the new opened space.

She is now going into her junior year in college. And she has been knocking it out of the park from day one. To be clear, it hasn’t been a ‘perfect’ experience…but she knew it wouldn’t be before she ever set foot on campus and has the skills and the confidence in herself to handle problems and challenges as they arose (as they always do/will).

It is really important to keep in mind the end goal for our children isn’t achieving “perfection” (grades or otherwise) in high school and/or college. It is for them to become independent adults who can be successful at life…which is going to include disappointment, failure, unfairness etc. Knowing how to deal with that is (in my opinion) one of the biggest challenges for all of us.

Getting the chance to practice reacting to/figuring out all those things in the low stakes environment (relatively speaking) of high school is something that might feel scary to us as parents but I think is invaluable to our children. It does require us to show the same confidence in their ability as we want them to feel.


Any thoughts/experiences with Quinnipiac University in CT?

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For what fields? It is extremely highly respected for various medical type fields like physical therapy, occupational therapy and similar programs. My impression is that those grads are highly employable. And that the programs are NOT easy. I don’t know much about other programs they may have.

This is soooo true. Question for you: I’ve been intentional for the last 10 years now in hoping D23 would toughen up and not be devastated at each an every setback and failure. We haven’t seen much growth in this area even with therapy, minimal parental pressure etc.

It’s she who puts the pressure and expectation on herself and beats herself up. I’m starting to worry because she only has a year to go to hopefully mature a little in this area before heading off to college.

We keep reassuring her that she IS enough and that comparison is the thief of joy.

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Has the therapist considered anxiety disorder and meds?

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Oooohhh yes we are covered there - though it’s always evolving. Her therapist is a wonderful and seasoned psychiatrist.


@relaxmom. - Probably marketing or psychology…

I am sorry I don’t know about those fields. You can take a look at Fairfield University as well.

I found the more my kids took the test, the more anxiety they had. Mine forgot his med, the first time he took it and got a 21. The next 2 times, after expensive prep classes and tutoring, and his meds, he topped out at 23. We did get a super of 24. My kids are all poor test takers, and their scores stayed relatively the same no matter how much money was poured into prep. I agree with your counselor on this one.