The Independent School Entrance Exam (ISEE) – Conservative, Independent, and private schools (i.e., Golda Och Academy, The Abraham Heschel High School, and Dwight-Englewood) require the ISEE. Registration (including testing fee) is online only. Please visit http://erblearn.org/parents/admission/isee for further information.
Please Note: SSDS will offer a preparation in mathematics course to 8th grade students this fall. (This course is recommended for students planning to take the ISEE, or Bergen County Academies test.)
Jewish Studies Achievement Test (JSAT) – Orthodox schools such as The Frisch School, The Ramaz School, SAR Academy, Torah Academy of Bergen County (TABC), and Ma’ayanot Yeshiva High School for Girls, each require prospective students to take the two-part JSAT Exam. If you have not done so, it is important to email Lynda as soon as possible if your child is interested in one of these schools. Registration is done through SSDS. There is a $50 fee for the test and the test-practice book.
For Bergen County public high schools, please contact the high school’s Guidance Department for the particular requirements, and request to be placed on the mailing list for “Orientation Day” and other related events. Some students may choose to apply to the Bergen County Academies, a public magnet high school; Mr. Katz is available to review this unique admissions process with any interested SSDS MS student.
High schools usually require a writing sample in the form of an essay or in a response to a question or prompt in the application. We encourage students to seek faculty support to help prepare their individual essays. During that consultation, the student and faculty member will brainstorm topics and the appropriate tone of our students’ essays. Our experience has been that most students need to work through three to four rewrites before their essay is ready for submission.
Please Note: Neither our administrators nor our faculty will write or rewrite your child’s essay; we ask the same of you. High school admissions directors are savvy enough to know when they are reading a parent’s essay; they want to be able to read and evaluate the independent work of your child in order to make an informed acceptance decision.
All private schools and certain public schools require teacher/faculty recommendations. Blank recommendation forms may be found online or in your admissions packet.
Note: Recommendations and transcripts will not be sent without a signed “Transcript Release Form” for each school to which you are applying. Please bring this signed form along with all your recommendation requests to the Middle School Office.
All high school deadline dates are different. Please make sure you carefully read the school’s requirements. (i.e, application due date for parent section/student section, transcript and recommendation due dates, etc.)
To help your child prepare for his or her high school interviews, we will conduct mock-interviews and discuss the importance of a personal interview. This includes advising students about body language, maintaining eye contact, projecting a positive attitude, response style, and wearing appropriate attire. Students are asked to think about the qualities that make them unique and to highlight them in their essays and interviews. They should include information regarding their volunteer histories and participation in extra-curricular activities. Please email Lynda to ensure that we have the date of your child’s interview.