Thursday, April 30, 2015

Getting into NYC Kindergarten

For every New York City parent finding schools for their kindergartener, here’s a resource for you. Getting Into NYC Kindergarten (September 2016) by Alina Adams is available now at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. We interviewed Alina to learn more about her book and how it helps parents through the process.

Why did you decide to write this book?
I have three children, ages 15, 11 and 8 and have been through the thrilling process of finding a Kindergarten three times. Currently, I have kids in a combination of public, private, gifted and religious schools. As I went through it myself, I talked to lots of parents along the way, helping them too. I was asked to make presentations in preschools and at the end, people kept saying, “I wish I had all this information in one place. You should write a book”. So I finally did.

How is this book helpful to parents?
No other book like it currently exists. There are books on NYC's top public and private schools, books on applying to private school, and books on how to prep your child for a variety of entrance exams. But "Getting Into NYC Kindergarten (September 2016)" is the first to cover everything in one. And because it's electronic, it features links to dozens of sites, articles and reports for parents to learn more about each topic; things like the pros and cons of gifted programs, red-shirting, single-sex schools and longer school days. Plus, the NYC Department of Education is known to change rules and requirements midstream. "Getting Into NYC Kindergarten (September 2016)" can be instantly updated, unlike a print book. I also have an option for parents to sign up for email updates to be notified right away when processes change.

What are some of the challenges parents face?
New York City is fortunate to have a wealth of school choices. The challenge is that many parents do not know what options they have available. In addition, applying to each school is unique, with different testing and interviewing requirements. It can be overwhelming for parents, so this step-by-step guide provides a timeline and resources to help them navigate their options. The month by month timeline is extremely helpful as many parents will need to begin the process almost a full year and a half before their child would enter kindergarten. That's why the book is called "Getting Into NYC Kindergarten (September 2016)." If your child will be starting Kindergarten in September of 2016, you should be beginning the process now!

Anything else you would like parents to know?
You can’t make an informed decision if you don’t know your options. It can be a time consuming process, but well worth it for your child to join a school that is the right fit for them. Many parents say they can’t afford private school, but I encourage them to pursue it anyway. For the right family and the right school, it may be more affordable than they realize.

For more information about Alina’s book and workshops available, please visit her website.

Friday, March 27, 2015

The Hidden Obstacle to Mobility: Schooling for Children with Special Needs

Susan Ginsberg, Vice President Global Services and Business Development of School Choice International shares our experience of assisting relocating families with children and particularly children with special needs. One of the biggest single obstacle to talent mobility involves moving with children. Read more about this topic in our blog post with SCI's business partner Cartus, a worldwide provider of domestic relocation and international assignment management solutions.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Scholarship fund encourages New York City school-age children to pursue their unique passions

The School Choice Group (SCG), the leading global education consultancy headquartered in New York, in collaboration with the Parents of Accelerated Learners, NYC (PALNYC), announced today the second annual Michael Perelstein Memorial Scholarship Fund Discover Your Passion competition winners.

This competition is targeted toward New York City students from 2nd through 8th grade who show exceptional promise and passion for an individual interest, such as academic fields, sports, music, the arts, community service, entrepreneurship, or technology. The focus on individual passion and the story behind the funds are what make this scholarship unique. Michael Perelstein was a man who learned late in life the importance of passion and of doing what he loved. His untimely death at age 56, taught the ultimate lesson––the value of living your dreams––to his widow, Elizabeth Perelstein and his children, Sarah and Daniel Perelstein. The opportunity to foster this value led to the creation of this memorial scholarship award program.

Each entrant was required to submit a sample or demonstration of their endeavor, nomination letters, and a description of how the award monies will be used to further their unique passion.

“I know Michael would be proud to have provided opportunity for young people to pursue their personal passions and I am honored to be able to keep his memory alive by nurturing these children’s educational interests," said Elizabeth Perelstein, the Chair and Founder of the School Choice Group.

The 2014 Michael Perelstein Memorial Scholarship Fund Discover Your Passion award winners are (click on their name to learn more about their passion):

Samantha Katel (The Mandell School, Manhattan, grade 8). Samantha, the Grand Prize Winner is being awarded $5,000 to develop a unique therapy device for autistic children. She is an 8th grader from Manhattan who for the last three years has been a volunteer peer buddy at Manhattan Children's Center, a school for children with autism. Samantha has designed and hopes to prototype and distribute her idea with the help of this award. 

Julian Benelli (The Anderson School, PS 334, Manhattan, grade 3). His musical talent already blooming at the age of 8, Julian is being awarded $3,500 to purchase a weighted keyboard, piano bench and piano lessons to help his music composition.

Akira Nakada (Speyer Legacy School, Manhattan, grade 6). A keen and talented chess player, Akira will receive $3,500 to attend the North American Chess Open and to take private chess lessons.

Sebastian Klein (PS 29 -John M Harrigan, Manhattan, grade 5). Sebastian is being awarded $1,500 to be used for fencing equipment, clothing, and private fencing lessons.

Nash Flammang (Success Academy, Manhattan, grade 3). Nash will receive $3,500 to expand his “Lemon-Aid” stand to help the homeless. The funds will be used for tuition to an entrepreneurship camp and for seed money to advance his project.

Olivia Kelly (School: PS 121, the Bronx, grade 2). Olivia will receive $1,500 to attend an International Gymnastics Competition winter camp to prepare her for the Junior Olympics.

Andrei Stewart-Chapman (Little Red School House, Manhattan, grade 4). Andrei is being awarded $1,500 to support his passion for tap dance with a tap board, shoes and lessons.

The winners will receive their scholarships on November 8th at an award celebration at the NYC Ed Tech Family Day A’Fair. This premiere event––part carnival, part scavenger hunt, part education fair for parents and their children in kindergarten through 8th grade––will introduce Education Technologies to NYC families. 

November 8, 2014 at 10:00-12 noon
NEST School+m 
111 Columbia St. 
New York, NY 10002

For information on the scholarship see

School Search Solutions, a division of The School Choice Group is New York’s leading education consulting service, specializing in school placement for private, public, specialized and international schools, from preschool through college. Founder and Chair, Elizabeth Perelstein, co-founded the British International School of New York. With its largest team of education consultants in the New York area, School Search Solutions has helped hundreds of New York families find the right schools for their children. 

School Choice International, also a division of The School Choice Group is the world’s largest education consulting and school placement firm with over 140 on-the-ground consultants (including Special Education Consultants) in 75 locations worldwide. School Choice International provides a broad array of education solutions to transferring employees and organizations.

About The Parents of Accelerated Learners, NYC [PALNYC] 
The Parents of Accelerated Learners, NYC [PALNYC] is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that launched three years ago with one mission: to provide educational resources for parents to better support the strengths and talents of their children. This mission continues to be realized today with an expanding collaboration of schools, educators, parents and organizations through quality programs and events like The NYC Gifted & Talented Symposium, that supports the cognitive, social and emotional needs of high potential youth, The NYC Ed Tech Family Day A’Fair, and the PALNYC Workshops Series for parents.

For more information, see and


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