Skip to content
SA Together Again: We’re back in classrooms and taking learning to new levels!

Mission Possible

Stories and insights on excellent education.

How Likely is “Likely?” A Success Academy Waitlist Parent Asks

The moment I found out I was pregnant with my daughter Jordyn, I thought about her education. My sister has twins, now eight years old, and I’d seen her struggle with the limited number of high-quality schools in Far Rockaway and NYC as a whole. Once, when I was picking up my daughter from daycare (and contemplating her imminent entrance into kindergarten), a flash of orange and blue caught my eye — a Success Academy information table.

Most people who know me know that I’m extremely picky, but the way I see it, why shouldn’t I be, especially with my daughter’s education? I wasn’t sure how Success would measure up to my standards, but I nevertheless set out to learn more about the school design. I grabbed a pamphlet off the table and spoke with the woman there. The more I learned, the more I loved. I admired SA’s K-12 education and commitment to setting high standards for their scholars.

Still, I applied to other charter schools, wanting to keep my options open. I was accepted to every single charter school I applied for — except Success Academy. My SA results read: “Waitlist – Likely.”

What does that even mean? I thought. How likely is likely? My mind raced. Should I accept a seat at another school, or wait it out? What if I choose another school and end up getting accepted to SA? It would be so much easier to just choose now, I thought. But I’d spent five years dreaming of a quality education for my child, so I didn’t want to rush the decision. I put my research hat back on and told myself I’d gather as much information as I could before making a final decision.  

At the SA Open House, I was struck with SA’s realistic approach to schooling. They were aware of the challenges scholars face, approaching these challenges with a whole-child curriculum and encouraging parents like me to partner with teachers on our kids’ educational journey. At my local Panera, I noticed current SA scholars in uniform and marveled at how excitedly they spoke to their parents about their latest science project.  

I began to immerse myself in SA and its resources. The deeper I dug, the more I knew this was the right choice for my daughter.

I began to immerse myself in SA and its resources. The deeper I dug, the more I knew this was the right choice for my daughter. I followed Success Academy on Facebook and Instagram and learned about SA’s rigorous STEM and chess programs. I avidly read SA’s newsletter to waitlisted parents, soaking up information on educational event opportunities in the city, spring learning activities, and books that I could read with my scholar. My parent engagement manager comforted me by sharing wisdom about the lottery process, telling me that I could be pulled from the waitlist all the way up until December. She and the other SA staff I’d spoken with along the way made me feel like a parent, rather than a piece of data on a waitlist. Though I had not been accepted yet, I felt like I was already a vital part of the SA community and that they truly cared about my daughter’s education, regardless of what school I attended.

About a month and a half later (and after countless calls to check my waitlist status), I received the news that I was accepted. Relief washed over me. My waiting had been worth it. Nearly a year later, my daughter dances, multiplies and divides, and reads miles above her grade level at Success. The best part? I don’t fight with her to get her to do homework, because she’s actually interested in school.

Being on the waitlist allowed me to take a step back and carefully evaluate what I wanted for my daughter’s education. I learned that it’s not about where you end up, whether that be a public school, private school, or any charter school. It’s about meditating on each school’s curriculum, offerings, results, and design, and deciding what’s best for your child. I was tempted, at first, to side with convenience and select the first school that accepted my daughter. But I realized that she deserved my patience and full dedication to finding the right fit for her. I urge you to invest time in learning about your options before making a decision. Whatever school you have your eye on — call them, visit them, research them, and understand them. Don’t give up on your child’s education — she deserves better.

Written by Megan Pryor May 10, 2019


Related posts

Protecting the planet, one world-class school at a time

November 12, 2021 Success Academy

Over the past two weeks, all eyes were on world leaders as they convened in Glasgow for the 2021 Climate Change Conference; the health of our planet has never been more critical. At Success Academy, our standard for excellence includes an investment in sustainability and an environmentally responsible approach to our operations and physical spaces.   ... Read more

Thank you to the veterans in our community!

November 10, 2021 Success Academy

The call to military service is not answered lightly, and those who sign up to serve our nation are often some of the most mission-driven people among us. It should come as no surprise, then, that so many veterans continue to serve their communities in some form after their military careers.  We’re lucky to have... Read more

“Happy Children Learn Better” – An SA parent reflects on the return to campus

October 7, 2021 Success Academy

Success Academy reopened its doors to scholars across the city in August, safely ushering students back into the classroom after an unprecedented 2020-21 school year. To keep our scholars safe — and learning — it’s more important than ever that we work together with families and guardians to ensure everyone in our community is on... Read more

Enroll your child

We’re now accepting K-4 applications for the 2022-2023 school year.

Work with us

Build your career while making an impact at Success Academy.