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Princeton Day School

School rating 4 / 5 by

The Great Road Princeton NJ 08542 United States
None to None
PK to 12th


Princeton Day School review by .

At PDS, academics are very strong. The thing that prepared me most for college was the amount of reading and assignments. Especially in junior and senior year, the outside-of-class work load was pretty heavy but not unmanageable. This definitely got me ready for the amount of reading in college! Also helpful was the independence teachers gave their students. Although in freshman and sophomore years a lot of times homework was checked or collected, by the time I reached my last two years of high school, homework was something that, if I didn't "feel like it", I didn't have to do. This is much like college--no one is checking up on you, so it's up to you to get your work done, even though it's not always required, it will always help to do it. The lecture based learning was also very influential. It taught me to be outspoken and a thoughtful participant. If my class sizes at PDS had been too big, I wouldn't have gotten such benefits and thus it was awesome to be in small class room sizes. Writing is a skill that's definitely emphasized at PDS which is awesome, because it's beneficial in any job to be a good writer! The skill that is least emphasized is probably foreign language. Although 3 years are required to graduate, the classes are often "jokes" (at least in the language I was in, French) as the teachers in the French department are not the best. However, this is the exception at PDS, and as long as you're not super interested in French, their is nothing lacking in the academics area!

College Counseling

My advisor was awesome--in the beginning of my process I would meet with her quite....

Sample insights on college counseling

  • They have contacts at most of the major universities and feel perfectly comfortable picking up the phone and advocating for a student to get accepted somewhere they feel is a good fit for that student. However, these counselors are certainly not magic bullets. They cannot guarantee that a student will get into an Ivy League university...
  • For those wishing to move on to Oxford or Cambridge, the provision is second-to-none. In the months running up to application and interview, every subject faculty offers classes (often run by former Oxbridge tutors) exploring further areas of their subject as well as offering advice on personal statements, interview technique and more...

Admissions - Getting Accepted

PDS wants well rounded students, not just kids who are ONLY good at sports or....

Sample insights on admissions

  • For the interview, dress conservatively. Try to be very clean and put together. Also, I was a tour guide for two years and at the end of every tour, we were asked to evaluate the candidate so if you think the tour is not apart of the process, you are very wrong. Ask questions and be interested. Also, tip for the parents: the kids speak on the tour. Do not ask their questions for them...
  • Most younger siblings have an easy time in the admissions process. I can only think of one case of a younger sibling not being admitted. About half of the students who entered with me had come from public schools. The remainder came from private K-6 schools, or had transferred from other New York private schools The Elizabeth Morrow School and St. Bernard were two of the larger feeder schools...

School Life

Students here are the best. They're all welcoming, there is a ton of diversity, and plenty of things to do. However, among the top level students, especially in senior year, there is often competition. When you're applying to colleges and coming from a school like PDS, this is only natural. Everyone wants to go to the best schools but not everyone can get in. Yet, while this underlying vibe is often there, students are still collaborative. Group projects happen often, and because the community as a whole is so friendly people do collaborate with each other well. Competition is natural....

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