High School Placement – September 18

Dear 8th Grade Families,

Please save the date for two Zoom webinars. While we will have ample time for Q and A during both, if you would like to submit questions ahead of time, please do! estoller@sdfrenchschool.org

Wednesday, September 23 – 5:30 – 6:30 pm

Part 1 – Public High School Information + Q/A
Part 2 – French in High School + Q/A (Mme Addo)
Part 3 – Private School + Q/A (no obligation to stay for Part 3 if not relevant for your family)

Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/97216082582

Presented by Ms. Stoller, Mme Addo, and Mr. Rosenblum. The webinar will be recorded and shared afterwards. Parents and students should tune in!

Wednesday, October 7 – 5:30 – 6:30 pm

Hear from SDFAS alumni about their high school experiences now and in pre-Covid times. Plenty of time for Q and A.
Will be recorded and shared afterwards. Parents and students should tune in! Link to follow.

SDUSD has not yet updated the Choice Application dates or deadlines on their website https://sandiegounified.org/departments/neighborhood_schools_and_enrollment_options

but I contacted the district and they confirmed the opening day will be October 5. The person I spoke to couldn’t confirm the end date, but it’s usually 6 weeks, so that would be November 13. If you need assistance completing the application — the language is a little tricky — I will organize a zoom help session during the week of October 12, especially for non-anglophone families as the administrative English in the online form can be challenging. (Surtout pour les familles françaises et/ou non-anglophones : vous serez confrontés par un anglais spécifique et administratif.)

Reminder: No Choice is to attend a school that is NOT your assigned school. No application is necessary to attend your assigned public high school, but you must show proof of residence to enroll there in the spring. Find your assigned school here: https://www.sandiegounified.org/schoolfinder

Most public and private schools are only doing virtual tours and open houses right now. This could change so be sure to check the admission page and do an “inquiry” sign up on the websites of schools you are interested in.

Mission Bay — Tracy Borg, the International Baccalaureate Coordinator at Mission Bay let me know that she will be doing at least two virtual tours via zoom before the Choice Deadline. As soon as I have the times and dates I will let you know.

La Jolla High School — will not be doing tours in person but will have a video soon and are planning a Zoom Q and A Session. I’ll keep you posted as I have more information.

Pacific Ridge, Grauer, Bishop’s, Parker, La Jolla Country Day, OLP and Saints are all doing virtual tours for now. Please go to their websites to sign up.

Cathedral is offering in person tours. Please go to their website to sign up.


The I.B. is offered at San Diego High School, Mission Bay High School in San Diego, and further north at La Costa Canyon, Vista, and San Guajome. It is a very robust academic, college preparatory curriculum for free at these public schools. Many colleges give credit for IB classes / passing IB exams. Doing the IB looks good on college applications because it is a known, rigorous curriculum. It is not for everybody – it is very challenging, writing intensive, and has cumulative exams at the end of 12th (and sometimes 11th) Grade. The program is complex – please let me know if you wish to talk about it in detail. Learn more about the IB here:
IB General
IB College Admissions


Academic Fit and Style; Public/Private/Religious; Location/Commute; Cost; Community; Diversity in all its forms; Athletics; Arts; Co-Curricular opportunities; Class Size; Size of School; Availability of individual support; College admission results; Mission and Philosophy; Programs – AP, IB, etc,; Classes available…and the intangible – how do you feel on campus? Can you imagine “living” here for the next four years? Even more difficult this year to know, as visits may not be possible.

Know that completing the SDFAS Middle School program will prepare you for any high school program you end up choosing.

Know that you are making a 4-year commitment and the way things look right now is not the way they will look a year from now…

–Most San Diego area private high schools will not require the ISEE exams as part of the application process this year. I can confirm that this includes Bishop’s, Parker, Pacific Ridge, and La Jolla Country Day, so far. Grauer continues to NOT require the ISEE.

–The Catholic high schools traditionally require the HSPT, a different test, but they are still coming to an agreement about whether or not to require it this year. Ask the school.

–Some private schools may ask for the CSS Character Snapshot. https://www.ssat.org/pages/character-skills-snapshot

Each school is taking its own approach, and we know that things can change rapidly, pending Covid-19 data and directives from the county and state, so please be proactive with the schools you are interested in.
Most application windows will open October 1. Please keep me informed of your plans, and consider having a Plan A, B and C, to cover all the bases.

As always, please let me know if you have any questions.

Erin Stoller

High School Placement Counselor