Admissions Frequently Asked Questions
What qualities does the school look for in a candidate?
We look for a variety of personal qualities such as strength of character, motivation, initiative, intelligence, creativity, perseverance, and the ability to work with and relate well to peers and adults.
Does Flintridge Prep accept applications from international students?
Presently, we do not issue the I-20 student visa and therefore, are unable to accept applications. Please visit www.caisca.org to find other independent schools in the area.
How many applications do you receive?
While numbers can vary from year to year, we typically receive 4 applications for each opening in the 7th grade and 6 applications per opening in the 9th grade.
From which cities and schools does Flintridge Prep typically receive applications?
We are proud to say we receive applications from a variety of schools and towns. In the most recent admissions cycle, we received applications from candidates who lived in 76 different towns and attended 165 different schools. Presently, we have 38 cities and 101 different schools represented in our student body.
Does the school accept transfer student’s mid-year?
We do not enroll students in the middle of the school year, only at the beginning of each school year in the fall.
Where does Flintridge Prep rank amongst independent schools in California and nationally?
While there are several publications and organizations that rank independent schools, we suggest visiting Niche to see where we are ranked.
Can interested families visit the school?
Yes, there are three opportunities to visit the school. One is to attend the Open House, held at the end of each calendar year. The event is open to students from all grade levels. The second way is to join a campus tour during the week with our Director of Admissions. Tours are held in the fall and spring for both students and parents. The third option is for students to attend a shadow visit on a weekday morning with a current Flintridge Prep student. Visits take place between January and March for applicants only.
Note: opportunities to visit campus may be different during the 2020-2021 school year. Please see Visiting the School for updates.
Does Flintridge Prep have an equal opportunity admission policy?
While our first consideration is to ensure that applicants are the right academic fit, Flintridge Preparatory School values the representation and full engagement of individuals within our community whose differences include—but are not limited to— intellectual perspective, age, ethnicity, family makeup, gender identity and expression, physical ability, race, national and ethnic origin, religion, sexual orientation and socioeconomic status. The school does not discriminate on any basis in its administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs and athletic and other school-administered programs.
Our family is considering applying for financial aid. Do you have any advice?
The financial aid deadline is Monday, January 25, 2021. Completed federal and state tax returns are a required part of the financial aid application. Paper copies of the family’s federal and state tax returns must be mailed to FAST by Friday, February 5, 2021. Please see the Financial Assistance section of our website for more information and a link to the financial aid application.
Please note that the application for financial aid is a separate and second process in addition to the application for admission to Flintridge Prep. If your family is interested in applying for financial aid, it is your responsibility to complete the on-line ISM FAST financial aid application, and to submit tax information by the deadlines noted.
Financial aid decisions will be sent by email to families on March 5, 2021.
Which grades generally have the largest number of openings?
There are 45 openings for 7th grade, and approximately 50 openings for 9th grade. On occasion, there are openings in 8th, 10th, 11th, or 12th grade.
Must I take the ISEE at Flintridge Prep?
No, you may take the ISEE at any one of the ISEE test sites. For more information about testing sites and dates, please visit www.iseetest.org. Remember to include our school code 052375.
Note: the ISEE will be optional for candidates applying for the fall of 2021. Please read the document at the top of this page for more information.
How does the school gather information about its candidates?
Four sources are generally used: A transcript of grades from the applicant’s present school, ISEE test scores, teacher recommendations, and a personal interview. Our aim is to obtain a balanced, objective view of your personality, achievements, and potential.
How can we be certain that Flintridge Prep receives all the necessary paperwork?
Flintridge Prep wants the admissions process to be as worry-free as possible for candidates and their families. Our online admissions system allows your family to work at its own pace to complete the application. In addition, an online tracker/checklist is accessible via the admissions portal that will show you when application materials are received. If we notice a delay, the Admissions Office will make every effort to obtain the required items from your school, and we will contact you if we have not received the necessary paperwork by the stated deadline. If you have any questions, you can always contact us.
I’m not sure my child’s current math and English teachers can do an online recommendation. Can I request paper recommendation forms?
Although we encourage applicants to use the online recommendation request, we realize that some schools and teachers may prefer to complete a paper form. Forms can be downloaded from the application portal or please contact the admissions office for assistance.
How is the personal interview arranged?
The online admissions application contains a section that asks families to select student interview dates. We will contact you to confirm one of the times and dates that the family has requested. It may take several weeks for you to be notified of the appointment. This is because all interviews are scheduled in January and February. Please note that candidates applying for grades 8, 10, 11 and 12 will be interviewed depending on available space in that grade. Also, the interview will be waived for prior applicants for these grades.
How is the interview conducted?
One or both parents should accompany the student on the day of the interview. The family should come to the front office and give the student’s name to the receptionist at the front desk. A teacher or administrator will come out to meet you.
The purpose of the interview is to get to know you, find out your interests, and answer your questions. After the interview the parent(s) will have a few minutes alone with the interviewer to ask questions about the school or share insights about the student.
The total length of the visit is usually no longer than 40 minutes. Plan to arrive a few minutes early, as interviews take place during a free class period for the interviewer — if you are late, there will be less time available for the interview.
How are the decisions made?
Decisions are reached by an Admissions Committee consisting of representatives from the administration and nearly half of the faculty. After each committee member has carefully reviewed each student’s file, the Admissions Committee meets to discuss what each candidate has to offer the Flintridge Prep community.
What does it mean to be on the waiting list?
Unfortunately, Prep has more qualified applicants than it has open spots in each class. The waiting list consists of qualified students who cannot initially be accepted. Students on the list are not ranked; if a space develops, all candidates for the space to be filled will be considered. Because vacancies can develop unexpectedly, acceptances might occur as late as the end of August. One out of four new 9th graders each year are students who applied previously for grades 7 or 8 but who were not admitted at that time.
What are the expectations of a family after a student has been admitted?
Prep is a family. We don't just teach students; we encourage parents to participate in the life of the school. We hope that your family will contribute to the school in many ways — by participating in the Parents Association, Fathers Club, or donating to the Annual Fund. There are many ways in which you can volunteer your time and resources.
For example, parents often volunteer to host receptions at student art exhibitions; assist with drama productions and dance concerts; help athletic teams by designing programs, selling concessions, and hosting season-end banquets; and add to the Flintridge Prep community in countless other ways.
I’m having trouble logging in to the admissions portal. What should I do?
Please see the appropriate instructions in the Admissions Resources box (for either new or current families/prior applicants). If you still encounter any difficulty, please call (818) 949-5545 for technical assistance.
Do you require any additional recommendations?
Aside from the two teacher recommendations, we don’t require recommendations from a school administrator or other personnel. We will accept recommendations from other individuals on a candidate’s behalf if you would like to submit one. Please have them write a letter to the attention of the Director of Admissions, Art Stetson. Letters can be mailed to our office or sent by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
How many electives can students take?
In the middle school, students will first be able to take electives in the 8th grade in language and art. In the 9th-11th grades, students will continue with a language and can also select a year-long art elective. Once students’ complete courses to meet the UC requirements, they have the option of taking more electives. In their senior year, apart from the Identity course, students can select classes to focus on their interests and passions. For more information, please view the curriculum page on our website.