Q. My daughter will turn 5 in late August. She has been attending preschool this year and will be starting kindergarten in the fall. However, she did not pass the entrance exam of the private school that my husband and I had wanted her to attend. She needed to score above 50 on the exam, and she scored below 20.
The school suggested that she attend their preschool next year. Then she could apply again for kindergarten at the end of the year and see if she could score higher on the admission test. There were no promises of kindergarten admission. Now I feel that attending another year of preschool would be holding her back. However, if I select another school, she may be missing a wonderful opportunity to attend this school. - Need to Make a Decision
A. Your daughter is definitely a very young 5, and the private school did offer you a plan. Don't feel that you are holding her back, because research shows that students do better academically if they are older when starting kindergarten.
You need to keep in mind that even though your daughter has been in preschool, she would be attending a different one, so everything is likely to be a new experience. The private preschool is likely to teach her what she needs to know to enter their kindergarten program.
It definitely sounds like you want your daughter to attend this school, and she can next year. Of course, there is no guarantee, as the school says, that she will be able to pass the kindergarten admission test at the end of next year. Nevertheless, she will be far better prepared for kindergarten wherever you send her.
Q. As my daughter starts the college application process, we are curious to know if some colleges are better at meeting their students' needs for financial aid than others. We will definitely need as much financial help as we can get. - Need Aid
A. Here is a list of the "Top 10 Best Value Public and Private Colleges" in rank order. It was compiled by The Princeton Review based on criteria covering academics, cost of attendance and financial aid. The complete list is posted online at The Princeton Review's website at http://bit.ly/3Xc6G.
10 Best Value Public Colleges
·2. New College of Florida (Sarasota)
·4. State University of New York at Binghamton
·5. University of Georgia (Athens)
·6. University of Michigan (Ann Arbor)
·7. College of William and Mary (Williamsburg, Va.)
·8. University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill)
·9. North Carolina State University (Raleigh)
10 Best Value Private Colleges
·1. Swarthmore College (Swarthmore, Pa.)