Private School Admissions – My Child Was Not Accepted

  Private School Admissions – My Child Was Not Accepted


By Admissions Expert, Dr. Lowe

You were certain that your son would be accepted. He had excellent grades. He played on a great sports team. His SSAT scores were off the charts. You made sure that his school principal knew him. His Math and English teacher recommendations were amazing (you even had a parent of a student at your target school write a recommendation). You thoughtthat your top-choice school board member’s recommendation would help. You thought that you wrote excellent parent statements and thoughtthat his student statements were great. The campus visit and the admissions interview, in your opinion, were also great.

However, when you gazed at your cell phone you discovered, to your surprise, that the school(s) didn’t accept your child. WHAT HAPPENED? Where did you go wrong? What do you do now?

As a private school admissions advisor, I am now receiving calls and emails from anxious and nervous parents who thoughtthey did everything right.

If your child was REJECTED (or WAIT-LISTED, which means that “we love your child, but we don’t have spot available today, tomorrow or perhaps NEVER”), what can you do at this stage in the process? SOMETHING WASN’T RIGHT!

From my observation, there are six crucial potential missteps during the private school application process –

  1. Parents assume that it’s all about connections. 
  2. Parents and students don’t prepare enough for the interviews. 
  3. Parents start too late in the admissions planning process. 
  4. Parents assume that their skill sets and/or titles give them an admissions edge.  
  5. Parents and students listen to incorrect advice from chat rooms, online communities and friends.  
  6. Parents make the mistake of retaining an inexperienced educational consultant who is not versed in the admissions policies, diplomacy and politics of top day and boarding schools or does not even continually visit schools and know directors of admissions.

What’s my recommendation – You should now hire an expert who understands the off-waitlist process as well as the reapplication process. It’s important to know, especially for top and elite day and boarding schools, that admissions officers review all the data, appreciate transparency and are experts in their fields.

Many parents also believe that private school admissions officers/committees focus primarily on tangible factors that are measurable and quantifiable. The reality is that admissions officers’ emotions, feelings and value judgment play a significant role in admissions decisions.

When I work with my clients, I ensure that they are protected from the uncertainties and the unexpected in admissions. I physically visit schools and actively interact with school admissions personnel, senior administrators and therefore help my clients avoid the irrevocable mistakes that cause rejections or being placed on the “permanent” waitlist.


Admissions is a competitive sport! Why gamble with uncertainty?” Dr. Lowe

We provide our clients access to our specialized knowledge!” – Dr. Lowe

Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe is the managing director and lead admissions expert at Greenwich Admissions Advisors. Tel. (203) 542-7288, and founder affiliates – Ivy League Admissions Advisors and Private School Admissions Advisors of the Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group network.

Dr. Lowe specializes in providing exclusive concierge-type admissions advisory services for families and students who are interested in applying to top private schools, Ivy League and highly selective colleges and combined BS/MD programs. Dr. Lowe also helps students gain admissions into their top choice private schools and colleges after they have been wait-listed and rejected. Dr. Lowe and his Greenwich Admissions Advisors team provide house-calls for families with extremely busy schedules who can’t come to their office.