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After middle-of-the-night news on G&T, decision-making time

Hundreds of city parents who spent the weekend hitting their e-mail refresh button now know which gifted and talented program has accepted their child.

Word came first in the form of e-mails sent at the hoppin’ hour of, in one reader’s case, 1:20 Saturday morning. (That was an hour and 20 minutes after the city’s self-appointed (and extended) deadline to start notifying families.) Others, according to this blogger, still hadn’t heard as of 10 p.m. yesterday. Snail-mail notice is expected to land in mailboxes today, a schools spokesman, Andrew Jacob, said.

The most interesting piece of news, though, will be where these parents decide to go. Many of the families applying to gifted programs also applied to private schools, and some are reporting choosing between the two kinds of kindergartens. Will the economy cause parents to spurn private schools? Or will the rising profile of some public schools encourage more families to choose them?

The same firm that the Department of Education relied on to centralize prekindergarten admissions, Vanguard, handled the alerts. Parents in search of placement information report having luck e-mailing Vanguard directly for news.

Families hearing news have children who tested above the 90th percentile on the city’s two gifted and talented tests. They ranked programs they were willing to attend, and today they are learning which one of those programs has offered their child a spot. Families had to rank all of the programs in a district to be guaranteed a spot in one of them, so some families are getting the disappointing news today that they weren’t placed into any gifted program at all.