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What Does a Private School Admissions Consultant Do?

A couple and their young daughter sitting and talking with a consultant.

Upon deciding to apply to private schools, some families find it helpful to incorporate the services of an admissions consultant. These experienced, expert professionals guide families through the independent school admissions process, ensuring that they are maximizing their child’s chances of admission at their dream schools and taking the lead in managing timelines, application materials, and important deadlines.

While a good admissions consultant will provide a tailored plan unique to your family’s particular goals, there are a few major categories with which they can be particularly helpful, all of which will maximize your chances of admission at your top-choice independent schools.

Finding the Right Schools

Finding the right private school can be something of a daunting task. Even determining the schools that are the best fit requires a substantial amount of time and energy, and then you need to make sure you have a balanced list. If you’re sure your child wants to attend private schools, it’s important to apply to some “reach” schools as well as some “safer” ones.

A private school admissions consultant can help you with both these aspects of the process. A good counselor will guide you in finding the right kinds of schools for you and help you understand your child’s chances of admission at each one. With their help, you can confidently create a list of schools to which you’ll ultimately apply.

Developing Your Child’s Resume

Independent schools care a lot about what students do outside the classroom, particularly as course grades in elementary and middle school sometimes reflect behavior more than ability. They want to see applicants who are good teammates with strong intellectual potential, so they look for community involvement, athletic participation, and interesting hobbies.

A private school admissions consultant will help your child figure out what he or she likes best and suggest how to develop those interests further. They will also help fill any gaps in your student’s resume, such as finding options for community service or academic enrichment over the summer and school breaks. By getting to know your child’s personality and interests, a private school admissions consultant will help him or her develop a competitive applicant profile.

Providing Academic Support and Resources

Having strong grades and study skills is critical to a successful private school application and another area in which an admissions consultant can provide support to your child. A good consultant can help your child figure out where he or she might be struggling and provide support and advice for study skills, self-advocacy, and learning strategies.

A private school admissions consultant can also help you find opportunities for academic enrichment outside the classroom, which will help your child grow intellectually while also expanding his or her resume. Whether it’s writing classes, math teams, or summer research, these opportunities ensure that a student really stands out during the admissions process.

Preparing for Admissions Visits and Interviews

Independent schools care a lot about personality and community. For that reason, campus visits and interviews are crucial components of the admissions process. A private school admissions consultant can assist with these tasks in numerous ways: planning out a visiting schedule, providing tips for what to ask on your tours, and, especially, helping you prep for interviews.

Independent schools generally interview both students and parents during the admissions process, and a private school admissions counselor can let both you and your child know what to expect and help you prepare strong responses. Through interview preparation and mock sessions, you can feel confident that you will both ace this critical aspect of the process.

Assisting with Essays and Other Materials

When it comes time to actually apply to independent school, you’ll be glad for a little additional help. Almost all private schools ask for essays from both students and parents, which can mean a dozen or more short-answer and essay responses to draft, write, edit, and revise. This is one of the most challenging aspects of the process for both parents and children.

Fortunately, a private school admissions consultant can help you with every aspect of the written application, from brainstorming what to say in every essay to proofreading the application and ensuring it’s completely perfect. A good consultant will know exactly what independent schools are seeking and assist you in submitting the strongest possible applications.

Answering Any and All Questions

When taking on a new project, the best thing you can do for yourself is to seek the guidance of someone who’s been there before. By hiring a private school admissions consultant, you can feel confident that you won’t miss any steps or make any mistakes. A good counselor will be there for you every step of the way to provide advice and answer your questions.

All students and families are unique, which means every application should be distinctive. How to stand out from other applicants is not always obvious, though, especially if you’re applying for the first time. Having an experienced guide by your side will make the independent school admissions process both easy and successful.

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