Westchester Middle School

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High School Information » Getting Started

Getting Started

Where Do I start? 

1. Attend High School Night at Westchester Middle School with your family

  • Meet with High School Representatives from several area high schools
  • Receive helpful information and ask questions 
  • Visit the high school websites and stay connected to high school social media for their upcoming events and announcements


2.  Plan to attend Open Houses of your choice 

  • Tour and Learn about the school
  • Academics and Enrollment details
  • Athletics and Clubs
  • Financial obligations
  • Meet teachers and speak with students
  • See what is most important to you!


3.  Shadow a High School Student! (In 7th Grade, only on days-off at WMS)

  • SEE what the school is like on a “normal” day
  • Experience classes, the learning environment–check out the student to teacher ratio
  • Lunch
  • Can you picture yourself there for four years?
  • During eighth grade, students have two shadow days for that high school experience but, are always encouraged to schedule when WMS is not in session. Students are also encouraged not to use the second day if it is not necessary. 


4. Comparing you final choices of schools - Academics first!
    Course offerings:
    Honors Track    
    Advanced Placement
    College Credit
    College acceptance rates, scholarships earned
    Average/Top SAT scores
    Teacher qualifications
    Student to teacher ratio
    Selection of subjects offered and types of academic assistance

5. Find out about Tuition, Scholarships and Financial Aid: Scholarships and Grants from the schools and from other organizations as well as possible Loan Programs.

6. Most Private schools require 8th grade students to take a placement test. The private Catholic schools all test on the same date and time, the second Saturday in January at 8 am. This prompts parents to determine a school of choice so, that their child takes the entrance exam at that high school. It should be noted that in order to be eligible to receive a high school scholarship, students must test on the second Saturday in January at that school. 

7. Proviso Math & Science Academy require 8th grade students take their entrance exam. It is wise to have a "back-up plan" second choice of high schools if you are not admitted.

8. Make plans to take the entrance exam/placement test, visit the high school's website and request an application. Call or contact high school representatives with questions or concerns.
Questions to consider: Who is allowed to take the exam? How long and what is the format of the test? Can scores be transferred to another school? How much weight does the exam hold?

9. Our 8th graders plan to take the PSAT 8/9 Test administered by Proviso West at WMS on October 4, 2016.  

10. When taking a private high school placement test, be sure to sign the records release form and return it to the WMS Office by the deadline. 

11. Admission each year into private high schools is based primarily on the placement test given at each high school. Copies of the student's latest standardized test results, which may be the PSAT 8/9 or MAP and seventh grade report cards, are also used to determine placement. Students taking a second entrance exam or submitting test scores from another school will generally have second priority.

Important Student Considerations

  • Is there room for improvement on my report card? 
  • Do I know any strategies to help me do well on standardized tests? 
  • What do I want my teachers to write in my letter of Recommendation? 
  • Am I staying involved in school and in the community? 
  • Am I looking for leadership opportunities to describe in my resume? 
  • Am I showing commitment to activities, sports, clubs and other interests?